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Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads

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Origins: James Madison Carpenter- Child Ballads 5 (33)
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Origins: James Madison Carpenter- Child Ballads 2 (129) (closed)
James Madison Carpenter shanties (38)
Sir Patrick Spens in Madison Carpenter (6)
Help: James Madison Carpenter (6)


Richie 25 Feb 18 - 01:37 PM
Steve Gardham 25 Feb 18 - 01:44 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 02:03 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 03:53 PM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 25 Feb 18 - 04:48 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 04:52 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 05:28 PM
Brian Peters 25 Feb 18 - 05:40 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 07:09 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 07:25 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 08:19 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 09:16 PM
Richie 25 Feb 18 - 09:36 PM
Brian Peters 26 Feb 18 - 07:15 AM
Steve Gardham 26 Feb 18 - 10:36 AM
Brian Peters 26 Feb 18 - 12:56 PM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 26 Feb 18 - 01:55 PM
Steve Gardham 26 Feb 18 - 02:45 PM
Steve Gardham 26 Feb 18 - 03:04 PM
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GUEST,Gerry 26 Feb 18 - 04:37 PM
Steve Gardham 26 Feb 18 - 05:26 PM
Richie 26 Feb 18 - 09:12 PM
GUEST,Brian Peters 27 Feb 18 - 01:03 PM
Steve Gardham 27 Feb 18 - 02:14 PM
Richie 27 Feb 18 - 06:03 PM
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Steve Gardham 01 Mar 18 - 10:32 AM
Richie 01 Mar 18 - 08:52 PM
Richie 02 Mar 18 - 11:24 AM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 02 Mar 18 - 01:57 PM
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Steve Gardham 02 Mar 18 - 05:42 PM
Richie 03 Mar 18 - 11:41 AM
Brian Peters 03 Mar 18 - 02:42 PM
Steve Gardham 03 Mar 18 - 03:36 PM
Richard Mellish 03 Mar 18 - 03:38 PM
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GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 03 Mar 18 - 05:24 PM
Richie 04 Mar 18 - 05:53 PM
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Steve Gardham 04 Mar 18 - 06:41 PM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 04 Mar 18 - 07:13 PM
Richie 04 Mar 18 - 08:22 PM
Brian Peters 05 Mar 18 - 08:14 AM
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Brian Peters 05 Mar 18 - 11:54 AM
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Richie 05 Mar 18 - 05:03 PM
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Richie 05 Mar 18 - 10:31 PM
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Brian Peters 13 Mar 18 - 07:55 AM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 13 Mar 18 - 08:44 AM
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Brian Peters 13 Mar 18 - 09:49 AM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 13 Mar 18 - 09:57 AM
Brian Peters 13 Mar 18 - 11:14 AM
GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP) 13 Mar 18 - 01:39 PM
Richie 13 Mar 18 - 03:02 PM
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GUEST,Carl in VT 14 Mar 18 - 11:12 PM
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OldNicKilby 15 Mar 18 - 08:40 AM
Steve Gardham 15 Mar 18 - 10:34 AM
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Richie 19 Mar 18 - 12:41 PM
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Subject: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:37 PM

Hi,

Now that the songs and ballads collected by James Madison Carpenter (1888-1984) of Mississippi are available online at the Vaughan Williams Memorial Library (hereafter 'VWML') this is an opportunity to study ballads he collected from England and Scotland, come of which date back to the mid-1800s (collected between 1928-1935). Also included are his Child ballad collected mostly in North Carolina between 1937 and 1941 by Carpenter and his Duke University students.

Here's a link to the Collection: https://www.vwml.org/search?q=James%20Madison%20Carpenter&is=1 It includes 5,018 entries some of them photos.

This is a study of specifically of The James Madison Carpenter Collection "Child ballads." In addition I would like to include older materials (broadsides, printed ballads, and other early sources) that may not have been available to F. J. Child when he was writing The English and Scottish Popular Ballads" with "305 Ballad Types" between c.1882-1898.

I welcome any discussion and posts of materials by such legendary informants as Bell Duncan, Alexander Robb, and others. Just so there is some order I'd like to start with Child 1 "Riddles Wisely Expounded" or in the US the ballad is known most commonly as "The Devil's Nine Questions" and work through each ballad in order.

The focus is on British ballads here, but US ballads from the Carpenter Collection are included.

TY

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 01:44 PM

I'm up for this and will contribute where I can. I was intending to look closely at the Bell Duncan ballads anyway. I want to try to evaluate what her sources might have been. This will no doubt involve comparing her versions with print copies and other versions from the same period.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 02:03 PM

Hi,

TY Steve,

Child No. 1, Riddles Wisely Expounded (Roud No. 161). There is apparently only one US version in the Carpenter Collection and it's from the US as collected in 1941 and titled, "Riddles Wisely Expounded." The local titles include "Sing Ninety-Nine and Ninety" or "The Devil's Nine Questions."

From the James Carpenter Collection, Reference Code AFC 1972/001, MS p. 07630, titled Riddles Wisely Expounded. According to reports from the Bluefield Daily Telegraph newspaper, Mary Davis Adair and the informant Mrs P. O. Ivery were in Bluefield, W. Va. in the years proceeding 1941 (until the late 1930s). In 1941 when the MS was collected they were in Narrows, Va. This version from the Carpenter Collection is nearly identical to the Kyle Arthur Davis Jr. version in Traditional Ballads of Virginia, published in 1929 and it could easily have been copied from the 1929 book. Since it was sent in, not transcribed, and no information has been provided to corroborate its legitimacy, it's impossible to determine whether it is, in fact, traditional. Personally I think it's a copy-- only one word has been changed from the verses published in 1929-- the word "me" replaces "my" in the first line. The title alone indicates that this was not a local version.

"Riddles Wisely Expounded" sent in by Mrs P.O. Ivery of Bluefield, WV in the 1930s and Narrows, VA, by June 1941 when the MS was sent in.

If you don't answer me questions nine
Sing ninety-nine and ninety,
I'll take you off to hell, alive,
And you are the weaver's bonny.

What is whiter than milk?
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
What is softer than silk?
Say you're the weaver's bonny."

Snow is whiter than milk,
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
Down is softer than silk,
And I'm the weaver's bonny."

What is louder than a horn?
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
What is sharper than a thorn?
Sing I am the weaver's bonny.

Thunder's louder than a horn,
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
Death is sharper than a thorn,
Sing I'm the weaver's bonny.

What is higher than a tree?
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
What is deeper than the sea?
Sing I'm the weaver's bonny.

Heaven's higher than a tree,
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
And hell is deeper than the sea,
Sing I'm the weaver's bonny.

What is innocenter than a lamb?
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
What is worse than woman-kind?
Say I'm the weaver's bonny.

A babe is innocenter than a lamb,
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
She-devil's worse than woman-kind,
Sing I'm the weaver's bonny."

You have answered me questions nine,
Sing ninety-nine and ninety;
You are God's-- you're not my own,
And you're the weaver's bonny."

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 03:53 PM

Hi,

The oldest extant English version of Child No. 1 is "Inter Diabolus et Virgo" taken from a manuscript of English and Latin prose and verse by Walter Pollard of Plymouth sometime after after 1445 when he acquired the MS. Child adds this version later in his Additions and Corrections.

I'm not familiar with the Exeter manuscript book which has "enigmata" or riddles at the end two sections.

Will anyone find any similar riddles?

The oldest analogue I know is Caxton's translation of "The Golden Legend (1483)" in the Miracles of St. Andrew entitled: The Bishop and the Devil in Disguise of a Woman. In this story St. Andrew, disguised as a pilgrim, is refused entrance to see the Bishop who has been visited by the Devil, in the form of a beautiful woman. The Devil asks the pilgrim (St. Andrew) three questions. To gain entrance through the Bishop's door-- the pilgrim must answer them:

1. What is the greatest marvel God made in little space? -- The diversity and excellence of the faces of men.
2. Is the earth higher than the heaven? - Where Christ's body is, in Heaven Imperial, he is higher than all the heaven.
3. How much space is there from the abyss to heaven? - The pilgrim requests that the Bishop make the woman answer this herself, for she had just fallen from heaven to the abyss.

* * * *

As far as older British versions, in Sabine Baring-Gould's "A Garland of Country Song (1895)," pp. 42-3, he mentions "a curious North-Irish version of the ballad may be seen in the British Museum, Ulster Ballads (1162 k.6)." Does anyone have the text or know where it may be found online?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 04:48 PM

Richie - I assume the Exeter book referred to is the one which is one of the major sources of Anglo-Saxon literature. It's the largest of the sources and gets the name from the cathedral of its location.

There's a wikipedia article: Anglo Saxon riddles and you can find the riddles in Old English with a modern translation here: Anglo Saxon Riddles Of The Exeter Book.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 04:52 PM

Hi,

Child No. 2, The Elfin Knight (Cambric Shirt) Roud 12 has a number of Scottish versions in The James Madison Carpenter Collection:

Alexander Robb- learned c.1875 from William Booth of Rathen
Alexander Stephens- learned c.1879 from Robert Nicol
John Ross-
Bell Duncan
Robert Nicol
Peter Christie

Here's one old broadside text not mentioned by Child:

The humours of love [London]. [1780?] 1 sheet: ill.; 1/40. Cambridge University Library Madden ballads, vol. 2 A slip-song - "If you will bring me one cambrick shirt,". REFERENCE: ESTCT200173.

If you will bring me one Cambrick Shirt,
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
Without any Needle, or Needle-work,
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

And wash it down in Yonders Well
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
Where never Spring Water or any Rain fell
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

And hang it up on yonders thorn,
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
That never bore blossom since Adam was born,
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

Now you have ask'd me Questions three;
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
I hope you will answer as many for me,
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

If you will take me an Acre of Land,
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
.Between the Salt water and the Sea-sand,
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

And plow it up with one Ram's horn,
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
And sow it all over with one Pepper-corn
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

And reap it with a Stray of Leather,
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
And bend it up with a Peacock's Feather
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

And put it into a Mouse's hole,
Sweet savory grows, rosemary and thyme,
And prick it out with a Cobbler's Awl,
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.

And when you have done and finished your work,
Sweet savory grows rosemary and thyme,
Then come to me for your Cambrick Shirt,
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.
And you shall be a true Lover of mine.
* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 05:28 PM

Hi Mick, ty

Child 2, Elfin Knight. From James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/8/1/B, p. 11511, dated c. 1930; compare to Robb's version in Greig-Duncan dated c. 1907. Robb was a school teacher and had access to printed materials.

"Laird o' Elfin" sung by Alexander Robb, School College, New Deer, (Aberdenshire) Scotland Learned from William Booth of Rathen fifty-five years ago (c. 1875).

The Laird o' Elfin stands on yon hill
Ba-ba-ba lily ba,
An' he blows his trumpet lood an' shrill
An' the wind blaws aye my plaid awa.

"O gin I had that horn in my kist
An' then be wedded wi' that knicht.

"But afore that I do that wi' thee,
A weel-shewed sark ye maun shew tee me.

"An' ye maun shew it needle-thread free
An' a weel-shewed sark ye maun sew to me.

"But afore that I do that tee thee
I'll gie you some wark to do tee me.

"I have a little wee acre o' land,
An' it's atween the salt seas an' the sand.

"Ye maun ploo it wi' a bugle horn
And ye maun saw't wi' Indian corn.

"An' ye maun cut it wi' your penknife
An' bind it up just as your life.

"An' ye maun stook it ower the sea
An' a dry sheaf ye maun bring to me.

"Robin Redbreast an' the wran
They'll bring tee me my corn hame.

"An' ye maun thras't i' your shee sole
An' ye maun riddle't in younder moose hole.

"An' ye maun winnie it in your nive,
An' ye maun sech it in your glive.

"An' when once ye've done a' this wark
Come ye tee me an' ye'll get your sark."

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 05:40 PM

That's an interesting broadside, Richie. I've tended to regard 'Cambric Shirt' as a different ballad to 'Laird of Elphin', although it includes many of the same tasks. Is this 1780[?] BS the earliest text we have for the 'Cambric Shirt' strain?

However, looking at the Carpenter texts, Robb's is obviously 'Laird of Elphin', but the others appear to be 'Cambric Shirt' - though they include a girl called Nell who, like the Elphin Knight, lives on a hill. Very confusing.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 07:09 PM

Hi,

Child No. 2, The Elfin Knight: James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/10/124, Cylinder 123, 14:59

From Bell Duncan, who Carpenter called "the greatest ballad singer of all time." She was eighty-two-year-old and lived in a shepherd's cottage at Lambhill in the parish of Insch, Aberdeenshire. Her repertoire goes back from the mid to late 1800s.

Listen: https://www.vwml.org/search?q=RN12%20James%20Madison%20Carpenter&is=1

"The Elfin Knight," sung by Bell Duncan of Insch, Aberdeenshire about 1930.

"Ye will mak a sark tee me,
Ower the hills a' far awa',
Wi' an' eeless needle wantin' a thread,
For the wind blaws aye my plaid awa'.

"Ye maun wash't in yon water wan
Faur never man saw water rin.

"An' ye maun dry on yon thorn
Faur the sun never shone sin man was born.

"It's O young man, I've a little bit o' land,
Atween the saut seas an' the sand.

"Ye maun ploo it wi' a horn
An' saw it wi' a paper quirn.

"An' ye maun cut it wi' your penknife
An' stook it on the bleed o' yer life.

"An' ye maun trash it wi' your nivs[1],
An' winnie it wi' yer livs
Syne an' ye maun sack it in yer green glivs.

"An' when once ye've done a' this wark
Come ye tee me an' ye'll get your sark."
_________________

1. Irregular stanza

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 07:25 PM

Hi Brian,

One way to group the versions is by the refrains:

1. "Blow, blow, blow, ye winds blow" or "The wind blew the bonny lassie's plaidie awa' "
2. Herb refrains, such as "Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme."
3. Syllable refrains.
4. "Sing ivy," refrains.

Here's a similar version to the broadside text published by Joseph Ritson about the same date (c. 1780) from "Gammer Gurton's Garland; Or, The Nursery Parnassus. A Choice Collection of Pretty Songs and Verses" (c. 1783).

"Can you make me a cambrick shirt,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
Without any seam or needle work?
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"Can you wash it in yonder well,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
Where never sprung water nor rain ever fell?
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"Can you dry it on yonder thorn,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
Which never bore blossom since Adam was born?
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"Now you have asked me questions three,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
I hope you'll answer as many for me.
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"Can you find me an acre of land,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
Between the salt water and the sea sand?
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"Can you plow it with a ram's horn,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
And sow it all over with one pepper corn?
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"Can you reap it with a sickle of leather,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
And bind it up with a peacock's feather?
And you shall be a true lover of mine.

