Ring out a welcome worthy peal,
Ye bells of Christmastide;
Ring out the woe, ring in the weal,
And human frailty guide;
Ring out the gloom, the saddened gloom
That we have known so long —
Enshrine it in a Christmas tomb,
And in a Christmas song.
Ring out a solemn, mournful peal
For friends who are no more,
Whose love, while here, but makes us luv!
That they are gone before.
Aye! ring out a muffled, muffled peal,
We all have lost a friend,
And While ye ring we, too, will kneel
To Him Who knows our end.
Ring out a merry, hopeful peal
For better days to come;
Aye! burst the cloud, and there reveal
A happy Christmas home.
Let hunger cease his piercing dart,
And want her clutching bite;
Let Christmas join each Christian heart,
And soul to soul unite.
Ring out, ye joyful Christmas bells;
Your lay ﬂoat on the wind
Till every human bosom swells
With love for all mankind;
Till cruel war no more shall wage
For selﬁsh, sordid aims;
Till we can show a blotless page:
’Tis this King Christmas claims.
Don’t think that I’m prone to be gloomy,
Because now and then I complain,
But really I think there is room, eh?
To grumble respecting the rain.
For day after day it is muddy,
And week after week it is wet;
No wonder our cheeks grow less ruddy,
So little of sunshine we get.
’Tis raining if early I’m rising,
It rains if I lie until noon;
Fine weather is now most surprising,
’Twill be quite a novelty soon.
’Tis so tantalizing to many
Who’ve business important to do;
But courters are worse off than any,
Their nights are the stormiest too.
The wind, and the shocking bad weather,
Are playing sad havoc with me;
Umbrellas won’t hold fast together;
I’ve broken, I think, twenty-three.
Have patience, humanity teaches;
I lose it, however I try;
I’m constantly changing my breeches,
And hanging them up for to dry.
I’m troubled with colds and rheumatic,
Digestion is failing its part;
And, though you may think me erratic,
There’s something disturbing my heart.
But heed not these sad lamentations —
Existence is burdened with grief;
I know I have strange inclinations,
But rain cannot give them relief.
A WALK IN SPRING
See how the trees are budding,
Greet joyfully each leaf,
Such harbingers of summer
Should know no pain nor grief.
While o’er the ﬁelds is spreading
God’s beauteous grass so green,
Let each small blade remind you
Of greater things unseen.
And when the ﬂowers shall open,
To blossom o’er the earth,
Be each sweet cup a token
Of Him who gave it birth.
And when the autumn cometh,
And all things fade away,
May we our work have ﬁnished,
As will the ﬂowers of May.
Hurrah! hurrah! for cricket,
Come cheer ye merry men;
For bat, and ball, and wicket,
Hurrah yet once again!
Ye people of dissension,
Who controversy court,
What is there you can mention
That beats this English sport?
What is there half so jolly,
What is there half so free,
What lightens melancholy,
And gladdens with such glee?
What gives such manly vigour,
Such animating zeal,
What is there softens rigour,
And makes us hearty feel?
My comrades ﬁll a bumper,
Here’s right good health to all,
To bowler, batter, stumper,
And all who touch the ball;
May luck desert you never,
But may you always win,
And may true friendship ever
Keep all your hearts akin.
LIFE ’S WORK
Come, why this sad dejection—
This longing after rest?
We cannot reach perfection
Though each one does his best
There’s always something higher
To spur us on our way;
’Twas meant we should aspire,
And thus progress each day.
This world is full of trials,
That oft our path beset;
Then brood not o’er denials,
We’re made to conquer yet.
This life were but a bubble
If shorn of toil and thought,
True pleasure comes of trouble,
That’s well and nobly fought.
What though our part be humble?
If done with heart and soul,
No man on earth need grumble —
’Tis parts that make the whole.
Dame Fortune may be frowning,
But keep your purpose true,
She’ll come again with crowning;
There’s always work to do.
I like a genial-hearted smile,
That brightens up the face,
That casts a halo all the while,
And gives a homely grace.
I like a smile that’s open, free,
Spontaneous in its mirth,
And peaceful as the calm blue sea,
Resistless as the earth.
I like a smile that oft will grow
Into a laughing sound,
And set all kindred hearts aglow,
Make merriment abound.
I like a smile that softly speaks
For its own soul within;
That plays so sweetly round the
A smile that knows no sin.
There’s language in a simple smile
More strong than tongues can speak
And eloquence in truest style,
Go where we will to seek.
THOSE CONFOUNDED BUTTONS!
“My dearest pet,
Pray, have you yet
Those buttons put upon my shirt?
I do engage
You’ll waste an age
In trimming that confounded skirt.
“And here I’ve been,
Nor dare be seen,
Stuck in this nook from morn till night,
Whilst you, my dove,
And darling love,
Don’t care to free me from this plight.”
“Now, Mister Winn,
Don’t make a din,
Because I’m working for myself —
I can’t see why
You shouldn’t try
To sew the buttons on yourself!
“I wonder when
There were such men
As these enlightened days produce,
Who, on my life,
Regard a wife
As manufactured for their use;
“Who think that we
Should ready be
Just at their lordship’s call, and rise
To stitch them that,
And who knows what,
And think us fools, and they the wise!
“I’ll let you know
It is not so —
Ah! you may stare, and shake your head —
You p’rhaps will ﬁnd
That I’ve a mind,
And mean to use it, too, my Fred.”
Alas! poor Fred!
He now is wed,
And must, of course, put up with fate!
He ﬁnds it is
Not always bliss
To join the matrimonial state.
The glory of our honoured name,
The dignity we nobly claim,
Have not been won by clash of arms,
Nor diplomatic war’s alarms;
’Tis not the men we set apart
To ﬁght that cause the English heart
To gladly own its native soil,
And proudly share its worthy toil.
The germ of English greatness springs
Him whence cometh all good
He planted riches in our lands,
And blessed us with industrial hands;
True labour in an honest ﬁeld
Is honour’s best and brightest shield.
FROM AN ESSAY ON IMPERIALISM
That rule is good, and liveth long,
Which, feeling that its arm is strong,
To want and grief is never blind,
But tries to comfort all mankind.
That rule is good, and great the crown
That scorns to tread its people down,
That stretcheth forth its hand to save,
And helps its subjects to be brave.
Aye! brave in greater things than war,
Where enmity and carnage mar,
The brightest side of human life,
And foster bitterness and strife.
But brave in true nobility,
And kindly generosity,
Forgetting not that God above
Delights in truth, in peace, and love.
And brave in all that constitutes
The gap dividing men from brutes;
Pursuing paths the great have trod,
That lead to purity and God.
That rule is good — and may it spread —
That loves to give its people bread;
Where natural laws are understood,
And less distinction paid to blood.
That rule is good, though it were stern —
Oh! would it might to us return,
Where men in power should speak the
And leave their dreams to foolish youth.
That rule is good that knows no pride,
Save as a bridegroom to a bride,
That seeketh not to make offence,
But gives and takes full conﬁdence.
That rule is best the wide world o’er,
That never seeks to quarrel more,
That curbs its lust, and gives its hand,
To’ards making peace throughout the land.
And can it be that war is just,
And proper that a Christian must
Decide by sword in bloody ﬁght
What may be wrong, or shall be right?
What has the sword in bygone days
Accomplished that deserves our praise?
What are its deeds of crimson hue
That ever made the world more true?
What righteous cause e’er rose to fame
By staining thus its holy name?
What noble work e’er felt its mead,
Nor could progress, did men not bleed
In mortal feuds, by malice wrought,
When men loved less the more they fought
Does Nature mean that man must draw
On brutal force for mortal law,
By practised aim and skilful eye
Declare what race must live or die?
I will not think — it cannot be —
That God designed such cruelty.
With every age invention brings
Some strange and unexpected things;
Each generation in its day
Cuts through the wood, and paves the
We further than our fathers get,
Our children will go farther yet;
Each generation will excel
The former one, though it did well.
We gaze with wonder and surprise,
And oft the works of men despise,
Though perhaps that work in days gone
Were ranked by men as being high,
Because, forsooth! we know the more,
And pride ourselves upon the store
Of knowledge which we may possess,
While we forget to thank and bless.
With every age there comes a task;
Let each and all this question ask,
“Can I assist, improve mankind?
Am I prepared, with heart and mind,
To do my duty as a man —
To do the work I feel I can?”
And, having asked it, answer too,
“The task assigned I’ll proudly do.”
Oh what a time is Whitsuntide
For jollity and mirth;
There’s scarce another holiday
That counts one half its worth.
What cheerful hearts,what prattling
What youthful happiness,
When nature vies with boys and girls
To show its summer’s dress!
How pretty is the harmony!
How bright the contrast too!
The ﬁelds and trees of greenish tinge,
The girls with dresses blue;
The earth bedecked with wondrous
All hearts are light and gay,
Sweet smiles prevail, kind words go forth,
To greet this holiday.
Unfurl your banners to the breeze
That speak of children’s glee;
Aye! lift them high, to show the world
No better sight can be.
Then hail with joy this gladsome time,
Take Nature by the hand,
And kindly help her thus to spread
True pleasure o’er the land.
Sweet Ilfracombe, I love thee well,
And thus would make my passion known;
Though many suitors near thee dwell,
There’s none whose love excels mine own
In fancy shall I oft embrace,
And bring thee closer still to me;
And feel that glow upon thy face,
Though distance separates from thee.
Thy caves, and cliffs, and mountain peaks,
Proclaim thy power with sacred awe;
The rippling rill then softly speaks,
And whispers that thy love is law.
Thy sisters, too, I fain would take,
Nay! chide me not, nor jealous grow;
Fair Clov’lly cannot evil wake,
And purest thoughts o’er Lynmouth ﬂow.
The waves may break upon thy beach,
And storms may rage around thy shore;
But peace and calm thy mem’ries teach,
Though I should never see thee more.
I wish I could have seen his face
Ere he was called away,
And met his bright and gentle eye,
And felt its genial ray.
He must be happy when he saw
His works crowned with success;
When labour wins such great rewards
’Tis highest happiness.
I wish I could have heard his voice,
It must have been so sweet
When he bent o’er his little child
To watch its pattering feet.
To have a father such as he,
Though poor to worldly eyes,
Were to possess God’s richest gift —
God’s greatest earthly prize.
My fancy often wanders o’er,
And lingers round that spot,
And even steals a glimpse within
That comfortable cot.
I see him bless his little one,
And take it on his knee;
I hear him cheer his loving wife,
And bid her merry be.
They cluster round the cosy hearth,
And, with a fondling look,
The father rises from his chair
To reach that good old book.
And when he reads in earnest tones
Of that bright heavenly goal,
I feel, whatever Tyndall says,
That man must have a soul.
