4 JANUARY 1930, Page 25

"PLOUGH MONDAY" [To the Editor of the SPECTATOR.]

Sm,—Plough Monday being at hand, you may be interested to have the Plough Boy's Play, which is still done in the York- shire villages. To my knowledge it has never been written down, but is passed on from father to son. The present version I took down from a woman who hailed from Co. Durham, but her three lads, all Yorkshire bred, confirmed each word. My father remembered the same thing being done word for word the same, fifty years ago in the villages north of York. Faces are blacked, and " properties " borrowed from masters, sisters or mothers. Usually only the kitchens of the larger houses in the village are visited—a fifth member carries a basket for the "collection." The characters (in order of appearance) are Beelzebub, King William, Old Roger, Doctor.—I am, Sir, &c.,

Wm. G. GRIMM 141 North Marine Road, Scarborough.

Bed.: In comes I Beelzebub On my shoulder I carry my club In my hand a dripping pan Think myself a jolly old man.

Jolly old man may I be • I've three sons here as jolly as me If you don't believe me what I say Slip in King William and clear my way.

K.W. In comes King William. King William is my name, My sword and pistol in my hand I'm sure to win the game. O.R. : Win the name you are not able

My backs made of iron, my belly's made of steel

My finger's made of knuckle bone that'l make you feel. Mince pies hot, mince pies cold Knock a fellow down afore I'se ten days old.


Who killed that man ?

Dee.: You did.

O.R. : Who sends for a doctor ?

Dee.: No doctor to be had.

OR.: £10 for a doctor.

Dee.: No doctor to be had..

O.R. : 115 for a doctor.

Dee.: No doctor to be had.

O.R. : £30 for a doctor.

Doe. : I'm the little doctor I O.R. : Who taught you to be doctor ? Doe.: By my travels.

O.R. : Where did you travel ?

Doe.: England, Ireland, Scotland, Spain, And back to Grannie's back door again. A little pig running up and down the street With a knife and fork in his hand Shouting Who wants pork ? I've a little bottle here My grandmother gave me A thousand years ago. Take a yard down yer throttle Jack, rise and beg.

(KING WILLIAM COMES TO LIFE.) ALL. I am an old Roger with me rags and me bags

For the sake of the money I wear these old rags Me hat is an old one, me boots are all worn Me breeches are roven, me stockings are torn.