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EBBA 21764

Magdalene College - Pepys
Ballad XSLT Template
The Woman to the Plow
The Man to the Hen-Roost.
OR, a fine way to cure a Cot-Quean,
The Tune is, I have for all good wives a Song.

BOth Men and Women listen well,
A merry Jest I will you tell,
Betwixt a Good man and his Wif[e],
Who fell the other day at strife:
He chid her for her Huswivery,
And she found fault as well as he
With him fors work without the doors,
Quoth he, a pox on all such whores,
Sith you and I cannot agree,
Let's change our work, content, quoth she,
My Wheel and Distafe here take thou,
And I will drive the Cart and Plow.
This was concluded twixt them both,
To Cart and Plow the good-wife goeth
The goodman he at home doth tarry,
To see that nothing doth miscarry,
An apron he before him put,
Judge was not this a hansome slut.
He fleets the Milk, he makes the Chese,
He gropes the Hens the ducks & Geese,
He Brew[s] and Bakes as well as he can,
But not as it should be done, poor man:
As did make his Cheese one day,
Two Pigs their Bellies broke with whey,

Nothing that he in hand did take,
Did come to good once he did Bake,
And burnt the Bread as black as a stock
Another time he went to Rock
The Cradle, and threw the Child o'th floor
And broke his Nose, and hurt it sore.
He went to milk one Evening tide,
A Skittish Cow on the wrong side,
His pail was full of milk God wot,
She kict and spilt it every jot,
Besides she hit him a blost o,th face
Which was scant well in six weeks space,
Thus was he served, and yet to well
And more mischances yet befell,
Before his apron he'd leave off,
Though all his Neighbours did him scoff,
Now list and mark one pretty jest,
'Twill make you laugh above all the rest,
As he to churn his Butter went,
One Morning with a good intent,
The Cot quean fool did surely dream,
For he had quite forgot the Cream,
He Churn'd all day, with all his might,
And yet he could get no Butter at night,

TWere strange indeed for me to utter
That without Creame he should make butter
now having shew'd his huswivery,
Who did all things thus untowardly,
Unto the good-wife I'le turn my Rhime,
And tell you how she spent her time,
She us'd to drive the Cart and Plow,
But do't well she knew not how,
She made so many banks i'th ground,
He been better have given five pound,
That she had never tan'e in hand,
So sorely she did spoil the Land,
As she did go to Sow likewise,
She made a Feast for Crows and Pies,
She threw away a hanful at a place,
And left all bare another space,
At the Harrow she could not rule the Mare
But bid one Land, and left two bare.
And shortly after one a day
As she came home with a Load of Hay,
She overthrew it nay and worse,
She broke the Cart and kill'd a Horse:
The good-man that time had ill luck,
He let in the Sow and kill'd a Duck,
And being grieved at his heart
For loss on's Duck, his Horse and Cart,
The many hurts on both sides done,
His eyes did with salt water run:

Then now, quoth he, full well I see,
The Wheels for her the Plow's for me,
I the intreat, quoth he, good-wife,
To take thy Charge, and all my life
I'le never m[e]ddle with huswivery more,
Nor find such faults as I did before,
Give me the Cart-whip and the Frail
Take thou the Churn and milking pail.
The good wife she was well content,
And about her Huswivery, she went.
He to Hedging and to Ditching,
Heaping, Mowing, Lading, Pitching,
He would be twa[t]ling still before,
But after that ne'r twatled more.
I Wish all Wives that troubled be,
With Hose and Doublet Huswivery,
To [se]rve t[h]em as this woman did.
Th[e]n ma[y] they work and ne'r be chid,
Thoug[h] she it'h intrim had some loss,
Thereby she was eas[e]d of a Cross,
Take heed of this y[o]u husband-men,
Let Wives alone to grope the Hen,
And meddle you with the Horse and Ox
And keep your Lambs safe from the Fox,
So shall you live Contented lives,
And take sweet pleasure in your Wives.


Printed for J. Wright, J. Clarke, W. Thackeray, and T. Passinger.

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