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Lyr Add: Young Henry of the Raging Main

Q (Frank Staplin) 20 Dec 08 - 10:11 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: Young Henry of the Raging Main
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 20 Dec 08 - 10:11 PM

Tune: The Waggon Train; Young Henry of the Raging Main

One summer morning as day was dawning,
Down by a pleasant river's side,
I saw a brisk and lovely damsel,
And a youth called 'England's pride';
He was a bright and smart young sailor
Tears from his eyes did fall like rain,
Saying adieu, my lovely Emma!
I am going to plough the raging main.
Cried Emma- Henry, will you leave me
Behind in sorrow to complain,
For your sweet features, lovely Henry,
I never may behold again.
See, Emma dear, our ship weighs anchor,
'Tis a folly, love, to complain;
Tho' you I leave I'll ne'er deceive,
I'm bound to plough the raging main.
Said Emma, stay a little longer,
Stay at home with your true love,
For if you enter I will venture,
I swear by all the powers above,
I'll venture with my lovely Henry,
Perhaps great honour I may obtain.
She cried, I'll enter and boldly venture
With Henry on the raging main.
Cried Henry, Love, don't be distracted,
Perhaps we may be cast away;
'Tis for that reason, cried young Emma,
That behind I will not stay.
I'll dress myself in manly apparel,
So dearest Henry, don't complain,
In a jacket blue and tarry trousers,
I will plough the raging main.
Then on board the brig Eliza
Henry and his Emma went,
She did her duty like a sailor,
And with her lover was content;
Her pretty hands once soft as velvet
With pitch and tar appeared in vain,
Tho' her hands were soft she went aloft,
And boldly ploughed the raging main.
The Eliza brig was bound for India,
And 'ere she had three weeks set sail,
From land or light one stormy night,
It blew a bitter and a heavy gale;
Undaunted up aloft went Emma,
'Midst thunder, lightning, hail, and rain,
With courage true and jacket blue,
Did Emma plough the raging main.
Twelve long hours the tempest lasted,
At length quite calm it did appear,
And they proceded on their voyage,
Emma and her true-love dear.
When just two years they had been sailing
To England they returned again,
And no one did suspect young Emma,
Ploughing on the watery main.
Three weeks after, gay young Henry,
Emma made his lawful bride,
Like turtle-doves they live and love
Each other by the river-side.
They happy dwell, and often tell
Their tales of love, and ne'er complain;
See how young Emma boldly ventured
With young Henry over the main.

Harding B(11)4367, c. 1813-1838, J. Catnach, London (and several other printers, continuing until the 1860s).

The ballad "Henry and Mary Ann" (Henry the Sailor Boy) is similar but the damsel saves the captain and is given a reward (see Traditional Ballad Index). This variant is not discussed in the Index.
The tune "Young Henry of the Raging Main," or "The Waggon Train" (the same tune?) are listed for several other songs, including "The Orphan Child;" thread 117098: Wandering Mary

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