|Laws, curfews and control of crowds||2||1||2|
|Sentries and nightwatchmen||1||2||1|
|Courts of law||2|
|Other legal proceedings||1|
|Sounds of crime||1|
Period referred to: 1680s
Sound category: Authority > Sentries and nightwatchmen
Title of work: A Copy of Verses presented by Isaac Ragg, Bellman, to his Masters and Mistresses of Holbourn Division, in the parish of St. Giles's-in-the-Fields.
Type of publication: Printed broadside
Author: Isaac Ragg
Year of publication: 1683-84
Page/volume number: N/A
Printed bellman’s verse, as sung or spoken to householders
Time, Master, calls your bellman to his task,
To see your doors and windows are all fast,
And that no villany or foul crime be done
To you or yours in absence of the sun.
If any base lurker I do meet,
In private alley or in open street,
You shall have warning by my timely call,
And so God bless you and give rest to all.
[A bellman's verse was typically sung or spoken by the bellman or nightwatchman in his ward, perhaps at Christmas, in the hope of receiving tips from householders. Some verses were printed as broadsides. The expression 'Bellman's verse' became synonymous with doggerel.]
Period referred to: 1660s
Sound category: Authority and public order > Sentries and nightwatchmen
Title of work: The Diary of Samuel Pepys
Type of publication: Diary
Author: Samuel Pepys
Year of publication: 1660
Page/volume number: January 1660
‘I staid up till the bell-man came by with his bell just under my window ‘
I staid up till the bell-man came by with his bell just under my window as I was writing of this very line, and cried, "Past one of the clock, and a cold, frosty, windy morning."