The Brick-makers Lamentation from New-gate:


The Brick-makers Lamentation from New-gate:


OR, A true Report of the Indicting, Arraignment, Tryal, and Convicting of four of the Brick-makers Court of In-justice: for the Notorious Riot committed on the Body of one Richard Lambart, Brick-maker of Fullum, who they Arraigned Indicted, and had almost Executed, for some pretended idle words. Their Examination, and Tryal, and Sentence they are to undergoe, exprest as followeth.


A group of bricklayers, after drinking, hold a mock trial (a common enough practice for guild members) for one of their number accused of stealing bread and cheese from another member. He is burned in the hand by a hot apple and then has to eat it. Then someone accuses him of treason and he is taken to be hanged. A groom of the king's stables tells them he is to be cut down and several of the group are arrested and imprisoned at Newgate for their actions.

Digital Object

Image notice

Full size images of all ballad sheets available at the bottom of this page.

Image / Audio Credit

British Library - Roxburghe, C.f.20.8.40; EBBA 30185. Audio recording by Molly McKew.

Set to tune of...


Good people come hither and listen a while,
Ile tell you a story shall make you to smile
For such a bold project there never was heard,
As now in this Ballad shall soon be declard;
The Brick-makers they
This project did play,
The Elventh of August as people do say:
Let this be a warning that others take heed;
Their court of in-justice will smart for the deed.

In Rainy wet weather it was I suppose,
When each bonny Brick-maker steeled his nose,
They drink their cups round, & do merrily prate
Each Brick-maker seemed a Lord in conceit;
Whilst thus they Carrouse,
And call on the House,
One of them his bread and his cheese he did lose
And one in the company there he did atackt,
As guilty of Fellony for this bold act.

They calld him Dick Lambart whom he did accuse,
Who, he said, such activity often did use;
And there for his life he would have him be tryd
A Judge and a Jury this deed should deside;
A Court there was calld,
The Cryer he bawld
And there with his flounder-mouth loudly he yauld.
And then on the bench for a judge there set down
One in a red wastecoat which servd for a gown.

A Judge and a Jury, and Clarks did appear,
A Sheriff and also a Hangman was there,
The Judge being set and prisoner brought forth
The plaintiff be there on a brickbat took oath,
that to his great cost
Too lately he lost,
Some bread & some cheese which he savd for a toast,
And that Richard Lambart had taken his peck,
Who for it deservd to be noosd by the neck.

For this he had sentance by which he was forst
To be burnt in the hand with an apple hot roast
And afterwards he on that apple must feed,
This Sentance he had for his Fellonious deed;
But now comes the worst
More bad then the first,
Poor Richard his fortune it was so accurst;
A Witness held forth, and he there did declare,
That Richard spoke Treason and he did it hear.

He said the Kings drums they did make a great sound
But in the midst of them no guts to be found,
And that the Kings horses with Iron were shod,
And often on dirt and on stones they have trod;
That they so were fed
With butter and bread,
They lost all the Rases what ever was laid:
And that the Kings Goshauks had got no more foul
Then is in the night-bird thats called an Owl.

This was the Indictment on which he was tryd,
The Jury was sworn on a Brickbat beside,
The Evidence there did make it out plain
And Lambart away from the Bar he was tane;
Their Jury went out,
And brought it about,
That Lambart was guilty of Treason no doubt;
And then by the Judge he was sentencd, that he,
Should hang by the neck on the Tiborn Tree.

A Clay cart they got, and a horse int beside,
And put Lambart in it, and him fast down tyd,
And then unto th Gallows they do him convey,
With a Guard of their Officers all on the way,
A Brickbat to read,
As they did proceed,
And then on the Gallows they hangd him indeed:
Thus have you heard of the Brick-makers Court,
who hang men in earnest, and count it their sport.

A Groom of the Kings stables came riding that way,
Seeing this rebel rout to them did say,
I see youve condemned this man in the Town,
But heres a reprieve and he must be cut down:
This being done,
Away then did run,
This Court of In-justice each mothers Son.
The Judge and the Hangman was tane in the act
And two of the Jury-men since for that fact.

This court of In-justice appeared in time
At Seshions house there for to answer their crime
A hundred pound is laid on each head,
Or else due imprisonment till it be paid:
In New-gate they are,
Remaining in care,
Of farther punishment they are in fear:
And thus you have heard of the Brick-makers Court
Who hang men in earnest & count it their sport.

Method of Punishment



treason (false accusation)


Execution Location


Printing Location

London, Printed for Phillip Brooksby next door to the Ball in West Smithfield.

Tune Data

Packington's Pound is often cited as Digby's Farewell, Packingtons Pound or Amintas' Farewell. The tune first appeared in 1671 and was popular for execution ballads (Simpson 1966, pp. 181-187, 564-570).


the brick-makers lament.mp3


“The Brick-makers Lamentation from New-gate:,” Execution Ballads, accessed June 24, 2024,

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