The Jolly Beggar

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The Jolly Beggar, also known as The Gaberlunzieman, is Child ballad 279. The song's chorus inspired lines in Lord Byron's poem "So, we'll go no more a roving".


A beggar comes over the hills one day, and knocks on the door of a local farmer and asks for a roof for the night. Curiously, he will not accept a bed in the barn, but wishes only to sleep by the kitchen fire. Late at night, the farmer's daughter comes down to lock the kitchen door. The beggar and daughter exchange words, and fall in love. They sleep together, and through some unmentioned premise, the daughter accuses the man of being a nobleman come dressed as a beggar to woo her. He convinces her that he is indeed only a beggar, and she kicks him out. However, it turns out he was, in fact, a noble.


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