I now behold him in the ﬁeld,
I hear his voice again
Depicting wrongs, and guiding right
His suffering fellowmen.
I gaze on him at Peterloo,
I love his graceful mien,
And while I look the ﬁeld is changed
Into a bloody scene.
And now I view that playful smile,
As step by step they come,
With martial tread and strong array,
To steal him from his home.
But force is needless — their’s the crime —
His glory gilds the van;
His honest and courageous deeds
Portray the noble man.
Then bid us not forget such times,
But rather let us trace
The landmarks that our fathers built,
The glory of their race.
Be those events indelibly
Impressed upon our minds,
Nor let us scatter history
Before the thoughtless winds.
AFTER (NOT MUCH) LORD SALISBURY AT
What won’t we Tories glibly preach,
What doctrines won’t we falsely teach,
What heights of folly won’t we reach,
What laws we’ll pass, what laws repeal;
What principles we’ll slyly steal;
What cards we’ll shufﬂe and misdeal,
One year we’ll advocate Home Rule,
The next we’ll rudely spurn its school;
We’ll either play the knave or fool,
We’re not exacting as to grade,
We’ll vote for “Fair” or any “Trade;”
Through mud and slime we’ll nobly wade,
We boast no colours, ’tis most true,
As suits us best we’ll change our hue;
We’ll mix, or vote for red or blue,
We’ll not resign our easy chairs
For what the people say downstairs,
We do so love the pay and cares
TO THE LIBERALS OF ENGLAND
Ye Liberals of England
Whose fame spreads o’er the seas,
Who proudly curb the despot’s sway,
And scorn his vain decrees,
Your glorious banner wave on high,
Aside your crotchets throw,
And plunge in the ﬁght
Till freedom and right
Shall stronger and nobler grow;
With valour and might
Your forces unite,
And Truth shall her honours
The spirit of our leaders
Will yet our honour save;
The Platform is their ﬁeld of faith,
The Press their champion brave.
Where Bright and Gladstone may be found
’Tis there that we will go
To plunge in the ﬁght, &c.
Britannia needs no bulwark,
Of titled men to keep
The proud position now attained,
Her greatness lieth deep.
Her glory is her people’s thrift,
That glory let us show,
And plunge in the ﬁght, &c.
The Liberal ﬂag of England
Will yet to victory tum;
We’ll bid adieu to foreign broils,
And Christian lessons learn.
Our armour now we’ll buckle on,
Our purpose all may know,
To plunge in the ﬁght, &c.
THE M.P. AND THE BABY
Three ladies, whom we’ll christen Brown,
Resolved to visit London town,
And, just their happiness to crown,
They took a baby.
They showed that baby all the sights,
Including all the shops at nights,
They carried with them women’s rights,
Besides a baby.
Thus pleasantly their time was spent,
But ere their steps were homeward bent,
Says Mrs. Brown :—“To Parliament
We’ll take the baby.”
Of course, the two Miss Browns were rile
But Mrs. Brown remarked, and smiled,
“Some members, just to put it mild,
Are only babies.”
To Westminster they went their way,
And entrance gained without delay,
And of a constable did pray
To take the baby.
He turned upon his heels, and ﬂed,
And with his hands he held his head,
“They know not that this House,” he said,
“Is full of babies.”
Upon a slip their names they write,
The slip then forward takes its ﬂight,
And presently a dandy quite
Comes to the baby.
He takes that baby on his arm,
And kisses it to keep it warm,
Then bids his friends, in great alarm,
To hide the baby.
He loved it, though his love would keep,
His love was like a well, ’twas deep,
But inward1y — let angels weep,
He cursed that baby.
“Alas!” says he, “what must I do?
If one by one, or one by two,
I’ll gladly take you all three through,
But not the baby.”
“You little know my standing here,
I’m not in Oldham now, I fear,
My mates will call a colleague dear,
That little baby.”
So one by one, or one by two,
He took them all the Commons through
And begged them, whatsoe’er they do,
Be mum about the baby.
THE SONG OF THE CALLS
Weary, sickened, and sad, with eyelids
heavy and red,
A poor man stood, in a penitent mood,
munching a crust of bread;
Munch, munch, munch, with his gaze ﬁxed
on the cold walls,
Whilst now and again, in a dolorous strain,
he sang this song of the calls.
Calls, calls, calls, I’m heartily sick of the
And calls, calls, calls, worth seven-and-six in
There’s scarce a day goes but — woe upon
woes — these terrible foes ,
Come ranged in long rows, deﬁantly
spoiling my nightly repose.
Breakfast, dinner, or tea, are one and the
same to me,
Of troublesome mails the post never fails to
bring me perhaps two or three;
And oft I’ve been tempted — but then I’ve
repented — the postman most
soundly to thrash;
But what if I did — though heaven forbid —
’t would scarcely mend matters of
Calls, calls, calls, each visit by post is the
And calls, calls, calls, let the future emblazon
The tragedy great that it plays deserves the
highest of praise,
But should it not cease, and let me have
peace, it surely will shorten my days.
Calls, calls, calls, what a musical word in my
And calls, calls, calls, I’m in for a scrape it is
The fortune I made by commerce and trade,
alas! I’m afraid
Will dwindle away, as sure as the day, ere
half of my calls I have paid.
Calls, calls, calls, I’ve ﬁles upon ﬁles that are
And calls, calls, calls, oh! my brain grows
maddened and dull;
Calls, calls, calls, till my senses wander
The calls are all due, but what is most true, I
have got no money to pay.
A SIMPLE STANDARD
Be earnest and steadfast
In all that you do,
And be your ambition
Exalted and true.
Be upright and manly,
And never be mean;
Give help to the needy,
But let it be clean.
Hold fast that religion
Which helps all mankind,
Not selﬁshly pushing
Your neighbours behind.
In matters of doctrine
Let each one be free;
Two consciences never
To faith offer freedom,
’Tis noble and just;
Say not to another
Thou shalt, or thou must.
In language and conduct
Make beauty your guide;
In all that lifts manhood
Take pleasure and pride.
Be honour your motto
And mercy your rule;
Do nothing unworthy
Nor play you the fool.
Have hope in the future,
Do good while you can;
Be all that is needful
To build up a man.
’TIS HARD TO DIE IN YOUTH
’Tis hard to die in youth,
When all seems incomplete;
Just when we realise the truth
That life on earth is sweet.
’Tis hard to die when young,
And leave our friends behind;
We think God’s links of love unstrun
And wonder, is he kind?
’Tis hard in youth to die,
In spring of life to part,
When fruits of Summer’s beauty lie,
But budding in the heart.
We often look aloft,
To view that distant scene;
We measure long, we measure oft.
The gulf that lies between.
That gulf draws nigh each day,
As we our course speed on,
Till Death a bridge throws o’er the way,
And we, alas, are gone.
O Father, teach us how to pray,
For all that helps us day by day;
Teach us to know our duty here,
And make the path of duty clear.
O make us thankful, Lord of Light,
For all the men who loved the right,
For those who in the darkest days,
The Flag of Freedom dared to raise.
For all the blessings we possess,
For all the joy and happiness,
For all the hopes that make us men,
O may we thank Thee, Lord, again?
And help us, Lord, to live the life
That makes for peace and not for strife;
That sees in all below, above,
Thy priceless gift — the gift of Love.
Interior of Unitarian Chapel,
Lord Street, Oldham.
O God of the frost and the snow,
That seem to ﬁnd every place,
Reminding Thy creatures below
’Tis so with Thy heavenly grace.
O God of the mist and the rain
That darken and shorten our days,
Give light that Thy children again
May sing to Thy glory and praise.
O God of the great rushing winds,
That toss the great ship like a toy,
Give Thou of Thy blessing that binds
Thy children in love and in joy.
O God of the billows and waves
That roll on the time-beaten sands,
That play in the caverns and caves
Of happy and unhappy lands;
Give strength like the strength of the tide,
To break down the barriers of sin,
To sweep them for ever aside,
While justice and mercy come in.
O God of the valleys and hills
Where sunshine and gloom alternate,
Where men spend their lives at the mills,
And droop like the victims of fate;
O send them the rays of the sun,
Surround them with heavenly light,
Illumine the path that they run,
Make labour more hopeful and bright.
O God of the weak and the strong,
O God of the high and the low,
Let right take the place of all wrong,
And love sweeten sorrow and woe.
HYMN OF PRAYER
Almighty God, who makest all
The worlds that move in space,
Whose love respondeth to the call
Of all the human race;
Help Thou Thy children to aspire
To great and worthy things;
Teach them that richest thoughts require
To soar on noble wings.
Almighty God, help us to feel
Our kinship with the world;
Let dogmas, that would friendship steal,
Be from their places hurled;
May all the doctrines, and the creeds,
Be merged in simple love,
And let religion live in deeds
That echo from above.
Almighty God, Whose loving hand
Doth all the World caress,
Whose bounty ﬁlleth every land
With gifts of loveliness,
O help us so to recognise
The ties of brotherhood,
That all our hopes shall realise
The lofty and the good.
EAWR FOLKS’ POLITICS
My faythur is a Tory —
He says his faythur wur —
An’ Tory he shall tarry
As lung as he can stir.
He doted on owd Cobbett,
But, neaw it’s Spinks an’ Lees,
He swears he’ll vote for booath,
Till one or th’ other dees.
He doesno’ care for monarchs,
Heawever good an’ great;
He doesno’ value parsons,
Nor loves the Church an’ State
He says he’s yerd sufﬁcient,
An’ seen sufﬁcient too;
That, if it’s but to spite ’em,
He’st awlus vote for th’ blue.
Eawr Sam an’ me are Lib’rals,
An’ so’s my brother Joe;
But, strange to say, eawr Jammie,
Pretends t’ be nowt at o.
He says he’s quite impartial,
An’ cares for noather side,
That bits o’ sects an’ parties
He never could abide.
He’s one o’ thoose that glory
I’ bein’ hawve-an-hawve,
That get both led an’ driven
Like some great suckin’ cawve.
They hanno’ th’ gift o’ thinkin’
What’s good for th’ human race,
But say they’re quite contented,
An’ winno’ shift their place.
They’ll stond wi’ meawth wide open,
Agree wi’ o ’at’s said,
An’ if yo’ ax their colour
They’re noather blue nor red.
They’ll coincide wi’ Gladstone,
An’ follow Beaconsﬁeld;
They’re gradely fond o’ Hibbert,
An’ Spinks, an’ Lees, an’ Neild.
They’re awkert folk to deal wi’,
There’s nowt but what they know
It’s same as feightin’ shadows,
Or puncin’ at a wo.
An’, if you’ll nobbo’ notice,
They’re often mean an’ sly,
An’, though they say they’re neutral,
They’re blue o’ th’ deepest dye.
