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John Barleycorn - Lyrics

There were three men
Who came out of the west
Their fortunes for to try
And these three men
Made a solemn vow
John Barleycorn must die
They've plowed, they've sown,
They've harrowed him in
Threw clods upon his head
And these three men
Were satisfied
John Barleycorn was dead

They've let him lie
For a very long time,
'Til the rains from heaven did fall
And little Sir John sprung up his head
And so amazed them all
They've let him stand
'Til midsummer's day
'Til he looked both pale and wan
And little Sir John's
Grown a long, long beard
And so become a man
They've hired men
With their scythes so sharp
To cut him off at the knee
They've rolled
And tied him by the waist,
Serving him most barbarously
They've hired men
With sharp pitchforks
Who've pricked him to the heart
And the loader
He has served him
Worse than that
For he's bound him to the cart

They've wheeled him around,
And around a field
'Til they came onto a barn
And there they made
A solemn vow
On poor John Barleycorn
They've hired men
With their crabtree sticks
To cut him skin from bone
And the miller
Has served him
Worse than that
For he's ground him
Between two stones

And little Sir John
In his nut brown bowl
And he's brandy in the glass
And little Sir John
In his nut brown bowl
Proved the strongest man at last
The huntsman he
Can't hunt the fox
Nor loudly to blow his horn
And the tinker he
Can't mend his kettle or his pots
Without a little barleycorn

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