"When you have done, and finished your work,
Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
Then come to me for your cambrick shirt,
And you shall be a true lover of mine."

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 08:19 PM

Hi,

Alexander Robb's version has the same refrain as Child A, dated 1670 which appears to be an arrangement of sorts with a complete refrain at the end:

My Plaid awa, my Plaid awa,
and ere the hill and far awa,
And far awa, to Norrowa
my Plaid shall not be blown awa.

Norway is far away! The author appears to change the last line at the end so that it agrees with the last line of the "original" chorus: "my Plaid shall not be blown awa." In effect there are stanzic refrains in lines 2 and 4 plus another four line refrain. The fact that the stanzic refrain's last line changes is not something that would occur in tradition. Whether the "ba, ba, ba" is an imitation of a horn blowing- is a matter on conjecture. Original spelling kept:

A proper New Ballad, Entituled,
The wind hath blown my Plaid away,
Or, A discourse betwixt a young Man, and the Elphin-Knight,
To be sung, with its own pleasant New Tune.


The Elphin Knight sits on yon Hill,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
He blows his Horn both lowd and shril,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

He blows it East, he blowes it West,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
He blowes it where he lyketh best,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

I wish that Horn were in my Kiss,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
Yea, and the Knight in my Armes two
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

She had no sooner these words said,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
When that the Knight came to her bed,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

Thou art over young a Maid quoth he,
Ba ba, ba, lilli, ba.
Married with me if thou wouldst be,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

I have a sister younger then I,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
And she was married yesterday,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

Married with me if thou wouldst be,
Ba, ba. ba, lilli, ba,
A Courtesie thou must do to me,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

For thou must shape a Sark to me,
Ba, ba, ba. lilli, ba,
Without any cut or heme, quoth he,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

Thou must shape it needle & Sheerlesse,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
And also sue it needle-Threedlesse,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.
If that piece of Courtesie I do to thee,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
Another thou must do to me,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

I have an Aiker of good Ley-land,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
Which lyeth low by yon Sea-strand,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

For thou must eare it with thy Horn,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
So must thou sow it with thy Corn,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

And bigg a Cart of stone and Lyme,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
Robin-Red-breast he must trail it hame,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

Thou must Barn it in a Mouse-holl,
Ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba.
And thrash it into thy shoes soll,
the wind hoth blown my Plaid awa.

And thou must Winnow it in thy looff,
ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
And also seek it in thy Glove,
the wind hath blown thy Plaid awa.

For thou must bring it over the sea,
ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
And thou must bring it dry home to me,
the wind hath blown thy Plaid awa.

When thou hast gotten thy turns well-done
ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
Then come to me & get thy Sack then,
the wind hath blown my Plaid awa.

Il not quite my Plaid for my life;
ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba,
It haps my seven bairns and my wife
the wind shal not blow my Plaid awa.

My Maiden-head, Ile then keep still,
ba, ba, ba, lilli, ba.
Let the Elphin-Knight do what he will
the winds not blown my plaid awa.

My Plaid awa, my Plaid awa,
and ere the hill and far awa,
And far awa, to Norrowa
my Plaid shall not be blown awa.

FINIS.

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 09:16 PM

Hi,

A different form of refrain with the "true lover o' mine" ending is found in Peter Christie's Scottish version (James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/8/1/C, pp. 11583-11584) that was learned from his mother and surely dates back into the 1800s. In this form the Elfin Knight asks three questions and the maid ask three questions in return. One of the early texts not mentioned by Child is from The Scots Magazine, Volume 69, dated 1807 and this no doubt dates back to the 1700s. The author, Ignotus, "had it from a person who heard it repeated to him when a youth by his grandfather; who also was acquainted with it in his early years." The text and his comments are here:
https://books.google.com/books?id=ceE5AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA527&dq=%22As+I+gaed+up+to+yonder+hill%22&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwif7v7GvsLZAhV

[He:]
As I gaed up to yonder hill,
(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
I met my mistress her name it was Nell,
" And lass gin ye be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll mak' to me a camric sark,
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"Without either seam or needlewark,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll wash it out at yonder well,
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"Whar water ne'er ran, nor rain ne'er fall,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

[She:]
"Now, Sir, since you speir't me questions three,
(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"I hope you will answer as mony for me,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll plough to me an acre o' land.
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"Atwixt the sea beet, and the sea sand,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll till it a' wi' yon cocklehorn,
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"And sow it all o'er wi' a handfu' o' corn,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll cut it a' down wi' a dacker o' leather,
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"And lead it a' in on a peacock's feather,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll thrash it a' wi' a cobbler's awl,
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"And put it a' up in a mouse's hole,
"And that an' ye be a true lover o' mine.

"And, Sir, when ye hae' done your work,
"(Saffron, sage, rue, myrrh,and thyme,)
"Come to me and get your camric sark
"And syne ye shall be a true lover o' mine."

* * * *


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 25 Feb 18 - 09:36 PM

Hi,

Compare this version James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/8/1/C, pp. 11583-11584 to the Scottish version from the 1700s in last post.

The Elfin Knight- sung by Peter Christie of 21 Shorehead, Stonehave, Scotland from his mother Margaret Leiper of Pinnon who was 93 when she died in 1919.

[He:]
"Ye maun mak' to me a camerin sark,
An' every rose maun smell o yon thyme,
Without any stitch o' yer sin needle waurk,
Before ye can be a truelover o' mine.

"Ye maun wash it in yonder well,
Where the sun never shone nor the dew never fell,

"Ye maun bleach it on yonder tree,
Where there hisna been blosson sin Adam wis born,"

[She:]
"Questions three ye hae given tee me,
An' as mony mair I will gie unto thee,

"Ye maun ploo me an acre o' land.
Between the sea saut, an' the sand,

"Ye maun ploo it wi' a ram's horn,
An' sew it all along wi' a leepie o' corn,

"An' when yer waurk is finished an' done,
An' every rose maun smell o yon thyme,
Ye'll call upon me for yer camerin sark,
Before ye can be a truelover o' mine.

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 07:15 AM

Thanks for posting, Richie. Interesting to note that Robb's text, though in many respects similar to Child 2A, ends on 'Come to me and ye'll get your sark' (as per the 'Cambric Shirt' strain) rather than 2A's 'My maidenhead I'll keep', which belongs to the 'Elphin Knight' narrative.

I'm still interested in whether the fact that both the Knight and Mistress Nell are to be found on a hill might be coincidental or part of a sequential process.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 10:36 AM

Hi Brian,
It's very common in oral tradition especially with such older pieces for details to be removed from one part of a ballad to another or from one character to another, as forgetting and recreating take their toll.

In this case although there are likely many interim versions that haven't survived it should be possible to postulate some sort of evolutionary lines, and Richie is the best man for the job.

I don't think there has been an in-depth study of this one using all of the extant versions.
It is beginning to look like the ballad originated in London (like many early ballads) but received most of its more drastic evolution in Scotland before being returned to England in a reduced form, where the 'Acre of Land' versions evolved, probably during the 19thc.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 12:56 PM

Steve, do you know of an early London copy?

Agree that Richie's work here is terrific.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 01:55 PM

Have you seen the comparison at ...Tell Her To Make Me A Cambric Shirt - From The "Elfin Knight" to "Scarborough Fair" by Juergen Kloss, 2012. He doesn't include all versions (though he does include the Scots Magazine text, but only had access to 1st lines from Carpenter at the time) but makes an attempt at a time lines.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 02:45 PM

I would have said both the Blackletter copies, Child A and B, were very likely printed in London first. The fact that the added chorus is loosely in Scots means very little. The rest of the ballad is in standard English of the time and in the 17thc very little if any ballads were printed outside London. The fact that A was bound up with an Edinburgh piece means very little as does the Scottifying of a few words in B. I can't remember seeing any ballads from Pepys, Euing or Roxburgh (17thc) that weren't printed in London.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 03:04 PM

I've got the Pepys copy in front of me now. 'To be sung with its own pleasant New Tune'.

It has been bound with the following. Mostly no imprint.

The Cripples Race set in Glasgow and mentions Aberdeen and Dunkeld. It is written largely in SE with a sprinkling of Scots words. NI


The Reply and Challenge of King Robert II the first of the Stuarts, unto Henry the fourth King of England. Again in SE with a sprinkling of Scots words. NI

John Robinsons Park, or A Merry fit of Wooing, totally SE, NI

A full version of Chevy Chase, SE , NI

Then our Elphin Knight NI

Christs Kirk on the Green, composed as supposed by James V, lightly sprinkled with Scots pronunciations but the vast majority in SE of the time. NI

Strephon and Clea: or Love in its Prime, seems to be printed on the same sheet as Cuckolds all a-Row, printed by R. Kell at the blew Anchor in Py-corner (London).
Kell was printing at the Blue Anchor 1687-90


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 03:13 PM

I should add that Child says his info on the black letter version came from Pinkerton (not a reliable source) he quotes 'in the Pepysian Library, bound up at the end of a copy of Blind Harry's 'Wallace' Edin. 1673.'


It would appear that the Pepys copy has been placed with other Scots related pieces for publication purposes unless there was more than one copy. I'll have a look at what EBBA have to say about it. It must be on their site.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 03:20 PM

There is a copy at EBBA but their notes show no background or suggested dates.

The reference to 'Wallace' I take to mean the 'King Robert' ballad mentioned above. When I put 'Wallace' into the search box at EBBA this ballad was one of 15 entries.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Gerry
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 04:37 PM

Back to Child No. 1 – it starts, "If you don't answer me questions nine..." and ends "You have answered me questions nine...," but there are only eight questions asked and answered. I demand a refund.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 05:26 PM

In the 15th century riddling was higher on the curriculum than maths.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 26 Feb 18 - 09:12 PM

Hi,

Thanks for the posts.

Mick, you're right Kloss is brilliant. I've emailed him about one of his other excellent articles "The Water is Wide" which I used in part for my "died for love" studies. He finds some rare versions and unknown broadsides- TY Kloss.

Brian- her rejection of the Elphin (Elfin) Knight shows he has no magic power over her. The herbs used in the refrains are used to cast off evil spirits or neutralize magical or supernatural powers. Also I've wondered about "the wind hath blown thy Plaid awa" refrain which is a reference to loss of virginity and has spawned a number of songs including one fragment sung by Jeannie Robertson. If you notice in the
Pepys that the end stanzas have changed- the "wind hath -not- blown thy Plaid awa" meaning she has not lost her virginity as reflected in the text of the stanza you mentioned.

Steve- I got my copy of the original Pepys from UCSB English Broadside Ballad Archive. So in your opinion it was printed in London? Are there any other Elfin Knight broadsides that Child missed?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 01:03 PM

Brian- her rejection of the Elphin (Elfin) Knight shows he has no magic power over her.

Yes Richie, I realize that. What is interesting is that the Robb text begins like 'Elfin Knight' but ends like 'Cambric Shirt'. Which might be because one strain was evolving into the other, or that both strains were in general circulation at the same time, and stanzas were transferred from one to the other.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 02:14 PM

This type of possibility can turn into at least probability by detailed study of all versions. Also relevant is the probable amount of literary influence.

For instance to use a more recent example in the same ballad, without looking at the few intermediary versions most people wouldn't have connected The Elphin Knight with An Acre of Land which it most definitely evolved into.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 06:03 PM

Hi,

Here's another older version from the James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/11/311, Disc Side 305, 04:42. Nicol's version, which is the source, is different but similar.

The Elfin Knight- from Alexander Stephens of Turfhill, New Deer, Strichen, learned from Nicol fifty-one years ago (c. 1869)

[He:]
As I gaed up to yonder hill,
Where every rose grew bonnie an' thyme,
I met a fair maid, her name it was Nell,
She longed to be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye'll mak' to me a cambric shirt, [sim.]
An' stitch it all over withoot needle wark,

"Ye will wash it in yonder well,
Where dew never dropped, nor rain never fell,

"Ye will bleach it on yonder green,
Where wind never blew or grass never grew,

"Ye will dry it up on yonder hedge,
Where bud never blossomed since Adam was formed,

[She]
"Questions three you've asked me
An' for as monny mair ye'll answer tee me,

"Ye will ploo me an acre o' Land,
Betwixt the saut water an' the sea sand,

"Ye will harrow it wi' a ram's horn,
An' sow it a' over with a handful o' corn,

"Ye will cut it wi' a cock's feather
An' bind it up wi' the sting o' an ather[1],

"Ye will thack it on yonder sea,
Where every rose grew bonnie an' thyme,
An' bring back that which is still dry tee me,
An' then I will be a true lover o' thine.

When your wark is finished an' ower,
Where every rose grew bonnie an' thyme,
When your wark is finished an' done,
An' then I'll be a true lover of thine.
____________________
1. adder (snake)

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 06:46 PM

Hi,

From James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/3/J, p. 06898. Cf. Alexander Stephens' version.

The Elfin Knight - from Robert Nicol, Aberdeenshire [who knew this fifty-one years ago before it was collected c. 1869]

[He:]
"As I went over yon bonnie high hill,
Where every rose grew bonnie an' thyme,
I met a fair maid her name it was Nell,
She longed to be a true lover o' mine.

"Ye will mak' to me a cambric shirt,
Withoot any stitchin or yet needle work,

"Ye will wash it in yonder well,
Where dew never dropped, nor rain never fell,

"Ye will bleach it on yonder green,
Where gerse[grass] never grew nor wind never blew,
Before ye can be a truelover o' mine

"Ye will dry it up on yonder thorn,
Where bud never blossom sin Adam was born,

[She]
"Questions three ye've asked me
An' for as monny mair ye'll answer tee me,

"Ye will ploo me an acre o' Land,
Atween the saut seas an' the sea sand,

"It's ye will harrow it wi' a ram's horn,
An' sow it a' over wi' one pill o' corn,

"Ye maun cut it wi' a cock's feather
An' bind it up wi' the sting o' an ather,

"Ye will thack it in yonder sea,
Bring back that which is dry tee me,

"Fan [when] ye have finished . . ."

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 27 Feb 18 - 07:02 PM

Hi,

There are two fragments in the Carpenter Collection. This is three stanzas- the other is not one stanza. Title is not local.

James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/8/1/L, pp. 12067-12068

The Elfin Knight - from John Ross, farmer of Lone Vine Farm, Balintore, Scotland. Heard at a wedding Parish of Nig, west of Balitore.

