“Sair Fyel'd, Hinny”


"(I/Aw) was young and lusty, I was fair and clear... Mony a lang year." "Sair fyel'd, hinny, sair fyel'd now, Sair fyel'd, hinny, sin' I ken'd thou." The singer looks back on his young days, and admits, at 65, to being both "stiff and cauld."

Supplemental text

Sair Fyel'd, Hinny
  Complete text(s)

          *** A ***

From Stokoe/Reay, Songs and Ballads of Northern England, p. 48.

Sair fyel'd, hinny,
  Sair fyel'd now,
Sair fyel'd, hinny,
  Sin' I ken'd thou.
Aw was young and lusty,
  Aw was fair and clear
Aw was young and lusty
  Mony a lang year.
       Sair fyel'd, hinny, etc.

When aw was young and lusty,
  Aw could lowp a dyke,
But now aw'm awd an' stiff
  Aw can hardly step a syke.
       Sair fyel'd, hinny, etc.

When aw was fove-and-twenty
  Aw was brave and bauld;
Now, at five-and-sixty,
  Aw'm byeth stiff and cauld.
       Sair fyel'd, hinny, etc.

Thus said the auld man
  To the oak tree,
"Sair fyel'd is aw
  Sin' aw ken'd thee."
       Sair fyel'd, hinny, etc.


At least some versions of this share the lyric "Says t'auld man to th' old tree" ("Says the Old Man to the Oak Tree), also found in _Gammer Gurton's Garland_, but I don't know if they were initially two which joined or one which split. I very tentatively split them because, well, we're splitters. - RBW

Cross references


  1. Stokoe/Reay, p. 48, "Sair Fyel'd, Hinny" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. ST StoR048 (Full)
  3. Roud #3062
  4. BI, StoR048


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1900 (Stokoe/Reay)
Keywords: youth age
Found in: Britain(England(North))