William Schwenck Gilbert ( )


The Bab Ballads. Sir Guy the Crusader


Sir Guy was a doughty crusader,
         A muscular knight,
         Ever ready to fight,
A very determined invader,
   And Dickey De Lions delight.

Lenore was a Saracen maiden,
         Brunette, statuesque,
         The reverse of grotesque,
Her pa was a bagman from Aden,
   Her mother she played in burlesque.

A coryphée, pretty and loyal,
         In amber and red
         The ballet she led;
Her mother performed at the Royal,
   Lenore at the Saracens Head.

Of face and of figure majestic,
         She dazzled the cits
         Ecstaticised pits;
Her troubles were only domestic,
   But drove her half out of her wits.

Her father incessantly lashed her,
         On water and bread
         She was grudgingly fed;
Whenever her father he thrashed her
   Her mother sat down on her head.

Guy saw her, and loved her, with reason,
         For beauty so bright
         Sent him mad with delight;
He purchased a stall for the season,
   And sat in it every night.

His views were exceedingly proper,
         He wanted to wed,
         So he called at her shed
And saw her progenitor whop her
   Her mother sit down on her head.

So pretty, said he, and so trusting!
         You brute of a dad,
         You unprincipled cad,
Your conduct is really disgusting,
   Come, come, now admit its too bad!

Youre a turbaned old Turk, and malignant
         Your daughter Lenore
         I intensely adore,
And I cannot help feeling indignant,
   A fact that I hinted before;

To see a fond father employing
         A deuce of a knout
         For to bang her about,
To a sensitive lovers annoying.
   Said the bagman, Crusader, get out.

Says Guy, Shall a warrior laden
         With a big spiky knob,
         Sit in peace on his cob
While a beautiful Saracen maiden
   Is whipped by a Saracen snob?

To London Ill go from my charmer.
         Which he did, with his loot
         (Seven hats and a flute),
And was nabbed for his Sydenham armour
   At Mr. Ben-Samuels suit.

Sir Guy he was lodged in the Compter,
         Her pa, in a rage,
         Died (dont know his age),
His daughter, she married the prompter,
   Grew bulky and quitted the stage.



William Schwenck Gilbert's other poems:
  1. The Bab Ballads. To Phoebe
  2. Songs of a Savoyard. Proper Pride
  3. The Bab Ballads. The Bishop of Rum-ti-Foo
  4. The Bab Ballads. The Sensation Captain
  5. The Bab Ballads. To the Terrestrial Globe


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