"O wid ye gie me a cambric shirt,
An' every rose blooms bonnie an' thyme,
An' stitch it along with roses so fine,
Before ye can be a truelover of mine.

"O ye maun wash it in yonder well,
An' every rose blooms bonnie an' thyme,
An' bleach it where grass never grew nor rain never fell,
Before ye can be a truelover of mine.

"Ye will bleach it on yonder green,
An' every rose blooms bonnie an' thyme,
Where rain never fell nor grass never grew,
Before ye can be a truelover of mine.
* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 01 Mar 18 - 10:32 AM

It is interesting to note that in both Stephens' and Nicol's versions 'questions 3' is mentioned whereas in both cases there are 4 tasks at least. These incremental list songs are prone to addition or fluctuation in oral tradition.

In the likely original he sets only 2 tasks (or 2 stanzas) and she replies with 6.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 01 Mar 18 - 08:52 PM

Hi,

Since I did not do the British Child 2 versions (I was waiting for the Carpenter), I'm working on them some before moving on. Here's a short Shetland version that was recently recorded. It uses the Form A which is the same form of the 1670 broadside:

Camric Sark- Sung by Mrs. Margaret Tait, learned from her mother, Mrs. Jemima Robertson, of the Westing, Unst. Collected by Alan Bruford in 1975.

Shue unta me a camric sark,
Blaa, blaa, tear da wind, blaa,
Withoot ether seam or needlewark,
An da wind is blaan me plaidie awaa.

Saa unta me free acres o laand,
Blaa, blaa, tear da wind, blaa,
Atween da saat sea an da sea straand,
An da wind is blaan me plaidie awaa.

Harrow it up wi da teeth o a redder, [comb]
Blaa, blaa, tear da wind, blaa,
Pack it aa inta ae moose holl,
An da wind is blaan me plaidie awaa.

When du's dun an feenisht dee wark,
Blaa, blaa, tear da winds, blaa,
Come ta me an du's get dee sark,
An da wind is blawn me plaidie awaa.

* * * *

My headnotes are halfway done :) http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/british-versions--other-versions--headnotes.aspx There's a nice image of the 1670 broadside on the page.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 11:24 AM

Hi,

I'm working on Child 1-3 and will be covering all Child ballads (mainly British versions)- eventually- with Carpenter versions.

I need help with this old English transcription of Child 1, I briefly did this but I don't understand all the words:

Inter Diabolus Et Virgo c. 1445
Talk [between] Devil and Virgin (Maid)

1   Wol ye here a wonder thynge
Betwyxt a mayd and the fovle fende?
[Narrator:] "Will you hear a wondrous story,
Between a maid and the foul fiend (Devil)?
"

2   Thys spake the fend to the mayd:
'Beleue on me, mayd, to day.
Thus spoke the fiend (Devil) to the maid:
"Believe on me, maid, today.
"

3   'Mayd, mote y thi leman be,
Wyssedom y wolle teche the:
"Maid, if I thy lover be,
Wisdom I will teach thee
."

4   'All the wyssedom off the world,
Hyf thou wolt be true and forward holde.
"All the wisdom of the world (will be yours),
If you wilt be true and mine henceforward.
."

5   'What ys hyer than ys [the] tre?
What ys dypper than ys the see?
"What is higher than is the tree?
What is deeper than is the sea?
"

6   'What ys scharpper than ys the thorne?
What ys loder than ys the horne?
"What is sharper than is the thorn?
What is louder than is the horn?
"

7   'What [ys] longger than ys the way?
What is rader than ys the day?
"What is longer(broader) than is the way?
What is redder than is the day?


8   'What [ys] bether than ys the bred?
What ys scharpper than ys the dede?
"What is better than is the bread?
What is sharper than is death?


9   'What ys grenner than ys the wode?
What ys sweetter than ys the note?
"What is greener than is the woods?
What is sweeter than is the nut?


10   'What ys swifter than ys the wynd?
What ys recher than ys the kynge?
"What is swifter than is the wind?
What is richer than is the king?


11   'What ys yeluer than ys the wex?
What [ys] softer than ys the flex?
"What is yellower than is the wax?
What is softer than is the flax?


12   'But thou now answery me,
Thu schalt for sothe my leman be.'
"But you now answer me,
Thou shall truly my lover be.
"

13   'Ihesu, for thy myld myyth,
As thu art kynge and knyyt,
"Jesus, [I ask] for thy mild might,
As you are king and knight,


14   'Lene me wisdome to answere here ryyth,
And schylde me fram the fovle wyyth!
"Lend me wisdom to answer here right,
And shield me from the foul being!
.

15   'Hewene ys heyer than ys the tre,
Helle ys dypper than ys the see.
"Heaven is higher than is the tree
Hell is deeper than is the sea
.

16   'Hongyr ys scharpper than [ys] the thorne,
Thonder ys lodder than ys the horne.
"Hunger is sharper than is the thorn,
Thunder is louder than is the horn
.

17   'Loukynge ys longer than ys the way,
Syn ys rader than ys the day.
Looking[1] is longer(broader) than is the way,
Sin is redder than is the day
.

18   'Godys flesse ys better than ys the brede,
Payne ys strenger than ys the dede.
"God's flesh[2] is better than is the bread,
Pain is stronger than is death
.

19   'Gras ys grenner than ys the wode.
Loue ys swetter than ys the notte.
"Grass is greener than is the woods,
Love is sweeter than is the nut.


20   'Thowt ys swifter than ys the wynde,
Ihesus ys recher than ys the kynge.
"Thought is swifter than the wind,
Jesus is richer than is the king
.

21   'Safer is yelner than ys the wexs,
Selke ys softer than ys the flex.
"Saffron is yellower than is the wax,
Silk is softer than the flax
.

22   'Now, thu fende, styl thu be;
Nelle ich speke no more with the!'
"Now thou fiend (devil), still thou be,
I will speak no more with thee!
"
______________________

1. "Sight" or "Seeing"
2. The Host, or Holy sacrament
3. Barry and others have "Sulfur"

* * * *

Corrections made to this original, ty.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 01:57 PM

Richie - you'll find it glossed in Lyrics carols ballads - pdf file, page 75.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 02:04 PM

I can't find any translations so these are my guesses only
wol/wolle I would give as 'will'
wolt=wilt, again 'will'
mote, I would say 'might'
'forward hold' 'hold by me' 'stand fast by me.
13 myyth 'might?'
14 'lend me wisdom to answer here right
    And shield me from the foul wight' (being)
17 'loukynge' 'looking' 'longing' (not love)
18 'God's flesh' as in religious ceremonies, breaking bread, body of Jesus etc.
22 'Now thou fiend'
For 'nelle' see Child's Glossary, literally
'will not I speak no more with thee'
Nice to now that double negatives were common in the 15th century just as much as today.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 02:29 PM

Great resource, Mick.
I didn't fare too badly with the guesses. Safer/saffron. I should have got that one.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 03:30 PM

Hi,

TY for your replies and now it's looking good.

Who is yellower than Saffron?

I'm just mad about Saffron, She's just mad about me

Ans. (Donovan, Mellow Yellow)

I've made corrections to the original- ty

For "forward holde." Mick's source has "compact" and I'm not sure about that stanza and line:

Hyf thou wolt be true and forward holde.

If you wilt be true and forever mine."

Anyone?

Riohie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 04:34 PM

I think the sense is keep me (as husband) from this time forward. holden has many senses (ME Dictionary entry), but this seems to me the most likely.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 04:36 PM

Meant to add: I came across this thesis (1910) on archive: Riddles In German And English Folk Songs. (Haven't read it!).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 02 Mar 18 - 05:42 PM

hold onto me henceforward. I like the economy of language in the 15th century version.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 03 Mar 18 - 11:41 AM

Hi,

I've finished the changes to Inter Diabolus Et Virgo. I changed "Saffron back to "Sulfur" which I had originally. "Looking" could be "Sight" or "Seeing," -- God's flesh could be "The Host" or "Holy sacrament."

I have the British versions of Child No. 1, "Riddle Wisely Expounded" as:

A*. "Inter Diabolus Et Virgo" acquired by Walter Pollard, of Plymouth, about 1445; the text is taken from Rawlinson MS. D. 328, fol. 174 b., Bodleian Library. Riddling contest between the maid and foul fiend (Devil). Child A*
A. Riddles Wisely Expounded (The knight is mortal) with "The Maid's Answer"
    a1. "A Noble Riddle Wisely Expounded; or, The Maid's Answer to the Knight's Three Questions." Printed for F. Coles, T. Vere, I. Wright, and I. Clarke London, between 1674 and 1679. According to Barry, Aa was licensed, March 1, 1675.
    a2. "A Noble Riddle Wisely Expounded; or, The Maid's Answer to the Knight's Three Questions." Printed by Tho. Norris, at the Looking glass on London-bridge, about 1711.
    a3. "A Riddle Wittily Expounded" Pills to Purge Melancholy by Henry Playford, iv, 129, ed. 1719. "II, 129, ed. 1712." Child A.
    a4. "Captain Wedderburn's Courtship[sic]" Jamieson's "Popular Songs and Ballads," 1806.
    a5. "Lay the Bent to the Bonny Broom;" Dixon (from print) edited by Bruce and Stokoe, 1882.
B. "The Three Sisters" from Davies Gilbert, Some Ancient Christmas Carols. London: John Nichols And Son, Second Edition, 1823, pp. 65-67. Child B is probably based on A.
C. "The Unco Knicht's Wowing" Motherwell's Manuscript, p. 647. From the recitation of Mrs. Storie of Lochwinnoch. Child C.
D. "Gar Lay the Bent to the Bonny Broom" from Motherwell's Manuscript, p. 142; dated c.1825.
E. "There was a Lady in the West" traditional in Miss Mason's mother's family, the Mitfords, of Mitford, Northumberland. From Miss M.H. Mason's Nursery Rhymes and Country Songs, p. 31; sung in Northumberland.
F. ["What's greener than the grass?"] fragment from Rev. William Findlay's MSS, I, 151, from J. Milne of Arbroath; dated c. 1865 but possibly later. From Additions and Corrections but not given a letter designation by Child.
G. "A Knight (Old Riddle Song)- sung Thomas Smart (1838-1919) of Blunsdon St Andrew, Wiltshire, published in 1915. Collected by Alfred Williams. Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard, 16th October, 1915 p 2, Part 3, No. 1: Williams, A: Folk songs of the upper Thames, 1923, p 37.

If anyone knows of an additional British version let me know,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 03 Mar 18 - 02:42 PM

"If anyone knows of an additional British version let me know"

I daresay it doesn't really count count, but Harry Green's recitation 'The Pear Tree' (Veteran VT135CD) includes the 'Higher than the tree / Deeper than the sea' and 'Louder than the horn / Sharper than the thorn' riddles and answers, in a completely different context.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 03 Mar 18 - 03:36 PM

Richie, have you got the 18th century slip song version of Elfin Knight from the Madden Collection 'The Humours of Love'? Or the one printed by Deeming 'Love Letter and Answer'?


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richard Mellish
Date: 03 Mar 18 - 03:38 PM

Richie,

> I changed "Saffron back to "Sulfur".

Just picking up on this one detail, it seems to me that saffron makes better sense, being an intense yellow rather than pale yellow. And saffron is the gloss in the document that Mick linked to. Saffron also had (and still has ) an associated industry; we still have a town in England called Saffron Walden; so it was something that a lot of people would have heard of, even if few could afford it. Whereas most people apart from alchemists would not have heard of sulphur by that name, though they might well have heard of "brimstone".


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 03 Mar 18 - 03:49 PM

I'm with you Richard, but I think Richie just got his words wrong way round. He probably meant to say 'I changed 'sulfur' to 'saffron'.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 03 Mar 18 - 05:24 PM

Saffron is the translation given by UMich ME Dict: Saffroun. Sulphur would be Sulphur/sulfre/solfre (and other).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 04 Mar 18 - 05:53 PM

Hi,

I'm almost done with my headnotes to Child 1, a rough version is here: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/english-versions-and-other-versions.aspx

Here's an excerpt:

C, "The Unco Knight's Wowing [Mysterious Knight's Wooing]" by Mrs. Storie of Lochwinnoch (dated c.1925) was taken by Child from Motherwell's MS. The text is the most complete traditional exemplar of the older original ballad. Scottish C, found in Motherwell's MS copy is now corroborated by another authentic copy from the same informant, Mary Macqueen Storie which was published in Crawfurd's Collection by Emily Lyle. Mary Ann Macqueen (also MacQueen, McQueen) was born in 1803 to parents Osbourne and Elizabeth (Copeland) McQueen of Kilbirnie, Ayrshire, Scotland and lived in Lochwinnoch, Renfrewshire. She married Willie Storie in 1821 at the age of 18. Crawfurd wrote "The same Mary Macqueen has a great number of auld ballads which I had fished out of her for Mr. William Motherwell" (Lyle 1975-1996/1: xxx). Her brother, Thomas was a poet and collected ballads for Motherwell. Curiously, one of the great Scottish ballad singers moved with her family to Ontario, Canada in 1829. Thomas MacQueen also moved to Ontario and was the founder and publisher of The Huron Signal newspaper until his death in 1861[]. That area is now known as Renfrew County after the Macqueen's home county of Renfrewshire in Scotland. For a time Mary Macqueen Storie moved to Utah (US) with her daughter, Elizabeth. Mary died in Renfrew County, Ontario in 1877.

The "Unco Knight" of Child C is the Devil. Important is MacQueen's ending, which is a superstition found in ballads and rooted in the Bible[]-- if you call the Devil by name, he will flee from you. When the maid uses the Devil's name (the Fiend) in her answer to the last riddle, she wins the riddling contest and banishes him.

18 The Peas are greener than the grass
Sing the claret banks tae the bonny broom
An' the Fiend is waur than a woman's wuss[wish],
An' ye may beguile a young thing sune.

19 As sune as she the Fiend did name
Sing the claret banks tae the bonny broom
He flew awa in a fierie flam,
An' ye may beguile a young thing sune.

A comparison of the two texts by Motherwell and Crawfurd gives some insight into Motherwell's editing. He changes for example "the Fiend is waur[worse]" to "And Clootie's waur."

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 04 Mar 18 - 05:57 PM

OK, Ok enough already :)

I'm just mad about "Saffron"-- Donovan was right!! (I changed it back, see translation above- a few posts back) The proper color now is Mellow Yellow!

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 04 Mar 18 - 06:41 PM

Richie, see my question of 3.36


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 04 Mar 18 - 07:13 PM

Richie - Just going back to Inter Diabolus Et Virgo for a minute.

