The Somercotes Guisers, 1942-1945

P.T.Millington Collection (2002, A.Kerry)


Folk Play Home Scripts Intro County List Class List Characters

Context:
Location: Somercotes, Derbyshire, England (SK4253)
Year: Perf. c.1942-1945
Time of Occurrence: Christmas
Collective Name: Guisers

Source:

Alan Kerry
The Somercotes Guisers
P.T.Millington Collection, Col. Jan.2002


Cast: (Click on any name for the character name index.)
Text:

{THE SOMERCOTES GUISERS}

{A Christmas play performed circa 1942-1945.}

{CHARACTER (WILLIAM THE GREAT):}

[WIlliam the Great]

I open this door; I enter in,
with my nose above my chin,
And whether I sit, stand, rise or fall,
I'll do my best to please you all,
A room, a room, a gallant room, a room to let us in,
I'm not one of the ragged sort, but of the royal kin,
My name is William of the Great, the greatest man, of courage bold,
My blood is hot, so raging hot, no man can turn it cold,
But Hah! . . what is that that strikes my mind,
I've killed my wife and left her behind,
Which causes my fluttering tongue to say,
Step in St George and clear thy way.

{2nd CHARACTER (ST. GEORGE):}

[St. George]

In steps St George, a baron knight,
Who shed his blood for England's right,
And for right or good reason
I'll draw my trusty weapon, {draws sword}
And if you don't believe these words I say,
Step in Bull Slasher, and clear thy way.

{3rd CHARACTER (BULL SLASHER):}

[Bull Slasher]

In steps Bull Slasher, Bull Slasher is my name,
My head is made of brass; my body is made of steel,
My hands and feet are made of the best knucklebone,
No man breathing can make me feel.

St George:

Can'st I not make thee feel?

Bull Slasher:

Thou silly ass, thou silly ass, thou feedest upon grass,
If I lived in Hope, I'd buy fine rope, and tie thy nose to a manger.

St George:

Draw out thy purse and pay.

Bull Slasher:

Draw out thy sword and fight thy way.

St George:

Let us shake hands before we fight. {Shake hands and draw swords.}

{Sword fight follows, at the end of which St George stabs Bull Slasher who falls to the floor dying.}

William the Great:

Oh George, Oh George, what hast thou done,
Thou's killed and slain my only son,
my only son, my only heir,
My only son lies bleeding there.

St George:

He challenged me on the field to fight, why should I deny,
I stripped the buttons down his back, and made his body fly.
Five pounds for a doctor!

William the Great:

There are no five pound doctors.

St George:

Ten pounds for a doctor!

{4th CHARACTER (THE DOCTOR):}

[Doctor]

In steps a doctor, and a very good doctor too sir.

St George:

And how did'st thou become a doctor?

Doctor:

By my travels sir!

St George:

And where hast thou traveled?

Doctor:

I've traveled through Itsy, Bitsy, France and Spain,
nine times round this jolly old world and back again.

St George:

Is that all sir?

Doctor:

No sir, not at all sir.

St George:

Where else hast thou traveled?

Doctor:

I've traveled through Hitty Titty,
where there's neither land, sand, sea nor city,
wooden churches, leather bells and houses thatched with treacle;
little pigs running around with knives and forks stuck up their backsides
shouting out "Who'll eat me, who'll eat me."
I took a running kick at one sir,
and kicked it over nine hedges and ten ditches,
broke every bone in its body except one and a half sir . .
and that's as good as two sir.

St George:

Is that all sir?

Doctor:

No sir! I've traveled through the Hasty Pudding Mountains.

St George:

And how did you get through them?

Doctor:

I bought a wooden spoon and ate my way through!

St George:

Is that all sir?

Doctor:

Yes sir!

St George:

And enough and all sir!
What pains can'st thou cure?

Doctor:

I can cure the It, the Grit, the Grunt, the Grout,
pains within and pains without.
If there be ninety-nine devils in that man,
I'll cast ye a hundred out.

St George:

Well cure me this man that lies here slain.

Doctor:

I'll cure ye this man that lies here slain,
or I'll take nothing for my pain.

{Lifts dying man's head and offers drink from bottle.}

Here Jack, take a drop of this nip-nap
and let it roll down thy tip-tap,
and if thou feelest not quite slain,
rise up and fight St George again.

{Bull Slasher doesn't move.}

St George:

Hah! The silly dog never moved.

Doctor:

Gad!!! I've given him the wrong stuff!
Here's another bottle in my inside waistcoat jacket pocket.

{Removes second bottle from pocket.}

Here Jack, take a drop of this nip-nap
and let it roll down thy tip-tap,
and if thou feelest not quite slain,
rise up and fight St George again.

{Bull Slasher half rises onto elbow.}

Bull Slasher:

Oh my back!

Doctor:

What is up with thy back?

Bull Slasher:

My back is broken, my heart is confounded,
and I'll never see old England again.

{Bull Slasher falls back dead.}

{5th CHARACTER (BEELZEBUB)}

BEELZEBUB:

In steps I, Beelzebub,
over my shoulder I carry my club,
in my hand a dripping pan,
don't you think I'm a jolly old man?
If you don't . . I do!
Tins, cans, pokers and pins,
when a man gets married his sorrow begins.
My father's a blacksmith, my mother's a weaver,
and if you've got any money to spare, I'll be the receiver.

{Beelzebub circles room collecting contributions in dripping tin}

{FINIS}


Notes:

Indexer's notes:

This text was transcribed by ex-performer Jim Marsh of Delta, British Columbia, Canada

Jim Marsh's notes:

Transcribed from a handwritten script obtained in January 2002 from Alan Kerry (Beelzebub) via Jim Roberts (Doctor).

CAST:

William the Great: Jim Marsh

St George: Tony Hunt

Bull Slasher: Charlie Stringer

Doctor: Jim Roberts

Beelzebub: Alan Kerry


File History:
7th February 2002 - Transcribed by Jim Marsh
11th February 2002 - Encoded by Peter Millington

The recommended URL for this web page is www.folkplay.info/Texts/94sk45ka.htm
Last generated on 26/12/2007 by P.Millington (Peter.Millington1@virgin.net)