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Bargery Number 476
Music (Given or Suggested) To the tune of "Jenny Jones" {Roud 13857}
Printer or Publisher Unknown
Author Durden, Richard
Composer Anonymous
Performer Durden, Richard
Earliest Date 1873
Evidence for Earliest Date Wreck of the Northfleet alluded to in the final two verses
Source of Text Bodleian Library, Firth c.26(134)
Where Printed Unknown
Roud V4201
Parsed Title What I Saw In My Dream As I Slept In My Chair
First Line One morn being drowsy, I then took a ramble
Source of Music
Variant Set Axon Ballad 118 "What I Dreamt in my Old Arm Chair" is a variant of this with very different subject amtter
Comments on Song The form of this song harks back to the dream narrative style of medieval works like Piers Ploughman
Source Title What I Saw In My Dream As I Slept In My Chair
Origin Broadside

What I Saw in My Dream as I Slept in My Chair


One morn being drowsy, I then took a ramble
And strolled through the town like a man in dismay
My pocket was lined with a little of rhino¹
So I cheered up my mind as I sped on my way
I rambled through the Park as the day was advancing
I chanted a rhyme to an old simple air
And then getting jolly, and home-ward returning
Neglected my bed, and slept in my chair

Then all being quiet a dream past before me
The sights that I saw unto you I'll relate
I saw a great row, in the street men were fighting,
Police they appeared when they knew 'twas too late
I saw a poor woman with three orphan children
And begging for bread, in distress and despair,
The Police locked her up, while fighting men mizzled²,
That I saw in my dream, as I slept in my chair.

I dreamt I was reading a Daily News¹ placard
But no railway accidents was there 'twas plain
For the men worked less hours and got better paid [Note 476.1]
And the directors took their time in driving the train
I then dreamt that strikes were entirely abolished
And Masters give in and acted quite square
But when I awoke I found they still resisted [Note 476.2]
Still that's what I dreamt as I slept in my chair.

I next dreamt of poor farm labourers of England
Who are starving with hunger in hundreds 'tis said
While the farmers themselves liv in luxury and splendour
Not caring for those who have earn't them their bread,
Some men with large families working twelve hours a day
For nine shillings per week, now is that not unfair?
While there hymes (sic) are not fit for a Christian to live in
This I saw in my dream as I slept in my chair

I dreamt of the death of the Emperor Napoleonº
But among British subjects, he ne'er met a frown
For he done more for France, I'm sure you'll agree
Than all other monarch's who sat on her throne
I then dreamt of the poor gas stokers² in London [Note 476.3]
Some committing suicide through utter despair
While other are sent with hard labour to prison
This I saw in my dream as I slept in my chair.

I dreamt of the fearful collision near Dover
And the terrible loss of near 400 lives [Note 476.4]
The sight was distressing as I saw the ship sinking
And the poor men a clinging to their children and wives
The weeping on deck was something heart rending
And the captain quite firmly bid them not despair
And bravely he parted with his young wife forever
This I saw in my dream as I slept in my chair

I dreamt of the cause of this dreadful collision
And there saw the steamer far, far o'er the waves
Perhaps little caring for those who had perished
And who they might have saved from a watery grave
Let's hope that justice will soon overtake them
And punish the guilty for a crime so unfair
For they were the cause of this dreadful disaster
This I saw in my dream as I slept in my chair

3 across Articles in this Category: click a link

Drowning of the Northfleet Immigrants...

bar639: Dates 1873~1873|

A detailed description of the events aboard the sinking ship. 

What I Saw in My Dream as I Slept in My...

bar476: Dates 1873~1873|

Complaint about the times mentioning the loss of the Northfleet and the railway accidents causued by long working hours.

Wreck of the Northfleet , The

bar486: Dates 1873~1873|

First line 'You have read of the wreck of the London, and the captain, too, as well'

Dreadful shipwreck of the Northfleet

bar612: Dates 1873~1873|

First line 'Come listen all you feeling people' concentrates on the Captains efforts to save female passengers

Wreck of the Northfleet or Farewell...

bar487: Dates 1873~1873|

First line 'A braver man that (sic) Captain Knowles, ne'er set a ship in motion'

Wreck Of The Northfleet; Or, Father Put...

bar351: Dates 1873~1873|

First line: 'The Good ship Northfleet at anchor lay'. Concentrates on the plight of a single child.

The Northfleet

ns009: Dates ----~----|

ns009Northfleet.pngThe Northfleet the day before she sailed
[Supplement to the Illustrated London...

Wreck of the Northfleet , The

bar724: Dates 1873~----|

First line: "There's a sad disaster lately occurred". Concentrates on the fate of the Captain and his wife.

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