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Wouldst thou, possessor of a flock, employ
SHOWING HOW HE WENT FARTHER THAN HE INTENDED.
AND CAME SAFE HOME AGAIN.
JOHN GILPIN was a citizen
Of credit and renown,
Of famous London town.
John Gilpin's spouse said to her dear,
-Though wedded we have been These twice ten tedious years, yet we
No holiday have seen.
And we will then repair
All in a chaise and pair.
My sister and my sister's child,
Myself and children three
On horseback after we.
He soon replied—I do admire
Of womankind but one,
Therefore it shall be done.
I am a linen-draper bold,
As all the world doth know, And my good friend the Callender
Will lend his horse to go.
Quoth Mrs. Gilpin—That's well said ;
And for that wine is dear,
Which is both bright and clear.
John Gilpin kiss'd his loving wife,
O'erjoyed was he to find
She had a frugal mind.
But yet was not allow'd
Should say that she was proud.
Where they did all get in,
To dash through thick and thin.
Smack went the whip, round went the wheel,
Were never folk so glad,
As if Cheapside were mad.
John Gilpin at his horse's side
Seized fast the flowing mane, And up he got in haste to ride,
But soon came down again.
For saddle-tree scarce reach'd had he,
His journey to begin,
Three customers come in.
So down he came, for loss of time
Although it grieved him sore,
Would trouble him much more.
'Twas long before the customers
Were suited to their mind, When Betty screaming came down stairs,
“ The wine is left behind.”
Good lack! quoth he, yet bring it me,
My leathern belt likewise
When I do exercise.
Now Mistress Gilpin, careful soul,
Had two stone bottles found,
And keep it safe and sound.
Each bottle had a curling ear,
Through which the belt he drew, And hung a bottle on each side
To make his balance true. Then over all, that he might be
Equipp'd from top to toe, His long red cloak well brush'd and neat
He manfully did throw. S. C.-9.
Now see him mounted once again
Upon his nimble steed,
With caution and good heed.
But finding soon a smoother road
Beneath his well-shod feet,
Which gall’d him in his seat.
So, Fair and softly, John he cried,
But John he cried in vain, That trot became a gallop soon
In spite of curb and rein.
So stooping down, as needs he must
Who cannot sit upright, He grasp'd the mane with both his hands
And eke with all his might.
His horse, who never in that sort
Had handled been before, What thing upon his back had got
Did wonder more and more.
Away went Gilpin neck or nought,
Away went hat and wig,
Of running such a rig.
Like streamer long and gay,
At last it flew away,