I think the 2nd line of [4] should be:
  If you wilt be true and mine henceforward.
rather than beholden. I think the sense of holde is similar to its use into have and to hold

The 2nd line of [22] should be just:
  I will speak no more with thee!
The 2 negatives are a function of the Middle English and I don't think you need them in the translation.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 04 Mar 18 - 08:22 PM

Hi,

Yes Mick- Ty for the improvements- I agree. I have already rewritten what I just posted about the MacQueens. The curious thing was that two leading Scottish ballad sources (singer and collector) came to Ontario and nothing more was heard of their Scottish ballads. Since Mary moved to Utah with her daughter for a number of years, you'd think some relic would have emerged from the Utah hills, but no- nothing. She had over ten children and her brother had children too.

Yes Steve, I've had the Deming 'Love Letter and Answer' 9 years ago but it was from Barry's reprint in British Ballads from Maine. Barry also had "Sulfur" and some extensive commentary about Child No. 1 in BFSSNE (a rare book of his Folk Song Society newsletters) which he edited until his death in 1937. I've had the Kloss and Edmund articles on my site for years-- so I've had "The Humours of Love" too, TY

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 08:14 AM

"A comparison of the two texts by Motherwell and Crawfurd gives some insight into Motherwell's editing."

Odd that he should change 'Claret Banks' to 'Cathar'. Anyone have an idea why?


Talking of Mary MacQueen, she was also a source for 'The Deil's Courtship', another Devil Ballad, similar to 'The Keys of Canterbury' in form, which Child chose to reject. I've just noticed in Lyle's book that this ballad is also in Kinloch's MSS. Anyone have a copy of that, by any chance?


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 10:17 AM

It's not in Kinloch's Ballad Book but there is a similar version in Chambers' Popular Rhymes of Scotland. Here the actual song is a straight English version which even mentions Bristol, just Scottified a little. The Devil only actually appears in the spoken introduction and at the end cantefable style. This could be an interim version between the English simple dialogue song and the Scottish introduction of the supernatural element. I'm sure you can guess what my attitude to stuff supplied by Crawfurd is.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 10:47 AM

Brian, is 'Cather' a local/poetic name for the Calder which flows through Lochwinnoch? Localisation was one of the much-used methods of the Scottish editors. In this case I would say Crawfurd rather than Motherwell was the perpetrator.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 11:54 AM

"is 'Cather' a local/poetic name for the Calder which flows through Lochwinnoch?"

Interesting idea, Steve.

I probably can guess your attitude to Crawfurd's material, but if you've anything specific to add I be happy to hear it.

I have seen the Chambers 'Tempted Leddie' with the cantefable bookends. I thought that and Crawfurd were the only examples, hence my interest in any corroboration from Kinloch.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 04:23 PM

Fairly general stuff on Crawfurd. I think I remember reading either in Lyle or one of the books on Motherwell that Crawfurd was fond of Scottifying English pieces. I think what it amounts to is he would collect a song in Standard English locally and then, to make it more tempting to Motherwell, Scottify it. I'm always very careful with material that comes from being paid to go out collecting. The temptation must be there, and I include Carpenter in that but as I haven't been through the material yet in Carpenter I reserve judgment. I have seen one bit of jiggery pokery with Carpenter's stuff but that doesn't mean he was the perpetrator.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 05:03 PM

Hi,

I compared 'Claret Banks' to 'Cathar' and neither seemed to be a well-known place.

Motherwell has "nor" instead of "than" which seems odd, also he has "pies" instead of "peas" which even if it's a slang doesn't seem to work. He also has "And Clootie's waur" where Crawford has "the Fiend is waur[worse]."

The "Humours of Love" broadside is missing the opening stanza. It has Cambrick which wasn't known much in England or Scotland before 1770. The earliest version with the herb refrains is Kinloch's (c. 1777)from Mary Barr and it has Holland sark.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 05:30 PM

Compounding the problems caused by the publishing editors editing is the fact that their contributors in various stages were also editing.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 05 Mar 18 - 10:31 PM

Hi Steve,

Which brings us to the master of illusion- Sabine Baring Gould who sent the following version to Child which Sabine claimed was acted out almost like a mummers play by a girl and boy acting out the parts of the maid and her dead lover: From Sabine Baring-Gould Manuscript Collection (SBG/2/3/26).

This bizarre composite version was sent to Child by Baring Gould about 1890 and was faithfully printed by Child in Additions and Corrections with the following note:

Communicated by the Rev. S. Baring-Gould. "From the north of Cornwall, near Camelford. This used to be sung as a sort of game in farm-houses, between a young man who went outside the room and a girl who sat on the settle or a chair, and a sort of chorus of farm lads and lasses. Now quite discontinued." The dead lover represents the auld man.

What Baring-Gould failed to mention to Child that it was actually three versions and the first version (stanzas 1-4 and 15) was from a different song!!! Somehow Baring Gould wed these songs together to form a spectral version of the Elfin Knight as a play starring the maid riddling with her dead lover who was impersonating the "auld man," the Devil or a demon spirit (some details follow). I assume the girl's dead lover, then asked the girl to perform the impossible tasks such as making a cambrick sark-- while he circled around her chair, chanting the tasks as a ghost from the other world!!!

Yes fact is stranger than fiction! David Atkinson reports that stanzas 6-14 were from Philip Symons of Jascobstowe, 1889 and another informant. These verses are Child 2, the other verses 1-4 and 15 are from Cornwall- which were acted out. Baring Gould writes that he didn't trust verses 1-4.

However, in his MS Baring Gould wrote out a connecting stanza (the missing 5th stanza) and one for 16. So that somehow the two dissimilar ballads could be wed. Since Baring-Gould never had versions with missing stanzas- he always filled them in himself- it added a degree of authenticity to the version (in his MS the missing stanzas are, of course, filled in).

Gilchrist in 1930 JFSS reports: Mr. Baring Gould (see his note on this song in Songs of the West) was informed that this ballad used to be sung in Cornwall as a dialogue between a young man and a girl. This dialogue may have begun abruptly, as in the Gammer Gurton's Garland (1810) version: "Can you make me a cambrick shirt?" The young man left the room, to re-enter it in the character of the ghost of a dead lover, the girl remaining seated. Her spectral visitant sets her the impossible tasks rehearsed in the first part of the song, and but for her resourcefulness in countering his demands would, so it was understood, have claimed her and carried her off. So it would seem that where the meaning of the dialogue was still remembered the menacing and malevolent had their part in it.

Baring Gould wrote: The following was sent to me from Cornwall — but I somewhat mistrust its genuineness in its present form. It was sent along with the "Tasks." I heard the "Tasks" from both a man of Jacobstow, & from another at Mawgan — but neither knew this former portion. Nevertheless it may have some basis, though perhaps touched up.

The Lover's Tasks- North of Cornwall: Camelford c. 1890. Sabine Baring-Gould Manuscript Collection (SBG/5/49)

1 A fair pretty maiden she sat on her bed,
The wind is blowing in forest and town
She sighed and she said, O my love he is dead!
And the wind it shaketh the acorns down

2 The maiden she sighed; 'I would,' said she,
'That again my lover might be with me!'

3 Before ever a word the maid she spake,
But she for fear did shiver and shake.

4 There stood at her side her lover dead;
'Take me by the hand, sweet love,' he said.

5. . . . . .
. . . . .

6 'Thou must buy me, my lady, a cambrick shirt,
Whilst every grove rings with a merry antine
And stitch it without any needle-work.
O and thus shalt thou be a true love of mine

7 'And thou must wash it in yonder well,
Whilst, etc.
Where never a drop of water in fell.
O and thus, etc.

8 'And thou must hang it upon a white thorn
That never has blossomed since Adam was born.

9 'And when that these tasks are finished and done
I'll take thee and marry thee under the sun.'

10 'Before ever I do these two and three,
I will set of tasks as many to thee.

11 'Thou must buy for me an acre of land
Between the salt ocean and the yellow sand.

12 'Thou must plough it oer with a horse's horn,
And sow it over with one peppercorn.

13 'Thou must reap it too with a piece of leather,
And bind it up with a peacock's feather.

14 'And when that these tasks are finished and done,
O then will I marry thee under the sun.'

15 'Now thou hast answered me well,' he said,
The wind, etc.
'Or thou must have gone away with the dead.'
And the wind, etc.

16. . . . . .
. . . . .

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 06 Mar 18 - 12:21 AM

Hi,

To be fair (although I did laugh at the concoction he gave to Child- see last post), I'll include Baring-Gould's notes from Songs of the West, No. 48 (1905 edition?) that deal with this subject, which I just found at Internet Archive (https://archive.org/details/SongsOfTheWest ). This play may be some form of mummers play since according to Baring Gould it's performed around Christmas. I do know that the ballad text (stanzas 1-4 and 15) and the reference to the play were sent to Baring-Gould and this single reference apparently supplied the info about the play.

48. The Lovers' Tasks. This very curious song belongs, as I was told, in Cornwall, to a sort of play that was wont to be performed in farmhouses at Christmas. One performer, a male, left the room, and entered again singing the first part. A girl, seated on a chair, responded with the second part. The story was this. She had been engaged to a young man who died. His ghost returned to claim her. She demurred to this, and he said that he would waive his claim if she could perform a series of tasks he set her. To this she responded that he must, in the first place, accomplish a set of impossible tasks she would set him. Thus was he baffled.

"In all stories of this kind," says Professor Child, "the person upon whom a task is imposed stands acquitted if another of no less difficulty is devised which must be performed first.
"

* * * *

I must admit, I'm baffled too. The rest of his notes go on tangents to include other, different songs- which I'd rather not go over at this time :)

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 06 Mar 18 - 12:16 PM

If you put this alongside other concocted material SBG sent to Child such as 295B and the introduction to 'Gypsy Laddie' it puts some of the other unique material under heavy question.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 08 Mar 18 - 03:38 PM

Hi,

In a tip from Kloss's article I got a copy of Thomas Hepple's original Whittingham Fair MS which was "arranged" and published by Bruce and Stokoe in 1882.

I noticed another somewhat similar song is "Newcastle Fair" c. 1810 attributed to James Stawpert, (b.1785? d.1814) which begins:

Ha' ye been at Newcastle Fair
And did you see owse o' great Sandy?
Lord bliss us ! what wark there was there;
And the folks were drinking of brandy.

What is interesting is comparing the Hepple's original MS with the Stokoe version which drastically rewrites Hepple's version and does not credit him. A copy of the MS is on my website: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/whittingham-fair--thomas-hepple-alnwick-c1855-.aspx

Below is a transcription of Hepple's original, The first set of tasks or questions (stanzas) is said to be three questions but is missing a stanza which was added by Stokoe. The last question in Hepple's MS is eliminated. The drastic changes may be indicative of editorial practices at that time. Both texts are presented below:

Whittingham Fair- From Hepple's MS, c. 1855

1 'Are you going to Whittingham fair?
Parsley, sage, grown merry in time
Remember me to one that lives there;
For once she was a true lover of mine.

2. 'Tell her to make me a cambric shirt,
Parsley, sage, &c
Without ever a seam or needlework,
Then she shall be a true lover of mine.

3. 'Tell her to wash't in yonder well,
Parsley, &c
Where is never sprung, where never rain fell,
Then she shall be &c

4. 'Three hard questions he's gotten to me,
Parsley, &c
But I'll match him with the other three
Before he shall be a true lover of mine.

5 'Tell him to buy me an acre of land
Parsley, &c
Between the sea and the sea-sand,
Then he shall be a true lover of mine.

6 Tell him to plow't with a hunting horn,
Parsley, &c
And sow it with the sickerly corn,
Then he shall &c

7 Tell him to shear'd with the hunting leather,
And bind[1] it up in a pea-cock feather.
Then he shall &c

8 Tell him to trash it on yonder wall,
Parsley, &c
And never let one corn of it fall,
Then he shall &c

9. After he has ended his work,
Parsley &c
Go tell him to come and to have his shirt,
Then he shall be a true lover of mine.
_______________

1. Hepple writes "bind" twice an obvious error.
____________________

Whittingham Fair- Stokoe's text published 1882, which was "popular in the north and west of the county of Northumberland; usually sung as a nursery-ballad."

1 'Are you going to Whittingham fair?
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme
Remember me to one who lives there;
For once she was a true-love of mine.

2 'Tell her to make me a cambric shirt,
Without any seam or needlework.

3 'Tell her to wash it in yonder well,
Where never spring-water nor rain ever fell.

4 'Tell her to dry it on yonder thorn,
Which never bore blossom since Adam was born.'

5 'Now he has asked me questions three,
Parsley, sage, rosemary, and thyme
I hope he will answer as many for me;
For once he was a true-love of mine.

6 'Tell him to find me an acre of land
Betwixt the salt water and the sea-sand.

7 'Tell him to plough it with a ram's horn,
And sow it all over with one pepper-corn.

8 'Tell him to reap it with a sickle of leather,
And bind it up with a peacock's feather.

9 'When he has done, and finished his work,
O tell him to come, and he'll have his shirt.'

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 09 Mar 18 - 11:36 PM

Hi,

This is an early version of Child 2, my title, from James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/3/J, p. 06902:

Cameric Sark- sung by Alexander Brown of Anchor Cottage, Land street, Rothes (Moray) Scotland. Heard about sixty years ago, dated c.1870.

As I was a walkin' early one day,
Where every rose sprung bonnie an' thyme,
It's there I met a bonnie fair may,
An' fain wid she be a true lover o' mine.

CHORUS: True lover o' mine, true lover o' mine
       An' fain wid she be a true lover o' mine.

Ye'll mak unto me a cameric sark
withoot ony stichin' nor yet needle waurk,

Syne since ye've asked this question o me,
Where every rose sprung bonnie an' thyme,
But I've got something to speir at ye,
Afore ye can be a true lover o mine.

Ye'll ploo unto me an acre o land
Atween the saut sea an' the strand,

Ye'll ploo it all ower wi' a ram’s horn,
And saw [sow] it all ower wi' a seed o corn,

"We'll cut it all doon wi' a peacock's fether,
An' ye'll bind it up wi' the sting o an ather [adder].

So when ye've finished all yer waurk
Ye'll come unto me, an' ye’ll get yer sark,

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 09 Mar 18 - 11:55 PM

Hi,

This is by far the most unusual version of Child 2 in the Carpenter Collection titled, King Ethelred & Cheeld-Vean (little child) recited (or/and sung?) in Cornwall. From James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/2/2/E, p. 04807; also Atkinson 1998, p. 436, see also p. 438, Kloss. A brief excerpt of a bio from Wiki follows.

