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Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell? / Blue Bell

15 Nov 96 - 11:33 PM
ac.graybill@fway.com 19 Nov 96 - 11:37 PM
Tom McDonnell JSMB73B@Prodigy.com 20 Nov 96 - 09:17 AM
Lin in Kansas 10 Oct 01 - 03:33 AM
masato sakurai 10 Oct 01 - 03:59 AM
GUEST,Lordclane 22 Feb 07 - 11:10 PM
Stringsinger 22 Aug 07 - 06:14 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 22 Aug 07 - 11:28 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 22 Aug 07 - 11:32 PM
GUEST 12 Jul 08 - 08:40 PM
GUEST,Arkie 12 Jul 08 - 09:37 PM
Steve Gardham 13 Jul 08 - 11:47 AM
GUEST,At last! 07 Mar 09 - 09:30 AM
Steve Gardham 07 Mar 09 - 05:43 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 07 Mar 09 - 06:17 PM
GUEST,Denny Shortliffe 02 Sep 10 - 11:10 PM
GUEST 27 Sep 10 - 08:03 PM
GUEST,SPARKLES THE CLOWN 27 Sep 10 - 08:05 PM
Kent Davis 27 Sep 10 - 09:03 PM
GUEST,doninark 04 Nov 10 - 11:57 AM
Jim Dixon 04 Nov 10 - 08:33 PM
Jim Dixon 04 Nov 10 - 08:48 PM
GUEST 04 Sep 13 - 12:45 PM
Mark Clark 04 Sep 13 - 12:48 PM
GUEST,Robert Godridge 14 Nov 13 - 05:16 AM
Mark Clark 14 Nov 13 - 03:41 PM
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Subject: Lyrics: Farewell, My Bluebell
From:
Date: 15 Nov 96 - 11:33 PM

I'd also like to know the history of this song. Was it a Civil War song?

"Farewell, my Bluebell, Farewell to you. One more fond look into your eyes so blue...


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Subject: Farewell, my Bluebell
From: ac.graybill@fway.com
Date: 19 Nov 96 - 11:37 PM

Hi, I work in a music library and we recently got a request from a patron for this Civil War-era (or earlier) song called "Farewell, My Bluebell". If anybody could help us find the lyrics, it would be most appreciated. If you would please email a copy to: polley@rand.lcl.lib.ne.us , in addition to posting them here. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: Farewell, my Bluebell
From: Tom McDonnell JSMB73B@Prodigy.com
Date: 20 Nov 96 - 09:17 AM

Interesting! I almost didn't read your message, thinking it was the one I sent a few days ago, on the same song! You can read it here, too. I was hoping to find lyrics to a verse, and/or more choruses, as well as possible corrections to the chorus I've been singing for many years. I MAY have that one chorus somewhere. I'll try to find it. Here's how I sing it:

Farewell, my bluebell, farewell to you!
One more fond look into your eyes so blue;
Through campfires' gleaming,
Through shot and shell,
I'll soon be coming back to my bluebell.


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Subject: Lyr/Tune Add: BLUE BELL (E Madden, T F Morse)
From: Lin in Kansas
Date: 10 Oct 01 - 03:33 AM

You can view, print and/or download sheet music at the Library of Congress site here.

Since the copyright is 1904, this couldn't have been a Civil War song, and it's too early for WWI. The uniform the soldier is wearing on the front cover looks like maybe Spanish American War? (I'm guessing, so don't hold me to that.)

Lin

________________________

BLUE BELL
By Edward Madden and Theodore F. Morse
Copyright 1904 by F.B. Haviland Publishing Co. Inc.

Blue Bell, the dawn is waking,
Sweetheart you must not sigh,
Blue Bell, my heart is breaking,
I've come to say goodbye,
Hear how the bugle's calling
Calling to each brave heart,
Sweetheart your tears are falling,
Blue Bell, we two must part.