Eawr Teddy is Republic —
He shows what brass we’ve spent,
An’ heaw it would be chepper
To have a president.
He says we get no proﬁt
Fro’ dukes, an’ lords, an’ th’ Queen
An’, though they’re nice as pictures,
There’s nicer to be seen.
My mother an’ eawr Sally
Discourse on wimen’s wrungs,
An’, when we say they’ve plenty,
They winno’ howd their tungs.
We’re o great politicians,
Except it be eawr Jim,
An’ he’s so very clever
I’m not surprised at him.
Aw think aw’st ne’er be a Tory
While aw’ve a day to live;
Aw wouldn’t be one, see yo’.
No matter what yo’d give.
Aw’ve closely watched their doin’s,
An’, though aw am but yung,
Aw’ve seen ’em do things often
Aw durst ha’ sworn wur wrung.
Just fancy aw’m supportin’
A party what aw know
Has in the cause of freedom
Ne’er struck a single blow —
The party that for ages
Has kept us in the dark,
An’ thowt we should be happy
Wi’ nowt but bed an’ wark.
The party that’s o bluster,
An’ sheawtin’ eawt for war,
That brings eawr famous commerce
A great deal under par;
That makes true, honest labour
Both scarce an’ badly paid,
An’ doesno’ care a button
For th’ welfare of eawr trade.
Con anybody tell me
When sich distress wur known?
(Except when war’s been ragin’)
If so, let’s have it shewn.
Ther’ seems t’ be nowt but strikin’,
An’ not for higher pay;
Nawe, nawe, those times have left us,
Is this good rulin’, pray?
A government that’s noble,
An’ bent on doin’ good,
Would less direct its actions
To’ards sheddin’ people’s blood.
We’re payin’ more i’ taxes,
An’ gettin’ less i’ wage,
But these things eawlus happen
In ev’ry Tory age.
We’re doin’ neaw at th’ present
What folks did in the past —
We’re payin’ for eawr whistle,
But heaw lung will it last?
These Tories are a lux’ry,
But, oh, aw wish they’d shift;
For, if they do no mischief,
They’re costly as a gift.
Aw conno’ tak’ to rowdies,
An’ parasites aw hate;
A sycophant’s un-English,
An’ loathsome is his prate,
So, as the Tory party
Is chieﬂy made o’ these,
Aw mean to stop a Liberal
Whoever aw displease.
EAWR SPIRITED POLICY
Aw’m gradely fain that Owdham folk
Are on their feet again,
Contendin’ for humanity,
And liberty of men.
Aw’m glad to yer ’em lift their voice
To swell the leawd protest
Against these cruel, horrid crimes
That shock each human breast.
It vexes me to nobbo’ think
Heaw cool eawr rulers are,
As tho’ they didno’, care a straw
For this most hellish war.
Their policy is “spirited,”
But when there’s owt to do
They’ve nobbo’ pluck enoof to mak
A bran new earl or two.
An’ this, they say, is statesmanship,
An’ worthy eawr applause;
But ere yo’ give it, gentlefolks,
Just look areawnd, an’ pause.
Pray, read of thoose atrocities
That mak’ us burn wi’ shame;
Aye, think of thoose barbarities
Unﬁt for me to name.
An’ when yo’ve done it, ax yo’rsels,
Is this enlightenment?
To be supported tooth an’ nail
By th’ British Parliament?
Is it a subject ﬁt for joke,
For ridicule, an’ mirth,
When deeds of ﬁendish malice rage,
An’ desolate the earth?
Shall o the ties of brotherhood
Religion ever made
Be cut asunder just for fear
O’ losin’ Turkish trade?
Shall o eawr boasts of Christian love
Be shorn of actual work?
An’ shall we stultify eawr fame
By feightin’ for the Turk?
Nawe! nawe! a theausand theausand
Whatever “earls” may say;
An’ we mun show ’em that we will
Not brook so mich delay.
But aw mun stop; aw’m gettin’ vexed,
My temper’s risin’ fast;
It’s strange heaw England will alleaw
Sich dreadful crimes to last.
Heaw do yo’ folks intend to vote?
I often ax mysel’,
An’, p’rhaps, aw should have ax’t yo’ o,
But, then, yo’ met no’ tell.
Heawever, if yo’ dunno mind,
We’ll just see heaw we stond,
An’ heaw we con improve this land
Of which we are so fond.
We’ll just consider, if yo’ please,
Some plain, unvarnished facts,
An’ see what are these glorious deeds
Dubbed “patriotic acts.”
We’ll see what good these Tories do,
An’ wheer that good is seen;
We’ll see heaw much these needless wars
Have gloriﬁed eawr Queen.
Their incapacity was shown
When dealin’ wi’ the Turks,
An’ th’ same unequalled tact is seen
In o their later works.
Their brilliant military feats,
Their Oriental skill,
Have been proclaimed at every bar,
An’ sung at every till.
But still the honours that they’ve won
Have been but very few;
True glory is a precious thing,
An’ rarely painted blue.
What though they’ve slain some
Their cause was never just,
An’ thoose that kill for th’ sake o’ fame
Are folks aw conno’ trust.
Their little war in Zululand
For just a toothri reaunds,
In which so many lives wur lost,
Has cost ﬁve million peaunds,
Of course, no good has come o’ this,
Nor do we think it will,
But workin’ folk must daily toil
To pay the “little” bill.
This Afghan war, of which they boast,
When will it really end?
It’s gettin’ time that someb’dy knew
What Ministers intend:
We’ve fowt, an’ fowt, to gratify
Eawr “noble,” warlike thirst,
But th’ mischief is, we get no nar
Nor what we wur at th’ ﬁrst.
In fact, we seem t’ be fur away,
As far as knowledge goes,
For what this war was started for
Lord Dizzy only knows.
His workmates in the Cabinet
Are prone to disagree,
But when he wants their little help,
He works ’em to a T.
They’ve shot an’ hung eawr foes by
An’ felt quite preawd o’ th’ job,
An’ when they’ve sided th’ people off,
Their land they’re gone to rob;
But th’ cost of o this dreadful work
They ceawardly impose
Upon a people helpless, poor,
Afflicted deep wi’ woes.
These blunderin’ pranks have cost so mich —
An’ will cost moore yet —
That when they borrow year by year
Folks say they add to th’ debt;
But, bless yo’r life, it’s nowt o’ th’ sort,
They lessen th’ nation’s debt,
They borrow ﬁve to pay back three:
Aren’t they a clever set?
These Tories never condescend
To do good, whoamly wark,
They’d sooner deal i’ foreign stuff,
An’ work it wheer it’s dark,
Of course, yo’ know what th’ Owd Book says
Abeawt sich deeds as these;
So, if yo’ want good, honest men,
Just vote for th’ Liberals, please.
THE SHIP CANAL
“Neaw, what abeawt this Ship Canal?”
Eawr Sally said to me;
“Altho’ theau’s kept it to thisel,
Fro’ th’ pappers aw con see
That th’ scheme is gettin’ into shape,
An’ meetings goin’ on,
While Parliament is to be ax’d
If this thing must be done.
Aw don’t see why they should refuse,
But then some jealous folk,
Who have their brass i’ railway shares,
May want it t’ end i’ smoke;
While others, p’rhaps, will deprecate,
Who, summat like eawr Dick,
If they should sail a toothri yards
Are feeart o’ bein’ sick.
But, then, no matter what is said,
Improvements must be made;
If Oldham spindles must increase
We must have freer trade.
It’s same wi’ nations as wi’ teawns,
If they must keep their pace,
For fettered labour cannot hope
To howd a foremost place.
Eawr divi’s neaw are not so good
An’ he would be a fool
Who’d pay his proﬁts year by year
To th’ folks i’ Liverpool.
Let’s have a sea at th’ side o’ whoam,
An’ see what we can do,
If it will pay, as some folks think,
We’st save a triﬂe, too.
Just fancy ships come sailin’ through
A populated street,
Surrounded by that other boon,
The new electric leet.
Who knows what wonders are in store
For enterprisin’ zeal?
When men unite in common bonds
For general public weal.
Then here’s success to this great scheme,
Let’s o be of good cheer;
That breeter days will surely dawn
We have no need to fear.
The ﬂag of progress still shall wave
To strengthen every hand,
An’ freer trade, an’ freer laws,
Will bless eawr native land.”
Eawr Johnny has begun to paint,
He’s quite a good un too,
In fact, aw don’t know what there is
Eawr Johnny conno’ do;
If he’ll but set his moind an’ try,
As well aw know he con,
He’ll do a job of ony sort
As well as ony mon.
Aw do so wish yo’d come some day
Just when he’s at his wark,
He’s paintin’ summat neaw he co’s
“Faint moonshine after dark;”
It represents sich lots o’ things
I’ th’ risin’ o’ the moon,
But what they are aw conno’ tell,
No moor nor Johnny’s shoon.
His sweethearts loikeness, once he said,
He’d have a try to paint,
He thowt he’d draw her angel-like,
An’ mak’ her in a saint;
So wi’ this noble view he geet
His easel an’ his things,
An’ sketched a maiden fair, and sweet,
Wi’ lung an’ pointed wings.
An’ ev’rybody said ’t wur noice,
An’ so it wur no deawbt,
For if there wur some little faults,
They hadno bin fun eawt;
So Johnny’s sweetheart took it whoam
And show’d it to her dad,
But when he set his eyes on it
It almost sent him mad.
For theer, as plain as plain could be,
Her een look’d to’rd her nose,
An’ ev’ry toime he looked at it
His passion heeghur rose;
He swore if Johnny ever coom
O’ courtin’ her again,
An’ he should chance to be i’ th’ heause
Hee’d twamp him theer an’ then.
Eawr Johnny moumed awhile at this,
Becose it seemed so wrung,
But after o he thowt it best,
As both wur very yung;
And neaw he spends his leisure toime
I’ dabblin’ wi’ his paints;
But ever since that day, aw think,
He’s kept off paintin’ saints.
Eawr Mally’s bin an’ getten wed
To sich a smart yung chap,
An’ neaw hoo’s Missis Benjamin
John Jeremiah Snap.
He loikes to see his name i’ full;
He spells it so hissel’;
Eawr Mally towd me this, yo’ know,
But then yo’ munno’ tell.
He’s awlus dressed quite up to th’ nines,
An’ sich a nobby walk;
An’ then his tung — eh! bless my life,
Aw wish yo’ yerd him ‘talk,
Sich words he uses neaw an’ then,
Enoof to break one’s jaw;
Aw’m sure he would ha’ made a mark
If he’d gone in for law.
