Come all ye good people, I'll sing you a song, Concerning hard times, but it's not very long, Since everybody is trying to buy Cheat their own neighbors and take a delight. And it's hard times.
Here's the blacksmith that lives by the sweat of his brow, Likewise the farmer, by following the plough, They think themselves honest, in their own conceit, And cheat one and another by measure and weight. And it's hard times.
Here is the baker, lives by the bread that he eats, And so does the butcher by selling his meats; They tip up their stilyards to make it weigh down, They will swear its good weight, if it lacks ten pound. And its hard times.
Here is the cook that cooks for us all, She is always complaining her skillet's too small. For us she will cook, and to us she will talk, Cares more for the skillet than she does for the flock. And its hard times.
Here is the bricklayer, he tries to do good, He will stir up his fire and burn up his wood, He will declare by all the powers above, He will wear out his fingers and then get no gloves. And its hard times.
Here is the preacher that preaches for all, He is always complaining his money's too small, To us he will preach, and to us he will talk, Cares more for the money than he does for the flock. And its hard times.
Here is the doctor I had like to forgot, The very worst devil that's in the whole flock, He will tell you he'll cure you for half you possess, And then he will kill you and take all the rest. And its hard times.
Here is the States Attorney, a very proud man, He spends all his time a planning at plans, For thirty-five dollars he'll send you to Richmond to dwell, For sixty-five dollars he'll send you to hell. And its hard times.
Here is the lawyer, he wants to live free, He will plead up your cause for a very small fee, And he'll plead up your cause and tell you a lie, And when you are gone he'll call you a bite. And its hard times.
And here is the Constable, a man that's despised, He will run to your house with a pack of d---d lies, He will seize all you have got, and that he will sell, Get drunk on the money, and doing d---d well. And its hard times.
Now, I think it is time to end my song, Since drinking and sporting it is going on, Hand-cuffs put on their legs, chained down to the floor, D---n the poor souls what can they do more. And it's hard times.
The times are so hard that fish wont bite, A great starved rat run off with my hat. And its hard times and plenty to do.