“The Trooper Cut Down in His Prime”


The singer sees a trooper "wrapped up in flannel yet colder than clay." He dies as "the bugles were playin'," and details of the burial are given. His gravestone warns, "Flash-girls of the city have quite ruined me."


One of the large group of ballads ("The Bard of Armagh," "Saint James Hospital," "The Streets of Laredo") ultimately derived from "The Unfortunate Rake." All use the same or similar tunes and meter, and all involve a person dying as a result of a wild life, but the nature of the tragedy varies according to local circumstances. - RBW

Cross references


  1. Darling-NAS, p. 6, "The Trooper Cut Down In His Prime" (1 text)
  2. Roud #2
  3. BI, DarNS006


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1979