When I Was a Wee Thing When I was a wee thing, And just like an elf, All the meat that e'er I gat, I laid upon the shelf. The rottens and the mice They fell into a strife, They wadnae let my meat alane Till I gat a wife. And when I gat a wife, She wadnae bide therein, Till I gat a hurl-barrow, To hurle her out and in. The hurl-barrow brake, My wife she gat a fa'; And the foul fa' the hurl-barrow, Cripple wife and a'. She wadnae eat nae bacon, She wadnae eat nae beef, She wadnae eat nae lang-kail, For fyling o' her teeth: But she wad eat the bonnie bird, That sits upon the tree: Gang down the burn, Davie, love, And I sall follow thee. ________________________________________________________ Herd MSS.; Herd 1776 II.213 (tune, John Anderson my Jo); Montgomerie SNR (1946), 87 (no. 107; omits st. 2 and 4), probably from Moffat 50 TSNR (1933), 23, similarly defective [with tune, a version of John Anderson]; ODNR 96 (no. 71), "When I was a little boy" etc.; first ref. Tommy Thumb's Pretty Song Book, c. 1744. The last two lines are from the conclusion of stanza 1 of Robert Crawford's "Doun the Burn, Davie", a love song appearing in TTM (1724), and with music in Orpheus Caledonius, 1725. MS oct99
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