Hark, Hark, the Dogs Do Bark
DESCRIPTION: "Hark, hark, the dogs do bark, The beggars are coming to town, Some in rags, and some in jags, And one in a velvet gown."
EARLIEST DATE: 1844 (Halliwell)
KEYWORDS: dog animal begging clothes travel
REFERENCES (4 citations):
Opie-Oxford2 140, "Hark, Hark" (1 text)
Baring-Gould-MotherGoose #84, pp. 84-85, "(Hark, hark, the dogs do bark)"
Jack, p. 55, "Hark, Hark, the Dogs Do Bark" (1 text)
Dolby, p. 30, "Hark, Hark, the Dogs Do Bark" (1 text)
NOTES [106 words]: Reportedly first found in the 1788 Tommy Thumb's Song-Book, but I have been unable to verify this.
One hypothesis is that the "beggars" referred to here are the followers of William III of Orange, hangers-on who showed up after the Glorious Revolution of 1688. If we want to give it a political context of a foreign monarch, though, I'd think George I (reigned 1714-1727) a better bet -- he was more foreign, and had a more useless company. Another hypothesis links it with the Dissolution of the Monasteries and the monks and nuns who lost their livelihood and were forced to beg. I can't claim to find any of this very convincing. - RBW
Last updated in version 3.3
Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography
The Ballad Index Copyright 2018 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.