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Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts

Cattia 11 Aug 20 - 10:49 AM
GUEST,Kenny B (inactive) 11 Aug 20 - 11:59 AM
Jack Campin 11 Aug 20 - 12:37 PM
GUEST,Guest TF 11 Aug 20 - 12:54 PM
Lighter 11 Aug 20 - 01:19 PM
Cattia 11 Aug 20 - 03:24 PM
GUEST,Brian Peters 11 Aug 20 - 05:56 PM
Jim McLean 12 Aug 20 - 04:54 AM
Nigel Parsons 12 Aug 20 - 06:53 AM
GUEST,Kenny B (inactive) 12 Aug 20 - 07:37 AM
Jim McLean 12 Aug 20 - 10:00 AM
GUEST,Mark 12 Aug 20 - 01:11 PM
GUEST,Wm 12 Aug 20 - 01:29 PM
Lighter 12 Aug 20 - 02:19 PM
Cattia 14 Aug 20 - 04:23 PM
Cattia 14 Aug 20 - 04:36 PM
Jim McLean 16 Aug 20 - 11:40 AM
Bearheart 06 Sep 20 - 04:28 PM
sleepyjon 07 Sep 20 - 01:47 PM
Cattia 09 Sep 20 - 12:08 PM
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Subject: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Cattia
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 10:49 AM

who can explain the meaning of the verse "I wot he has garred iron gae" (in eng. "he has made cold iron go!")

from stanza
He's taen oot his lang, lang sword
That he had strappit through the strae
And through and through Clerk Saunders' body
I wot he has garred iron gae

"To make cold iron go" is an idiom?
Grazie mille


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: GUEST,Kenny B (inactive)
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 11:59 AM

Possibility

He's taken out his long long sword
That he has cut his way through the straw
And through and through Clerk Saunders body
I guess he has given him the cold steel?

May have been an Idiom at the time?

Further Reference From June tabor songs


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Jack Campin
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 12:37 PM

There's no word for "cold" in that.

It's a bit odd but does make sense.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: GUEST,Guest TF
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 12:54 PM

Garred. Scots: made.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Lighter
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 01:19 PM

No idiom, just a simple reversal of phrases for emphasis and to allow the rhyme:

"And I wot he has garred iron gae through and through Clerk Saunders' body."


Compare, for example, Longfellow:

"Under the spreading chestnut tree, the village smithy stands."

Reverse the phrases, and it's suddenly normal, if blah.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Cattia
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 03:24 PM

thanks I also found the line "he's got that rusty rapier go" in June Tabor,that made me understand the sentence.
Thanks for your help


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: GUEST,Brian Peters
Date: 11 Aug 20 - 05:56 PM

Probably obvious to all, but 'I wot' = 'I know.'


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Jim McLean
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 04:54 AM

It's fairly simple, Clerk Sauders was 'run through' with a 'lang, lang, sword' i.e. the iron.
The Scottish words have been explained, 'strappit through the strae=wiped it through the straw, wot=know, Lang=long, garred=made, gae=go.
By the way, Kinloch's Sxottish Ballads, p.233, has 'I wot he garrd could iron go'.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Nigel Parsons
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 06:53 AM

I read the thread title and envisaged a clerk named Saunders chasing loose manuscripts around an office.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: GUEST,Kenny B (inactive)
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 07:37 AM

A further point of info for those who didnt know before LoL

Cambridge Dictionary Meaning of idiom in English

idiom
noun

B2 [ C ]
a group of words in a fixed order that have a particular meaning that is different from the meanings of each word on its own:
To "have bitten off more than you can chew" is an idiom that means you have tried to do something which is too difficult for you.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Jim McLean
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 10:00 AM

I should have written "cold" not "could".


