|Ovingdean Mummers Play|
|This is the text for the Mummers Play performed in the village of Ovingdean. It should be noted that the text of this play is supposedly very similar to that of the play performed in Rottingdean, which has been preserved by the Copper family, who perform it every year in Rottingdean. Whether this is true is unknown as other accounts of the play give a different impression. For instance, a note in Sussex Notes & Queries for 1933 gives the characters for the Rottingdean play as Father Christmas, the Prince of Wales, the Proud Turkish Knight, a Soldier, a Doctor, a Widow who wept and a Little Black Jack. As can be seen, this list is somewhat different, the Widow being most closely matched by the "Moll" character in the Firle Play|
SUSSEX TIPTEERER'S PLAY
|ENTER FATHER CHRISTMAS|
In comes I old Father Christmas, am I welcome or am I not,|
I hope old Father Christmas will never be forgot.
|ENTER NOBLE CAPTAIN|
|The Noble Captain:||
Room, room, Lady and Gentleman, room, room I say,|
For I am the Noble Captain, brought all my men this way.
|ENTER TWIN TWAN|
In comes I little Twin Twan the noble man of all this gang,|
I press them all and sent them all aboard of man o'war,
Although I am but little and small,
I call myself the best man of them all.
|ENTER BELLZIE BUB|
In comes I old father Bellzie Bub,|
Over my shoulder I carries my club,
My head is made of a dripping pan,
And don't you think I am a handsome young man!
Room, room Lady and Gentleman, room, room, I say,
Step in King George and clear the way.
|ENTER KING GEORGE|
In comes I King George, that man of courage bold,|
With my sword and spear I won three hundred tons of gold.
It was I who killed the Dragon and sent him to a slaughter,
And by those means I won the Queen of Denmarks Daughter,
Oh oh that man that comes under my hand I cut him as small as dust,
And send his body to the Bakehouse to make a pie crust.
|ENTER TURKISH KNIGHT|
In comes I the proud Turkish Knight,|
Just come from my proud Turkish land to fight,
That man of courage bold,
If his blood is hot, I soon draw it cold.
Draw out your sword and fight, pull out your purse and pay,|
For satisfaction we will have this very night before we go away.
Oh you villain, let us this battle try.|
|( FIGHT, KING GEORGE KILLS TURKISH KNIGHT )|
Lady and Gentleman see what wonderful work I done,|
I cut and slain the champion down like a flying eagle in the sun.
|ENTER VALIANT SOLDIER|
In comes I the Valiant Soldier Bold and Hardy is my name,|
To be avenged of my masters death unto this place I came,
My head is as hard as iron my helmet is made of steel,
My sword is buckled by my side to fight King George all in this field.
Oh hard, Hardy don't you be so bold,|
Nor talk or think so great,
When you see your master lay there dead and cold,
Soon you shall be in the same state.
Oh you villain it was you who struck my master,|
With a blow pierced him to the heart,
The very same thing I wil do to you,
This night before we do part,
Let us this battle try,
Now Lady and Gentleman see what wonderfull work I have done.
Oh you villain as you live,
This very night along side that rough Turkey you shall lie.|
|( FIGHT. KING GEORGE KILLS THE VALIANT SOLDIER )|
Lady and Gentleman see what wonderful work I have done,|
I have cut and lain these two champions down like a flying eagle in the sun.
Doctor! Doctor! Is there a doctor to be had all in this night,|
To cure these two men of their bleeding wounds and make them stand upright?
Oh yes, there is a doctor to be had all in this night,|
To cure these two men of their bleeding wound and make them stand upright.
What can you cure doctor?|
Hippsey, Pippsey, Pousey, Gout pain,|
Wound inside or out,
Broken arm or leg,
Broken bone of any kind.
What are your fees doctor?|
Twenty guineas is my fees, money I have down,|
Although you are an honest man I do it for ten pound,
When will you see me pay?
|The Noble Captain:||
I see you pay or unpay in the morning,|
You see me pay or unpay in the morning.
You see me pay or unpay in the morning!|
Here, boy get my horse and I am gone.
|The Noble Captain:||
Stop, stop Doctor, I see you pay in the morning.|
Oh now you talk more like a man.|
Now lady and gentleman,
I have got a little box of pills,
Which I called the best Dutch pills.
Likewise a bottle of drops,
Which I called the best golden drops.
I shall put one to the nose,
And one to the heart,
And make them rise and fight their part,
Sniff hard Jack.
Rise, fight fall no more for many times have I been slain,|
I'll rise and fight King George again.
Doctor, kick these two Turkish dogs out of doors.|
( DOCTOR KICKS TURKISH KNIGHT AND VALIANT SOLDIER OUT )|
|ENTER BLACK JACK|
In comes I little Black Jack,|
Wife and family at my back,
Money I have, money I crave,
If you don't give me money I will sweep you to your grave.
Although Christmas comes but once a year,
When it comes it brings good cheer,
Plum pudding, mincepies,
Nobody likes them better than I,
Money in pocket is a very fine thing,
Though it isn't often to be seen,
Lady and Gentleman give me what you please.
Now Doctor these two Turkish dogs that you just kicked out of doors,|
If they will their master pardon beg, I will forgive.
|( DOCTOR RECALLS TURKISH KNIGHT AND VALIANT SOLDIER)|
Pardon me most noble king and do not cut me down,|
I will be burnt unto take(sic) if you will heal up my crown.
Rise and sing and see your county knighted,|
For tonight we will merry merry be and tomorrow we get sober.
[ Mumming Page | Customs Page | Sussex Main Page ]