“I Wish That You Were Dead, Goodman”

Alternate titles: “There's a Herrin' in the Pan”
Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1823 (Sharpe)
Keywords: food love curse death
Found in: Britain(Scotland) Ireland

Description

"There's six eggs in the pan, goodman (x2), there's one for you and twa for me, And three for (our John Hielandman)." The woman complains, and concludes, "I wish ye were dead, wi' a stone at your head, and I'd run awa wi' John Hielandman"

Supplemental text

I Wish That You Were Dead, Goodman
  Complete text(s)

          *** A ***

There's a Herrin' in the Pan

As recorded by Gordeanna McCulloch on "Sheathe and Knife" (Fellside FECD117).
Described as "Collected recently by Jim Mahon from his grandmother in Glasgow."

There's a herrin' in the pan for you, auld man,
There's a herrin' in the pan for you, auld man,
The heid's for you and the tail's for me,
But the middle's for the lodgin-man.

There's an egg in the pan for you, auld man,
There's an egg in the pan for you, auld man,
There's ane for you and there's ane for me,
But there's twa for the lodgin-man.

Ye're gettin' auld and grey, auld man,
Ye're gettin' auld and grey, auld man,
Och, I wisht ye were deid, wi' a stane at your heid,
And I'd run awa wi' the lodgin-man.

Notes

Murray Shoolbraid's notes in the Digital Tradition discuss possible bawdy connections of this song. Interestingly, though they are all extremely subtle, Gordeanna McCulloch has a text which seems to have cleaned them all up and converted them into a complaint against landlords. - RBW

References

  1. SHenry H531, p. 506-507, "I Wish That You Were Dead, Goodman" (1 text, 1 tune)
  2. DT, EGGSMAN WISHDEAD
  3. ST HHH531 (Full)
  4. Roud #5884
  5. BI, HHH531