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: GUEST,Mark
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 01:11 PM

I found Eliza Carthy's version really compelling. There's lyrics compared at This page


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: GUEST,Wm
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 01:29 PM

Further instances of variations of this phrase in Child. Worth of course examining the diversity and integrity of these sources before declaring it a common commonplace, so to speak.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Lighter
Date: 12 Aug 20 - 02:19 PM

The finest rendition I ever heard was by Jean Redpath on her "Scottish Ballad Book" LP (1962).

Haunting and beautiful in its simplicity.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Cattia
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 04:23 PM

Clerk Saunders (in Italian Il chierico Alessandro) is a ballad of unfortunate lovers with a supernatural corollary of the revenant. It tells of the sad fate of two lovers, Saunders and Margaret, he a young scholar, or a university student (in other versions a knight or a Lord), she the only sister of 7 brothers.
The difference in class does not allow the two young people to publicly manifest their love, in addition the seven brothers watching over the virtue of the girl. The maid had sworn that she would never, ever let Saunders into her bedroom. After that, the desire to sleep together one night, was stronger than any promise, and needless to say that very same night, the brothers also entered the room ...
I have grouped three variants:
Eliza Carthy "Heat Light & Sound" 1996 and Malinky The Unseen Hours 2005 which are quite similar to Child # 69 A;
June Tabor Ashes and Diamonds 1977 similar to Child # 69 C; and finally Child # 69 G version - also in Sir Walter Scott- sung by Jean Redpath (which I particularly like) where we have the night visit with revenant.
https://terreceltiche.altervista.org/clerk-saunders-child-69


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Cattia
Date: 14 Aug 20 - 04:36 PM

I found other points difficult to interpret.
The first: "And take the sword from out my scabbard,
You can use it to lift the pin "
the stratagem that Saunders suggests is to lift the door stop, that is to leave the door open, so "technically" she won't be the one to let him in since the door is open. However, the dynamics of the operation are not clear to me: why a sword? And why must it be she who is inside to lift the "pin"?
“This night”, she said, “the sleepiest man
That ever my two eyes did see,
Has lain by me and sweat the sheets,
And you know that’s a shame to see "
Does she scold him for doing nothing but sleeping chastely, wetting the sheets with sweat?
Here too we have the nightmare of pigs (I dreamed my bower was full of swine) and I imagine pigs hanging by their paws and quartered.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Jim McLean
Date: 16 Aug 20 - 11:40 AM

Using his sword to lift the latch, or "gin" as was originally written seems sensible but how she can open an open door is beyond me unless if the latch or bolt (another definition of gin) remains in the open position it proves she did it. The sword is just the implement.
As far as Saunders sleeping "chastely", Buchan's Ballads of the North of Scotland,
Verse 19:
Awake, awake now Clerk Sandy,
Awake, and turn ye unto me;
Ye're nae sae keen' s ye were at night,
When you and I met on the lee.

The 'sweat' she felt was, of course, his blood


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Bearheart
Date: 06 Sep 20 - 04:28 PM

Personally, my favorite version is Rod Paterson's (with Jock Tamson's Bairns). I love Rod's singing, and his delivery is perfect on this one. He makes it sound poignant and tragic without once being heavy handed.I am not sure which version he's doing -- I haven't compared them, it's been some time since I have listened to June Tabor's or any other recording.


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: sleepyjon
Date: 07 Sep 20 - 01:47 PM

In the version that I used to sing (about 1970, so if it wasn't a "traditional" version then it probably is by now!) Saunders says that he (not she) will open the door ("I'll tak my sword frae it's scabbard, And lightly lightly lift the pin, So you may swear and save your oath You ne'er let Clerk Saunders in") - I assume he would have inserted it through the crack, much as at the time we would have used a credit card! He also advises her to take a napkin and bind her eyes so she may swear she "ne'er saw him since late yest'reen".
SJ


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Subject: RE: Clerk Saunders Herd's Manuscripts
From: Cattia
Date: 09 Sep 20 - 12:08 PM

Rod Paterson's (with Jock Tamson's Bairns) Is this song?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o7R1mTjN-mA


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