He’d soon ha’ bin at th’ top o’ th’ tree
If he’d that road bin bent,
An’ had Q.C. beheend his name,
An’ bin i’ Parliament,
But then, he’d happen ne’er ha’ known
My sister Mally then,
So it’s as weel he shouldn’t have
His chances o’er again.
He’s bowt a bran new lot o’ goods,
An’ o i’ ﬁrst-class style;
For me t’ ha’ sich loike when aw’m wed
Aw’st ha’ to wait awhile.
Aw wonder heaw eawr Mally did
To get a chap loike him?
He seems so clever placed beside
My own true sweetheart Jim.
An’ sich a weddin’, too, they had,
Wi’ o set eawt so grand;
They went an’ spent their honeymoon
I’ some foine forrin land,
They’ve just come back, an’weel they
They’re happy too, no deawbt;
But never moind, a day will come
When we’st ha’ tums abeawt.
Aw know my Jimmy’s savin’ brass,
An’, if aw’ll nobbo’ wait
Till o his calls are paid, he says
He’ll gi’ me sich a thrate.
So here’s good luck to Missis Snap,
An’ Ben, here’s luck to thee;
Lung life an’ strength to ev’ryone,
Includin’ Jim an’ me.
A FAMILY EAWT
“Come Susie, lass, just lay aside
That little bit o’ wark,
We’ll tak’ eawr childer for an eawt
To Alexandra Park.
There’s lots o’ things sprung up o’ late
Aw’m sure theau hasno’ seen;
Theau’ll stop i’ th’ heause till folks may
Declare theau’rt gdoin’ green.”
“To Alexandra Park!" hoo said,
“Whey, where i’ th’ world is that?”
Hoo knows as much o’ g’ography
As my owd boddyhat.
They didno’ teach sich fancy stuff,
Yo’ see, when hoo wur yung;
Beside, hoo thinks hoo’ll manage neaw,
Hoo’s done witheawt so lung.
Well, hoo geet done, an’ off we set
Past Tum o’ Robin’s farm;
Aw’d three o’ th’ childer at my laps,
An’ one on ayther arm.
Eawr Susie carried th’ yung’st but two,
For, goodness, heaw it scroikt!
An’ t’ other four had liberty
To roam just where they lokt.
We geet to th’ Park at four o’clock,
Eawr legs no worse for wear,
But yo’d ha’ been amused, aw know
To see eawr Susie stare;
Hoo look’d at me, as wimen look
(Yo’ve seen ’em aw’ve no deaubt)
Who’ve summat awful on their minds
They’re bent on lettin’ eawt.
Hoo look’d, an’ freawn’d, an’ then it coom
“Theau good-for-nowt,” hoo said,
“If someb’dy tak’ this chilt a bit
Aw’d come an’ jow thy yed.
Is this thy Alexandra Park
Theau’s trailed me here to see,
As though aw’d never been before
Quite unbeknown to thee?
“It’s nobbo’ gradely Owdham Park
When folk’ll co’ it reet;
Theau knows what Shakemspeere said
Abeawt things smellin’ sweet?”
“Of course aw do, but never heed
What Shakemspeere said;
He’d not ha’ said one hauve he did
If he’d been gradely wed.”
Hoo chummert to hersel’ awhile,
But wouldno’ stir a yard,
Though neaw an’ then aw catched a word
Fro’ th’ owd immortal bard.
Hoo quoted o hoo knew I think,
An’ then hoo faced abeawt,
Commandin’ me to goo i’ th’ Park,
An’ ne’er again come eawt.
Hoo laft me wi’ th’ yung’st childer too,
An’ what a noise they made;
Aw’st ne’er engage a nursin’ job,
Heawever weel it’s paid;
Aw’d quite enoof that afternoon
To last me for a while,
For oather one or t’ other scroikt
I’ splendid scroikin’ style.
Aw took ’em deawn to look at th’ ducks,
Aw show’d ’em th’ boulder-stone,
An’ tried if th’ owd bellman could
Induce ’em t’ change their tone;
But neawe, they didno’ care a bit
For th’ ducks, or th’ stone, or Joe;
So then aw thowt to tak’ ’em whoam
Would be th’ best plan of o.
Aw bowt ’em both a sugar stick,
To ﬁnd ’em summat t’ do,
An’ made my way o’er th’ Coalpit Road
An’ deawn by Brunley Broo;
Aw wonder’d why aw hadno’ thowt
O’ sugar sticks before;
But never mind, o’ fam’ly eawts
Aw think aw’st ha’ no more.
TH’ OWD FOLKS’ TAY PARTY
Aw’ve often thowt yo’d happen loike
To know a little bit
Abeawt this stir that’s gan to us,
An’ heaw we liken it.
Aw darsay, neaw, if yo’ could see
Heaw nice an’ snug we look,
Yo’d give a triﬂe, if yo’ must
Just come an’ mix wi’ th’ rook.
Neaw dunno’ go an’ contradict;
Yo’ want to do, aw see;
Aw’ve lived awhile, an’ know yo’r ways
Don’t think o’ chettin’ me.
Yo’d o foot up, aw durst bi bund,
If Abram would alleaw;
So don’t yo’ turn yo’r noses up,
An’ try to look so feaw.
It’s nobbo’ once i’ twelvemonth’s time,
We get a chance to meet;
An’ then we simply talk things o’er,
An‘ see that o goes reet.
They’re gradely whoamly parties these,
A daycent, sober spree;
If once yo’ come, yo’ll want to come
Again, aw’ll guarantee.
It is so good o’ Abram, too,
To keep us o i’ mind;
He keeps invitin’ fresh uns, too,
An’ leeovs noan behind;
Except it be — sometimes it is —
That when his chap goes reaund
He yers o’ some owd friendly face
That’s getten put i’ th’ greaund.
There’s ’Liza, Maggie, little Nan,
An’ Ruth, an’ Kit o’ Bob’s,
An’ Jane, and me, that’s bin so lung,
We’ve getten thick wi’ th’ nobs;
They’ll come an’ sit an’ talk to us,
They’ll smooke a pipe an’ o,
An’ one chap coom an’ said to me
“Heawever is yo’r Joe?”
“Eh! thank yo’ sir; he’s doin’ neaw
As weel as e’er he will,
For him an’ me, yo’ know,” aw said,
“Are slurrin’ fast deawn th’ hill;
We’ve seen some changes i’ this world,
An’ had eawr ups an’ deawns;
We’ve noticed, too, heaw Owdham has
Eawtstripp’d o other teawns.
“We’ve seen” — but here aw had to stop
For th’ chap wur co’ed away,
An’ then aw thowt aw met as weel
Be shappin’ for my tay.
Aw hardly need to tell yo’ what
A rare nice tay we had;
If Joe had nobbo’ bin wi’ me
He would ha’ be’n some glad.
They browt us sugar towfy reaund,
An’ ’bacca, pipes, an’ snuff;
An’ rare un good it wur for folks
That’s use’t to sich like stuff.
They made some funny speeches, too,
But then, my mem’ry’s gone;
Aw did intend to larn ’em o,
But conno’ think o’ one.
Aw conno’ ﬁnish up so weel,
Nor would aw be so rude,
Witheawt just tryin’ to convey
My heartfelt gratitude.
There’s lots o’ folks would like to thank
Kind Abram, if they could,
Aw nobbo’ speak their wishes when
Aw wish him o that’s good.
There are a toothri clever folks
We daily come across,
Whose ways we conno’ understond
Becose they are so fausse;
They’ll talk, an’ talk, fro’ morn till neet,
An’ wondrous tales they’ll tell
Of heroes, that yo’ll awlus ﬁnd
Turn eawt to be theirsel’.
Whate’er yo’ve seen, they’ve seen before,
An’ summat better, too;
An’ what yo’ve yerd, they’re sure to
An’ what they say is true;
Their facts are facts, an’ warranted
To bear the strongest test,
So if yo’ get a tale fro’ ‘em
It’s sure t’ be one o’ th’ best.
They’re rattlin’ folks for company,
Or joinin’ in a spree;
Or if yo’re dull, an’ nowt to say,
They’re th’ reet uns to a T.
We conno’ spare ’em very weel
Though we may think so neaw,
For after o their little faults
They’re jolly folks, chus heaw.
Another sort o’ clever folks,
Of extra consequence,
Are thoose ’at seldom spake at o,
Lest they should lose some sense;
They look wi’ scorn an’ great disgust
On common ways an’ things,
They’d ﬂit to some grand wo’ld above
If someb’dy a mak’ ’em wings.
Aw mak’ no ’ceawnt o’ sulky chaps,
But sulky wimen less,
Aw’d sooner ha’ one ﬁfty times
That spends a lot o’ dress.
There is a bit o’ comfort when
Hoo’s th’ latest fashion eawt,
But bless my life, a sulky wife,
Is awlus on the peawt.
Hoo’ll spend her brass, an’ then come
Dissatisﬁed an’ vex’d,
An’ mak’ yo’ tremble, lest hoo should
Begin a feightin’ th’ next.
It’s best to let ’em sulk it eawt;
Though some will sulk awhile,
Their meawths o’ someheaw arno’ shaped
To give a gradely smile.
Neaw, if there’s one amung yo’ o
Would like a sulky wife?
Aw’m sure aw’d sooner live mysel’
A jolly single life.
Aw dunno’ want to say it’s reet
That chaps should sulk, not I;
Aw think if wimen never sulk’d
That chaps could never try.
SAM TULIP’S WILL
Sam Tulip said he’d mak’ a will,
Lest he should chance to dee
Witheawt his kinsfolk knowing heaw
He wanted things to be.
He thowt he’d tell ’em i’ this note
Just heaw an’ what to do
Wi’ o his goods an’ chattels, loike,
An’ who to give ’em to.
A gradely business chap wur Sam,
An’ gen’rous too, ’tis said;
He’d awlus lived a sengle life,
Nor dreamt o’ gettin’ wed.
He used to moralise a bit,
An’ oft he said to me,
“Do summat, lad, i’ this short life,
That winno’ dee wi’ thee.
“What’s th’ good o’ livin’ if we dee
An’ leeov nowt behind
Which, when it’s put to reet good use,
Will beneﬁt mankind?
What’s th’ end of o this business here,
Reward for o this strife?
Are we put here for nowt i’ th’ world
But live an empty life?
“Are we machines, that do eawr wark
Witheawt a bit o’ thowt,
An’ when that wark has getten done
Be put aside as nowt?
Nay, nay, my lad; a nobler part
Remains for us to play,
An’ if we brave it eawt loike men
We’st live to endless day.”
Well, Sam set to to mak’ this will,
A job not done so soon;
He started soon i’ th’ momin’ part,
An’ hadn’t done at noon.
