In the 17th and 18th centuries, the streets of London were full of people selling their wares to anyone passing by. To get themselves noticed, the sellers would invent cries, which were often elaborate rhymes which they hoped would attract customers. Many of these are now lost to history, but I found some accompanying a selection of printed woodcuts.
My game are round and fat you see,
If on the price we can agree:
These ducks but one day since were shot,
And suit alike the spit or pot.
Or if for game you’re not inclin’d,
Here is a chicken to your mind.
Here is spice-cake for those good boys,
Who better love their books than toys;
And little girls may have their share,
As often as they sew with care:
Here he comes! his basket smokes;
BUY SOME SPICE, good little folks.
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