Martinmas Time

Traditional

Audio

This example of "Martinmas Time" is  performed by Andy Irvine. He recorded it with Paul Brady on their classic album 
Please refer to Cantaria's Copyright information

sheet music (toggle as desired for printing)

Notes: Irvine learned this from Anne Briggs who had it from the late and sorely missed A.L. Lloyd. The story of a girl dressing herself in men's clothes and fooling entire armies and navies is as old as the hills.

It fell out upon one Martinmas time
When snow lay on the border
There came a troop of soldiers here
To take up their winter quarters

Chorus:
With me right fol adle
edle idle a-dee-o
With me right fol adle edle eyrie

And they rode east and they rode west
And they rode o'er the border
And there they met with a nice little girl
And she was a farmer's daughter.

And they made her sware a solemn oath
With a salt tear in her eye-o
Tahat she would come to the quarter gates
When no one did her spy-o

And she's gone to the barber's shop
To the barber's shop went soon-o
Amde them cut her long yellow hair
As short as any dragoon-o

And she's gone to the tailor's shop
And dresses in soldiers clothes-o
Two long pistols down by her side
And a nice little boy was she-o

And she's gone to the quarter gates
And loudly she does call-o
There comes a troop of soldiers here
And we must have lodgings all-o

And the quartermaster he somes down
And he gives her half a crown-o
Go find your lodgings in the town
for here there is no room-o

But she's moved nearer to the gates
And louder she does call-o
Room, room, you gentlemen,
We must have lodgings all-o

O the quartermaster he comes down
And he gives her Eighteen ppence-o
Go find your lodgings in the town
For tonight there comes a wench-o

O she took a whistle from her side
And she blew it loud and shrill-O
You're all very free with your eighteen pence
But you're not for a girl at all-o

And she took the garters from her knees
And the ribbons from her hair-o
She's tied them around the quarter gtes
As a token she's been there-o

And when they found that it was her
They tried to have her taken
But she's clapped her spurs to her horses side
And she's galloped home a maiden.