Judy Cook, Folksinger

Kate and the Cowhide

As Sung By Judy Cook

A lady lived in Colchester
At length a clothier courted her.
He courted her for many a day,
But still this lady answered “Nay”.

cho: Sing tiddy, sing taddy,
Sing trum little laddy,
Sing tra-la-liddle-te-I-de-O

She said, “Were I to love inclined
Perhaps you soon might change your mind
And court some other damsel fair,
For men are false I do declare.

At length he gained her full consent,
Straightway courting another he went
He left poor Kate quite in despair,
Went courting a lawyer’s daughter fair.

Kate knew that every night he came
From his new love, Nancy by name
Sometimes at ten o’clock or more
Kate to a tanner went therefore

She borrowed there an old cowhide
With crooked horns both long and wide
Then she to a lonely path did stray
At length the clothier came that way

He was so sorely scared of her
She looked so like old Lucifer
With hairy hide, horns on her head
Which near three feet asunder spread

And when he saw her long black tail
He tried to run, but his feet failed
Kate quickly seized him by the throat
And spoke with grim and doleful note

She said, “You leave poor Kate, I hear
And court the lawyer’s daughter dear.
You shall, whether you will or no,
Into my gloomy regions go!”

“O master devil, spare me now,
And I’ll prove true to my former vows.”
“See that you do!” The devil exclaimed
Or else you’ll hear from me again!”

He went to Kate and married her
For fear of doleful Lucifer
Her friends and parents thought it strange
That there was such a sudden change

Kate never let her parents know
Nor any other friend or foe,
‘Til they a year had married been;
She told it at her lying-in.

It pleased the women to the heart;
They said she’d fairly played her part;
Her husband laughed as well as they;
It was a merry, happy day.