Hushie Ba Birdie Beeton 1. Hushie-ba, burdie beeton! Your mammie's gane to Seaton, For to buy a lammie's skin, To wrap your bonnie boukie in. 2. Ba lamb, ba lamb, beattie O, Your mammy's away to the city O, To buy a wee bit croby's skin, To row about your feety O. 3. Baloo, lillie beetie, Mammie's at the ceetie, For tae plick an' for tae pu', For tae gather lammie's woo', For tae buy a bullie's skin, Tae rock wir bonnie bairnie in. ________________________________________________________ (1) Chambers PRS (,1847), 176; (1870), 13 (followed up by a Scots version of "Bye baby bunting", of which the first is definitely a Scots variant); Ford CR 19; Montgomerie SNR (1946), 130 (no. 167). (2) Maclagan GDA (1901), 251, from Argyll. (3) Gosset, Lullabies of Four Nations (1915), 189 (no. 126), from Orkney. Note (p. 265) says: "Contributed by Mr. John Frith, of Finstown Frith, where he heard it sung quite recently as a lullaby. It is of special interest, as it illustrates the plucking or pulling of the wool from the sheep instead of shearing, a method adopted in Shetland, Orkney, and other parts of Britain with certain breeds of sheep, also of the old custom, swinging or rocking the baby in a hammock, hence the `bullie', or `calf skin'." Rymour Club Misc. I (1906-11), 46, "Arbroath names introduced": "Hushy-ba, Lilly Beaton, Mammie's awa to the Seaton,/ For to buy a sheepie's skin, To row my bairnie's feeties in." ODNR 63 (no. 25). SND I. s.v. beeton, ref. to Ork. rhyme under ba'.- i.e., "Baa the bairns o' Bae-tun,/ For minno's awa tae Sae-tun" -- from H. Marwick, "Antiq. Notes on Sanday", Ork. Antiq. Soc. (1922), 29. "Ba' is prob. an imitative word from the action of the lips in kissing" (SND WBO OCT98
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