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THE

HONEST MILLER OF GLOUCESTERSHIRE.

A TRUE BALLAD.

Of all the callings and the trades

Which in our land abound,
The miller's is as useful, sure,

As can on earth be found.

The lord or squire of high degree

Is needful to the state,
Because he lets the land he owns

In farms both small and great.

The farmer, he manures the land,

Or else what corn could grow?
The ploughman cuts the furrow deep

Ere he begins to sow.

And though no wealth he has, except

The labor of his hands,
Yet honest industry's as good

As houses or as lands.

The thresher, he is useful too

To all who like to eat;
Unless he winnowed well the corn,

The chaff would spoil the wheat.

But vain the squire's and farmer's care,

And vain the thresher's toil;
And vain would be the ploughman's pains,

Who harrows up the soil;

And vain, without the miller's aid,

The sowing and the dressing :
Then sure an honest miller, he
Must be a public blessing.

And such a miller now I make

The subject of my song,
Which, though it shall be very true,

Shall not be very long.

This miller lives in Glo'stershire :

I shall not tell his name;
For those who seek the praise of God,

Desire no other fame.

In last hard winter—who forgets

The frost of ninety-five?Then was all dismal, scarce, and dear,

And no poor man could thrive.

Then husbandry long time stood still,

And work was at a stand ;
To make the matter worse, the mills

Were froze throughout the land.

Our miller dwelt beside a stream,

All underneath the hill; Which flowed amain when others froze,

Nor ever stopped the mill.

The clam'rous people came from far

This favored mill to find;
Both rich and poor our miller sought,

For none but he could grind.

His neighbors cried, “ Now, miller, seize

The time to heap up store, Since thou of young and helpless babes

Hast got full half a score."

For folks, when tempted to grow rich,

By means not over nice,
Oft make their numerous babes a plea

To sanctify the vice.

Our miller scorned such counsel base ;

And when he ground the grain, With steadfast hand refused to touch Beyond his lawful gain.

VOL. I. 34

“When God afflicts the land,” said he,

“ Shall I afflict it more?
And watch for times of public wo,

To wrong both rich and poor?

Thankful to that Almighty Power

Who makes my river flow,
I'll use the means he gives to soothe

A hungry neighbor's wo.

« My river flows when others freeze,

But 'tis at his command;
For rich and poor I'll grind alike;

No bribe shall stain my hand!”

So all the country who had corn

Here found their wants redressed;
May every village in the land

Be with such millers blessed !

KING DIONYSIUS

AND

SQUIRE DAMOCLES.

A NEW SONG TO AN OLD STORY.

PROPER TO BE SUNG AT ALL FEASTS AND MERRY MEETINGS

THERE was a heathen man, sir,

Belonging to a king;
And still it was his plan, sir,

To covet every thing.

And if you don't believe me,

I'll name him, if you please ;
For let me not deceive ye,

'Twas one Squire Damocles.

He thought that jolly living

Must every joy afford;
His heart knew no misgiving,

While round the festive board.

He wanted to be great, sir,

And feed on fare delicious, And have his feasts in state, sir,

Just like King Dionysius.

The king, to cure his longing,

Prepared a feast so fine, That all the court were thronging

To see the courtier dine.

And there, to tempt his eye, sir,

Was fish, and flesh, and fowl; And when he was a-dry, sir,

There stood the brimming bowl.

Nor did the king forbid him

From drinking all he could ; The monarch never chid him,

But filled him with his food.

O then to see the pleasure

Squire Damocles expressed ! 'Twas joy beyond all measure :

Was ever man so blessed ?

With greedy eyes the squire

Devoured each costly dainty ; You'd think he did aspire

To eat as much as twenty.

But, just as he prepared, sir,

Of bliss to take a swing,
O, how the man was scared, sir,

By this so cruel king!

When he to eat intended,

Lo! just above his head, He spied a sword suspended

All by a single thread.

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