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Saturday, August 3, 2019

Five Examples Of "Two Dukes A-Riding" (Children's Singing Game)

Edited by Azizi Powell

This is Part II of an ongoing pancocojams series on African American versions of the English children's singing game "Two Dukes A-Riding".

Part II presents five text (word only) examples and/or YouTube sound files for a few versions of the children's singing game "Two Dukes A-Riding" (or other titles for versions of that singing game.)

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/08/african-american-versions-of-english.html for Part I of this pancocojams series. Part I presents excerpts from two Mudcat folk music discussion threads: "Help: johnny cockaroo" [comments from 2008, 2009] and "Lyr Req: Playground songs" [one singing game example which I collected in 1992 and posted on that forum in 2007].

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/08/two-examples-of-african-american_5.html for Part III of this pancocojams series. Part III presents my thoughts about the meanings of the words "Johnny Cuckoo" in the African American singing game with that name. Part III also showcases a text (word only) example and a YouTube video of the singing game "Johnny Cuckoo" as sung by Bessie Jones and children from St. Simon's Island, Georgia along with a YouTube sound file and lyrics for a version of "Johnny Cuckoo" as sung by Joan Baez.

The Addendum to Part III presents an article excerpt about Black men in the United States Civil War's Union army and Black men in the Confederate army.

Click https://pancocojams.blogspot.com/2019/08/an-example-of-singing-game-johnny.html for Part IV of this series. Part IV presents an excerpt from the record notes for the album Been In The Storm Too Long and lyrics for a South Carolina version of the "Johnny Cuckoo" singing game that was sung by Janie Hunter. A link to a sound file for that version of "Johnny Cuckoo" is also included in that post.

Part IV also includes information about the Gullah culture that is documented as the original site of examples of the singing game "Johnny Cuckoo". (Visit Part III for a more widely known example of "Johnny Cuckoo" from the Gullah culture.)

The content of this post is presented for folkloric, cultural, recreational, and entertainment purposes.

All copyrights remain with their owners.

Thanks to all those who are quoted in this post and all those who are featured in these YouTube examples.

****
EXAMPLES OF "TWO DUKES A-RIDING" (AND SIMILAR TITLES)

[Pancocojams Editor's Note: This pancocojams post departs from this blog's practice of showcasing performing arts that were created or performed by Black people around the world.

Instead, these showcased examples are presented to show their similarities to the examples that were presented in Part I of this pancocojams series.

These examples are given in no particular order. Numbers are added for referencing purposes only.]

Example #1
From http://www.traditionalmusic.co.uk/folk-song-lyrics/Three_Dukes.htm Three Dukes

1.
There came three dukes a-riding, a-riding, ride, ride, riding;
There came three dukes a-riding,
With a tinsy, tinsy, tee!

Come away, fair lady, there is no time to spare;
Let us dance, let us sing,
Let us join the wedding ring.

2.
The Campsie dukes a-riding, a-riding, a-riding;
The Campsie dukes a riding, come a rincey, dincey, dee.
3.
There's three dukes a-riding, a-riding, a-riding,
there's three dukes a-riding,
Come a ransin, tansin, my gude wife.
Come a ransin, tansin te-dee,
Before I take my evening walk,
I'll have a handsome lady,
The fairest one that I do see.

4.
Here are two Dukes arriving,
Arriving, arriving;
Here are two Dukes arriving,
My Ramsy, Tamsy, Telimsay.

What is your good will, sir,
Good will sir, good will, sir;
What is your good will, sir,
My Ramsy, Tamsy, Telimsay?

My will, sir, is to get married,
Get married, get married;
My will, sir, is to get married,
My Ramsy, Tamsy, Telimsay.

Take one of my fair daughters,
Fair daughters, fair daughters,
Take one of my fair daughters,
My Ramsy, Tamsy, Telimsay.

They are all so black and so browsy,
They sit on the sides o' Rousay;
They have no chains about their necks,
And they are all so black and so browsy.

Good enough for you, sir,
You, sir, you, sir;
Good enough for you, sir,
My Ramsy, Tamsy, Telimsay.

Before I ride the cities so wide,
I will take Miss ----- to be my bride.

5.
Here comes three Dukes a-riding,
A-riding, a-riding,
Here come three Dukes a-riding,
With a hansom-tansom-tay.

Pray what do you want with us, sirs,
With us, sirs, with us, sirs,
Pray what do you want with us, sirs,
With a ransom-tansom-tay?

We have come to marry, to marry, etc.
Will ever a one of us do, sirs? etc.

You're all as stiff as pokers, etc.
We can bend as well as you, sirs, etc.
_______________________________________________________

(1) Gomme II.245, from the West of Scotland [Folklore Record, IV.174]
(2) Gomme II.247, from Biggar;
(3) ibid., from Rosehearty, Pitsligo.
(4) Greig FSNE art. clii.2, from Sandwick, Orkney.
[Another instance of the tribal marriage imitated by
children, for at least a thousand years. Gomme suggests
that the chorus preserves an old slogan or war cry.]
(5) Rodger Lang Strang (1948), 32. Three boys play the
dukes, advancing and retiring with st. 1; the girls in a
line take hands and advance and retire with the second
stanza, etc.
Gomme & Sharp, Children's Singing Games I (1909), 20;
Opies Singing Game (1985), 76 (no. 11), with refs.
MS
oct97"

****
Example #2:
From https://en.wikisource.org/wiki/The_Folk-Lore_Journal/Volume_7/Dorsetshire_Children%27s_Games,_%26c
The Folk-Lore Journal, Volume 7
Dorsetshire Children’s Games, &c by John Symonds Udal

[...]

