#03219
Handsome John (E Greenleaf & G Mansfield)

A lady near Portland Square,
She kept a waiting maid so fair,
Who loved the footman as her life,
Expecting for to be his wife.
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

A maid been dressing of her hair,
The lady said, "I do declare,
John is a handsome lad complete,
A smarter lad never walked the street."
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

A maid been dumb and could not speak,
Her heart with grief did almost break;
But still the lady's tongue ran on,
"And what a handsome man is John."
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

At last the maid all silence broke,
Answered the lady very cross:
"Madam," she said, "upon my life,
John promised I should be his wife."
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

To marry you, you saucy jade!"
All in a rage the lady said;
And with that the lady sprung,
To box her ears she then begun.
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

And with that the maid began,
To ring her bitter complement;
And the bell in her ear went ring-a-ding-ding,
All for the sake of handsome John.
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

The maid gived up and runned away,
The lady she have gained the day;
Now John is a gentleman, we hear,
With thirty thousand pounds a year.
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

Now ladies have a new plan,
Boxing for their fancy man;
And to conclude and finish my song,
Goodnight lady and handsome John.
Sing fal de diddle al-lido O,
Sing fal de diddle al-diddle larry O!

####.... Author unknown ....####
This ballad recorded by Jane Quackenbush in 1928 from the singing of John Henry Gueunuex, Barr'd Harbour, NL, and collected by Elisabeth Bristol Greenleaf and Grace Yarrow Mansfield as #38 on p.87 of Ballads And Sea Songs Of Newfoundland (Harvard University Press, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 1933; Folklore Associates, Hatboro, Pennsylvania, 1968).


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