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The Frog and the Mouse / Froggy's Courting

[ Roud 16 ; Master title: The Frog and the Mouse ; G/D 8:1669 ; Ballad Index R108 ; Bodleian Roud 16 ; GlosTrad Roud 16 ; Wiltshire 798 ; Mudcat 37522 , 6853 ; trad.]

Robert Russel of Marion, Virginia, sang Froggie Went A-Courtin' to Sidney Robertson on 14 November 1936. This recording was included in 1978 on the Blue Ridge Institute album in their Virginia Traditions series, Ballads from British Tradition.

Adolphus Le Rue of Bonne Nuit, Jersey, Elizabeth Cronin of Ballyvourney, Co. Cork, Annik Paterson of Tob, Orkney, and Albert Beale of Kenardington, Kent sang The Frog and the Mouse in recordings made by Peter Kennedy in the 1950s. He mixed them together for a track on the album Songs of Animals and Other Marvels (The Folk Songs of Britain Volume 10; Caedmon 1961; Topic 1970).

Cecilia Costello sang The Frog and the Mouse in a BBC recording made by Maria Slocombe in Birmingham on 16 January 1954. This was published in 1975 on her Leader album Cecilia Costello: Recording from the Sound Archives of the BBC.

Packie Byrne sang The Frog's Wedding on his eponymous EFDSS LP of 1969, Packie Byrne.

Frankie Armstrong sang The Frog and the Mouse in 1972 on her Topic album Lovely on the Water.

Tim Hart sang Froggy's Courting in 1983 on Tim Hart and Friends' album Drunken Sailor and Other Kids Songs. This track was later included on their compilation CD Favourite Nursery Rhymes and Other Children's Songs.

Megson sang A Frog He Would A-Wooing Go on their 2012 album of children's folk songs, When I Was a Lad….

Bill and the Belles sang Mr Frog Went A-Courtin' on the 2017 Appalachian ballad tradition anthology Big Bend Killing.

Helen Diamond sang The Frog's Wedding on her 2018 eponymous first album Helen Diamond. She noted:

Another old favourite, this song manages to be playful, funny and dark at once, in the way of many traditional Irish children’s songs. I learned this version from the Seán Corcoran collection Here Is a Health, sung by Annie MacKenzie from County Fermanagh.

Jeff Warner sang A Frog He Went A-Courting in 2018 on his WildGoose CD Roam the Country Through. He noted:

This old English song goes back to at least 1580, and there is much speculation that the “mouse” could be Queen Elizabeth I; others say perhaps Mary Queen of Scots. This version was collected in the mountains of Kentucky in 1917 by English song collector Cecil Sharp. I learned it in the 1980s from a charming singer—and renowned arts administrator—Dick Lewis of Portland, Oregon.

Andy Turner sang King Kong Kitchie Kitchie Ki-Me-O as the 5 April 2019 entry of his project A Folk Song a Week. He learned the song from Chubby Parker singing it on Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music.


Tim Hart sings Froggy's Courting

Oh Froggy went a-courting and he did ride, a-hum,
Froggy went a-courting and he did ride, a-hum,
Oh Froggy went a-courting and he did ride
With a sword and a pistol by his side, a-hum.

And off he went in his big cocked hat, a-hum,
And on his way met Mister Rat, a-hum.

They rode till they came to Miss Mouse's hall, a-hum,
And there they did both knock and call, a-hum.

Miss Mouse, Miss Mouse, will you give us some beer, a-hum,
And we will all be of good cheer, a-hum.

And Froggy, oh Froggy, give us a song, a-hum,
But please make sure it's not too long, a-hum.

And while they were all a-merry making, a-hum,
The cat and the kittens came tumbling in, a-hum.

And the cat she seized the rat by the crown, a-hum,
And the kittens pulled the little mouse down, a-hum.

Oh Froggy jumped up all in a fright, a-hum,
He grabbed his hat and said good night, a-hum.

As Froggy was crossing over the brook, a-hum,
Along came a duck and gobbled him up, a-hum.

So that is the end of one, two, three, a-hum,
The Rat and the Mouse and the little Froggy, a-hum.