Wiki: Ethelred or Æthelred (c. 966 – 23 April 1016), known as the Unready, was King of the English from 978 to 1013 and again from 1014 until his death. His epithet does not derive from the modern word "unready", but rather from the Old English unræd (meaning "poorly advised"); it is a pun on his name, which means "well advised".

King Ethelred and Cheeld-Vean from Jim Thomas, MS , 14 Union Street, Camborne, Cornwall, England by c. 1930. Thomas, aged over 80 years was formerly one of Cecil Sharp's informants.

[Spoken] In the days when Saxon kings invaded England
Each one taking their sections for to rule
Ethelred father north, Diddimus here in Cornwall
The King approached a cheeld-vean (little child) and said:

King Ethelred:
       "Good morning, fair maid"
       "Good morning, Sir", she said.

       "Can you make a shirt without a needle?

       Can you sew without a seam?
       Can you wash in a well where the water never stream?

       Can you dry in a hedge where the sun never shine?"

Cheeld-Vean:
       "Yes, Kind Sir, that I can.

       "Can you plough with a ram's horn
       And harve[1] it with a bushy thorne,

       Saw it with a pepper dredge,
       In a field without a hedge,

       And mow it in a mouse's hole,
       And trash it with a shoesole,

       Do it all and not complain;
       Then come to me again
       And you shall have your shirt made."
________________________

1. harvest


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 10 Mar 18 - 12:05 AM

Hi,

Some of the "tasks" in the last post are similarly found in "My father left me an acre of land," which uses the "Sing ivy" first refrain. This related Ballad Type has a different Roud number, 21093, and should be regarded as a song or nursery rhyme which has been created from the second set of tasks. It could be an appendix, however, I'm listing those versions under Child 2 as Ballad Type IV.

There are several "Sing Ivy" texts collected by Carpenter. This one is from the James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/2/2/E, p.04819.

Green Holly and Ivy- sung by Edward Newitt of Oxfordshire, England about 1930.

My father he left me an acre of ground,
Sing inc, sing inc, sing ivy.
My father he left me an acre of ground,
With a little green holly and ivy.

I ploughed it up with a team of cats,
&c

I sowed it down with some caraway seed,
&c

I cut it down with the wing of a flee,
&c

I carted it home on a mouse's back,
&c

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 10 Mar 18 - 12:12 AM

Hi,

This is a longer "Sing Ivy" version from the James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/3/J, p. 06906:

Sing Holly and Ivy- sung by Jim Cox of Hamptonfields, Minchenhampton about 1930.
   
My father he keepit a team o' rats,
Sing ovey, sing ivy.
I ploughed his land with that team o' rats
With a bunch of green holly an' ivy.

He worked it all down with this team o' rats,

He sowed his seed with a little sidlip,

He worked it all down with this team o rats

He rolled it all down with this team o' rats,

he ripped his corn with his little penknife,

He hauled it all home with this team o' rats

He built his mow in a mouse's hole,

He thrashed his corn with his little fan,

He winnowed it with his little fan,

He stacked it up in his old box hat,

He sent it all out with this team o rats,

His team o rats come a-rattlin' back,

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 10 Mar 18 - 10:06 AM

Hi Richie, it was me who suggested to Steve 'Acre o' Land' should have its own number, even though there are a few interim versions that clearly demonstrate the evolution from one song to the other. The main reason for a separate number was that 'Acre o' Land' had completely lost its riddling/task function and by the 19th century had its own autonomy and was extremely popular. Just about every farm hand in East Yorkshire knew a version when I started recording in the 60s. There are 3 quite different versions on our website www.yorkshirefolksong.net that came from the same place within a few yards of each other.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 11 Mar 18 - 12:34 PM

Hi Steve,

I agree with the new Roud number and think perhaps I should list it as an appendix. One of the intermediate songs (snail/mouse's tail) with some associated text, although a version of Roud 12, Child 2 is the Irish variant:

Rosemary Fair as sung by Frank Harte on the album: Dublin Street Songs/ Through Dublin City (1967)
Listen Rosemary Fair - YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U2uBvoEAfVE

You may go down to Rosemary Fair,
    Every rose grows merry and fine,
And pick me out then the finest boy there,
    And I will make him a true love of mine.

Tell him to get me an acre of land,
    Every rose grows merry and fine,
Between the salt sea and the salt sea strand
    Or he cannot be a true love of mine.

Tell him to plough it with a ram's horn,
    Every rose grows merry and fine,
And sow it all over with one grain of corn,
    Or he cannot be a true love of mine.
   
Tell him to reap it with a cock's feather,
    Every rose grows merry and fine,
And bind it all down with strappings of leather,
    And I will make him true lover of mine.

And tell him to drive it home on a snail,
    Every rose grows merry and fine,
And thresh it all out with a mouse's tail,
    And I will make him a true lover of mine.

Tell him to bring it to Rosemary Fair
Every rose grows merry and fine
And when he arrives, they'll be nobody there
And he cannot be a true lover of mine.

Since you have been so hard upon me,
Every rose grows merry and fine;
I'm going to be, as hard upon thee
If you wish to be a true lover of mine.

You may go down to Rosemary Fair,
Every rose grows merry and fine
And pick me out then the nicest girl there
And I will make her a true lover of mine.

Tell her to send me a cambric shirt,
Every rose grows merry and fine
Made without needle or needle work,
Or she cannot be a true lover of mine

Tell he wash it in yonder well,
Every rose grows many and fine;
Where water ne'er rose and rain ne'er fell,
And I will make her a true lover of mine.

Tell her to dry it on yonder thorn,
Every rose grows merry and fine,
Where none never grew since Adam was born,
And I will make her a true lover of mine.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 11 Mar 18 - 02:42 PM

Interesting version with the tasks reversed.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 11 Mar 18 - 03:51 PM

With this amount of detail I can't conceive of a situation where the sets of tasked would be reversed without a deliberate conscious act involved. You say THE Irish variant. Are there other examples?


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 12 Mar 18 - 01:36 PM

Hi,

My title. Here's a version from the James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/2/2/E, p. 04818. which has the second set of tasks only- similar to "Sing Ivy." This could be considered a cross-over form.

Every Rose Blooms- sung by Mrs. Watson Gray, Corner house East st. Fochabers, Morayshire Scotland heard over 50 years ago from old man William Stuart of Glenlivet.

Ye maun has an acre o' land
Every rose blooms bonnie in thyme,
Atween the sae and the saut sea strand
Afore ye be a true lover o' mine.

Ye maun ploo it wi' yon ram's horn.
And saw [sow] it with ae grain o' corn.

Ye maun shear it wi' a peacock feather,
An' bind it up wi' a sting o' an ether [tongue of an adder]

Ye maun carry it hame on yon snail's back,
An' cover wi' a rainbow for a thack.

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 12 Mar 18 - 03:06 PM

The jump from riddle tasks to inheritance and first person, together with the new refrain, must have been, I feel, a conscious act probably by one person, as these are all big jumps. Changing refrains are common in ballads even where they use proper words, but the whole meaning and purpose of the song changes in 'Sing Ivy' types. What can be seen is a lengthening of the progression of tasks in Elfin Knight types before this takes place. I think it probably happened some time in the middle of the 19thc.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 12 Mar 18 - 08:16 PM

Hi,

Just when I though I had all the Carpenter versions of Child 2 another pops up:

From:(VWML Song Index SN24452) Carpenter Collection 04816

True Love of Mine- sung by Mrs. Mary Stewart Robertson of New Deer, about 1930 learned from Christina Stewart Robertson 50 years ago.

Come a' you young maids that's sittin' by me,
Let every rose grow merry in thyme,
Ye'll buy tae me a white holland shirt,
An saw [sow] it a' up wi' oot[1] needle work,
Afore ye be a true lover of mine.

Ye'll wash it up in yonder well
Where water ne'er sprung nor dew ne'er fell.

An' ye'll dry it on yonder thorn
The bush that was rotten before Adam wis born.

Ye'll buy tae me an acre o' land
Atwen the saut water and the sea sand,

Ye'll plow it up wi' ae ram's horn
An saw [sow] it a' doon wi' a pill o' corn.

An' ye'll shear it doon wi' a peacock's feather,
An' ye'll mak it weel up wi' the sting o' an adder [tongue of an adder]

__________________

1. written in by hand looks like, "without"

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 12 Mar 18 - 08:21 PM

Hi,

This is the longest Carpenter Collection variant (22 stanzas) of "Sing Ivy" or "My father left me an acre of land" (Roud 21093). From James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/3/J, pp. 06907-06908, the last stanzas are confused.

A Bunch of Green Holly and Ivy- sung by Daniel Fisher of Weston Newbury, Berkshire, about 1880 when he was a little lad.

My father he died and left me some land,
Sing ivy, sing ivy,
My father he died and left me some land
With a bunch of holly and ivy.

I ploughed it up with three buck horns

I sewed it up with three peppercorns,

I harrowed it with a bramble bush,

I rolled it down with me rollin' pin,

My carn came up and it did look well

I rolled it down with me rollin' pin,

I reaped it down wi' me little pen knife

I shocked it up in nine little shocks,

I builded me a rick in a mouse's hole,

I drawed it to a rick with an old blind rat,

I thrashed it out with three bean stalks

I winnowed it out with the tyale[1] o' me shirt.

I measured it in an old quart cup,

I sacked it up in three mice skins,

I sent it to market with a team o' rats,

The team of rats came rattling back

The whip did crack on the old rat's back

The money came back in the corner of the sack,

The miller came back with a broken back

The team of rats came rattling back
Sing ivy, sing ivy,
The whip did crack on the old rat's back,
With a bunch of holly and ivy.

The team of rats came rattling back
Sing ivy, sing ivy,
The bells did ring and the carter did sing,
With a bunch of holly and ivy.

1. original spelling for "tail"

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 07:55 AM

That's a good version, Richie. I can't see a tune for it in the VWML archive, but TBH I'm finding that quite difficult to use since the revamp, and I haven't sussed out how to get to the Carpenter recordings. Any advice appreciated.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 08:44 AM

Brian

If you use this link JMC Index you can follow the tree to get to the recordings. Cylinders and Discs are the last 2 items in the initial tree. Tunnel down to a song and you'll get the cylinder in the information on the right. (I think you'll need to allow cookies to make it work and I can't seem to open items in a new tab).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 09:12 AM

If you want to search for a specific song, use the Advanced Search on the VWML Index Search Page. Use the 1st drop down (it shows All fields initially) to select eg Roud Number: 12 (or title or whatever you need to select the song), press + to get the next drop down and select Collector : Carpenter; press + again to get another drop down and select Source Contents: Audio. Then press Submit and that will get you any entries with audio (there's also a fragmentary audio too I think).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 09:49 AM

Thanks, Mick. I'd worked out some of that, but not all of it. With your assistance I've now found at least one recording of 'Acre of Land' from an unknown man in Gloucestershire.

However, when I search the Carpenter archive for Richie's last example, by entering Roud number = 12 and performer = fisher, I don't get any hits.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 09:57 AM

Brian

You need Roud 21093. See Steve's notes above on his instigation of different Roud number for Acre of Land versions. So Roud:21093, Collecter: Carpenter, Performer: Fisher returns 3 entries.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 11:14 AM

Thanks again, Mick, I think I've got the hang of it now. Still no recording or tune from Mr Fisher, but you can't have everything.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 01:39 PM

Brian again!

While I remember, about the word Cather you were asking about above and Steve suggested might be a local name for the Calder.

Lyle's notes to the song in Vol1 say:

"..and evidently Crawfurd was responsible for substituting the River Calder (which runs through Lochwinnoch parish) under its old name of 'Cather', which occurs eg on the cover of a letter dated 1740 that was in Crawfurd's posession and is now in Paisley Central Library"

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 03:02 PM

Brian,

Another way to find out is to use the main (Carpenter) search engine: https://www.dhi.ac.uk/carpenter/ginit.jsp?src=box2pac2.xml&id=p04803.0

This is the Fisher item: A Bunch of Green Holly and Ivy. Blunt has a copy with the same refrain with music. You can search: VWML Song Index with title or RN12 with title. It seems clear that the Fisher text was from "Miscellaneous Field Typescripts and Manuscripts" and not a recording. Every recording may not be on the site yet but if you use the online catalogue that should tell you if there is a recording.

Some items are not listed properly -if you search RN12 Carpenter - not every item comes up. I had to search "True Love of Mine" to find one item.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 03:21 PM

The last two versions of Child 2 are fragments, the first is missing the opening line, while the second is scribbled and has three disjointed stanzas:

1. James Madison Carpenter Collection, JMC/1/8/1/K, p. 12026

"Every rose grows" sung by Mrs Annie Morrison from The Hill, Evanston, Scotland (p.04608/p.05478), 1931 with music.

Every rose grows bonnie and thyme
Between the salt water and the sea sand
Before ye can be a true lover of mine.

2. Carpenter MSS Reel 4, Box 2, Packet II. listed incorrectly as Roud 21093.

"True Lover of Mine" George McDonald, from The Hill, Evanton, near Inverness, Scotland, 1931.

Ye maun ploo me an acre of land
As every rose bids bonny in time
Between the salt water and the sea sand,
Before ye can be a true lover of min,

He maun sew for me a cameric shirt
And bleach it on the green,
Where grass never grew nor rain never fell

She maun ploo for me an acre of land
And turn it over with a peacock's feather

* * * *
Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 03:37 PM

Hi,

Although the Child 2 is regarded by many as battle of wits between lovers, the Scottish versions of A is a competition between the Elfin Knight and the maid. At least in Perthshire among the Scottish travellers, it's clear that the Elfin Knight is the Devil. A 1956 recording made at The School of Scottish Studies of Bella Higgins and her brother Andrew Stewart (known as the Blairgowrie Stewarts from Perthshire) sums up their family version:

The Traveller meets the Devil, who gives him impossible tasks to do, but when the Traveller quotes the Bible, the Devil disappears in a ball of flame.

This is similar to some Scottish versions of Child 1 and Bella also knew a version of Child 3, a ballad where the Devil confronts a school boy. Unfortunately the stanzas of the archaic Stewart family version of The Elfin Knight could not fully be remembered (see: fragment Bella Higgins "Elfin Knight") and are now lost forever.

In 1955 a Perth version was collected by Collinson and Henderson from "Peasie" Martha Reid (Johnston) of Birnam, Perthshire:

"It's supposed to be him that's doun below (i.e. the Devil) that's giving this woman a task."

