> Danny Spooner > Songs > Three Jolly Huntsmen

Three Jolly Huntsmen / Three Jolly Sportsmen

[ Roud 796 ; Ballad Index R076 ; VWML GG/1/18/1130 , RoudFS/S163285 ; Wiltshire 688 , 986 , 987 ; trad.]

George Gardiner collected Three Jolly Huntsmen from William Taylor at Peterfield Workhouse, Hampshire, in August 1908 [VWML GG/1/18/1130] . Frank Purslow included this version in 1965 in his E.F.D.S. book Marrow Bones.

Farmstead sang The Huntsman's Chorus in 1977 on their Fellside album The Sheep and the Hay.

The Wassailers sang Three Jolly Sportsmen in 1978 on their Fellside album Wassailers. They commented:

A comedy hunting song a version of which crops up in the Hammond and Gardiner collection.

Danny Spooner and Duncan Brown sang Three Jolly Huntsmen on their 2011 CD The Fox, The Hare and the Poacher's Fate.

Amsher sang this song as Three Jolly Sportsmen on their 2014 CD Amsher Sings Hampshire Songs. They noted:

A hunting song with a great chorus. Sometimes hunting was a euphemism for the chase of love.

Lyrics

William Taylor sings Three Jolly Huntsmen

It's of three jolly huntsmen went out to hunt for fox
But where shall we find him amongst the hills and rocks?

Chorus (after each verse):
With my hip, hip, hip and my holloa
And away went the merry, merry band.
With my ran tan tan and my chivvy, chivvy chan
All over the merry, merry strand.
With my ugle, ugle, ugle, went the bugle horn,
Fal le ral, fal le ral, fal le ral le dee.
Through the woods we'll go, brave boys,
And through the woods we'll go.

The first we met was a fair maid a-combing out her locks,
She swore she saw bold Reynolds amongst the farmer's ducks.

The next we met was a farmer a-ploughing of his land,
He swore he saw bold Reynolds amongst the ewes and lambs.

And the next we met was a miller a-working of his mill,
He swore he saw bold Reynolds run over yonder hill.

And the next we met was a blind man, as blind as blind could be,
He swore he saw bold Reynolds run up a hollow tree.

And the next we met was a parson, and he was dressed in black,
He swore he saw bold Reynolds upon the huntsman's back.

Danny Spooner sings Three Jolly Huntsmen

It's of three jolly huntsmen went out to hunt for fox
But where shall we find him amongst the hills and rocks?

Chorus (after each verse):
With my hip, hip, hip and my holloa
And away went the merry, merry band.
With my ran tan tan and my chivvy, chivvy chan
All over the merry, merry strand.
With my ugle, ugle, ugle, went the bugle horn,
Fal le ral, fal le ral, fal le ral le ree.
And through the woods we'll go, brave boys,
And through the woods we'll go.

The first we met was a fair maid a-combing out her locks,
She swore she saw bold Reynard amongst the farmer's ducks.

The next we met was a farmer a-ploughing of his land,
He swore he saw bold Reynard amongst the ewes and lambs.

And the next we met was a miller a-working of his mill,
He swore he saw bold Reynard run over yonder hill.

And the next we met was a blind man, as blind as blind could be,
He swore he saw bold Reynard run up a hollow tree.

And the next we met was a parson, and he was dressed in black,
He swore he saw bold Reynard upon the huntsman's back.

Acknowledgements

Transcribed by Garry Gillard