Friday, 2 August 2013

"The Lord Mayor's Coachman" -- a London diversion (part one)

"The Lord Mayor had a Coachman, and the Coachman's name was John,
Said the Lord Mayor to the Coachman, 'Take your wages and be-gone,
I want a better driver, for I'm going to see the Queen',
Said John, 'I am the finest Coachman that was ever seen,
And if you'll let me drive today I'll show I can't be beat,
For I'll drive to Buckingham Palace and I won't go through a street'.

'You must be mad',  the Lord Mayor said, 'but still I'll humour you,
But remember that you lose your place, the first street you go through'.

The Coachman jumped upon his box and settled in his seat,
And started up the Poultry, which we know's not called a street,
Then up Cheapside he gaily went, the bobbies cleared the course,
To the statue of the Bobby who first organized the force,
'Why you're going into Newgate Street', the Lord Mayor loudly bawls
But John said 'Tuck your tupp'ny in, I'm going round St. Paul's!'

'Well, round St. Paul's means Ludgate Hill and Fleet Street, John!' said he,
But John said, 'No! down Ludgate Hill and up the Old Bailey'. "

The Lord Mayor's Coachman  or,  the Man Who Knew How to Drive  (part I)

Lyrics by Harry Hunter,  music by David Day, 1896
(see  Historians of London  Stanley Rubinstein)

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