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EBBA 32977

National Library of Scotland - Crawford
Ballad XSLT Template
West-Country TOM Tormented,
Vexed to the Heart by the News-Mongers of the Town.
He vowd hed neither talk nor prate,
or any News would give,
Concerning the Affairs of State,
but would at quiet live.
To the Tune of, Lilli borlero.

I Am a Lad thats come to the Town,
who from the West did travel of late;
And they do call me Country Clown,
because I will not prattle and prate:
I no sooner came to London,
but by the hand a Friend did me take,
And News did require, but twas my desire,
I told him neither to meddle nor make.

As I came by a Cobblers Sta[l]l,
where he was set a sowing his Shoes,
After me then he straightways did call,
saying, my Friend, I prithee what news?

This did straightways raise my anger,
knitting my brows, my head I did shake;
Do not stand bawling, but m[i]nd your own Calling,
for I will neither meddle nor make.

I having heard Men talk of rich Wine,
some of that drink methought I did lack,
Then I resolvd a Tavern to find,
where I woud buy two pennoth of Sack:
Being in my Leather Jacket,
Gallants unto poor Tommy did speak,
Concerning the Army, but they coud not charm me,
I swore I would neither meddle nor make.

Some said the Prince to London woud come,
then we shoud be more happy than ere;
Others declare we all were undone,
if to the City he did repair:
Thus they talkd like men distracted,
but not a word to them did I spake,
But as I sat drinking, I paid it with thinking,
but vowd I woud neither meddle nor make.

Some they did d[r]ink a Health to the Prince,
with a fair Orange p[l]acd in a Glass,
And without any seeming offence,
flowing full brimmers freely d[i]d pass:
Then they calld to Leather Breeches,
saying to me this Health I should take,
Ide not be at leasure, they might do their pleasure,
for I would neither meddle nor make.

Then I went to the Royal Exchange,
where they discoursd of matters of State,
Z bobs, thought I, tis wondrous strange,
that they do talk at such a rude rate:
Some were seemingly Disloyal,
the which did cause my heart for to ake,
But the I stood neuter, and was no disputer,
vowing Ide neither meddle nor make.

Then a young Spark all in a vine Coat,
in a great rage his Rapier he drew,
Swearing hed make me alter my Note,
a[n]d tell him more than ever I knew:
But as he was coming to me,
I with my Club his Noddle did break,
And said, honest Neighbour, take this for your labour
for I will neither meddle nor make.

Then to a Barbers Shop I did go
where being placd and set in the Chair,
Straightways he did desire to know
what kind of News abroad I did hear?
This did make me near Distracted,
unto my heels I straightways did take,
I ran and I Raved with half my Beard shaved,
crying, Ide neither meddle nor ma[k]e.

Printed for J Wolrah.

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