“The Blythesome Bridal”


A call to a wedding: "Fy let us a' tae the bridal, For there will be lilting there, For Jock's tae be married tae Maggie, The lass wi' the gowden hair." The elaborate feast is described in extravagant and nauseating fullness, as are the guests

Supplemental text

Blythesome Bridal, The
  Complete text(s)

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The Blithesome Bridal

From James Johnson, "The Scots Musical Museum," Volume I, pp. 58-59.
As found in the 1853 edition (punctuation is somewhat uncertain,
given the state of the facsimile, as are a few instances of f/s).

Come, Fy! let us a' to the wedding
  For there'll be lilting there,
For Jock'll be married to Maggie,
  The lass wi' the gowden hair.
And there will be langkail and castocks,
  And bannocks of barley meal,
And there will be good sawt-herring,
  To relish a cog of good ale.

And there will be Saundy the sutor,
  And Will wi' the meikle mou,
And there will be Tam the blutter,
  With Andrew the tinkler, I trow;
And there will be bow'd legged Robie,
  With thumbless Katie's goodman,
And there will be blew cjeeked Dobbie,
  And Lawrie the laird of the land.

And there will be sow-libber Parie,
  And plucky fac'd Wat i' the mill,
Capper-nos'd Francie, and Gibbie,
  That wins in the how of the hill;
And there will be Alaster Sibby,
  Wha in with black Bessie did mool,
With snivelling Lilly and Tibby,
  The lass that stands aft on the stool.

And Madge that was buckled to Steenie,
  And coft him gray breeks to his a__,
Wha after was hangit for stealing,
  Great mercy it happen'd nae warse;
And there will be gleed Geordy Janners,
  And Kirsh with the lilly, white-leg,
What gade to the south for manners,
  And plaid the fool in Mons-meg.

And there will be Judan Maclawrie,
  And blinkin daft Barbara Maclet,
Wi' flea-lugged sharny-fac'd Lawrie,
  And shangy-mou'd halucket Meg;
And there will be happer a__ Nancie,
  And fairy-fac'd Flowrie by name,
Muck Madie, and fat-hippet Girsy,
  The lass wi' the gowden wame.

And there will be Girn-again Gibby
  With his glakit wife Jeany Bell,
And misled-shinn'd Mugo Macapie,
  The lad that was skipper himself.
There will be lads and lasses in pearlings,
  Will feast in the heard of the ha',
On sybows and rifarts and carlings,
  That are baith sodden and raw.

And there will be fadges and brachan,
  With fouth of good gabbocks of skate,
Powsowdie, and drammock and crowdie,
  And caller nowt-feet in a plate;
And there will be partans and buckies,
  And whitens and speldings enew,
With figit sheep-heads and a haggies,
  And scadlips to sup till you spew.

And there will be lapper'd milk kebbuck
  And sowens, and farles, and baps,
WIth swats and well-scraped paunches,
  And brandy in stoups and in caps;
And there will be meal kail and porrage,
  With skink to sup till ye rive,
And roasts to roast on a brander,
  Of flewks that were taken alive.

Scrapt haddocks, wilks, dufse and tangle,
  And a mill of good snighing to prie,
When weary with eating and drinking,
  We'll rise up and dance till we die;
Then fye let us a' to the bridal,
  For there will be lilting there,
For Jock'll be married to Maggie,
  The lass wi' the gowden hair.


By the seventeenth century, the "penny bridal" was common in Scotland: At a marriage, anyone could get into the feast by paying the penny fee. The results were often uproarious. - RBW

Same tune

  • The Sports o' Glasgow Green (File: Ord397)

Cross references


  1. PBB 82, "The Blythesome Bridal" (1 text)
  2. ST PBB082 (Full)
  3. Roud #5889
  4. BI, PBB082


Author: Francis Sempill ?
Earliest date: 1776 (Herd)
Found in: Britain(Scotland)