Trotting Horse, The

DESCRIPTION: "I can sport as fine a trotting horse as any well in town." The singer declares that the animal can travel at fourteen miles per hour. He describes its intelligence and racing abilities, and says how quickly it can bring him home from far away
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: before 1830 (broadside, Bodleian Firth c.19(78))
KEYWORDS: horse racing nonballad
FOUND IN: Britain(England(Lond))
REFERENCES (3 citations):
VaughanWilliams/Palmer, #69, "Trot Away" (1 text, 1 tune)
Dixon-Peasantry, pp. 244-245, "The Trotting Horse" (1 text)
Bell-Combined, pp. 438-439, "The Trotting Horse" (1 text)

ST BeCo438 (Partial)
Roud #1540
Bodleian, Firth c.19(78), "The Trotting Horse"("I can sport as fine a trotting horse as any swell in t[own] ")[the right edge is missing; to complete the text see Firth c.19(96)], T. Birt (London), 1828-1829; also Firth c.19(96), Harding B 11(2804), Harding B 11(3887), 2806 c.16(27, Harding B 11(1359), Harding B 11(890), "[The] Trotting Horse"; Harding B 17(320b), "The Troting[sic] Horse"
NOTES [122 words]: Bell attributes his text and the Dixon-Peasantry text to W. H. Ainsworth. I assume this is Harrison Ainsworth, author of Rookwood, who also gave us the legend of Dick Turpin and Black Bess. AInsworth did not create the song -- there are numerous broadside copies -- but I wouldn't trust Ainsworth's version very much as an example of the type; he would be too tempted to fiddle with it. - (BS), RBW
The broadsides are recognizably the same song but verses are omitted from some. There are a few lines notably different; for example, "She'll trot fifteen miles an hour I'll bet you a thousand pounds" vs. "To trot you 14 miles an hour I will bet you five to one." The Ainsworth-influenced text is closer to "the five to one" set. - BS
Last updated in version 4.2
File: BeCo438

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