“Mairin Ni Ghiobhalain”

Alternate titles: “Auld Mairin's Gibberlin”; “Mairins Gibberlin”
Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1906 (_The Journal of the Irish Folk Song Society_, according to Jim Carroll's notes to IRTravellers012)
Keywords: sex bawdy tinker
Found in: Ireland

Description

Tradesmen, with their tools, come to fix "a new foundation In Maureen from Gippursland" to stop her leak: a blacksmith, saddler, baker, tailor, ploughman and timberman. Each fails. Finally, a big tinkerman, with a soldering iron, fixes her.

Long description

radesmen, with their tools, came to fix "a new foundation In Maureen from Gippursland" to stop her leak: a blacksmith with hammer and anvil, a saddler with needle and thread, a baker with flour and soda, a tailor with cloth and scissors, a ploughman with horse and plough, and a timberman with an axe. Each work "until his sides was sick and sore, And after all his labour she leaked In the place where she leaked before." Finally, a big tinkerman, with a soldering iron, "rosined her, he soldered her ... but after all his labour she never leaked In the place where she leaked before"

Notes

Jim Carroll's notes to IRTravellers01 includes the complete text of a "version entitled 'The Jolly Weaver', described as an old Ulster weaving song ... to be found in _The Journal of the Irish Folk Song Society_ of 1906...."; the tradesmen in that text are a weaver with his shuttles and jacks, a sailor with his compass, a mason with his hammer, trowel and plumb-line, and a ploughman "with two ploughshares in his hand." In addition he refers to "a fragment entitled 'Mairins Gibberlan,' described as 'decidedly objectionable', included in _The Greig Duncan Folk Song Collection_ [vol 7]."

There are many examples in traditional song of tradesmen's use of tools of their trade as code for sexual activity. See, for example, "Donnelly," "Anything (II)," "Bill Wiseman," "The Bonny Black Hare," "Coachman's Whip," "Cruising Round Yarmouth," "The German Clockwinder," "The Jolly Tinker (III)," "The Long Peggin' Awl," "Miller Tae My Trade" and "The Thrashing Machine (I)." - BS

Recordings

References

  1. Roud #7269
  2. BI, RcMaNiGh