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The Limerick Rake

– Trad.

I am a young fellow that’s easy and bold
In Castletown corners I’m very well known
In Newcastle West I spent many a night
With Kitty and Judy and Mary
My parents rebuked me for being such a rake
Just spending my time in such frolicsome ways
But I ne’er could forget the good nature of Jane
Agus fágaimid siúd mar atá sé

If I chance for to go to the town of Rathkeal
The girls are all around me do flock on the square
Some give me a bottle and others sweet cakes
To treat me unknown to their parents
There’s one from Askeaton and one from the Pike
Another from Arda, my heart was beguiled
Tho‘ being from the mountains her stockings are white
Agus fágaimid siúd mar atá sé

To quarrel for riches I ne’er was inclined
For the greatest of misers must leave them behind
I’ll buy me a cow that will never run dry
And I’ll milk her by twisting her horn
John Damer of Shronel had plenty of gold
Lord Devonshire’s treasures are twenty times more
But he’s laid on his back among nettles and stones
Agus fágaimid siúd mar atá sé

And some say I’m foolish and more say I’m wise
Being fond of the women I think is no crime
For the son of King David had tenthousand wifes
And his wisdom was highly recorded
I’ll buy me a garden and live at my ease
And each woman and child can partake of the same
If there’s war in the cabin theirselves they can blame
Agus fágaimid siúd mar atá sé

And now for the future I mean to be wise
And I’ll send for the women who acted so kind
And I’ll mary them all on the morrow by and by
If the clergy agree to this bargain
And when I’m on my back and my soul is at peace
These women will crowd for to cry at my grave
And my sons and my daughters will offer their prayer
To the Lord for the soul of their father