Tailor and Louse
DESCRIPTION: A tailor and louse live in a house. Spitefully, the tailor sews the louse into a button. The louse escapes, has misadventures in town and dies. His body is carried by six fleas. A bug tolls the bell to carry the louse's soul to Hell.
EARLIEST DATE: 1906 (Reeves-Circle)
KEYWORDS: burial death humorous bug clothes
FOUND IN: Britain(England(South))
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Reeves-Circle 129, "Tailor and Louse" (1 text)
ADDITIONAL: F.C.H. in Notes and Queries (London, 1871 ("Digitized by Google")), Fourth Series Vol. VIII, No. 194, September 16 1871, p. 231, ("There was a tailor and a louse") (1 text)
NOTES [53 words]: Reeves-Circle: "The traditional connection between tailors and lice is indicated in the expression to prick a louse: i.e. to be a tailor, which goes back at least to the seventeenth century." For other examples see "Benjamin Bowmaneer" and "Four and Twenty Fiddlers."
F.C.H.: "in vogue about seventy years ago." - BS
Last updated in version 2.7
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.