Blue Bell, they are returning,
Each greets a sweetheart true,
Blue Bell, your heart is yearning,
Never a one greets you,
Sadly they tell the story,
Tell how he fought and fell
No tho't of fame or glory,
Only of his Blue Bell.

CHORUS: Goodbye my Blue Bell; Farewell to you.
One last fond look into your eyes so blue.
'Mid camp fires gleaming
'Mid shot and shell
I will be dreaming
Of my own Blue Bell.

_______________________

And here's the midi file:

MIDI file: BlueBell.MID

Timebase: 1024

TimeSig: 4/4 24 8
Key: Ab
Tempo: 096 (625000 microsec/crotchet)
Name: Grand Piano
Start
0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 0768 0 67 000 0000 1 65 064 0256 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 63 064 1024 0 63 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 63 064 2048 0 63 000 0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 0768 0 67 000 0000 1 65 064 0256 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 63 064 1024 0 63 000 0000 1 68 064 2560 0 68 000 1536 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 0768 0 70 000 0000 1 68 064 0256 0 68 000 0000 1 70 064 1024 0 70 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 68 064 0768 0 68 000 0000 1 70 064 0256 0 70 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 65 064 1024 0 65 000 0000 1 63 064 2560 0 63 000 1536 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 0768 0 67 000 0000 1 65 064 0256 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 63 064 1024 0 63 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 63 064 2048 0 63 000 0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 0768 0 67 000 0000 1 65 064 0256 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 63 064 1024 0 63 000 0000 1 68 064 2560 0 68 000 1536 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 0768 0 70 000 0000 1 68 064 0256 0 68 000 0000 1 70 064 1024 0 70 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 68 064 1536 0 68 000 0512 1 63 064 0512 0 63 000 0000 1 65 064 1024 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 0512 0 67 000 0000 1 65 064 1024 0 65 000 0000 1 63 064 1024 0 63 000 0000 1 70 064 2560 0 70 000 1536 1 72 064 2048 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 1024 0 70 000 0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 2048 0 67 000 0000 1 73 064 2048 0 73 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 71 064 1024 0 71 000 0000 1 72 064 3584 0 72 000 0512 1 75 064 2048 0 75 000 0000 1 73 064 1024 0 73 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 65 064 1024 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 72 064 2048 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 2048 0 70 000 0000 1 70 064 2560 0 70 000 1536 1 72 064 2048 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 1024 0 70 000 0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 68 064 2048 0 68 000 0000 1 67 064 2048 0 67 000 0000 1 73 064 2048 0 73 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 71 064 1024 0 71 000 0000 1 72 064 2560 0 72 000 1536 1 75 064 2048 0 75 000 0000 1 73 064 1024 0 73 000 0000 1 72 064 1024 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 1024 0 70 000 0000 1 65 064 1024 0 65 000 0000 1 67 064 1024 0 67 000 0000 1 68 064 1024 0 68 000 0000 1 72 064 2048 0 72 000 0000 1 70 064 2048 0 70 000 0000 1 68 064 2560 0 68 000
End

This program is worth the effort of learning it.

To download the March 10 MIDItext 98 software and get instructions on how to use it click here

ABC format:

X:1
T:Grand Piano
M:2/4
Q:1/4=96
K:Ab
A4G3F|G4E4|A8|E8|A4G3F|G4E4|A8|-A8|c8|-c4B3A|
B4c4|A8|A8|G4A3B|G4F4|E8|-E8|A8|-A4G3F|G4E4|
A8|E8|A4G3F|G4E4|A8|-A8|c8|-c4B3A|B4c4|A8|
A8|E2F4G2|F4E4|B8|-B8|c8|-c8|B8|-B4A4|A8|
G8|d8|c4=B4|c8|-c8|e8|-e8|d8|-d4c4|c4F4|G4A4|
c8|B8|B8|-B8|c8|-c8|B8|-B4A4|A8|G8|d8|c4=B4|
c8|-c8|e8|-e8|d8|-d4c4|B4F4|G4A4|c8|B8|A8|
-A2||


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Subject: RE: Farewell, my Bluebell
From: masato sakurai
Date: 10 Oct 01 - 03:59 AM

The sheet music for BLUE BELL is also in The Lester S. Levy Collection of Sheet Music.