An’ neet coom on — noane ﬁnished yet;
He still stuck to his wark,
Nor seemed to notice th’ ﬂight o’ time,
Nor see ’at it wur dark.
An’ when aw coed, as wur my wont,
He sat at th’ table still;
His pen was in his cowd, cowd hont,
An’ restin’ on his will.
Aye, Sam, owd friend, theaw little thowt,
When theaw wur writin’ this,
Theaw’d reached a spot i’ life’s roof road
That opened Death’s abyss.
His will wur short, an’ ran loike this:
“I, Sam, the undersigned,
Do neaw bequeath to Lucy Ann
My curtains an’ my blind.
To Martha Jane I also give
My cheears an’ th’ little stoo’;
Hoo’ll let her sisters join at these,
An’ o her brothers too.
“My sofa, an’ my pots an’ pons,
To ’Lizabeth an’ Joe,
Wi’ hopes that when they fratch a bit
They winno’ break ’em o.
My carpets, rugs, an’ ﬁre things
Aw give to ’Liza Lord;
Aw know hoo loikes a smartish heause,
But conno’ weel afford.
“My dresser, an’ it’s ornaments,
To Polly an’ her chap;
Aw’ve awlus loiked her ever sin
Aw nursed her i’ my lap.
Aye, bless her little pratty chops!
An’ may her pleasant face,
Of trouble, care, an’ sleepless toil,
Be awlus free fro’ trace.
“Aw’ve neaw disposed of o my goods,
Except my clock an’ bed,
An’ these yung Charley Binns may have,
Again he wants t’ be wed.
They’ll come in useful, aw’ve no deawt,
To booath him an’ th’ wife;
They’re two essential attributes
Of happy married life.
“Aw saved a little bit o’ brass
(Yo’ know who it wur for);
Aw’ve added toothri peawnd sin’ then,
But give it o to her.
Aw loved her lung wi’ honest love,
That love aw cherish still;
An’ if yo’ll kindly tell her this
Yo’ll best fulﬁl my will.”
Owd Sarah wur a good un,
As everybody knew,
For while th’ owd lass geet owder,
Her heart yet y’unger grew.
Yo’ve often yerd it stated
As heaw the good dee y’ung ;
“The good are y’ung, though agèd,”
Wur th’ song Owd Sarah sung.
Th’ owd girl wur awlus smilin’,
Tho’ hoo’d her ups an’ deawns;
Said hoo, “Life’s short at th’ lungest,
Why mix it up wi’ freawns?”
Hoo seem’d to carry sunshine
Abeawt fro’ place to place,
An’ th’ childer ever welcomed
That sweet an’ kindly face.
To win the love o’ childer
Is good enoof for me;
It’s like a bit o’ heaven,
There happiness to see.
Th’ owd lass had che’tted th’ sexton,
Hoo’d pass’d three score and ten,
Hoo said hoo’d like to square it,
An’ have it o’er again.
Of course, hoo nobbut said it
To have a bit o’ fun;
Hoo’ll have her joke wi’ th’ angels
O’er th’ earthly race hoo’s run.
Hoo’ll have some tales to tell ’em
Of what hoo did deawn here;
But nowt hoo’d need t’ be shamed on
O’ that yo’ needn’t fear.
Hoo used to go to sarvice,
When th’ days wur nice an’ warm,
Hoo loved to yer th’ singin’,
That ﬁlled her soul wi’ charm.
To see her glad een breeten
When some owd hymn wur sung
Wur worth a toothri sarmons
From ony parson’s t’unge.
Hoo seem’d t’ be gettin’ ready
For goin’ up above,
An’ everything areawnd her
Reﬂected only love.
An’ where th’ owd dame has sattl’d
Celestial songs are sung,
Hoo’s one amung the angels,
An’ every angel’s y’ung.
WALKIN ’ REAUND
God bless thoose pratty faces;
Heaw they smile!
They’re full o’ glee an’ gladness,
They know no grief nor sadness,
They ﬁll the angels’ places
God bless their toddlin’ marchin’,
Eawt o’ line,
Wee sister, little brother ;
They bravely help each other
An’, though their legs are wartchin
They’re like a bunch o’ posies,
Red, white, green;
New clooas here an’ theer,
Cheeks shinin’ ev’rywheer,
The ﬁnest bed o’ roses
Just hearken heaw they’re singin’
Their songs are gently swellin’
Reet up to th’ heavenly dwellin’,
And in their train are bringin’
An’ hearken th’ bells i’ th’ steeple?
Ring, ding, dong.
They want to mak’ life breeter,
They want to mak’ life sweeter,
An’ sing unto the people
Th’ good owd song.
These scenes will live for ever
In the mind.
They’ll in the mem’ry sattle
An’ through life’s daily battle
In ev’ry great endeavour
Bless childer in their beauty,
Some day they’ll ﬁll eawr stations,
Accept eawr resignations,
But each will do his duty
Like a mon.
OLDHAM AND OLDHAMERS
We’ve chimneys tall
An’ chimneys small
An’ smooke o reawnd us clingin’;
We’ve lots o’ wark,
But ne’er a lark ‘
To cheer us with its singin’.
We’ve narrow streets
An’ bad gas leets,
An’ other things that’s rilin’.
But th’ folks are ﬁt,
An’ full o’ grit,
An’ do their duty, smilin’.
Old Market Place, Oldham,
To stop awhoam this Owdham Wakes
Aw thowt would be as well;
In fact, to tell yo’ th’ gradely truth,
Aw couldno’ help mysel’.
Aw couldno’ boast o’ ready brass,
Though credit’s full an’ free;
It’s chieﬂy made o’ heavy calls —
That mak’ a wakes o’ me.
Aw’d just completed packin’ up,
And puttin’ th’ label on,
When th’ postman coom an’ rapp’d at th’
“Another letter, John,”
“Another call,” aw said to th’ wife,
“Another call behanged!”
An’ th’ chap could hardly get away
Ere th’ dur wur shut an’ bang’d.
Of course, aw softly sided th’ things
As though we’d just com’d back,
An’ th’ wife stood by, but never spoke —
But didno’ hoo look black!
Hoo didno’ poo her bonnet off
For sich a lung, lung while,
An’ do an’ say whate’er aw would
Aw couldno’ get her t’ smile.
An’ then hoo vow’d, as wimen con —
Yo’ve yerd ’em aw’ve no deawbt —
That thoose met share, an’ share ’at loik’t
Hoo wish’d that we wur eawt.
Hoo’d had no pleasure sin’ we ﬁrst
Began to spekilate;
But then aw wanted brass so fast
Aw couldno’ work an’ wait.
“Neaw, dunno’ spake a word,” hoo said;
“Thy case needs no defence,
For th’ job is done, an’ here we are
Awhoam, i’ consequence.”
“Nay, nay,” aw said, “there is no need
To stop awhoam at o;
We’ll go as far as Tommy Fielt,
An’ in a penny show.
“There’s lots o’ folk as well as us
I’ th’ same predicament;
Besides, we’re savin’ th’ brass, theaw knows
So rest thysel’ content.
Come, breeten up thy face a bit;
What, though it rains to-day,
There’ll come a time o’ sunshine yet —
There’s worse things done at say.”
Hoo veer’d reawnd i’ course o’ time,
An’ then hoo said to me,
“Well, if we go to Tommy Fielt
Whatever shall we see?”
“What shall we see? Eh, bless me, wench,
There’s circuses an’ shows,
There’s endless fun an’ merriment,
An’ lots o’ folk theaw knows.”
“Well, then, we’ll go.” An’ go we did,
An’ had a gradely reawnd;
We yerd o sorts o’ dismal chords
Mak’ up a dismal seawnd.
The showmen towd us what they had,
They sheawted leawd an’ strung,
An’ swore they’d give us ﬁfty peawnd
If what they said wur wrung.
We went to Howden’s mannikins,
An’ rare an’ good they wur;
It fairly capp’d me heaw they made
Thoose little chaps to stir.
They’rn up an’ deawn i’ double quick,
So nimble wur their shanks,
But th’ worst on ’t wur, they played at nowt
But reet deawn peevish pranks.
We went to see the goblinscope,
We went i’ th’ circus, too;
In fact, we went i’ ev’ry show
To see what there wur t’ do.
Aw said aw’d ride a dobby horse,
An’ th’ wife said so would hoo;
So on we geet, loike jockeys bowd,
An’ reawnd an’ reawnd we ﬂew.
Aw see’d eawr Sally turnin’ pale,
Aw sheawted for my life,
“Yo’ rascals, stop that engine neaw;
Yo’re beawn’ to kill my wife!”
They stopp’d, an’ deawn aw jump’d at once
An’ ran across the street;
Aw geet some brandy, nice an’ warm,
An’ help’d her on her feet.
Hoo wurno’ lung i’e comin’ reawnd,
It seem’d to do her good,
An’ if aw’d ax’t her t’ ride again
Aw do believe hoo would.
Heawever, th’ time wur gettin’ on,
An’ th’ brass wur gettin’ done,
“So let’s be goin’ whoam,” aw said,
“We’ve had enoof o’ fun.”
Eawr Jammie wur a singer,
A gradely good un too,
Yo’ couldno’ bring him music
But what he’d sing reet through.
When he wur quite a babby,
Aw’ve yerd my mother say,
He’d lie him deawn i’ th’ cradle,
An’ sing a childish lay.
But as he grew up owder
He added tune to tune,
Till folks said to my fayther,
“He’ll be a topper soon.”
They said he wur so cheerful,
His looks wur never dark,
No matter when they seed him
He’re singin’ like a lark.
An’ do not aw remember
When him an’ me went th’ schoo
He sang for o his schoo’mates,
An’ weel they like’t him too.
He read just like a parson,
That never missed a word,
An’ sang his summin’ tables
Just like a little bird.
An’ when at jolly Christmas
We had eawr barrin’ eawt,
What fun we had wi’ rompin’,
An’ heaw we used to sheawt.
We sang abeawt “Tom Bowlin’;”
Eawr Jammie sang an’ o,
But heaw he put a ﬁnish
On what we sang, aw know.
As we kept grooin’ bigger,
We had to leeov schoo’;
Folks said it would be better
If we’d some wark to do.
We geet a job i’ th’ factory,
We work’d both soon an’ late,
But Jammie lost his troubles
Wi’ tunes i’ th’ jenny-gate.
An’ while he kept i’ practice
He geet a smack o’ fame,
An’ then his course soon ended,
An’ folks forgeet his name.
He met a fair young alto,
Wi’ sich a splendid voice,
He couldno’ sing for lookin’,
He thowt hoo wur so noice.
He chirp’d a lovely ditty,
An’ hoo responded too,
An’ then — would yo’ believe it?—
They’re wed ’beawt more ado.
