The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #126026   Message #3411881
Posted By: Mysha
29-Sep-12 - 05:28 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Jolly Old Hawk - Goss-Hawk (Original)
Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Jolly Old Hawk (Original Lyrics)
Wow, some interesting stuff was added to this thread while I wasn't looking.


Yes, I agree that the fifth verse - the one first long verse BTW - seems to send people astray in both songs. I don't hear "Five gold-rings" all that often and, though obvious, "fifth and a-faring" is probably a lost cause as well. In that version of JOH, it would appear a stray anyway, as it's in numbers format, while the others verses are in counting format.

Which one would be the older song? Interesting question, especially since My True Love Gave to Me so clearly derives from a song counting seven days, while on the other hand Jolly Goshawk in versions where it speaks of the days of May would seem second half 18th century at the earliest, as before that there would not have been a meaningful period of twelve days of May: From New Mayday to Old Mayday. (The latter being the day for Weddings, it would be the proper day to decide the announced competition: "Now let us see - who'll win this fair lady, you or me.") Do we have a date for My True Love etc.?

And back to the topic:
Regarding the versions talking about "twelfthmost day" etc.: Is such a day before or after the firstmost day?

When I was at Cecil Sharp House I didn't know I had something to research there, unfortunately. But Reeves being interested in the language, does Idiom of the People include the melodies as well?

Well, that sort of caught up with things, I guess.