"The Duke of Rideo.

In this game the children stand in a group; one is chosen for the Duke, and he must stand opposite to and at some little distance from the rest of the party, who say or sing:

“Here comes the Duke of Rideo—
Of Rideo—of Rideo—
Here comes the Duke of Rideo,
Of a cold and frosty morning.”

The Duke answers:

“My will is for to get married—
To get married—get married—
My will is for to get married,
Of a cold and frosty morning.”

Chorus:

“Will any of my fair daughters do—
Fair daughters do—daughters do-o-o?
(The word “do” must he said in a drawling way.)
Will any of my fair daughters do,
Of a cold and frosty morning?”

Duke:

“They are all too black or too proudy.
They sit in the sun so cloudy,
With golden chains around their necks,
That makes them look so proudy.”

Chorus (indignantly):

“They’re good enough for you, Sir!
For you, Sir! for you, Sir!
They are good enough for you, Sir!
Of a cold and frosty morning.”

Here the Duke steps forward and says or sings:

“I’ll walk the kitchen and the hall,
And take the fairest of them all;
The fairest one that I can see
Is Miss ———— (naming her)
So Miss ———— come to me.”

The one chosen then becomes a Duke, and the game is repeated, the chosen ones, each in turn, becoming Dukes, until there is only one of the party left, when they sing:

“Now we’ve got this pretty girl—
This pretty girl—this pretty girl—
Now we’ve got this pretty girl,
Of a cold and frosty morning,”

Whilst singing this last verse they come forward and claim the last girl, and embrace her as soon as they get her over to their side. (Symondsbury.)

(vii.)—The following variant of this last game, called “A Young Man that wants a Sweetheart,” was one of those that Mr. Barnes sent an account of to Mr. Otis, and appeared in the Yarmouth Register (Mass.) for February, 1874, before alluded to.

The players consisted of a dozen boys standing hand in hand on one side, and a dozen girls standing in a row facing them. The Boys commence by singing as they dance forward:

“There’s a young man that wants a sweetheart—
Wants a sweetheart—wants a sweetheart—
There’s a young man that wants a sweetheart,
To the ransom tansom tidi-de-o.

“Let him come out and choose his own—
Choose his own—choose his own—
Let him come out and choose his own—
To the ransom tansom tidi-de-o.”

The Girls reply:

“Will any of my fine daughters do—
Daughters do—daughters do?
Will any of my fine daughters do,
To the ranson tansom tidi-de-o?”

Boys:

“They are all too black and brawny,
They sit in the sun uncloudy,
With golden chains around their necks,
They are too black and brawny.”

Girls:

“Quite good enough for you, Sir!
For you, Sir—for you, Sir!
Quite good enough for you, Sir!
To the ransom tansom tidi-de-o.”

Boys:

“I’ll walk in the kitchen, and walk in the hall,
I’ll take the fairest among you all,
The fairest of all that I can see,
Is pretty Miss Watts, come out to me.
Will you come out?”

Girls:

“Oh, no! oh, no!

Boys:

“Naughty Miss Watts she won’t come out—
She won’t come out—she won’t come out;
Naughty Miss Watts she won’t come out.
To help us in our dancing.
Won’t you come out?”

Girls:

“Oh, yes! oh, yes!”[13]"...
-snip-
[Pancocojams Editor's Note] - "Dorset" is a shire (county) in southwest England.]

****
Example #3a: Children's Songs and Games from the Southern Mountains



Jean Ritchie - Topic, Published on Nov 8, 2014

Provided to YouTube by The Orchard Enterprises

Two Dukes A-Riding · Jean Ritchie

Children's Songs and Games from the Southern Mountains

℗ 2004 Smithsonian Folkways Recordings / 1957 Folkways Records

Released on: 1957-01-01

Auto-generated by YouTube.

****
Example #3b
From https://greatsong.net/PAROLES-JEAN-RITCHIE,TWO-DUKES-A-RIDING,102673666.html Paroles de Two Dukes A-Riding [Lyrics For Two Dukes A- Riding]

Children's Songs And Games From The Southern Mountains ALBUM

"Here comes two Dukes a-riding, a-riding, a-riding
Here comes two Dukes a-riding, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
Why do you ridin’ here for, here for, here for?
Why do you ridin’ here for? Ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
Ridin’ here to get married, married, married
Ridin’ here to get married, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
Do you want any one of us, Sir, us Sir, us Sir?
Do you want any one of us, Sir? Ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
You’re all too dirty and greasy, greasy, greasy
You’re all too dirty and greasy, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
We just as good as you are, you are, you are
We just as good as you are, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
Won’t have nobody but Mary, Mary, Mary
Won’t have nobody but Mary, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
Will you come? No!
Old dirty rag she won’t come out, she won’t come out, she won’t come out
Old dirty rag she won’t come out, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o
Will you come? Yes!
Pretty little girl she will come out, she will come out, she will come out
Pretty little girl she will come out, ring tim-a-ding to my johnnie-o"

