Back and Side go Bare

Original Text: 
William Stevenson, attributed, Gammer Gurtons Nedle (London: T. Colwell, 1575). STC 23263. Facs. edn. Tudor Facsimile Texts (1910). PR 2411 G2 1575AB Robarts Library.
2    Both foot and hand go cold;
3But, belly, God send thee good ale enough,
4    Whether it be new or old.
5I cannot eat but little meat,
6    My stomach is not good;
7But sure I think that I can drink
8    With him that wears a hood.
9Though I go bare, take ye no care,
10    I am nothing a-cold;
11I stuff my skin so full within
12    Of jolly good ale and old.
13Back and side go bare, go bare,
14    Both foot and hand go cold;
15But, belly, God send thee good ale enough,
16    Whether it be new or old.
17I love no roast but a nutbrown toast,
18    And a crab laid in the fire;
19A little bread shall do me stead,
20    Much bread I not desire.
21No frost nor snow, no wind, I trow,
22    Can hurt me if I would,
23I am so wrapt, and throughly lapt
24    Of jolly good ale and old.
25Back and side go bare, go bare,
26    Both foot and hand go cold;
27But, belly, God send thee good ale enough,
28    Whether it be new or old.
29And Tib my wife, that as her life
30    Loveth well good ale to seek,
31Full oft drinks she, till ye may see
32    The tears run down her cheek.
33Then doth she troll to me the bowl,
34    Even as a maltworm should;
35And saith,"Sweetheart, I took my part
36    Of this jolly good ale and old."
37Back and side go bare, go bare,
38    Both foot and hand go cold;
39But, belly, God send thee good ale enough,
40    Whether it be new or old.
41Now let them drink, till they nod and wink,
42    Even as good fellows should do;
43They shall not miss to have the bliss
44    Good ale doth bring men to.
45And all poor souls that have scoured bowls,
46    Or have them lustily troll'd,
47God save the lives of them and their wives,
48    Whether they be young or old.
49Back and side go bare, go bare,
50    Both foot and hand go cold;
51But, belly, God send thee good ale enough,
52    Whether it be new or old.

Notes

1] A play acted at Cambridge before 1560, and probably by William Stevenson, a fellow of Christ's College at the time. The titlepage gives the author as "Mr. S., Mr. of Art." Back to Line
Publication Start Year: 
1575
RPO poem Editors: 
N. J. Endicott
RPO Edition: 
2RP.1.243; RPO 1996-2000.