When Good King Arthur Ruled This Land
A Nursery Rhyme

When good King Arthur ruled this land,
He was a goodly king;
He stole three pecks of barley-meal
To make a bag-pudding.

A bag-pudding the king did make,
And stuffed it well with plum;
And in it put great lumps of fat,
As big as my two thumbs.

The king and queen did eat thereof,
And noblemen beside;
And what they could not eat that night,
The queen next morning fried.


An alternate version:

When auld Prince Arthur ruled this land,
He was a thievish king;
He stole three bolls o' barley meal,
To make a white pudding.

Chorus:
The pudding it was sweet and good,
And stored well wi' plums;
The lumps o' suet into it,
Were big as baith my thumbs'


Or...

When as King Arthur ruled this land,
He ruled it like a swine;
He bought three pecks of barleymeal
To make a pudding fine.

His pudding it was nodden well,
And stuffed right full of plums;
And lumps of suet he put in
As big as my two thumbs.


Or...

King Stephen was a worthy king
As ancient bards to sing
He bought three pucks of barley-meal
To make a bag-pudding.


Or...

Our good Quane Bess she maayde a pudden,
An' stuffed 'un vull o' plums.
An' in she put gurt dabs o' vat,
As big as my two thumbs.


Or...

When first King Henry ruled this land
He was a right generous King... etc.


And this nineteenth century parody:

When great Victoria ruled the land
She ruled it like a Queen
She had a Princess and a Prince
Not very far between.


Mmm... I can just taste this year's plum pudding...

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