****
Example #4: Here come three dukes a-riding - a traditional line game



Dany Rosevear, Published on Oct 4, 2016

For music, chords and how to play this as a game visit: http://www.singinggamesforchildren.com/A%20Cluster%202.2%20Awaywego/20%20Follow%20my%20leader%20and%20other%20games%201.htm

Here come three dukes a-riding,
A-riding, a-riding,
Here come three dukes a-riding,
With a rancy, tancy, tay!

What is your good will, sirs?
Will, sirs? will, sirs?
What is your good will, sirs?
With a rancy, tancy, tay!

Our good will is to marry,
To marry, marry,
Our good will is to marry,
With a rancy, tancy, tay!

You won’t get one of us, sirs,
Us, sirs, us, sirs,
You won’t get one of us, sirs,
With a rancy, tancy, tay!

You're all as stiff as pokers,
Pokers, pokers,
You're all as stiff as pokers,
With a rancy, tancy, tay!

We can bend as much as you, sirs,
You, sirs, you, sirs,
We can bend as much as you, sirs,
With a rancy, tancy, tay!

Through the kitchen and down the hall,
I choose the fairest of you all,
The fairest one that I can see
Is come along -------, and go with me.
-snip-
Game instructions from the website whose link is given above:
"A meet and greet line game. It is classed by the Opies as a match-making game.

This version came from the Ladybird book of Singing games with the ‘fat and dirty’ verse omitted and the final line changed to make it more gender neutral.

It original probably came from a game collected by Miss Burne in Shropshire in 1891.

Three children are chosen as ‘dukes’. The rest form a line facing a line of ‘dukes’. Each line advances, bows and retires in turn. On the ‘poker’ verse the line walks stiffly in a mocking manner. The other line bends and bows very low. For the last verse one child is chosen to join the line of ‘dukes’.

The game continues with the ‘dukes’ singing ‘Here come four dukes’ then ‘five’ until all children are ranged on one side."....

****
Example #5:
From https://www.itma.ie/digital-library/sound/three_gipsies_riding_aughil_children
"Three gipsies riding, song
Aughil children, singing in English
ITMA Reference: 863-ITMA-MP3

Creator: Aughil children

Date: July 1969

Location: Aughill, Co. Derry

Subject: Ireland: Singing in English

Language: English

Collection: Hugh Shields Collection, HS 6918

Type: Sound

Format: MP3

Extent: 1 computer file (MP3 file, ca. 3 min.) : digital, stereo

Copyright: Shields Family

Roud Number: 2967


Lyrics
There came three gipsies riding
Riding, riding
There came three gipsies riding,
Y– O – U.

2
– What are you riding here for? &c.

3
– We’re riding here to marry one of you boys.

4
– Who would marry you boys?

5
– We’re just as good as you boys.

6
– Your knees are stiff as pokers.

7
– We can bend our knees as well as you boys.

8
– Where will your mother sleep?

9
– Her mother will sleep in her father’s bed.

10
– Where will your father sleep?

11
– Her father will sleep in the maid’s bed.

12
– Where will the maid sleep?

13
– The maid will sleep in the pigsty.

14
– Where will the pig sleep?

15
– The pig will sleep in the riverside.

16
– Where will you wash your clothes?

Notes
A few sessions with Magilligan children made clear that they practise a wide range of traditional game songs and rhymes. ‘Three gipsies riding’ is anything but rare: dukes, the duke, a Jew, a duck, a king or a mere young man are alternatives to gipsies all over Britain and Ireland. What is unusual in print is the combination of this game with another, ‘Milking pails’, to which v. 8–16 belong. Yet the combination was noted long ago in Berkshire and must be widespread: Gomme I 388.

The children played and sang uncertainly. ‘Three dukes riding’ is traditionally a courtship game while ‘Milking pails’ in its full form enacts a mother-child relationship

–Mother, will you buy me a pair of milking-cans?
– But where shall I get the money from? &c.

Most versions end with punishment of the children’s glee at the prospect of ‘mother’ falling into the river. The composite verses have perhaps synthecized courtship and chastisement in a mock battle. ‘Three gipsies riding’ is also known in Magilligan without ‘Milking pails’ (DE, perhaps F) and in this form ends in a fight:

‘. . . then the others said that they were just as clean as you, sir, and then at the end they all started to fight, and the gipsies ran away’ – Gracie Butcher 6918."
-snip-
From https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magilligan
"Magilligan (from Irish: Ard Mhic Giollagáin, meaning "Magilligan's height"[1]) is a peninsula that lies in the northwest of County Londonderry, Northern Ireland, at the entrance to Lough Foyle."...

****
This concludes Part II of this pancocojams series.

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Visitor comments are welcome.

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