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The Three Jovial Huntsmen, by Randolph Caldecott

The Three Jovial Huntsmen, Front Cover (Routledge edition). Click to enlarge.

Bull-calf from "Jovial Huntsmen" (Routledge edition). Click to enlarge.In 1880 Randolph Caldecott further popularized this centuries-old song with his illustrations to a delightful Lancashire dialect version, "The Three Jovial Huntsmen".

Here is a typical verse:

"They hunted, an' they hollo'd, an' the next thing they did find
Was a bull-calf in a pin-fold, an' that, too, they left behind.
                                     Look ye there!

One said it was a bull-calf, an' another he said "Nay;
Bull-calf from Jovial Huntsmen (Warne edition). Click to enlarge. It's just a painted jackass, that has never learnt to bray."
                                    Look ye there!"

The two pictures on the right are from 

  1. The original edition, published by George Routledge & Sons, and 
  2. One of the later reprints, published by Frederick Warne & Co.

Purists prefer the original - but it's doubtful whether our scanner and computer-screens do justice to either version!

To view another picture from this book, reproduced by Warnes on a Postcard, click here.

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Unless otherwise stated, material from this site may be freely copied and reproduced, but please acknowledge where you got it from!           Last modified:  31 May 2004