Comin' thro' the Rye


Comin thro' the rye, poor body, Comin thro' the rye, She draigl't a' her petticoatie Comin thro' the rye. Oh Jenny's a' weet, poor body, Jenny's seldom dry, She draigl't a' her petticoatie Comin thro' the rye. Gin a body meet a body Comin thro' the rye, Gin a body kiss a body Need a body cry. Gin a body meet a body Comin thro' the glen; Gin a body kiss a body Need the warld ken! Oh Jenny's a' weet, poor body, Jenny's seldom dry, She draigl't a' her petticoatie Comin thro' the rye.

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Karen Dunbar

About this work

This is a song by Robert Burns. It was written in 1788 and is read here by Karen Dunbar.

More about this song

This version of 'Comin' thro' the rye' was composed by Burns for James Johnson's Scots Musical Museum where it appeared in 1796. It is thought that the song was inspired by an older bawdy version which appears in The Merry Muses of Caledonia (1799).

The song points to eighteenth-century society's intrusive approach to romantic relationships. Young couples were frequently the subject of common gossip and closely scrutinised by the strict Kirk elders to ensure that courtships were conducted in an appropriate manner without breaching religious doctrine.

Pauline Mackay

Themes for this song

love seduction

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