Polly Perkins of Paddington Green
DESCRIPTION: The singer describes beautiful Polly, whom he vainly loved. She teases and flirts, but declares, "The man that has me must have silver and gold." He gives up his courtship -- but later learns that she did not marry a lord but a "bow-legged conductor."
AUTHOR: Harry Clifton (source: GreigDuncan6)
EARLIEST DATE: before 1886 (broadside, Bodleian Firth b.26(314))
KEYWORDS: love courting rejection money beauty
FOUND IN: Britain(England(South),Scotland(Aber)) Ireland
REFERENCES (6 citations):
GreigDuncan6 1212, "Pretty Polly Perkins of Paddington Green" (3 texts)
SHenry H132, pp. 398-399, "Polly Perkins of Paddington Green" (1 text, 1 tune)
Wiltshire-WSRO Mi 680, "Pretty Polly Perkins of Paddington Green" (1 text)
Scarborough-SongCatcher, pp. 282-288, "The Butcher Boy" (8 texts; the "E" text is a single stanza which does not belong with the usual "Butcher Boy" versions and which does mention Polly Perkins, so it might be related to this song)
ADDITIONAL: Aline Waites & Robin Hunter, _The Illustrated Victorian Songbook_, Michael Joseph Ltd., 1984, pp. 72-75, "Polly Perkins of Paddington Green" (1 text, 1 tune, plus a plate of the color cover of the sheet music version)
Bodleian, Firth b.26(314), "Polly Perkins of Paddington Green" ("I'm a broken hearted milkman, in grief I'm arrayed"), H. Such (London), 1863-1885; also Harding B 16(206c), Harding B 11(3384), "Polly Perkins, of Paddington Green"
Cushie Butterfield (Peter Davison, _Songs of The British Music Hall_, Oak, 1971, pp. 30-31)
Polly Perkins, of Washington Square ("I'm a broken-hearted butcher-boy") (WolfAmericanSongSheets p. 127)
Pretty Polly Perkins
Pretty Polly Perkins of Paddington Green
NOTES [77 words]: GreigDuncan6: "Composed by the music hall performer, Harry Clifton and published in 1856." - BS
According to Waites and Hunter, there was much dispute over whether this song or "Cushie Butterfield," with which it shares a tune, was the original. They note, however, that both use the tune of "Nightingales Sing," so the most likely explanation is that both songs borrowed that melody.
For background on Harry Clifton, see the notes to "The Good Ship Kangaroo." - RBW
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