Modern Street Ballads


I sing of a man to some well known,
Who went and listed in the King’s Own,
For he was tall, and mighty grown,
Full six feet high of flesh and bone.
                  Ri lol, lol, lay, etc.

Now this man to battle did go,
The balls flew thick, and whistled so,
There was one came straignt and gave him a blow,
And knocked off his arm above his elbow.

When the surgeon came to look at the wound
A noted thief lay on the ground,
Quite dead, but still he’d a perfect arm,
So he sawed it off while it was warm.

Now this arm he spliced to our hero’s stump,
And bound it fast, wasn’t he a trump?
And in a short time it got well,
As man of that brave corps can tell.

This man he turned out a thief,
And was discharged for stealing beef,
For with this cursed thief’s arm he got,
He could let nothing be too heavy or hot.

Then up to London he did repair,
To see if advice he could get there,
And all the way that he did jog,
The arm was at work, and found him in prog.

And when he got there he walked along,
And strove to bustle through the throng,
But the arm kept diving in every one’s pocket,
He tried all he could, but he couldn’t stop it.

It stole him watches, gold and rings,
And many other precious things,
And one night he found he’d wealth in store,
For Bandanna wipes, he had a score.

He robbed the Bank and Treasury,
Likewise a Poet at the play.
And, one night, ’tis really said,
He stole a glass eye from an old woman’s head.

Now this arm had such a propensity
For stealing, that it could not stay,
It robb’d a regiment of its baggage,
Likewise a tailor of all his cabbage.

Long time he carried on the trade,
Until he had a fortune made,
But for a crime he was afterwards taken,
And sent by the Judge to be hung up like bacon.

And when he came to the gallows tree,
With the Parson’s watch he did make free,
And as Jack Ketch was tying the knot,
He pick’d his pocket of all he’d got.

Now this man, he was buried, as you may suppose,
And after that the arm arose,
And join’d a body-snatching knave,
Who stole his master out of his grave.

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