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Lyr/Tune Req: Tak Your Auld Cloak About Ye

John in Brisbane 16 Feb 03 - 08:19 PM
Jim Dixon 21 Jan 11 - 01:06 AM
randjgc 21 Jan 11 - 01:59 AM
Jim Dixon 21 Jan 11 - 10:55 AM
Jim Dixon 21 Jan 11 - 12:07 PM
GUEST 13 Mar 11 - 12:37 PM
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Subject: Tak Your Auld Cloak About Ye
From: John in Brisbane
Date: 16 Feb 03 - 08:19 PM

The DT attributes this tune as the source for Burns 'Twa Wives', but I can't find the original in the DT. Bruce O proffered this five or so years ago. I have the score if it's required. Please PM me.

Regards, John


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Subject: Lyr Add: TAK YOUR AULD CLOAK ABOUT YE
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 21 Jan 11 - 01:06 AM

From Scotish Song, Vol. 1 by Joseph Ritson (London: J. Johnson and J. Egerton, 1714), page 219—where there is also musical notation for the melody line only.


TAKE YOUR AULD CLOAK ABOUT YOU*

1. In winter when the rain rain'd cauld,
And frost and snaw on ilka hill,
And Boreas, with his blasts sae bauld,
Was threat'ning a' our ky to kill:
Then Bell my wife, wha loves na strife,
She said to me right hastily,
Get up, goodman, save Cromy's life,
And tak your auld cloak about ye.

2. My Cromie is an useful cow.
And she is come of a good kyne;
Aft has she wet the bairns mou,
And I am laith that she shou'd tyne;
Get up, goodman, it is fou time,
The sun shines frae the lift sae hie;
Sloth never made a gracious end,
Go tak your auld cloak about ye.

3. My cloak was anes a good grey cloak,
When it was fitting for my wear;
But now it's scantly worth a groat,
For I have worn't this thirty year;
Let's spend the gear that we have won;
We little ken the day we'll die:
Then I'll be proud, since I have sworn
To have a new cloak about me.

4. In days when our king Robert rang,
His trews they cost but haff a crown;
He said they were a groat o'er dear,
And call'd the taylor thief and loun:
He was the king that wore a crown,
And thou the man of laigh degree,
'Tis pride puts a' the country down,
Sae tak thy auld cloak about thee.**

5. Every land has its ain laugh,
Ilk kind of corn it has its hool.
I think the warld is a' run wrang,
When ilka wife her man wad rule;
Do ye not see Rob, Jock, and Hab,
As they are girded gallantly,
While I sit hurklen in the ase;
I'll have a new cloak about me.

6. Goodman, I wate 'tis thirty years,
Since we did ane anither ken;
And we have had between us twa,
Of lads and bonny lasses ten:
Now they are women grown and men,
I wish and pray well may they be;
And if you prove a good husband,
E'en tak your auld cloak about ye.

7. Bell my wife, she loves na strife;
But she wad guide me, if she can,
And to maintain an easy life,
I aft maun yield, tho' I'm goodman:
Nought's to be won at woman's hand,
Unless ye give her a' the plea;
Then I'll leave aff where I began,
And tak my auld cloak about me.

* Dr. Percy, though he supposes this to be originally a Scotish ballad, has given an ancient copy of it, from his folio MS. in the English idiom, with an additional stanza (the second) never before printed. See the Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, &c. vol. i. p. 190. The additional stanza is as follows:

O Bell, why dost thou flyte and scorne?
Thou kenst my cloak is very thin:
It is so bare and overworne,
A cricke he thereon cannot renn:
Then Ile noe longer borrowe nor lend,
For once Ile new appareld bee,
To-morrow Ile to towne and spend,
For Ile have a new cloake about me.

** This stanza [4], with a little variation, as "king Stephen" for "king Robert" is sung by Iago, in Shakspeares tragedy of Othello, act ii, scene 3.


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: Tak Your Auld Cloak About Ye
From: randjgc
Date: 21 Jan 11 - 01:59 AM

Some redundant information on this. Robert Burns, in his "Interleaved copy" of the Scots Musical Museum wrote -

"A part of this old song according to the English set of it, is quoted in Shakespear." (without the..e)

The particular volume of the SMM was printed in 1790, and gives a complete tune, being numbered 250.

Ritson lived 1752-1803, so I can only conclude that the printers date on the book is in error? It should be 1794.


