A Leary Mot

A Leary Mot
c. 1811
A broadside ballad.


Rum old Mog was a leary flash mot,
  and she was round and fat, 1 woman or harlot
With twangs in her shoes, a wheelbarrow too,
  and an oilskin round her hat;
A blue bird’s-eye o’er dairies fine—
  as she mizzled through Temple Bar, 2 Silk-handkerchief; Notes; paps; went
Of vich side of the way, I cannot say,
  but she boned it from a Tar— 3 stole
      Singing, tol-lol-lol-lido.


Now Moll’s flash com-pan-ion was a Chick-lane gill,
  and he garter’d below his knee, 4 sweetheart
He had twice been pull’d, and nearly lagg’d, 5 gaoled; transported
  but got off by going to sea;
With his pipe and quid, and chaunting voice,
  “Potatoes!” he would cry;
For he valued neither cove nor swell,
  for he had wedge snug in his cly 6 money; pocket
      Singing, tol-lol-lol-lido.


One night they went to a Cock-and-Hen Club, 7 Notes
  at the sign of the Mare and Stallion,
But such a sight was never seen as Mog
  and her flash com-pan-ion;
Her covey was an am’rous blade,
  and he buss’d young Bet on the sly, 8 kissed
When Mog up with her daddle, bang-up to the mark, 9 fist; straight to the spot
   and she black’d the Bunter’s eye. 10 rag-gatherer
Singing, tol-lol-lol-lido.


Now this brought on a general fight,
  Lord, what a gallows row— 11 great shindy
With whacks and thumps throughout the night,
  till “drunk as David’s sow”— 12 Notes
Milling up and down—with cut heads,
  and lots of broken ribs, 13 fighting
But the lark being over—they ginned themselves
  at jolly Tom Cribb’s.
    Singing, tol-lol-lol-lido.


Stanza III, line 1. Cock and Hen Club = a free-and-easy for both sexes.

Stanza IV, line 4. Tom Cribbsee note p. 223.

Taken from Musa Pedestris, Three Centuries of Canting Songs and Slang Rhymes [1536―1896], collected and annotated by John S. Farmer.

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. . .
The Oath Of The Canting Crew
Come All You Buffers Gay
The Potato Man
A Slang Pastoral
Ye Scamps, Ye Pads, Ye Divers
The Sandman’s Wedding
The Happy Pair
The Bunter’s Christening
The Masqueraders
The Flash Man of St. Giles
A Leary Mot
The Night Before Larry was Stretched
The Song of the Young Prig
The Milling Match
Ya-Hip, My Hearties!
Sonnets For The Fancy: After The Manner Of Petrarch
The True Bottom’d Boxer
Bobby And His Mary
Flashey Joe
My Mugging Maid
Poor Luddy
. . .