The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #141779   Message #3837156
Posted By: Steve Gardham
06-Feb-17 - 03:48 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Rolling Sailor (Eliza Carthy)
Subject: RE: Origins: Rolling Sailor (Eliza Carthy)
Perhaps to clarify a very muddy situation a little.

This song (or family of songs if you like) has a very wide range of stanzas and has been rewritten several times using a few core stanzas with a range of different occupations for the lead character. In versions he is variously a sailor/collier/fisherlad. The collier/fisher versions have different Roud numbers but the core stanzas are the same.

It dates back at least to the middle of the 18th century having been printed at Aldermary Churchyard in London.

I have various widely differing copies from the Madden Collection if anyone is interested.