Peasie gave a version to Peter Shepheard and her husband Duncan Johnston also knew a few lines. This last example from Perth makes it clear who these Scottish travellers thought the Elphin Knight was:

The Devil and the Maid- As sung by Ronnie McDonald and his father John McDonald at Marshall's field, Alyth, Perthshire in August 1965. Recorded by Peter Shepheard, also Ewan MacColl.

There once was a fair maid went for a walk,
Blow, blow, blow ye wynds blow,
She met a devil on the way.
The weary winds'll blow ma plaidie awa

"Noo," he says tae her, "I will gie ye a task,
Blow, blow, blow ye wynds blow
Ye'll mak tae me a Holland sark,
Aye without either seam or needle work.
An the weary winds'll blow ma plaidie awa

'For ye'll wash it doun in yon draw well,
Where there never was water or a dew drop fell.'

'For ye'll dry it up with one blink o sun,
Blow, blow, blow ye wynds blow
If I do that task for you,
Surely you'll do one for me.
An the weary winds'll blow ma plaidie awa'

'For ye'll fetch to me three acres of land,
Aye atween the salt sea an the salt sea strand.'

'For you'll plough it up with a dooble ram's horn,
An ye'll harrow it ower wi a tree o blackthorn.'

'For ye'll sow it ower wi one pile o corn, [a pile = a grain
And ye'll ripe it up wi one blink o sun.' [ripe = ripen]

'For ye'll shear it down wi a peahen's feather,
And ye'll stook it up wi a stang o an ether.' [stang o an ether = tongue of an adder

'For ye'll yoke two sparrows in a matchbox,
And ye'll cart it home to your own farm yard.'

'For it's when you do that task for me,
Blow, blow, blow ye wynds blow
You come back an ye'll get your sark.'
The weary winds'll blow ma plaidie awa'.

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 13 Mar 18 - 05:34 PM

Hi,

Here's a summary of the Carpenter versions of Child 2 (included are the Sing Ivy versions). The Carpenter master title is Elfin Knight and there are 16 versions, three of which are fragments, "King Ethelred & Cheeld-Vean" is recited and introduces other material.

    Cambric Shirt- Robert Nicol (Aber) 1869 Carpenter
    Cambric Shirt- Alex Stephens (Aber) c.1869 Carpenter
    Cameric Sark- Alex Brown (Aber) c.1870 Carpenter
    The Laird o' Elfin- Alex. Robb (Aber) c.1875 Greig/Carpenter
    Camerin Sark- Peter Chritie (Aber) c1880 Carpenter
    Every Rose Blooms- Mrs Gray (Mor) 1880 Carpenter
    True Love of Mine- Christina Roberston (Aber) 1880 Carpenter
    Elfin Knight- Bell Duncan (Aber) c.1930 Carpenter
    Cambric Shirt- John Ross (Aber) c.1930 Carpenter
    King Ethelred & Cheeld-Vean- Thomas (Corn) 1930 Carpenter
    Every rose grows- Morrison (Ross) 1931 Carpenter
    True Lover of Mine- McDonald (Ross) 1931 Carpenter

    Bunch of Green Holly and Ivy- Fisher (Berk) c.1880 Carpenter
    Green Holly & Ivy- E. Newitt (Oxf) 1930 Carpenter
    Sing Holly and Ivy- Jim Cox (Minch) 1930 Carpenter
    Green Holly An' Ivy- Belcher (Oxf) 1930 Carpenter

* * * *

Since Child 3 apparently has no Carpenter versions, Child 4 is next.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 14 Mar 18 - 09:50 AM

Thanks, Richie. The sheer volume of that Carpenter stuff is all a bit overwhelming. Well done for getting to grips with it.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 14 Mar 18 - 03:31 PM

Thanks Brian,

I'm sure you'll be doing a new CD of Carpenter Collection songs with Fisher's version on it!!

Child 2 has a lot of varied material. I've finished a rough draft of the British versions and the main headnotes of Child 2 here: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/british-versions--other-versions--headnotes.aspx

I've waited for the Carpenter versions to finish the Child ballads. It's going to take a while :)

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 14 Mar 18 - 04:50 PM

Not at the speed you move, Richie!

Nit-picking perhaps, but the travellers refer to THE Devil in their description, but the version given here says A devil, i.e., a demon or an imp. The two sparrows in a matchbox perhaps a step along the development towards Acre of Land.

Brian, lacking a tune, I think the most common tune used for 'Acre of Land' is Brighton Camp.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Carl in VT
Date: 14 Mar 18 - 11:12 PM

Richie - (a bit off this thread) Saw a post of yours under "Dominique" from some years back saying "Lord Randall" is unk. in France, tho a version is found in the maritimes ("Le garcon empoissoné"). Try under "Honoré, mon Enfant", Trad., via Gabriel Yacoub, Green Linnet, SIF 3038, according to my notes. It's Honoré who cops it, not Lord Randall, but it's the same story.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 15 Mar 18 - 12:38 AM

Thanks Carl and Steve,

I agree that "a" devil is not "the" Devil, in the other Perth vesions it's not "a" devil.
We're headed toward Lord Randall :)

I found two more with Devil in them; one from Perth and another from Newfoundland. Both are versions of Child A (by refrains). I don't have access to full text of the Newfoundland version so only one stanza is given:

"The Elf Knight." Sung by Alexander Reid ('Shells') of Pitlochry, Perthshire, collected by Linda Headlee on 14th September 1975; Tocher XX (1975) pp.140-1.

Go mak tae me a Highland shirt
Withoot a seam or needle a work,
And the dreary, dreary winds blaw my plaidie awa.

You'll wash it in a ne'er dry well
Where there ne'er was water nor one drop o dew fell;
You'll dry it on a thorn haw bush
Where there ne'er was thorns since Adam was born,
And the dreary, dreary wind blaw my plaidie awa.

O devil, o de'il, ye put a task on me
And it's surely I'll put one on you;
You will find to me three acre o land
Between the salt sea and the salt sea strand,
You will plough it up with a tup's horn - [spoken] a tup doesn't have a horn -
You will sow it over with one pea o corn,
And the dreary, dreary wind'll nae blaw my plaidie awa.

You will cut it down with a peahen feather,
You will stook it up with a tongue of an adder;
You will yoke two sparrows in a match-box*
And cart it home to our own farm yard,
And the dreary, dreary wind'll blaw my plaidie awa.

* * * *

The Cambric Shirt- sung by Charlotte Decker of Parson's Pond, Great Northern Penninsula, Newfoundland in August, 1966.

The devil came to her one night in bed,
Blow, blow, blow the wind blow,
And this is the very words he said,
The wind do blow my plaid awa.

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: OldNicKilby
Date: 15 Mar 18 - 08:40 AM

O K I know it's a bit off topic but songs have travelled. I remember being out with a Client in Barcelona who as a Catalan Bag piper. We were discussing songs and he asked me what I was singing at the time . I mentioned and sang Cherry Tree Carol , Ah he said we have the same song in Catalan Tradition but the tree is an Almond
When the Opera House in Barcelona burnt down the had to re-bind many of the Books, they found a version of "Go from My Window " in Spanish of course in the Binding of a book from the Twelve Hundreds


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 15 Mar 18 - 10:34 AM

a version of "Go from My Window "

The English language version can be traced back to the 16th century, but it would be useful to see a translation of a 13th century variant. Of course the basic plot features in a number of songs and ballads, various types of 'Drowsy Sleeper' among others. Has the Spanish variant been published?


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 15 Mar 18 - 08:44 PM

Hi,

I'm working some on UK versions of Child 3 (didn't see any Carpenter versions of "False Knight") before I'm moving to Carpenter versions of Child 4. I'm wondering if Child 3 is Irish-- partly because of the 1818 Irish text and partly because the informant for Child A (Motherwell from Crawfurd) Mary MacQueen's father was Irish.

Any Irish texts or recordings? Origin of the recent Irish "False Fly" versions (Barry Gleeson)?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 15 Mar 18 - 10:46 PM

Hi,

Consider the first of the two Irish stanza sung by a Dublin madwoman in "Women, Or, Pour Et Contre: A Tale" - page 26 by Charles Robert Maturin - 1818:

The woman loitered some time after the rest, and with the inconsistency of madness, was singing a fragment of an Irish ballad evidently of monkish composition, and of which the air has all the monotonous melancholy of the chaunt of the cloister:—

“Oh, I wish you were along with me,
Said the false knight, as he rode;
And our Lord in company,
Said the child, and he stood.”

“Where's the next,” she muttered; “ay —gone far off, like all I remembered once —far off.”

“Oh, I wish you were in yonder well,
Said the false knight, as he rode;
And you in the pit of hell,
Said the child, and he stood.”

And her voice died away in indistinct mutterings.


    with this stanza from Ulster Folklife, 1955:

In fact, the traditions so overlap and intertwine that it's impossible to dogmatize about the origins of some songs either in words or in music. But here is a Scots Ballad which, although it must be over two hundred years in these parts, is still sung to the air of The Uist Tramping Song:

“What brings you here so late?” said the Knight on the road:
“I go to meet my God,” said the Child as he stood,
And he stood and he stood and 'twere well he stood;
“I go to meet my God,” said the Child as he stood.


Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Lighter
Date: 16 Mar 18 - 09:44 AM

"The Uist Tramping Song" is copyright 1937 by Hugh S. Roberton & John S. Bannerman.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 16 Mar 18 - 10:12 AM

Hi,

The first excerpt is from the novel: "Women, Or, Pour Et Contre: A Tale," page 26 by Charles Robert Maturin - 1818. Set in the Dublin area by Maturin (1782-1824), an Irish clergyman and writer of gothic plays and novels who lived in Dublin, the two Irish stanzas predate the (assumed Scottish) version published by Motherwell(Child A) in 1827.

The version from Motherwell was sung by Mary MacQueen (Storie) b. 1803 in Kilbirnie (Aryshire) Scotland. Her father, Osbourne MacQueen, was from County Down, Ireland-- born about 1781 (Son of James and Janet (Stevens) McQueen). Could Mary's version be Irish from her father? Her mother was from Kilbirnie and Mary was born there so naturally she would sing in Scots dialect. Her version was given by Crawfurd to Motherwell and Motherwell made few changes to Mary's text (see Lyle's transcript below) which was published without attribution in his "Minstrelsy: ancient and modern" in 1827.

A number of versions from the US are directly taken from Irish sources. Barry prints the first Irish text in 1911:

THE FALSE KNIGHT UPON THE ROAD (Child, 3) Sung before 1870, in Fort Kent, Me., by a French girl who could speak very little English, as learned from an illiterate Irish family. From "The False Knight upon the Road," A, Folk-Songs of the North Atlantic States recollected by M. L. F., Portland, Me., Oct. 16, 1907.

    1. "What have you in your bottle, my dear little lad?"
         Quo the fol fol Fly on the road,
       "I have some milk for myself for to drink!"
         Said the child, who was seven years old.

In this text the words "fol fol Fly" are very likely corrupted from "foul, foul Fiend;" that is, the Devil. Fragmentary as it is, the text is interesting as attesting the survival, in America, of a ballad supposed to be long extinct, and, furthermore, as retaining a form of the theme more primitive than that of Motherwell's version
.

* * * *

Here is Mary MacQueen's version. Although an Irish source (her father) is speculation, it's possible:

Andrew Crawfurd's Collection of Ballads and Songs - Page 77 by E. B. Lyle- 1975 (his footnotes):

Motherwell does not credit Mrs Storie with the text of The Fause Knight upon the Road that he printed in his introduction but the Crawfurd MSS indicate that it was derived from her. The ten detached verses linked with the music were also, it seems, from Mrs Storie. As three of these are the same as full texts, this gives seven additional items from this singer. The fourteen items from Mrs Storie which were included by Motherwell in his Minstrelsy and Ballad Book were available to Child who printed all of them apart from The Deil's Wowing (41 The Deil's Courtship in the present collection) which fell outside his compass.

THE FAUSE KNICHT from Mary Macqueen (Mrs Storie) Crawfurd's Collection:

1 O whar are ye gaun quo[1] the fause knicht upon the road
I'm gawn to the skeul quo the wee boy and still he stood

2 What is that upon your back quo the fause knicht upon the rade
Atweel[2] it is my books quo the wee boy and still he stood

3 What's that ye hae gotten in your arm quo the fause knicht upon
Atweel it is my peat[3] quo the wee boy and still he stood the road

4 Wha's aught they sheep[4] quo the fause knicht upon the road
They are mine an my mother's quo the wee boy and still he stood

5 How money of them are mine quo the fause knicht upon the road
Aw them that hae blue tails quo the wee boy and still he stood

6 O I wish ye were on yon tree quo the fause knicht upon the road
And a guid ladder under me quo the wee boy and still he stood

7 And the ladder for to break quo the fause knicht upon the road
And you for to faw down quo the wee boy and still he stood

8 I wish ye were in yon sea quo the fause knicht upon the road
And a gude bottom[5] under me quo the wee boy and still he stood

9 And the bottom for to break quo the fause knicht upon the road
And you for to be drowned quo the wee boy and still he stood

1 quo said
2 atweel certainly, sure
3 peat piece of peat (for use on the schoolroom fire)
4 wha's aught they sheep "whose are these sheep"
8 bottom ship

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 16 Mar 18 - 10:57 AM

TY Lighter,

I don't know whether the Uist Tramping Song is in fact the standard Irish tune for "False Knight" as claimed. There's a version of the Uist Tramping Song by the Corries on youtube and it's called a traditional Scottish song (the copyright doesn't necessary reflect the age of the song). The Irish verse of "False Knight" which they claim was sung two hundred years ago in Ulster(1755), seems to be the same as, or taken from, the 1961 recording of Frank Quinn of County Tyrone (see text below). If anyone has any info on Quinn's song please post it.

Uist Tramping Song

Chorus:
Come along, come along,
Let us foot it out together,
Come along, come along,
Be it fair or stormy weather,
With the hills of home before us,
And the purple of the heather,
Let us sing in happy chorus,
Come along, come along.

O gaily sings the lark,
And the sky's all awake,
With the promise of the day,
For the road we gladly take;
So it's heel and toe and forward,
Bidding farewell to the town,
For the welcome that awaits us,
Ere the sun goes down.
Chorus:

It's the call of sea and shore,
It's the tang of bog and peat,
And the scent of brier and myrtle,
That puts magic in our feet;
So it's on we go rejoicing,
Over bracken, over stile,
And it's soon we will be tramping
Out the last long mile.
Chorus:

* * * *

The Knight on the Road- from the singing of Frank Quinn, County Tyrone, recorded in 1961.

