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In the Irish folk song "The Wild Rover," the narrator has been spending his money on beer for a long time, many years (and maybe living nomadically). He regrets this very much and resolves to mend his ways, especially since his drinking has made him very poor. But when he goes back to his old town (I think), to the tavern, he has a huge amount of gold coins in his pockets. How was he able to get them? Were some verses lost over the centuries that would explain it?

[Verse 1] I've been a wild rover for many's a year And I've spent half me money drinking strong ale and beer But now for the future I must take better care In case that misfortune might come to my share

[Chorus] Wild rovin' I'll give it over Wild rovin' give o'er And I never will be called the Wild rover no more

[Verse 2] I went into an alehouse I used to resort And I told the landlady that my money was short When she heard of my story, oh her answer twas "nay" Sayin' "Custom such as yours I could have any day"

[Chorus] Wild rovin' I'll give it over Wild rovin' give o'er And I never will be called the Wild rover no more

[Verse 3] I put my hand in my pocket, some money to find And I pulled out the full of my two fists five times When she saw I had the money And money galore When she saw I had the money Well she called me her stór Saying "I have the whiskey and wines of the best All the words I have spoken, they were only in jest"

[Chorus] Wild rovin' I'll give it over Wild rovin' give o'er And I never will be called the Wild rover no more

[Verse 4] If I had half the money I left in your care It would buy me ten acres and my family rear It would thatch me a cottage, it would build me a barn It would buy me a coat fur to keep my back warm

[Chorus] Wild rovin' I'll give it over Wild rovin' give o'er And I never will be called the Wild rover no more

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    He doesn't say. It's left to your imagination. – Mozibur Ullah Jul 8 '20 at 11:47
  • An interesting question that I have never thought to ask. I tried my mother who is more Irish than me (actually born there) but she did not know either. I have not heard those lyrics before. I use "I've spent all me money on whiskey and beer". "Strong ale" doesn't sound very Irish and "half his money" is not very wild, maybe just feral. – badjohn Jul 10 '20 at 8:18
  • I just listened to the Dubliners singing it. They use the words more familiar to me. – badjohn Jul 10 '20 at 8:22
  • I learned this version from the Irish band Lankum. They also use a different tune than everyone else. – user24353 Jul 12 '20 at 5:06

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