The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #161176   Message #3828514
Posted By: Richie
24-Dec-16 - 04:13 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Died for Love: Sources and variants
Subject: RE: Origins: Died for Love: Sources and variants

It should be pointed out that "Rambling Boy" (sent to sea- dies of a cannonball) from a chapbook by J. & M. Robertson, Saltmarket, Glasgow; 1799 as well as "Answer to Rambling Boy" and "The Cruel Father or Deceived Maid," from the Madden Collection, c.1790 are completely different ballads from Brisk Young Sailor and all the rest. They have almost nothing in common with Butcher Boy.

Cox said in 1925 that "The Cruel Father or Deceived Maid" was one of 4 ballads that make up Butcher Boy- this is also not accurate- the only commonality is the suicide and last stanza.

The "new" ballad "O Willie" that Roger Dev Renwick writes about in his chapter, 'Oh, Willie': An Unrecognized Anglo-American Ballad, is the old 1700s ballad 'Cruel Father/Rambling Boy,' whose variants were mixed with Butcher Boy variants in collections. Renwick fails to identify the original sources of his "new" ballad and why they were not correctly identified. He does show the differences and identifies some versions in various collections.