“What brings you here so late?” said the Knight on the road:
“I go to meet my God,” said the Child as he stood,
And he stood and he stood and 'twere well he stood;
“I go to meet my God,” said the Child as he stood.

“How will you go by land? said the knight on the road.
"With a strong staff in my hand," said the child as he stood.
And he stood, and he stood, and 'twere well he stood.
"With a strong staff in my hand," said the child as he stood.

"How will you go by sea?" said the knight on the road.
"With a good ship under me,' said the child as he stood.
And he stood, and he stood, and 'twere well he stood,
"With a good ship under me," said the child as he stood.

“Methinks I hear a bell,” said the knight on the road.
“It's ringing you to hell,” said the child as he stood.
And he stood and he stood, and 'twere well that he stood.
“It's ringing you to hell,” said the child as he stood.

* * * *

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Lighter
Date: 16 Mar 18 - 03:12 PM

Richie, in this case I think we can rely on the copyright date.

Roberton's "Songs of the Isles" (1950), p. 36, includes the Uist song with the 1937 copyright notice.

The credits read, "The original Gaelic words by Archibald MacDonald, Uist. The English words by Hugh S. Roberton. Tune by John R. Bannerman arranged by Hugh S. Roberton."

It thus seems that the "song" originated as a Gaelic poem by MacDonald, whose words may or may not have been translated by Roberton himself.

Roberton identifies most of the melodies in "Songs of the Isles" as "Traditional" or "Old Highland air" or similar. But a few are clearly attributed to current composers as original tunes.

"Westering Home" (crt. 1939 by Hugh S. Roberton) is interesting because Roberton claims the words and the stanza melody, but attributes that of the chorus to "the singing of Donald McIsaac."

Roberton was evidently scrupulous in distinguishing the traditional from the brand-new.

McIsaac's tune is easily recognizable as a version of "The Muckin' o' Geordie's Byre."


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Shimmering
Date: 17 Mar 18 - 05:02 PM

I've only just started reading this thread ... so if anyone is interested in the Exeter Book riddles (the Anglo Saxon riddles), this here is a blog I follow that gives the riddles in OE, translation, and commentary.

They are not really similar to the riddles in Child 1: they are all much longer, more complicated, and the answers are not given and are not always obvious ...


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Mar 18 - 07:45 PM

Not only "Geordie's Byre."

It also sounds a lot like the Jacobite song "Ghille Mhoir."

Sort of in between.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 18 Mar 18 - 02:19 PM

Hi Lighter thanks,

We can assume then that the words and song were 1939 but that the melody was older and probably borrowed since according to Ulster Folklife, it was sung for two hundred years as the "False Knight."

This same melody and text, probably originating from Quinn's version is, one of the most popular ones and has been used by Oysterband, Richard Thompson, Hart and Prior, Fleet Foxes and Outside Track-- to name just a few a few covers.

However, to verify the traditionality of the Irish version we have to look to the US at versions brought over from the UK since there aren't earlier Irish ones. Luckily, Sharp A which was collected in 1916 (Tennessee) has the same melody and text:

THE FALSE KNIGHT UPON THE ROAD- from Mrs. T.G. Coates, TN 1916; Collected by Sharp.

O where are you going to?
Said the knight on the road
I'm a-going to my school,
Said the Child as he stood.
He stood and he stood,
And it's well because he stood
I'm a-going to my school
Said the child as he stood.

O what are you going there for?
For to learn the word of God.

O what have you got there?
I have got my bread and cheese.

O won't you give me some?
No, ne'er a bit nor crumb.

I wish you was on the sands.
Yes, and a good staff in my hands.

I wish you was on the sea
Yes, and a good boat under me.

I think I hear a bell.
Yes, and it's ringing you to hell.

There's even an intro narrative: "The knight met a child on the road..." If we look at Mike Yates article on the Coates family (The Greatest Prize) we find this: 'According to Coates' family tradition, the first members of the family had arrived in America as 'Irish missionaries' and had settled originally in South Carolina. . ."

Yes, the Coates believe they were originally Irish. This would corroborate the Ulster Folklife claim and date.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 18 Mar 18 - 02:50 PM

Hi Shimmering,

I don't consider Child 3 a riddling ballad, it seems to be a forming of archaic verbal jousting called "flyting." It's there that an antecedent may be found.

As for the Exeter book, I think it's possible the courting riddles of Child 2 Elphin Knight/Scarborough Fair, may be found. As I remember one old riddle known as Dr. Whewell's riddle,

A headless man had a letter (o) to write,
He who read it (naught) had lost his sight;
The dumb repeated it (naught) word for word,
And deaf was the man who listened and heard (naught).

was part of the Exeter riddles, but now I can't remember where I read it. See part of the riddle as last stanza in "Cambrick Shirt" dated Feb. 1867 as taken from from a "lady from Cornwall" who herself had heard it "when a child" from an "old woman of St. Ives:

       Can you make me a cambrick shirt,
       Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
       Without any seam or needle work?
       And I will be a true lover of thine.

       Can you wash it in yonder well,
       Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
       Where never sprung water nor rain never fell?
       And I will be a true lover of thine.

       Can you dry it on yonder thorn,
       Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
       Which never bore blossom since Adam was born?
       And I will be a true lover of thine.

       Now you have asked me questions three,
       Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme,
       As many wonders I'll tell to thee
       If thou wilt be a true lover of mine.

       A handless man a letter did write[1],
       Parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme;
       And he who read it had lost his sight,
       And thou shalt be a true lover of mine.

Where is this riddle found in the Exeter riddles?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 18 Mar 18 - 03:32 PM

Richie

I don't think it is in the Exeter Book riddles! (I did a quick scan of them, so I could be wrong).

Incidentally, have you seen this thesis: Susan Edmunds- The English riddle ballads (pdf). She has a chapter on whether the things in the ballads really are riddles and classifies the types found in them. (She conclude some are!).

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Lighter
Date: 18 Mar 18 - 04:14 PM

> although it must be over two hundred years in these parts, is still sung to the air of The Uist Tramping Song,

Given the 1937 copyright information, the simplest interpretation of the above is that the writer believed

a) that "False Knight" had been sung in those parts for over 200 years, and

b) that the "Uist Tramping Song" (or its tune) is over 200 years old, and

c) that the ballad is currently sung to the tune of the "Tramping Song."

Without two-centuries-old evidence to back it up, there's no reason to assume that *either* belief "a" or "b" is necessarily true.

"C," however, is evidently factual.

If "a" and "b" are supportable, there will be contemporaneous evidence. We can't logically assume it is exists unless we see it.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 18 Mar 18 - 07:43 PM

Hi,

Lighter, I assume the Ulster tune is Quinn's tune, which is the version I sing. That same tune and text was collected by Sharp in Tennessee in 1916 from the Coates family-- and it's reasonable to presume that they came from Ireland to South Carolina in the late 1700s (maybe early 1800s) before coming to Tennessee. The "Knight on the Road" tune was simply used for "Tramping Song" with new words around 1939. That's my quick conclusion. What I wonder is whose version is on Ulster Folklife-- it's obviously identical to Quinn's first stanza but it may not be his or is unattributed.

Mick- yes, I've had the Edmunds on my site for a few years now: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/english-riddle-ballads--false-knight-on-the-road.aspx This is only the Chapter on Child 3 but it's easier to use and you can copy text from it. I can only describe her writing in a word: brilliant!

There are a few other articles on False Knight there too,

TY for sharing I should have included the link earlier,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 12:06 AM

Hi,

According to Edmunds the other versions are Scottish. In 1954 Hamish Henderson collected a stanza of this previously "lost" ballad from a "Scottish tinker" and the next year collected a version from Duncan MacPhee in the berryfields of Blairgowrie, Perthshire in the summer of 1955.

This uses the Old Scottish melody called “The Old Lea Rigg” or “The Rose Tree” that dates back to at least 1774. Henderson's 1962 version from William Whyte of Aberdeenshire also had the melody.

One of the better traditional versions that clearly has the Rose Tree melody is sung by Norman Kennedy of Aberdeenshire in 1968: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bW0U1WEoEks Anyone know his source?

Child B from Motherwell has a melody which resembles "Rose Tree" but it's not close enough to identify as that melody. McMath's melody, taken from his aunt who learned it c. 1830s is closer to "Rose Tree" (first strain) and may be a variant. Listen also to the Steeleye Span version on Youtube.

There are also a number of versions at the Scottish Studies site: Bella Higgins sings the first strain only as her melody: http://www.tobarandualchais.co.uk/en/fullrecord/11389/3 which dates back to circa 1900.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 07:31 AM

"Sharp A which was collected in 1916 (Tennessee) has the same melody and text"

Richie, I'm not sure which melody you're saying is the same as that collected by Sharp from Mrs. Coates. Her tune doesn't sound anything like Frank Quinn's to me.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 08:39 AM

"Yes, the Coates believe they were originally Irish. This would corroborate the Ulster Folklife claim and date."

But the ballad was sung to Sharp by Mrs Coates (nee Allen). She claimed German or Dutch descent, although Sharp believed her brother John Allen to be Scots. Of course it doesn't necessarily follow that she had learned the ballad within her own family anyway.

Sharp found one other example of Child 3, which he collected from Jane Gentry - I'm sure Richie will shortly be getting to that one. FWIW, Gentry's family - from Watauga Co., NC - claimed English descent. Again we can't say for certain whether the ballad arrived in America with her ancestors, or with later migrants. It's certainly one of the rarer ballads in Appalachia.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 10:22 AM

I agree about the tunes. Mrs Coates' tune is nothing like Frank Quinn's. In fact after a quick look at Bronson, none of the tunes there are like Frank Quinn's either. (Both Mrs Coates' tune and Frank Quinn's seem quite singular).

In fact the Ulster Folklife quote above (But here is a Scots Ballad which, although it must be over two hundred years in these parts, is still sung to the air of The Uist Tramping Song:) doesn't imply that the Uist Tramping Song melody was used for 200 years, only that the words were about for 200 years, and are currently (my emphasis) being sung to the Uist Tramping Song melody. This could be a recent (but popular) marrying of words and tune. The 1938 copyright on Songs Of the Isles would have allowed the tune to be known to Frank Quinn (or his ultimate source). As Lighter says above Roberton's Songs Of The Isles clearly gives John R Bannerman as composer of the tune, whereas elsewhere in the book he credits other tunes as traditional.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 11:34 AM

Actually Mick, I was singing through both the Coates and Quinn tunes while cycling over the hills, and 'nothing like' was perhaps too strong.

The first three notes are almost the same, and the third line ('he stood and he stood...') does have something of the same shape about it. The repeat patterns in the text are also alike, and different from the other versions in Bronson.

Incidentally, if we're looking for Transatlantic similarities, Bronson 2 (Creighton & Senior) is much the same shape as Dearnley's rather odd version from Cheshire.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 12:41 PM

Hi,

Brian-- Mick,

I put the Coates melody on my site here: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/english-and-other-versions-of-fause-knight.aspx

I'm not saying the melody is exactly the same but the contour is (which is the quick recognition I use) and the form (text) is the same. The Irish melody I know and sing is the same as the Quinn covers Richard Thompson, Tim Hart and Maddy Prior, Oysterband, Fleet Foxes, and Outside Track to name a few. To me it was instantly clear that the Coates and Quinn are the same after looking at the Coates melody.

It's clear to me, and you may disagree, but the Coates, Jane Hicks Gentry/ Maude Gentry are the same type as Quninn's type. We don't know if Mrs. Coates nee Allen learned it from her family or her husband's so its conjecture- just hat the Coates family was in Cheraw SC in the late 1700s and moved to NC from there.

This is what I have for the Irish versions- which is quite different than Edmunds:

A. Irish versions; including versions from America from Irish/American informants (standard melody: "Uist Tramping Song" c. 1700s ref. Ulster Folklife)
   a. False Knight- my title, two stanzas sung by a madwoman in the Dublin area from the novel: "Women, Or, Pour Et Contre: A Tale," page 26 by Charles Robert Maturin, 1818.
   b. "False Knight On The Road." Sung by Margaret Sullivan (Mrs. E.M. Sullivan) about 1865. From Flanders Ancient Ballads, 1966 and Ballads Migrant in New England, 1932. Sullivan was born in County Cork, Ireland about 1855. Learned in her childhood.
   c. "Fol Fly on the Road." Sung before 1870, in Fort Kent, Me., by a French girl who could speak very little English, as learned from an illiterate Irish family. From "The False Knight upon the Road," A, Folk-Songs of the North Atlantic States recollected by M. L. F., Portland, Me., Oct. 16, 1907. Also published in The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. 24, No. 93 (Jul. - Sep., 1911), pp. 344-349.
   d. "Knight on the Road" Sung by Mrs. T. G. Coates of Flag Pond, Tennessee on Sept. 1, 1916. From Sharp MSS 3369/2466; Sharp & Karpeles, English Folksongs from the Southern Appalachians, 1932, I p. 3.
   e. "Knight in the Road." Sung by Mrs. Jane (Hicks) Gentry, from Madison County, NC, was one of Cecil Sharp's main informants. Sharp & Karpeles, English Folksongs from the Southern Appalachians, 1932, I p. 4.
   f. "The Smart Schoolboy." Sung by Preston Wolford of Virginia, 1935, collected by John Jacob Niles; from Niles, Ballad Book, 1966.
   g. "The False Knight upon the Road" Sung by Mrs. Maud Long of Hot Springs, North Carolina, at Washington, D. C., 1947. Recorded by Duncan Emrich.
   h. "The False Knight on the Road" sung by Frank Quinn of Coalisland, Co. Tyrone, Ireland in 1958 as recorded by Sean O'Boyle. Topic, The Folksongs of Britain IV, 'The Child Ballads'. Also in J. Taylor & Michael Yates, eds., Ballads and Songs, Vol 6.

Edmunds includes several versions which are not similar enough to include in the group. Some of the versions in this group are not the same form.

There's also an Irish/Newfoundland group (False false Fly) which has text from Child 1 which includes Barry Gleeson/Ben Henneberry (NL) Archie Fisher etc. Barry's version (c. 1870) may be part of that group only one stanza.

Brian thanks for pointing out the similarity between Creighton & Senior) and Dearnley. There's not a tradition in England but these should be separate.

Hard to categorize these- I can't agree with Edmunds who doesn't consider the melody- she doesn't give the Coates as related melodically and instead give Niles version which seems to be based on Coates. Edmunds includes a number of versions under the "Irish" group which I can't include.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 01:30 PM

Brian/Richie

Here are the transcriptions of Quinn and Coates. (Quinn is mine, Coates I'd already taken from bluegrassmessengers).