Aw yer him neaw but seldom,
Although it’s Christmas time,
But yesterday, aw’ll tell yo’,
He sang a nurs’ry rhyme.
Joe Todlin was a-crying fast,
He’d lost his Mary Ann,
And down his face the woeful tears
In little streamlets ran.
He cried himself asleep, and dreamt
Of her in days gone by,
When she’d embrace him unawares,
And kiss him on the sly.
Oh! those were happy, halcyon days,
Too happy long to last;
He shuddered when he woke to ﬁnd
His dreams were of the past.
A cruel girl was Mary Ann,
Joe’s feelings thus to hurt;
But I had told him long before
That she was but a ﬂirt.
Now, Joseph did not hang himself,
Nor yet attempt to drown,
But wisely buoyed his spirits up,
And went to live in town,
He there forgot his Mary Ann,
And, when he last was seen,
Another love hung on his arm,
Whose name was Angeline.
REET AND WRUNG
Folks say there’s nobbo’ reet an’ wrung
In owt we undertak’,
But someheaw wrung gets th’ best o’ th’
An’ reet keeps hangin’ back.
Reet’s quite a bashful sort o’ chap,
An’ darno’ show his face,
Nor even put his modest yed
In ony sort o’ place.
Aw’ll give yo’ toothri incidents
To show yo’ what aw mean,
Some that aw’ve yerd folks talk abeawt,
An’ others that aw’ve seen;
Yo’ll tak’ ’em just for what they’re worth
For little or for mich,
For bad or good, or nowt at o,
It doesno’ matter which.
For instance, neaw, there’s Jimmy Jones,
That lives up eawr street,
Do what yo’ would yo’ couldno’ keep
That felly goin’ reet;
He’s such a notion in his yed
O’ gettin’ nicely reawnd,
To pay a nineteen shillin’ debt
He’ll borrow just a peawnd.
He keeps a shillin’ thus i’ hond,
An’ seems so light an’ gay
Yo’d think he’d laid a fortune by
Again a rainy day.
He gets abeawt a peawnd a week
To keep a heawse o’ six,
So neaw an’ then he borrows, just
To save ’em from a ﬁx.
He has a son coed Spanky Sam,
That ne’er geet on his feet;
He married, when he’re seventeen,
A wench noane gradely reet;
Yo’ll say that he wur summat th’ same,
An’ if yo’ do it’s true;
Aw do believe aw never seed
A bigger, gawpin’ foo.
There’s Tinker Tom, yo’ happen know,
He tramps abeawt so mich,
The brass he gets mak’s folk declare
He owt t’ be gradely rich;
But his affairs, like lots o’ folks’,
Are in a bunglin’ state,
An’ if he ever gets ‘em reet
He’ll have a while to wait.
Young Donty thowt he’d spekilate,
An’ bowt a lot o’ shares,
An’ neaw he fuddles ev’ry week
To drive away his cares.
The shares wur up at th’ time he bowt,
But neaw they’re very low,
Tho’ neaw an’ then he’ll cause a rise
By kickin’ up a row.
Thus things go on fro’ week to week,
An’ reet an’ wrung go reawnd;
We awlus get eawr share o’ one
Before we’re put i’ th’ greawnd.
Aw hope that o yo’r prospects neaw
Are shinin’ very breet,
That in this world’s great ups and deawns
Yo’ll get yo’r share o reet.
ADVICE TO YOUNG FRIENDS
Eh, bless yo’, little childer,
That neaw “Eawr Circle” read;
It’s sich-like pratty faces
That o great movements need.
There’s nowt ’at’s great an’ noble
But some may to it climb;
An’ noane, heawever mighty,
But’s been a choilt sometime.
Neaw, Jack, theau’rt fond o’ music,
An’ music’s really grand:
It mak’s a lowly dwellin’
Into a heavenly land:
So get thee up an’ practise
Thy lessons ev’ry day;
An’ then, my charmin’ minstrel,
Go eawt an’ get thy play.
An’ Dick, theau’rt good at ﬁgures,
An’ doin’ fraction sums:
Thee follow up thy studies,
Theau’ll get thy share o’ plums.
The best o’ this world’s places
Are only won by work,
An’ deawnreet stirlin’ merit
Beats accident o’ birth.
So get thy slate an’ pencil,
An’ do thy Rule o’ Three;
Theau’ll ﬁnd, someday, it’s useful,
So be advised by me.
An’ when theau’s done thy lessons,
Go run an’ play eawtside;
Get exercise an’ l’arnin’,
An’ be thy mother’s pride.
Neaw, Mary, theau’rt for t’achin’:
It’s summat grand to do
To give to thoose ‘at need it,
An’ help to poo ’em through.
It doesn’t matter whether
It’s knowledge that yo’ give,
Or whether food an’ raiment,
Yo’re helpin’ folks to live.
So Nancy meeons l’arnin’
What some folks co’ a trade,
Hoo’ll try her hond at ribbins,
An’ match ’em to a shade;
Hoo’ll put ‘em into bonnets,
For ladies ﬁne to wear,
An’ mak’ the world look cheerful
Through o its toil an’ care.
Aye, well, we’ve o eawr troubles;
Sometimes we’re low an’ sad;
But he’s a noble worker
That maketh life more glad.
So o yo’ lads an’ lasses
Spread sunshine here below;
Be gentle in yo’r actions,
An’ kind where’er yo’ go.
Give honour to yo’r parents;
Aye, more, give them yo’r love:
Of o yo’r friends they’re th’ truest,
Except the One above.
So neaw, my dearest childer,
Go neaw an’ have yo’r fun;
But in yo’r fun an’ frolic
Offend no other one.
EAWR MALLY ON TH’ JUBLIEE
“What’s o this talk o’ th’ Jubilee?”
Says Mally, th’ other day,
“Aw’m not so larned i’ g’ography,
Who ever is it, pray?
Aw used to go to th’ Birchinlee,
But that’s awhile ago.
There’s been some bakin’ days sin’ then,
An’ fewer bakin’s, Joe.
“But then, thoose days are past an’ gone;
We need not grumble neaw.
We’re better off than what we were —
That’s progress made, chuz heaw.
But then, I often think, what fun
We had i’ th’ Birchinlee;
I wonder, Joe, if it wur like
This Royal Jubilee?”
“God bless thee, lass! theau’rt off thi track
Thoose places that theau’s seen
Have nowt to do wi’ th’ Jubilee
Of eawr most gracious Queen.
It’s ﬁfty years, this comin’ June,
Since hoo began to reign,
An’ folks are makin’ o this fuss
To show they’re gradely fain.”
“Aw dunno’ understond thee, Joe!
What are they fain abeawt?
Becose hoo’s gettin’ owd, an’ soon
Her lamp must ﬂicker eawt?
Aw dunno’ think that’s reet at o,
If my thowts aw mun tell;
Owd age should be respected, Joe!
We’re gettin’ owd ussel’.”
“Theau’rt off thi track again, owd brid!
It’s not becose hoo’s owd.‘
It’s like a birthday party, mon—
At least, that’s what aw’m towd.
Hoo’s reigned o’er us for ﬁfty years,
An’ thinks it would be grand
If summat could be done to show
Heaw well hoo loves this land.”
“Aw’m glad to yer thee say it, Joe!
Aw’m sure hoo’s very good.
I hope hoo’ll put some rum i’ th’ tay —
Hoo’d mend it if hoo would.
We made a party once, theau knows,
On th’ birthday of eawr lass;
But th’ Queen could mak’ a grand affair —
Hoo has sich lot’s o’ brass.”
“Aw’m loth to dissappoint thee, lass —
Fond hopes aw’d fain not dash —
But th’ Queen would have these things t’ be
An’ some’dy else ﬁnd th’ cash.
They’re gettin’ up subscriptions neaw,
An’ some seem glad o’ th’ job
Theau’ll see it i’ that papper, which
Aw’ve borrowed fro’ yo’r Bob.”
“What’s that theau says? Theau’rt jokin’,
Aw conno’ credit that.
When workin’ folks have cause for joy
They don’t go reawnd wi’ th’ hat.
Aw quite admit we’re better off
Than when th’ Queen coom on th’
But what we have we’ve worked hard for;
It’s eawt o’ th’ ﬂesh an’ bone.
“When thee an’ me wur starvin’, Joe,
An’ hunger made me cry,
Did th’ Queen do owt to help us then
But put her theausands by?
When folks wur pinched through cruel
Which good men tried to reet,
Did hoo lift up a ﬁnger then
To ﬁnd us summat t’ eat?
“For what we have eawr thanks are due
To noather King nor Queen;
The people their own architects,
An’ builders too, have been.
If ony gratitude is due
For princely blessin’s given,
Let th’ Queen acknowledge what hoo owes
To us, an’ God in Heaven.”
EAWR SALLY ON TH’ STORE
Eawr Sally says to me, says hoo,
“Aw wonder which is th’ biggest foo’?
Theau’s be’n an’ bowt a suit o’ togs,
Aw’ve bowt a bonnet, shawl, an’ clogs;
An’ while we thowt we’d look’d o’l o’er
We’ve noather on us thowt at th’ store;
Theau’rt wise no deawbt, aw’m fose aw’m
But o eawr sharpness keeps us poor.”
“Bethink thisel’ neaw, what we’ve lost,
An’ reckon up the total cost
Of o these things that we’ve just bowt,
Witheawt us givin’ th’ store a thowt.
Let’s see, there’s o’er three peawnds for
An’ very nee two peawnds for mine:
Three shillin’ th’ peawnd we’ve lost o that.
Neaw which of us is th’ biggest ﬂat?”
“There’s childer’s things we’ve had beside —
Theau knows we’re o stuck full o’ pride —
But then that’s noather here nor theer,
The question neaw seems very clear:
Wheer have we been this mony o’ ye’r
While th’ store’s be’n makin’ sich a stir?
Wheer’s o this divi’ that we’ve made,
An’ when’s it likely we’st be paid?
“Eawr Nancy tells me sich a tale,
Hoo goes quite reg’lar, witheawt fail;
An’ look heaw nicely off they are,
They’re better off nor us bi far.
Aw’m sure they get no moor brass,
An’ tho’ eawr Nan’s a careful lass,
Hoo’s nobbo’ like onesel’, aw know,
Hoo says hersel’ th’ store does it o.
“Neaw let me calkilate a bit,
An’ see if aw can mak’ things ﬁt:
This last ten ye’rs we’ve spent, aw’m sure,
Two peawnds a week, an’ happen moor,
Two peawnds a week — neaw dunno’ speak —
Three shillin’ th’ peawnd, six bob a week,
Four peawnds a quather, very nee;
We’ve lost a fortune, doesno’ see!”
