A wealthy old merchant who in London did dwell
He had only one daughter an uncommon fine young girl
And her name it was Dinah, scarce sixteen years old
With a very nice fortune in silver and gold

Chorus: Singing to too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da
(which I sings by myself)
Singing too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da

Now as Dinah was a walking round her garden one day
(The front garding)
Her Papa walked up to her and quickly did say
'Come dress yourself Dinah in gorgeous array
(take your hair out of paper)
For you shall have a husband both gallant and gay'

Chorus: (In favour of the parent's desire, and the wedding breakfast he was about to order of the pastry-cook round the corner)
Singing too-ral-li etc

(Now this is what the daughter said to the prophetic parent, in reply)

Oh papa, Oh Papa, I have made up my mind
But to marry just now, oh I don't feel inclined
To you all the fortune I'll freely give o'er
If I can but be single for a year or two more

Chorus: (Wheedling and persuasive Chorus: on behalf of the offspring's remonstrance to the author of her being)
Singing too-ral-li etc.

(Now this here is what the paternal parient said agin to the daughter, and tells you what the parricidal papa parenthetically and paragorically pronounced, with all the parabolical particulars)
Then go, boldest daughter, her parient replied
As you won't agree to be this here young man's bride
(He was a merchant pieman from Abyssinia, and exported baked taters to Timbuctoo for the Hottentots)
I shall leave your large fortune to the nearest of kin
And you shan't have the benefit of one single pin

Chorus: (of the enraged parient against his progeny)
Singing too-ral-li etc
As Vilikins was waliking the garding all round
(This was the back garding)
He spied his own Dinah lying dead upon the way
And a cup of cold pi-son, it stood by her side
With a billet-dow which said as how - T'was by pi-son she died
(The label was marked British Brandy)

Chorus: Singing to too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da
(Mournful and desponding Chorus: of the sympathising sparrows, the sad and smoke-dried spectators of this malignant and misanthropic case of unfortunate servericide)
Singing too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da

(This here is what the lovyer did on the diskivery)
He kissed her cold corpus a thousand times o'er
To be parted from Dinah he could not endure
Then he swallowed the pi-son, and sang a short stave
(Neither agreed with him)
And Villikins and his Dinah were buried in one grave


Now all nice young maidens take warning, be sure
Never not by no means offend the guv'nor
And all gay young bachelors mind who you set eyes on
Think of Villikins and Dinah and the cup of cold pi-son

Chorus: (powerfully impressed)

(Now, this is the superlatively supernatural wisulation which appeared to the parient at midnight, after the disease of his only progeny)
At twelve the next night, by the tall poplar tree
The Ghost of Miss Dinah her other parient did see
Arm in arm with her Villikins, and both looking blue
Said 'We shouldn't have been poisoned if it hadn't been for you

Chorus: Singing to too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da
(Phantasmagorean and sepulchral Chorus:, to astonish the weak nerves of the parient)
Singing too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da

Singing to too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da
Final sympathetic Chorus:, though the verdict was 'sarved them right'
Singing to too-ral-li, too-ral-li, too-ral-li da
Words of this version credited to John Parry - circa 1855
Based on a much earlier English, broadside ballad entitled 'William and Dinah'.
Performed by Sam Cowell (1820-1864)
From Music Hall Lyrics Collection
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