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There is a thread on mudcat about this song.

From Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads, Harding B 25(275). THE BREECHES, Printer: J. K. Pollock (North Shields), dated between 1815 and 1855
capo 2, Cate always called this the "Ode to Spousal Abuse" and I see a commenter on the mudcat thread did the same. Of course we know this song through the Paul Brady version.

    Wearin' the Britches

    by trad
    [Am] Come all young men where e'er you be and listen to me lamentations
    I courted a girl beyond compare and I loved her with admiration
    [Am] At length in time she became my wife,
    [D] twas not for beauty [Em] but for riches,
    [G] And all the time it [C] causes strife,
    to [Am] see which of us will [Em] wear the [Am] britches.

    O Paddy Kane it is my name, me height it is five foot eleven,
    and Me wife is nearly not so big, she only measures four feet seven,
    The hedges I have oft times stripped,
    I've left them bare of rods and switches,
    Her skin with blows I have turned black,
    but still she says she'll wear my britches.

    Well I am a tailor to my trade, at cutting out I am quite handy,
    But all the money that I make, she leaves it out on tay and brandy,
    Now sometimes I do shout and ball
    with nothing going with rogues and witches,
    Her head goes oft times to the wall,
    still she says she'll wear me britches.

    One morning at the tay and eggs, content and sitting by the fire,
    Well She broke the taypot on my legs, and left me leapin to retire,
    How often do I shout and moan, as I go hopping on my crutches,
    I wished I'd broke her collar bone, the day I let her wear me britches

    So come all young men where e'er you be,
    don't marry a wife if she's enchantin,
    For if you do, you'll be like me, with other men she'll go gallanting,
    Now my advice it is to you, to marry for love and not for riches,
    And be sure of a wife with a civil tongue,
    who'll give you leave to wear your britches.

    Cate calls this Nate's "Ode to Spousal Abuse". after Paul Brady's version, but since I can't sing that high I play it lower. Close to a version printed by J. K. Pollock (North Shields) dated between 1815 and 1855.