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Poor Murdered Woman It was Hanky the squire as I've heard men say Who rode out a-hunting on one saturday They hunted all day but nothing they found But a poor murdered woman laid on the cold ground About eight o'clock, boys, our dogs they throve off On Leatherhead Common and that was the spot They tried all the bushes but nothing they found But a poor murdered woman laid on the cold ground They whipped their dogs off and they kept them away Cried "We think it is proper that she should have fair play" They tried all the bushes but nothing they found But a poor murdered woman laid on the cold ground They mounted their horses and they rode off the ground They rode to the village and alarmed it all around "It is late in the evening, I'm sorry to say She cannot be removed until the next day" The next sunday morning about eight o'clock Some hundreds of people to the spot they did flock For to see the poor creature, your hearts would have bled Some cold-hearted violents came into their heads She was took off the Common and down to some inn And the man that has kept it, his name is John Simms The coroner was sent for, the jury they joined And soon they concluded and they settled their mind The coffin was brought, in it she was laid And took to the churchyard of this court Leatherhead No father nor mother nor no friend I'm told Came to see the poor creature laid under the lawn So now I conclude and I'll finish my song And those that have tarried shall find themselves wrong To the last day of Georgemont a trumpet shall sound And this soul's not in heaven, I'm afraid, when being found recorded by Shirley Collins and the Albion Country Band on "No Roses" (1971) and by Carthy/Swarbrick on "But Two Came By" (1969) (without last verse) Collected by Lucy Broadsword from Mr. Forster of Surrey "A favourite song of mine learned from the singer Pete Wood. Reported in The Times on Tuesday January 14th 1834, it's the true story of a body found on Leatherhead Common by the Surrey Union Hunt. Written by a tender-hearted observer at the time, the song is so straight-forwardly told that its compassion and dignity might escape you, were it not for its noble tune." - Shirley Collins "A song describing a non-event" - Martin Carthy The last verse is a bit strange, anybody knows better words? MJ
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