“Aye, aye, aw see,” at last aw sed,‘
“We’ve lost a big un sin’ we’re wed,
But never mind, it’s not too late,
We’ll ha’ one yet as sure as fate.”
Aw went th’ next day, my brass aw paid,
An’ gradely store folks we wur made;
An’ if yo’ like, some other time,
Heaw we went on aw’ll tell i’ rhyme.
Eawr store has made a “divi.”;
Aw connot say heaw mich,
But folks ’at once wur starvin’,
Seem gettin’ fairly rich;
An’ th’ brass has not been laft ‘em
By some ’at’s pass’d away;
They’ve had to scrape an’ save it
Again a rainy day.
But th’ scheme ’at help’d ‘em forrad,
Thro’ heavy storms an’ gales,
Wur true co-operation,
That rarely ever fails.
At ﬁrst they hardly felt it,
It’s guidin’ touch wur leet;
But soon their whole surreawndin’s
Wur helpful, hopeful, breet.
Someheaw they’d grit beheend ’em,
An’ courage on their road;
Someheaw they’re awlus sanguine,
Whatever weight their load;
Someheaw their aims wur higher
Than what they used to be,
An’ then they tried to live ’em,
An’ that wur grand to see.
Aye! that’s a part o’ th’ “divi.”
A part o’ th’ ﬁrm feawndation
It’s men an’ women strivin’
To live a nobler life,
Assistin’ one another
To banish want an’ strife.
Aw dunno’ just remember
What th’ “divi.” wur i’ th’ peawnd
But then that doesn’t matter,
If th’ balance sheet wur seawnd,
It’s not th’ ameawnt o’ money ‘
Yo’ may be turnin’ o’er,
It’s makin’ men an’ women
’At’s th’ standard of a store.
Aw know we’ve made a “divi.”;
Aw know we mak’ it when
We train the sweetest women
An’ rear the noblest men.
When honesty an’ honour
An’ love dwell in eawr hearts,
We’ve made a gradely “divi.”
That’st seawnd in o its parts.
So neaw, co-operators,
Aw think we o agree
That life’s more worth the livin’
For yo’ as weel as me.
Aw’m sure more rayso’ sunshine
Come streamin’ from above
When each one does his duty,
An’ ﬁnds in duty — love.
MRS. PENDLEBURY’S PICKLE.
THE CURSE OF CREDIT.
A Domestic Drama in One Act.
MRS. PENDLEBURY — An apparently well-to-do lady.
MRS. WORSLEY — — An old acquaintance of Mrs. Pendlebury’s.
JANE — — — — — Mrs. Pendlebury’s Maid.
_ _ _
SCENE — ROOM in Mrs. Pendlebury’s House.
— Theighur, neaw, that’s what aw co’ a relief! That ends th’ second
lesson for today. Talk abeawt free eddication! Some folks dunno know
what it is. Aw’ve yerd some say ’at there’s no sich thing as free
eddication. Aw say, let ’em come to Mrs. Pendlebury’s schoo’, an’
they’ll soon ﬁnd it eawt. Hoo’s been tryin’ mony a week neaw to larn me
heaw to talk ﬁne, but hoo says ’at aw dunnot get mich forrader. An’ aw
dar say ‘at hoo’s reet. Eddication depends on willin’ scholars a good
deeol moore nor it does on able schoo’ mesthurs. It’s no use tryin’ to
larn a lad French if he intends to be a carter. Th’ ’osses couldn’t
understond French, an’ he met as weel ha’ no eddication at o’ if his
’osses connot understond him. Neaw, it’s just the same wi’ me an’
larning to talk ﬁne. My felley, yo’ see, is a carter, an’ when we
getten wed we meean to have a little farm, abeawt th’ size o’ three
acres an’ a ceaw. What good will ﬁne talk be to me then? Just fancy me
talkin’ to a ’oss, an’ saying, “I beg your pardon, Neddy, but will you
please walk on the other side of the street?” Why, bless yo’! th’ ’oss
would wonder what i’ th’ world aw wur talking abeawt: but if aw said
“Gee back,” it would gawm what aw wanted in a minute. (Sees Mrs. P’s hat on the table).
Hello! What han we here? Another new hat for Mrs. Pendlebury, aw
declare. Aw wonder heaw hoo con forshame of her face, spendin’ her
brass like teemin’ wayter deawn a doitch back, ‘an’ owin’ me four
months’ wages. But aw dunnot think ’at it’s paid for. Mrs. Pendlebury
believes moore i’ buyin’ nor hoo does i’ payin’. Neaw, aw wonder heaw
aw should look in it? Eh! but it’s gradely stylish, isn’t it? What
pratty ﬂeawers, an’ what a bonny ﬁther. They say ’at ﬁne ﬁthers mak’
ﬁne brids. Well, aw say ‘at ﬁne brids set ﬁne ﬁthers off. (Puts on the hat and adjusts it at the mirror.)
Neaw, then, dunnot aw look smart? But, then, yo’ know, ev’rybody
wouldn’t look as weel in it as me. It’s my pratty face ’at sets it off.
With a nice leet bleawse an’ my new heeliotrope dress, shouldn’t aw
look like a grand lady? Well, whooa knows? awst happen be a lady
sometime. But aw hope aw’st never goo into society on th’ tick. (A knock is heard at the door).
Hello! whooa’s that? Noane Mrs. Pendlebury, surely? Neawe; hoo winnot
be back for an heawr, at leeost. Oh! aw know, it’ll be Bessie Hardwick.
Hoo said hoo’d co’ in when hoo seed Mrs. Pendlebury go eawt. Neaw, just
see if aw dunnot surprise her. (Goes
out, still keeping the hat on her head. As the door opens, Jane
suddenly screams, and Mrs. Pendlebury’s voice is heard).
MRS. P. (outside).—So
that is the way you behave when I am out, is it? Putting on my hats and
dresses, eh? Perhaps walking out in them with your young man, eh?
— Aw dunnot think yo’ need trouble yo’resel, missis, my felley wouldn’t
like me to wear out ’at didn’t belung to me, or ’at wurn’t paid for.
MRS. P. (outside
). — How dare you use your insolence? But I won’t have it any more. You
will take your notice at once. Do you hear, Jane? You will leave this
[Enter MRS. PENDLEBURY and MRS. WORSLEY]
P. — I am sorry, Mrs. Worsley, that this incident should have occurred,
because it has upset me, and I did so want to have a chat with you
about old times. You know, Mrs. Worsley, when you and I were courting.
But how is Mr. Worsley, and how are the children, and you, Annie — you
will pardon me calling you Annie, but it is so like old times — but I
do not think you are looking quite so well as you used to do? You have
not been ill, I hope.
MRS. W. — Eh, neawe, bless
yo’, aw’m as reet as a ribbin, an’ so are th’ childer. Yo’d think so if
yo’ seed ’em side a great big pon full o’ pon-itch ev’ry mornin’. But
eawr Joe, that’s Mesthur Worsley, as you co’en him, aw’m sorry to say,
has had a raythur lung beawt o’ sickness.
MRS. P. — Dear me! That is unfortunate. But I hope that he is recovering.
W. — Aye, aw’m fain to say ’at aw think he’s chetted th’ sexton this
time, but six months’ sickness is a lung an’ serious trial.
MRS. P. — It is indeed. And has he been away from his employment all that time?
W. — Aw should think he has. Folks are hardly in a ﬁt state to
mind a pair o’ jennies when they connot stond o’ their feet.
MRS. P. — But how have you lived? People don’t give credit for ever.
MRS. W. — Aw reckon not, th’ owd Jonas Clack once did abeawt ten ye’rs beawt payin’ oather his rent or his shop score.
MRS. P. — How did he manage to do that?
W. — Oh, he awlus ﬂitted before th’ Bums coom. He said ’at it wur
chepper to ﬂit nor pay. But aw’m thankful to say ‘at we’ve never gone
MRS. P. — What! Not gone into debt?
And your husband at home sick for half a year? How have you done it?
Why, I am over head and ears in debt now, and my husband has had full
work, and earns, I believe, more wages than yours when he is working.
MRS. W. — Aw’m surprised, an’ aw’m sorry to yer it, Alice.
P. — You may be surprised, but you needn’t be sorry. Why should either
you or I be sorry. It only concems those who give the credit, and they
are only too eager, I can assure you, to do business, even on credit.
It is a pure business speculation; if it succeeds so much the better,
if it fails, there is the Bankruptcy Court, and an end of the matter.
It does not affect us in any way.
MRS. W. — Aw
think it does, Alice; aw think it does. It touches eawr moral
character. When a woman con swagger abeawt wi’ ﬁne clooas ’at haven’t
been paid for, hoo’s losin’ that sense of honour ’at’s wo’th moore to
her nor o’ her good looks. When a woman darn’t pass a shop dur becos
hoo’s feeart ‘at th’ shopkeeper met see her an’ ax her when hoo’s beawn
to pay him th’ brass ’at hoo owes him, hoo’s lost that liberty which
should be a preawd possession to her. But when a woman gets so used to
bein’ i’ debt ’at hoo doesn’t care whooa knows abeawt it, aw say ’at it’s
a bad job, not only for thoose ’at hoo owes th’ brass to, but it’s a
worse job for thoose ’at look to her for example an’ for help. If hoo’s
nob’dy nobbut hersel’ to tew for, hoo’ll end her days i’ th’
warkheause; but if hoo’s a family, they’ll wear clogs of a Sunday, an’
awlus be two or three weeks beheend nowt. Beside, if folks ﬁnd eawt ‘at
they con live beawt payin’, they areno’ lung before they ﬁnd it eawt
’at they con live beawt working! An’ someb’dy has to keep ’em. If
you’ll notice, folks ’at run up a shop score are never as reg’lar at
their wark as those ’at pays their road.
— Really, Annie, you have developed into quite an eloquent preacher.
You have given me a splendid sermon, but, like a good many sermons, it
would not work out well in practice. Take your own case, Annie, and say
whether it would not have been better for you and your family if you
had enjoyed your usual comforts and luxuries, even though you had
obtained them on credit.
MRS. W. — Neawe! aw
dunnot think it would. Lookin’ back at th’ difficulties we’ve had to
face aw think ’at eawr efforts to get o’er ’em have done us good. We
larnt th’ evil o’ waste an’ th’ value o’ wark. If yo’ ever want to know
th’ real value o’ money yo’ should work for it. Then we never wore
shoon when we could nobbut afford clogs. See yo! aw’d sooner go to
church in a pair o’ clogs nor swagger in a pair o’ shoon ’at squeak an’
tell ev’rybody ’at they aren’t paid for.
MRS. P. — But you forget, Annie, that even churches go into debt.
