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The dogs did bark, the children scream'd,
Up flew the windows all;
As loud as he could bawl.
Away went Gilpin—who but be?
His fame soon spread around,
'Tis for a thousand pound!
And still, ss fast as he drew near,
'Twas wonderful to view,
Their gates wide open threw.
And now, as he went bowing down
His reeking head full low,
Were shatter'd at a blow.
Down ran the wine into the road,
Most piteous to be seen, Which made his horse's flanks to smoke
As they had basted been.
But still he seem'd to cany weight,
With leathern girdle brae'd; For all might see the bottle-necks
Still dangling at his waist.
Thus all through merry Islington
These gambols he did play, Until he came unto the Wash
Of Edmonton so gay;
And there he threw the wash about
On both sides of the way, Just like unto a trundling mop,
Or a wild goose at play.
At Edmonton his loving wife
From the balcony spied
To see how he did ride.
Stop, stop, John Gilpin!—Here's the house—
They all at once did cry;
Said Gilpin—So am I!
But yet his horse was not a whit
Inclin'd to tarry there;
Full ten miles off, at Ware.
So like an arrow swift he flew.
Shot by an archer strong;
The middle of my song.
Away went Gilpin out of breath,
And sore against bis will, Till at his friend the calender's
His horse at last stood still.
The calender, amaz'd to see
His neighbour in such trim,
And thus accosted him:
What news? what news? your tidings tell;
Tell me you must and shall— Say why bareheaded you are come,
Or why you come at all?
Now Gilpin had a pleasant wit,
And lov'd a timely joke! And thus unto the calender
In merry guise he spoke:
I came because your horse would come;
And, if I well forebode,
They are upon the road.
The calender, right glad to find
His friend in merry pin, Return'd him not a single word,
But to the house went in;
Whence straight he came with hat and wig;
A wig that flow'd behind,
Each comely in it's kind.
He held them up, and in his turn
Thus show'd his ready wit,
They therefore needs must fit.
But let me scrape the dirt away,
That hangs upon your face;
Be in a hungry case.
Said John, it is my wedding-day,
And all the world would stare, If wife should dine at Edmonton,
And I should dine at Ware.
So turning to his horse, he said,
I am in haste to dine;
You shall go back for mine.
Ah luckless speech, and bootless boast!
For which he paid full dear; For, while he spake, a braying ass
Did sing most loud and clear;
Whereat his horse did snort, as he
Had heard a lion roar,
As be had done before.
Away went Gilpin, and away
Went Gilpin's hat and wig:
For why ?—they were too big.
Now mistress Gilpin, Vihen she saw
Her husband posting down Into the country far away,
She pull'd out half a crown;
And thus unto the youth she said,
This shall be yours, when you bring back
The youth did ride, and soon did meet
John coming back amain; Whom in a trice he tried to stop,
By catching at his rein;
But not performing what he meant,
The frighted steed he frighted more,