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EBBA 20188

Magdalene College - Pepys
Ballad XSLT Template
The Cooper of Norfolke:
OR ,
A pretty Jest of a Brewer, and the Coopers wife: and how the Cooper served the
Brewer in his kinde. To the tune of The wiving age.


A Ttend my masters, and listen well
Unto this my ditty, which briefly doth tell
Of a fine mery Jest which in Norfolke befell
A brave lusty Cooper in that Country did dwell,
And there he cride worke for a Cooper,
Maids ha'y any worke for a Cooper.

This Cooper he had a faire creature to's wife
Which a Brewer ith' towne lov'd as deare as his life,
But she had a tricke which in some wives is rife,
She still kept a sheath for another mans knife,
And often cornuted the Cooper,
while he cri'd, more worke for a Cooper.

It hapen'd one morning the Cooper out went,
To worke for his living it was his intent,
He trusted his house to his wives government,
And left her in bed to her owns hearts content,
while he cri'd, what worke for a Cooper,
Maids ha'y any worke for a Cooper.

And as the Cooper was passing a long,
Stil crying and calling his old wonted song,
The Brewer, his rivall, both lusty and yong,
Did thinke now or never to doe him some wrong,
and lie with the wife of the Cooper,
who better lov'd him then the Cooper,

So calling the Cooper, he to him did say,
Goe home to my house, and make no delay,
I have so much worke as thou canst doe to day,
What ever thou earnest, Ile bountifully pay,
these tydings well pleased the Cooper,
oh this was brave newes for the Cooper.

Away went the Cooper to th' house of the Brewer,
Who seeing him hard at his worke to endure,
Thought he, now for this day the Cooper is sure,
Ile goe to his wife the greene sicknesse to cure,
take heed of your fore-head, good Cooper.
for now I must worke for the Cooper.

So strait waies he went to the Coopers dwelling,
The good wife to give entertainment was willing:
The Brewer & she like to Pigeons were billing,
& what they did else they have bound me from telling:
he pleased the wife of the Cooper,
who better lov'd him then the Cooper.

But marke how it happened now at the last,
Their sun-shine of pleasures was soone over-cast,
The Cooper did lacke one of's Tooles and in hast,
He came home to fetch it, and found the doore fast:
Wife, open the doore, quoth the Cooper,
and let thy husband the Cooper.

Now when the good-wife and the Brewer did heare,
The Cooper at doore, affrighted they were,
The Brewer was in such a bodily feare,
That for to hide himselfe, he knew not where,
to shun the fierce rage of the Cooper,
he thought he should die by the Cooper.

The Goodwife perceiving his woefull estate,
She having a subtill and politicke pate,
She suddenly whelm'd downe a great brewing fat,
And closely she cover'd the Brewer with that,
then after she let in the Cooper,
what's under this tub, quoth the Cooper,

The second part, To the same tune.

S He hearing her husband that question demaund,
She thought it was time to her tackling to stand,
Take heed how you move it, quod she, with your hand,
For theres a live Pig, was left by a friend,
Oh let it alone good Cooper,
thus she thought to coozen the Cooper.

It is a Sow pig the Cooper did say,
Let me ha'it to my supper: the Good-Wife said nay.
It is sir a Bore pig, quoth she, by my fay,
Tis for mine owne dyet, twas given me to day,
It is not for you John Cooper,
Then let it alone John Cooper.

I would it were in thy belly, quoth John ,
Indeed then quoth she so it shall be anon,
What ere become of it, faith thou shalt have none,
Why standst thou here prating, I prethee be gone,
Make haste to thy worke John Cooper,
worse meate's good enough for a Cooper.

Cannot a good-wife have a bit now and than,
But there must be notice tane by the Good man,
Ile ha'it to my dinner sir, doe what you can,
It may be I long to have all or none,
Then prethee content thee good Cooper,
Oh goe to thy worke John Cooper.

The Cooper mistrusted some knavery to be,
Hid under the brewing fat, and therefore he
Was fully resolved for his mindes sake to see,
Alas said the Brewer then woe be to me;
Oh what shall I say to the Cooper,
I would I were gone from the Cooper.

You Whore quoth the Cooper, is this your bore pig?
He has beene well fed, for hees growne very big,
Ile eyther of him have an arme or a leg,
Ile make him unable his taile for to wrig
Before he gets hence from John Cooper,
Ile make him remember the Cooper.

Oh pardon me neighbour the Brewer did say,
And for the offence I have done thee this day,
I am well contented thy wrath to allay,
And make restitution for this my foule play,
Oh prethee forgive me John Cooper,
And Ile be a friend to John Cooper .

If for this offence thou wilt set me cleare,
My bouty and love to thee shall appeare,
Ile freely allow thee and thine all the yeare,
As much as yee'll drinke, eyther strong Ale or beere,
Then prethee forgive me John Cooper,
Accept of my profer John Cooper.

Oh, no, quoth the Cooper, Ile have thee to thinke,
That I with my labour can buy my selfe drinke,
Ile geld thee, or lame thee, ere from me thou shrinke,
These words made the Brewer with feare for to stincke,
he feared the rage of the Cooper,
yet still he intreated the Cooper.

The Cooper by no meanes would let goe his hold,
The Brewer cri'd out to the Cooper and told
Him there was the key of his silver and gold,
And gave him free leave to fetch what he would,
oh then he contented the Cooper
these tydings well pleased the Cooper.

If thou quoth the Cooper, wilt sweare with an oath,
To doe all thou telst me, although I am loath,
I will be contented to pardon you both:
Content, quoth the Brewer, I will be my troth,
Here take thou my key, John Cooper,
yea, with a good will, quoth the Cooper.

On this condition they both went their way,
Both John and the Brewer, but John kept the key,
Which open'd the Coffer where more money lay,
Then John the Cooper made many a day:
this is a brave fight thought the Cooper,
Ile furnish my selfe thought the Cooper.

John was so farre in affection with that,
That he tooke up handfuls and filled his hat,
I will have my bargaine quoth John , that is flat,
The Brewer shall pay well for using my Fat;
Ile cry no more worke for a Cooper,
farewell to the trade of a Cooper,

Thus money can pacifie the greatest strife,
For John never after found fault with his Wife,
He left off his Adz, his Saw and his knife,
And after liv'd richly all dayes of his life,
he cri'd no more worke for a Cooper,
oh he left off the trade of a Cooper.

And in his merry mood, oft he would say,
If that I had hoopt twenty tubs in one day,
I should not have got so much wealth, by my fay,
Gramercy kind wife, for thy wit found the way,
to make a rich man of John Cooper,
oh what a good wife has John C ooper.

Let no marrid couple that heare this tale told,
Be of the opinion this couple did hold,
To sell reputation for silver or gold,
For credit and honestie should not be sold,
Thus endeth the Song of the C ooper,
That cri'd, ha'y any worke for a C ooper.


FINIS.

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