W. — Nay, aw dunnot forget it, Alice. Aw know ’at nob’dy brakes th’
Tenth Commandment moore nor th’ churches, but becose they’ve brokken it
that doesn’t say ’at they’ve been put in to piece it up again th’
back’ard road abeawt. Yo’ dunnot think, dun yo’, ’at they’ll alleaw
thoose folks to wear grand creawns i’ heaven ’at wouldn’t pay their
bonnet bills deawn here?
MRS. P. — Really, Annie, I do not see that the Tenth Commandment has anything to do with credit trading.
W. — Hasn’t it? Doesn’t it tell us ’at we munnot covet owt ’at belongs
to someb’dy else, an’ if we buy summat an’ haven’t brass to pay for it,
it’s noane eawrs, is it? Doesn’t credit tempt us to buy lots o’ things
’at we dunnot need, an’ things ’at aren’t work’d for are never cared
for so weel. Aw think ’at th’ Co-operative Stores are th’ best things
’at ever coom up for workin’ folks, becose they dunnot alleaw credit
MRS. P. — Do you say that the Co-operative
Stores do not allow credit? Why, that is where I ﬁrst learned the art
of credit trading. At ﬁrst I only obtained a few articles in that way.
Then I began to get more. Soon I found that I had reached the limit
which the Society would allow. But the habit of getting that which I
fancied, whether I had money to pay for it or not, had so grown upon me
that I could not resist it, and as the Stores would not let me have
more credit, I went elsewhere. If I want a picture, or a piece of
furniture, or a hat, or a dress, I simply order it and pay when it is
convenient. That hat, for instance, which Jane was wearing when we came
in, I saw in the window of Madame Bulet’s shop, and being delighted
with it, I went in and ordered it.
MRS. W. — An’ isn’t it paid for?
MRS. P. — Oh, dear, no. But it is really a pretty hat. You shall see it. (Rings the bell).
[Enter JANE, attired ready for departure]
MRS. P. — Bring that hat, will you, Jane, for Mrs. Worsley to — really, Jane, whatever is the matter? Where are you going?
JANE. — Aw’m goin’ whoam. Yo’ve bagg’d me, haven’t yo’?
MRS. P. — Yes, I am aware of that, and you richly deserved it. But you must remember that you have a month to serve yet.
— Aw beg yo’r pardon, ma’am, but yo’re mista’en. Yo’ owe me four
months’ wages, so th’ contract is brokken. Aw’m goin’ neaw, so aw’ll
trouble yo’ to pay me what yo’ owe me.
MRS. P. — Nonsense, girl! Don’t be foolish. Fetch that hat and go on with your work.
JANE. — Not if aw know it, ma’am. Yo’ insulted me before this lady, an’ neaw aw want my money, an’ aw’ll goo.
MRS. P. — Bring me that hat, Jane, and let me have no more foolery.
— Foolery, is it? Which is the mooist foolish, yo’ or me? Aw dunnot goo
an’ order new hats an’ dresses when I haven’t paid for th’ last.
MRS. P. — Hold your tongue, Jane.
JANE. — Aye! When yo’ve paid me my wages.
MRS. P. (aside)—What
must I do? I have not sufﬁcient money to pay her, and if she is
not satisﬁed she will give the whole business away. (Aloud) Jane, I tell you to go and fetch that hat.
JANE. — An’ aw tell yo’ ’at aw’ve ﬁnish’d my contract, but aw’ll just try to oblige yo’ if yo’ll pay me what yo’ owe me.
(A loud knock is heard at the door).
MRS. P. — Attend to the door, Jane, at once.
JANE. — Jane’s noane on duty neaw, ma’am; hoo’s been sack’d.
MRS. P. — Don’t exasperate me, Jane, but do as you are told.
JANE. — Dunnot vex me, ma’am, but pay me my wages.
(Knocking at the door louder than before).
MRS. P .— Do you hear, Jane, they are growing impatient.
JANE. — Aye! an’ so am I.
MRS. P. — Jane! I beg of you to see what is the matter, and who it is that so loudly demands admittance.
JANE. — An’ dun’ yo’ withdraw that insult to me?
MRS. P. — Yes, Jane, I withdraw it.
JANE. — An’ th’ notice, too?
MRS. P. — Yes, Jane, and the notice.
JANE. — Then aw’ll attend to th’ dur. — (Very loud knocking). Coming.
P. — I am extremely distressed that this little scene should have taken
place to mar the pleasure of your visit, but, then, you know how
difﬁcult the great servant problem is.
MRS. W. — Indeed, Alice, th’ sarvant problem doesn’t concern me at o. Aw’ve no bother wi’ em, becose aw’m my own sarvant.
MRS. P. — You do not mean to tell me that you do all the housework yourself?
MRS. W. — Of course, aw do.
MRS. P. — But, really!——
[Enter JANE, hastily].
JANE.—Eh, Mrs. Pendlebury, do come here! It’s th’ Bums.
MRS. P. — The what? The Bums?
JANE. — Aye, it is. An’ they would come in.
MRS. P. — But they must go out before Mr. Pendlebury retums.
JANE. — But they swear ’at they winnot go eawt for noather Mr. Pendlebury nor King George till they get what they’ve come for.
P. — Gracious me, Mrs. Worsley! What — ever must I do? It will bring
discredit on Mr. Pendlebury. Can nobody help me? Can you suggest any
way out of the difﬁculty, Annie?
MRS. W. — Aw’m
feeart ’at aw connot, Alice. Yo’ see aw’ve had no experience i’ these
sort o’ things. Aw’ve noather been in a Bum Bailey’s Court, nor a
King’s Court. Aw dunnot want to goo i’ one, an’ aw dunnot think ’at
onybody’ll ever ax me to goo into th’ other. But aw thowt yo’ said ’at
these debts didn’t consarn yo’?
MRS. P. — So I
did, Annie, so I did. Ah! I was wrong. I never thought it would come to
this. Can’t you persuade them to go away, Jane? Tell them I will pay
everything off as soon as possible.
JANE. — Aw towd ’em ’at it would be o reet, but they nobbut laugh’d at me, an’ said ’at they’d rayther see th’ colour o’ yo’r money.
MRS. P. — Do they doubt my word?
JANE. — Aw’m feeart they do, ma’am. Judgin’ fro’ what they said, they’d sooner have a promise fro’ Mrs. Worsley nor yo’.
MRS. P. — Absurd! Ridiculous! Do they know that Mrs. Worsley is poor through having a long sickness in the family?
JANE. — Aye! But then, yo’ see, hoo’s never gone into debt.
MRS. P. — Ah! I see it now. My promise is worth just as much as I am, which is nothing. Oh! Annie, can you help me?
MRS. W. — Heaw mich dun yo’ owe?
MRS. P. — I do not know. Ask them, Jane, how much they want?
— They said as they’d been put in for £50, but they’re prepared to
accept £5 deawn, an’ security for th’ remainder at £5 a month.
MRS. P. — Alas! They might as well ask me for £1,000. It is impossible for me to ﬁnd the money or the security.
MRS. W. — Aw’ll ﬁnd it for yo’, on one condition, Alice.
P. — You! Annie? You ﬁnd £5 and give security for £45 more, after
having had to maintain a family of children and a sick husband? Surely
you are mocking me.
MRS.W. — Nay I aw’m noane
makkin’ a foo’ on yo’. Yo’ve done that for yo’rsel’. Yo’ve londed
yo’rsel’ in a bonny pickle, shuz heaw it is. But aw’m preawd to say ’at
we’re noane beawt brass, tho’ we’ve had a lot o’
bad luck i’ th’ heause. But aw’m noane ’shawm’d o’ sayin’ ’at aw not
only nursed eawr Joe but aw took in a bit of other wark, so ’at we
shouldn’t lessen eawr savin’s so mich. Then we made it a rule never to
buy owt ’at we didn’t really need or what we couldn’t pay for, so, yo’
see, we kept a close watch on eawr expenses. I haven’t had mony new
geawns, an’ we hannot dined so oft off roast turkey, but eawr Joe’s
nearly ready for his wark again, an’ still we’ve a bit of a balance
left i’ th’ bank.
MRS. P. — You amaze me, Annie!
A balance at the bank after all your misfortunes, whilst I, with a
greater income and a less family than you, am in debt. How do you
MRS. W. — By one word, Alice —
credit-trading. Folks ’at begin o’ buyin’ ﬁne things witheawt havin’
brass to pay for ’em soon get agate o’ thinkin’ ’at they’ve no need to
pay for ’em at o.
MRS. P. — You are right, Annie, I know it. But you say you will help me?
MRS. W. — Aye! on one condition.
MRS. P.—And what is that?
MRS. W. — That yo’ solemnly promise me that yo’ll never buy another article, heawever great or smo’, on credit i’ yo’r life.
P. — I solemnly give you that promise Annie, and I seal my pledge with
a kiss, and may God bless you for your kindness. I will try to show my
earnestness by returning the new hat which I do not require, and which, as Jane says, is not paid for.
— Aw beg yo’r pardon, Missis Pendlebury; but if yo’ dunnot mind aw’ll
buy that hat, aw need a new un, an’ it suits me very weel. Beside aw’ve
brass enoof to pay for it. But aw shannot wear it till it’s paid for.
MRS. P. — You shall have it, Jane, and may God bless you, too, for your devotion. (Kisses JANE) And now we’ll go and see if we can persuade these bailiffs to take their departure.
MRS. W. — An’ we’ll try to stop ’em fro’ coming back again by having nowt to do wi’ that ruinous system o’ Credit Trading.
JANE. — An’ if yo’ want to see heaw it’s done, come an’ visit me when aw’ll wed, an’ see eawr three acres an’ a ceaw.
BARNETT, H. F.
BRADBURY, MISS A.
BROADBENT, A. A
BARBER, MRS. L.
BRADSHAW, F. INGHAM
COLLINS, M.P.S., S.
CHADDERTON, F. W.
CHEETHAM, ALD. J. K.
CLARKE, W. D.
COLLINGE, S. J.
DORNAN, J.P., MISS A.
HARDMAN, T. E
HIBBERT, A. E.
HENSHALL, W. A.
JACKSON, LL.B., A.
LORD, S. W.
LETHAM, E. E.
MCLAUCHLAN, W. S.
MOOK, G. E
NEWBY, M.P.S., F.
NEDDERMAN, G. H.
EASTHOPE, J. W.
EASTHOPE, A. E.
GOULDING, W. A.
HAIGH, MRS. J. W.
HAIGH, MISS A.
HARDMAN, ALD. C.
HOLDEN, MRS. E.
PEARSON, REV. J. A.
SHEPLEY, MISS N.
SLACK, J. S.
SIM, J. T.
TAYLOR, MRS. J. T.
TAYLOR, MRS. T. B.
WOLSTENCROFT, A. E.