Reply To: Harvest Songs

The British Druid Order Forums BDO Public Forum Harvest Songs Reply To: Harvest Songs

david poole

    John Barleycorn 1885 the longest version I can find, contains some verses not in the more common version:

    There came three men out of the West,
    Their victory to try;
    And they have taken a solemn oath,
    Poor Barleycorn should die.

    They took a plough and ploughed him in,
    And harrowed clods on his head;
    And then they took a solemn oath,
    Poor Barleycorn was dead.

    There he lay sleeping in the ground,
    Till rain from the sky did fall :
    Then Barleycorn sprung up his head,
    And so amazed them all.

    There he remained till Midsummer,
    And looked both pale and wan;
    Then Barleycorn he got a beard,
    And so became a man.

    Then they sent men with scythes so sharp,
    To cut him off at knee ;
    And then poor little Barleycorn,
    They served him barbarously.

    Then they sent men with pitchforks strong
    To pierce him through the heart;
    And like a dreadful tragedy,
    They bound him to a cart.

    And then they brought him to a barn,
    A prisoner to endure;
    And so they fetched him out again,
    And laid him on the floor.

    Then they set men with holly clubs,
    To beat the flesh from his bones ;
    But the miller he served him worse than that,
    For he ground him betwixt two stones.

    O ! Barleycorn is the choicest grain
    That ever was sown on land ;
    It will do more than any grain,
    By the turning of your hand.

    It will make a boy into a man,
    And a man into an ass;
    It will change your gold into silver,
    And your silver into brass.

    It will make the huntsman hunt the fox,
    That never wound his horn;
    It will bring the tinker to the stocks,
    That people may him scorn.

    It will put sack into a glass,
    And claret in the can;
    And it will cause a man to drink
    Till he neither can go nor stand.