The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #105266   Message #2167456
Posted By: GUEST,leeneia
09-Oct-07 - 03:56 PM
Thread Name: Lyr Add: Bonny Doon / The Banks o' Doon
Subject: RE: Bonny Doon- The Banks o' Doon
Malcolm. stop being a schnook.

In poetry, every word is important, and Genie is as entitled as anyone else to contribute what she knows. Catters, of course, can discuss a single word at great length.
For example:

"Aft hae I rov'd by bonnie Doon
To see the rose and woodbine twine"

Aft!? Whaddya mean, 'aft'? Is our lovelorn maiden in the back of a boat or what? Distinguish aft from oft, researching etymology going back to the Ancient Norse or Medieval Latin. Was she even a maiden?

As for the history of the tune, I have something to add, though I wish I could be more specific. Back when I was still trying to play piano for real, I carefully picked out the melody of a dance by a French [I think] composer. I got the treble going, and my husband remarked, "That's that new Scottish song you've been doing." And lo, it was! That dance by a French composer had the tune for "Banks and Braes of Bonnie Doone."

I've looked in my surviving piano books, but I can't find it now. Too bad.

The Frenchman may have borrowed the tune from the people, of course. I do know that at one time this tune was sloshing back and forth over Western Europe. I doubt if its authorship can ever be pinned down.