X:1
T:False Knight On The Road
C:Frank Quinn
L:1/8
Q:1/4=76
M:2/4
Z: MCP
K:C
D | GG GG | (ed) BA | G2 ED | (E G2)
w: What|brings you here so|late _ says the|knight on the|ro- ad
D | GG GG | (ed) dB | B2 AG | A2
w: I|go to meet my|God_ said the|child as he|stood
Bd | e2 ed | B2 GA | (BA G)E | D3
w: And he|stood and he|stood and 'twere|we- - ll he|stood
D | GG GG | (ed) BA | G2 ED | (E G2) |]
w: I|go to meet my|God_ said the|child as he|stood_ |]


X:5
T:The False Knight upon the Road
T:The Fause Knight upon the Road
C:Trad
B:Bronson
O:Sharp MSS., 3369/2466. Also in Sharp and Karpeles, 1932,
O:I, p. 3(A); and, with piano accompaniment, in Sharp, 1918,
O:p. 20. Sung by Mrs. T. G. Coates, Flag Pond, Tenn., September I, 19I6.
N:Child 5
N:1932 gives Fnatural (i.e. transposed D natural) in tne in the penultimate bar.
M:2/4
L:1/8
K:Gmix % Heptatonic ( -6 +7#)
c | d2 cc | [M:3/4] d3 c AG |
w:The knight met a child in the
G4 z |: d | G3 A/B/ A/A/G | G^F G2 cc |
w:road. O where are you go-ing to? said the knight in the
d3 c AG | F6 | G3 A/B/ AG |
w:road, (knight in the road) I'm a-*go-ing
G^F G2 cc | d3 c AG | [M:2/4] G3 c |
w:to my school, said the child as he* stood. He
[M:4/4] d2 gg f2 fd | c3/ d/ d A/G/ F4 | [M:3/4] G3 A/B/ AG |
w:stood and he stood and it's well be-cause he* stood. I'm a-*go-ing
G^F G2 cc | d3 c AG | G4 z :|
w:to my school, said the child as he* stood.


Brian - I disagree about the 1st 3 notes, but you're right about stood... , there is something similar in the shape there.


Richie -minor point - your 1932 note in the abc says F# where it should say Fnatural.

I still don't think the tunes are very similar!.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 03:31 PM

Mick:

Thanks for transcribing the Quinn tune. There are however several errors in that abc of Coates.

When I said "the first three notes" I should have said the initial progression from lower dominant to tonic (i.e. D to G in the key of G). In the Coates abc the first note of the main tune is given incorrectly as a high D.

Richie:
"To me it was instantly clear that the Coates and Quinn are the same after looking at the Coates melody."

I don't see how you can say they are 'the same'. There are similarities (at least partly arising from the textual pattern) but the contours are different.

The Gentry version also has a similar text format, and the leap to high G on 'stood' does recall Coates. Again there are substantial differences to the Quinn tune contour.

There's not a tradition in England but theses should be separate.

There may be a typo here, but we know of two variants from England, both listed on your site. How is this "not a tradition"? There is relatively little evidence for English balladry in the late 18th / early 19th century, but the existence of those two at least suggests some previous history.

"We don't know if Mrs. Coates nee Allen learned it from her family or her husband's so its conjecture"

Exactly - so you need to be careful about using it to support a link with Ireland.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 03:59 PM


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 04:07 PM

Sorry about previous - accidentally submitted.

I went through the Roud Index counting up version by location the other day.

While the USA and Scotland had many entries (41 and 28 I think; I didn't try to resolve these into individual sources), England, Ireland and Northern Ireland provide relatively modest numbers.

England comes down to 4 sources - Mr,Smart (FSUT), and three more recent: Mrs Eyre (1962, coll.Collinson, Glouc.), Mrs Stanley (1967, the Cheshire version referred to above), and Jeff Wesley (1888, Northampton).

N.Ireland boils down to the Quinn version.

Ireland gives only the Maturin reference given above.


Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 05:15 PM

Mick, the Smart and Wesley entries are both actually Child 1, incorrectly entered in the online RI.. Jeff Wesley's is actually the American 'Ninety-Nine and Ninety' version, learned somehow from the folk revival.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 05:28 PM

OK Mick,

Mr. Smart's version is Child 1 and so is Jeff Wesley but it's 1988. They're just categorized wrong by Roud. I have the two others on my site under English versions. I also have a couple US versions that don't conform to the parameters of "Scottish" or "Irish"

I'll play both versions Caotes/Quinn but usually I can tell from the contour and text but it could be in different mode. I also solfege and sight sing so maybe I just assumed from the contour they were the same- without playing them.

Brian, yes I should not present Coates as an Irish version although it could be. And, Yates gave more information which should have been included so an informed decision by the reader could be made.

The two English versions do not, in my opinion, constitute a tradition- however there could have been other versions that were older and overlooked (but you'd think they would have been found in the early 1900s).

The ballad disappeared in the UK for a number of years, the Scottish travellers were singing it:

   j. "False Knight," sung by Nellie MacGregor of Perthshire in 1954. Pentatonic V. A two-phrase tune, Form AA. Collected by Hamlish Henderson; from Scottish Studies - Volumes 9-10 - page 12, 1965.
   k. "False Knight." Sung by Duncan MacPhee, recorded in the Hamlish Henderson in the berryfields of Blairgowrie, Perthshire in the summer of 1955. He uses the tune - "The Rose Tree." Published with music in Scottish Studies - Volumes 9-10 - Page 10, 1965.
   l. "The False Knight upon the Road," sung by Charlotte Higgins 1895-1971 of Perthshire, Blairgowrie. Born on the moss between Torphins and Lumphanan, and travelled in Aberdeenshire before settling in Blairgowrie. Recorded by Hamish Henderson, 1958. Fragment from: Collection - School of Scottish Studies; Original Track ID - SA1958.64.A5
   m. "The False Knight upon the Road." As sung by Belle Stewart, Blairgowrie, Perthshire. August 1964. Learned from Ruby Kelby's mother, Christina MacKenzie; from "Till Doomsday in the Afternoon: The Folklore of a Family of Scots Travelers" by Ewan McColl, Peggy Seeger.
   n. "False Knight," sung by Willie Whyte of Hayton, Aberdeen (Pentatonic I Form AABA.) before 1965 (1962?). His melody was "The Rose Tree." From Scottish Studies - Volumes 9-10 - page 12, 1965.
   o. The Fause Knight Upon the Road- sung by Norman Kennedy of Aberdeenshire. From Norman Kennedy's 1968 Folk-Legacy album "Ballads & Songs of Scotland." Kennedy a native of from Aberdeen came to the US about 1965. Sung to the traditional Scottish tune, "Rose Tree."
   p. "The False Knight Upon the Road," sung by Johnnie Whyte of Perthshire Recorded in 1975 and 1978 by Mrs. Williamson; He learned the song when she was small from his mother; from Mrs. Linda Williamsons (wife of Duncan Williamson) 1985 thesis on Scottish Travellers (Narrative Singing Among Scots Travellers

I appreciate the feedback, as always,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 05:39 PM

Brian and Richie - thanks for the updates on the English versions.

What is the world coming to when you can't rely on things you read on the internet?!

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 05:47 PM

Hi,

Steve Roud has a million versions to worry about :) I only have a few in comparison- and- I make mistakes cause I go fast and can't type :)

You'll notice that I'm moderator and most of my typos magically are fixed- but my errors in judgement remain- can't delete those!!! But some new things are being said and that enough for me. Plus I can fix and improve the info on my site- and I need to carefully consider points made on this thread before deciding what I do on my site.

TY

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 06:32 PM

Hi,

Mea Culpa-- played Coates version and the first phrase (not counting intro line) ends on the flat-seven chord. It's a mixolydian mode very different sound. The first phrase does go up on "knight" as the melody I sing. The second part (third phrase) "He stood and he stood" goes up higher but on the second beat instead of the first and ends on the flat 7 chord again.

So yeah it seems completely different although the contour is similar, I should have looked at it more closely,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 19 Mar 18 - 10:29 PM

Hi,

I've leave Child 3 with a few more tidbits from Ireland (from my website):

The ballad was popular enough in Ireland to be parodied in "Poems and Ballads of Young Ireland," 1888 by William Butler Yeats. Only the opening was used in the poem:

THE FALSE BARON OF BRAY. written by T. W. Rolleston,

“AND where are we going?” said the fair young child
To the false false Baron of Bray, -
As mounted before him, she prattled and she smiled,
And looked in his face with her blue eyes mild,
As she rode on his charger away.


In his article (see The Modern Language Review, Vol. 12, No. 2, Apr., 1917, pp. 203-205) "The Fause Knight upon the Road," Joseph J. MacSweeney gives a version from County Dublin he learned in 1912 from his mother. He gives some background then the text:

The version of 'The Fause Knight upon the Road' which I record is, like all the known versions of this ballad, incomplete, for the last stanzas were not remembered, as is so very often the case. The traditional account of the climax is that the little child outwitted the false Knight, and forced him to reveal himself in his true character as the fiend. It is therefore possible that the latter was forced, on being known to the little child, to go away in a flame after the manner of his departure in some other cases. I here record the ballad as I heard it [7], though it would appear probable that the last two lines I quote belong to the fifth stanza, and that it is the last two lines of the latter stanza which should be left isolated.

The Old False Knight

1. 'Where are you going ?' says the old false knight,
To the pretty little child on the road;
'I am going to the school,' says the pretty little child
That was scarcely seven year old.

2. 'What have you on your back ?' says the old false knight,
To the pretty little child on the road;
'I have my books on my back,' says the pretty little child
That was scarcely seven year old.

3. 'What have you in your hand?' says the old false knight,
To the pretty little child on the road;
'A cut of bread and butter,' says the pretty little child
That was scarcely seven year old.

4. 'Will you give me a bite?' says the old false knight,
To the pretty little child on the road;
'No not a crumb,' says the pretty little child
That was scarcely seven year old.

5. 'Are you going down to Hell ?' said the old false knight,
To the pretty little child on the road;
'Who'll ring the bell ?' said the pretty little child
That was scarcely seven year old.

6. . . . .
. . . .
'You may go there yourself,' said the pretty little child
That was scarcely seven year old.

* * * *

On to Carpenter and "False Sir John," I may start another thread- part 2 since this one is getting long.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 20 Mar 18 - 05:33 AM

Good idea, Richie - keep 'em coming.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Mar 18 - 08:23 AM

Like he said.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 20 Mar 18 - 09:26 AM

Before we leave Child 3, that MacSweeney version from Dublin is quite close textually to the Coates and the Gentry versions, though it omits land/staff and sea/boat.

Coates and Gentry are in fact strikingly similar textually. That does suggest some shared history, so perhaps this wasn't one of the ballads that Jane G brought with her from Watauga Co.

None of them have sheep or cows with blue (or no) tails. Is this a feature of Scots texts only? I haven't had time to check them all so far.

Thanks again Richie for making such a comprehensive list.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Mar 18 - 01:19 PM

Great stuff all round! I might have a go at a close text analysis if you haven't already beat me to it, Richie. Marvellous to see several experts analysing the tunes for a change. That's what's needed so badly in ballad study. Are all the texts of 3 up on your site yet, Richie?

Good idea to start another thread for the next one.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 10:58 AM

Hi,

Steve: All texts are up, the complete list is here with my headnotes- roughed in for now: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/brittish--other-versions-of-false-knight-.aspx The British versions are attached on this page. I also included info from Minton's article and his method of classification which is also flawed.

Brian: The Coates/Gentry is a distinct form as found in Quinn's version and Niles version also. Perhaps this form is a way to group these versions.

All: I only have two versions of the French-Canadian: "Où Vas-Tu, Mon Petit Garçon?" but there are more-- for now I'm moving on.

I need help identifying this Carpenter text mislabeled Roud 21 which should be Roud 12. It's a very complete version of Child A, Elfin Knight:
https://www.vwml.org/search?q=RN21%20Carpenter&is=1 There's no information about it at VWML, a mystery text but an excellent one. I can't read the words in pen in top right corner: A-- Gigine "e" or make sense of it. I guess I need to contact whoever is in charge of putting the texts on VWML for info. How do I do that?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Brian Peters
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 11:16 AM

You mean this one?

I don't know enough about the Carpenter papers to help you, but I thought I might at least narrow down which one you're talking about.


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Shimmering
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 11:31 AM

I checked out the Swedish (language) relative of Child 3 referred to in the PhD thesis linked above. Very interesting. I think it is pretty obscure --- the text is printed in a Finnish-language title (from Finland of course). It's certainly not anything I had seen before. Anyway, the form of the whole ballad seems very close to the Child 3 versions. Much more so than a lot of the so-called correspondences with Scandinavian ballads ...


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 11:35 AM

Hi,

Yes, Brian. That's the one, it's not exactly like any of the text I have. There may not be any more info about it available other than the notation in pen in the top right corner,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 12:36 PM

Richie, Brian - re 'mystery text'.

I think the "e" might refer to Child's E version from Motherwell mss, which has the same refrain lines (in fact almost identical 1st verse):

The Elfin Knight sits on yon hill
Ba ba lilly ba
Blowing his horn loud and shill
And the wind has blawn my plaid awa.

The word could be Esquire, but I'm not sure, and don't know what it means if it is.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 03:53 PM

It looks like a composite version to me made from Child A with alterations from the likes of Greig-Duncan (Alexander Robb).
It should be possible by looking at C's handwriting to work out what it says 'figure'? 'begin'? 'fugue'?


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: GUEST,Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 04:49 PM

It could be begin "e".

I did look at the handwriting on the entry titled May Colvin a couple of items further along in the search Richie gave above for Brian. His (what I presume is) fast handwriting is hard to read. Look at his writing of Colvin.

Several of his pages have indications like A _ e _. I did wonder if they were indications of Child versions.

Mick


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Subject: RE: Origins: James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads
From: Richie
Date: 21 Mar 18 - 11:59 PM

Hi,

TY, I think it says: A -- begin "e" as in similar to Child A with the beginning of Child E. It's not specifically a Child version nor Alex Robb's version and with the corrections written in that are not from other versions it seems to be unique. The question is: Why if it's an important version-- is it not labeled or attributed? Maybe as Steve said: It's a created composite.

I'm switching to James Madison Carpenter & Child Ballads 2 (part 2) and have started the thread- very busy but I'll try and put a new ballad on every day from Carpenter Collection. Child 4 is intimidating in its scope and breadth so I'll need help,

TY everyone

Richie


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