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: Tak Your Auld Cloak About Ye
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 21 Jan 11 - 10:55 AM

Randigc: You're right.

Volume 1 is dated "MDCCXIV."

Volume 2 is dated "MDCCXCIV."

--which disappoints me. I was looking for the oldest available text, and thought I had found it. That might not be the case.


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Subject: Lyr Add: TAKE THY OLD CLOAK ABOUT THEE
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 21 Jan 11 - 12:07 PM

TAKE YOUR AULD CLOAK ABOUT YOU was also printed (text only) in The Tea-Table Miscellany, Volume 1, by Allan Ramsay (London: A. Millar, 1733), page 114, but that text is not significantly different from the version from Ritson.

The following version appears in Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, New Edition, Volume 1 by Thomas Percy (London: Henry Washbourne and Co., 1857), page 207:


TAKE THY OLD CLOAK ABOUT THEE,

Is supposed to have been originally a Scottish ballad. The reader here has an ancient copy in the English idiom, with an additional stanza (the 2d) never before printed. This curiosity is preserved in the Editor's folio MS. but not without corruptions, which are here removed by the assistance of the Scottish edit. Shakspeare in his Othello, act ii. has quoted one stanza, with some variations, which are here adopted: the old MS. readings are however given in the margin.

1. This winters weather itt waxeth cold,
And frost doth freese on every hill,
And Boreas blowes his blasts soe bold,
That all our cattell are like to spill;
Bell my wife, who loves no strife,
She sayd unto me quietlie,
Rise up, and save cow Crumbockes life,
Man, put thine old cloake about thee.

2. HE. O Bell, why dost thou flyte 'and scorne?'
Thou kenst my cloak is very thin:
It is so bare and overworne
A cricke he thereon cannot renn:
Then Ile noe longer borrowe nor lend,
'For once Ile new appareld bee,
To-morrow Ile to towne and spend,'
For Ile have a new cloake about mee.

3. SHE. Cow Crumbocke is a very good cowe,
She has been alwayes true to the payle,
Shee has helpt us to butter and cheese, I trow,
And other things she will not fayle;
I wold be loth to see her pine,
Good husband, councell take of mee,
It is not for us to go soe fine,
Then take thine old cloake about thee.

4. HE. My cloake it was a very good cloake,
Itt hath been alwayes true to the weare,
But now it is not worth a groat;
I have had it four and forty yeare:
Sometime it was of cloth in graine,
'Tis now but a sigh clout as you may see,
It will neither hold out winde nor raine;
Ill have a new cloake about mee.

5. SHE. It is four and fortye yeeres agoe
Since the one of us the other did ken,
And we have had betwixt us towe
Of children either nine or ten;
Wee have brought them up to women and men;
In the feare of God I trow they bee;
And why wilt thou thyself misken?
Man, take thine old cloake about thee.

6. HE. O Bell my wyfe, why dost thou floute!
Now is nowe, and then was then:
Seeke now all the world throughout,
Thou kenst not clownes from gentlemen.
They are clad in blacke, greene, yellowe, or 'gray,'
Soe far above their owne degree:
Once in my life Ile 'doe as they,'
For Ile have a new cloake about mee.

7. SHE. King Stephen was a worthy peere,
His breeches cost him but a crowne,
He held them sixpence all too deere;
Therefore he calld the taylor Lowne.
He was a wight of high renowne,
And thouse but of a low degree:
Itt's pride that putts the countrye downe,
Then take thine old cloake about thee.

8. HE. 'Bell my wife she loves not strife,
Yet she will lead me if she can;
And oft, to live a quiet life,
I am forced to yield, though Ime good-man;'
Itt's not for a man with a woman to threape,
Unlesse he first give oer the plea:
As wee began wee now mun leave,
And Ile take mine old cloake about mee.

Verse 7, line 1, King Harry ... a very good king. MS.
Line 2, I trow his hose cost but. MS.
Line 3, He thought them 12d. to deere. MS.
Line 4, clowne. MS.
Line 5, He was king and wore the crowne. MS.


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Subject: RE: Lyr/Tune Req: Tak Your Auld Cloak About Ye
From: GUEST
Date: 13 Mar 11 - 12:37 PM

The tune & lyrics of 'Tak your Auld Cloak about you' are in Bremner's "Thirty Scots Song for Voice & Harpsichord". p.14 & printed in 1757 (according to the National Library of Scotland).


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