I Love Sixpence

DESCRIPTION: "I love sixpence," spend a penny, lend a penny, and take fourpence home to the wife. The singer repeats the process with fourpence and twopence. With nothing left he says "I have nothing, I spend nothing, I love nothing better than my wife"
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1810 (Ritson)
KEYWORDS: poverty humorous nonballad wife
FOUND IN: Britain(England(North,South),Scotland(Aber)) Canada
REFERENCES (11 citations):
Williams-FolkSongsOfTheUpperThames, p. 90, "The Jolly Shilling" (2 texts) (also Williams-Wiltshire-WSRO Wt 405)
Opie/Opie-OxfordDictionaryOfNurseryRhymes 480, "I love sixpence, jolly little sixpence" (1 text)
Baring-Gould-AnnotatedMotherGoose #113, pp. 93-95, "(I love sixpence, a jolly, jolly sixpence)"
Greig/Duncan3 572, "I've Got a Shilling" (3 texts, 1 tune)
Kidson-TraditionalTunes, pp. 158-159, "The Jolly Shilling" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hopkins-SongsFromTheFrontAndRear, pp. 28-29, "Ive Got Sixpence" (1 text, 1 tune)
Chappell-PopularMusicOfTheOldenTime, pp. 737-738, "O Dear Twelve Pence" (1 short text, 1 tune, which Chappell connects with his song although his text is different)
Averill-CampSongsFolkSongs, pp. 293, 387, 395, "I've Got Sixpence" (notes only)
ADDITIONAL: Joseph Ritson, Gammer Gurton's Garland (London, 1810 ("Digitized by Google")), p. 40, "The Jolly Tester" ("I love sixpence, a jolly, jolly sixpence") (1 text)
Henry Randall Waite, _Carmina Collegensia: A Complete Collection of the Songs of the American Colleges_ first edition 1868, expanded edition, Oliver Ditson, 1876, p. 67, "I've a Jolly Sixpence" (1 text, 1 tune)
Gwenda Beed Davey and Graham Seal, _A Guide to Australian Folklore_, Kangaroo Press, 2003, "(I've Got Sixpence)" (1 text, which is not explicitly said to be Australian)

Roud #1116
SAME TUNE:
Training for Brown ("I love my lager, jolly jolly lager, I love my lager when I drink it down") (Henry Randall Waite, _Carmina Collegensia: A Complete Collection of the Songs of the American Colleges_ first edition 1868, expanded edition, Oliver Ditson, 1876, p. 95)
ALTERNATE TITLES:
The Jolly Tester
The Shilling
NOTES [107 words]: The Williams-Wiltshire-WSRO text consolidates the two Williams-FolkSongsOfTheUpperThames texts, adds three verses but shows only one of the two choruses. - BS
The incomparable Katherine Elwes Thomas, in The Real Personages of Mother Goose, Lothrop, Lee & Shepard Co., 1930, pp. 42-43, claims this is about the English King Henry VII. This is not as instantly absurd as most of Thomas's explanations of nursery rhymes; Henry VII was notoriously tight with his money. But the first sixpence coin was not minted until 1551, from what I have read, in the reign of Henry VII's grandson Edward VI. There were no sixpences for Henry VII to love! - RBW
Last updated in version 6.3
File: OO2480

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 2022 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.