Each month I will be publishing a random newspaper article that featured the traditional Jack-in-the-Green. Each of these articles is a magical window into a bygone era. For more information about the Jack in the Green both current and historical visit our main website at: www.thecompanyofthegreenman.co.uk
1832, 1 May: MARLBROUGH-STREET (Magistrates Court)
MAY DAY. – A lady and gentleman, two of the loyal and sooty subjects of Jack in the Green, having, after the May-day enjoyments, ” kicked up a bobbery,” they were taken into custody by a policeman, and placed at the bar on Wednesday, when ” sweepy ” made the following characteristic speech, in answer to the magistrate’s question, ” What are you?” “Oh, why I’m a chimbley sweep – a master sweep – and this here’s my wife. Yesterday was our day, and so we went to John’s wood, to the United Society of Chimbley Sweepers – master chimbley sweeps – and you see we were fatigued, and so we merely drank to squench ourselves ; and we’d got home comfortable enough, nearly, when we were hinsulted by some chaps, and they hit me and my wife : and my wife said, ‘Bill, don’t let them ere coves podger you,’ and so we up and took’d our parts, your honour ; and we all larrup’d one another till this here hofficer com’d up, and oh, s’elp me, I never touched him.” They were committed for seven days
The Atlas, 6 May 1832, page 292.