~Masato


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Subject: RE: Farewell, my Bluebell
From: GUEST,Lordclane
Date: 22 Feb 07 - 11:10 PM

The German Nazis later stole the entire melody and set it to different words in the song, "Heil Deutschland."
    Threads combined. Messages below are from a new thread.
    -Joe Offer-


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Subject: Tune Req: Farewell My Bluebell
From: Stringsinger
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 06:14 PM

There was some interest in this song in 1996. Apparently it's from the Civil War and a hymn was made out of it. Anyone please have any information about this song and could someone post the tune in ABC?

The words that I found in a thread on Mudcat were these:

Farewell my Bluebell
Farewell to you.
One more fond look
into your eyes so blue.
Through campfires gleaming
Through shot and shell,
I'll soon be coming back
To my bluebell.

I think it became a five-string banjo piece. Does anyone know where it was recorded?

Thanks,

Frank


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 11:28 PM

The full title, "Blue Bell, March Song and Chorus," 1904, is easily found at American Memory.


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Subject: RE: Tune Req: Farewell My Bluebell
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 22 Aug 07 - 11:32 PM

See original thread, linked above by Masato.
I can't find any evidence of the tune being used for a hymn.


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST
Date: 12 Jul 08 - 08:40 PM

It was used in The Jolson Story (funnily enough era = Circa 1904), Scotty Beckett sang it as the young Jolson. Obviously it was a popular song of the time. Hope this triggers some memories.


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST,Arkie
Date: 12 Jul 08 - 09:37 PM

I do not know if the music is the same, but many thumbstyle guitarists play a tune they call Bluebell or Goodbye My Bluebell.   Not long after one of the Merle Travis Tributes at the Folk Center here in Mountain View, AR we sang a hymn in church with striking similarites. I believe it was "O Jesus I Have Promised".


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 13 Jul 08 - 11:47 AM

My grandfather sang a parody of 'My Own Bluebell'.

I entered into an alehouse, I entered the Music hall,
The singer was singing 'Bluebell', you could hear him in Montreal.
The first and the second sang 'Bluebell' and so did the following one,
And when the fourth turn started, as soon as he came on,
He gave us 'Bluebell' and then he gave a yell,
For someone had hit him with a big dumb-bell.
Now he's an angel with a golden harp as well.
he can't play 'Bill Bailey' so he plays 'Bluebell'.

One day I went to the races, I thought I could make some tin,
I spotted a horse called Bluebell and everyone said it would win,
It being a public fancy, everyone had backed it well,
so I thought I'd go and chance it so I went and backed Bluebell.
When I backed Bluebell I went to see the start,
before half the race was o'er me mouth was in me heart,
Then someone shouted, 'Old Bluebell's gone and fell!'
Well, the laguage that followed it was bluer than Bluebell.

One night I went out burgling, I entered a house at dark,
And as I got into Bluebell's room, I fairly got a start,
For she had a loaded pistol and she held it against my head.
She said, 'Marry me or I'll fire,' but I looked at her face and said,
'Goodbye, old Bluebell, farewell, adieu,
I've seen better faces on the monkeys in the zoo,
When I first saw you I thought you was a beaut,
But if that's your face it's a damn disgrace, and for the Lord's sake shoot!'

I now sing the song myself on occasions, along with other songs from the family repertoire. This one is in typical later MH style, with it's 3 disconnected comic stanzas on a theme.


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST,At last!
Date: 07 Mar 09 - 09:30 AM

We sang "Farewell, My Bluebell" in the 1940's at Smith college, and someone thought it was a Civil War Song.   No one knew where it had come from, but it was a favorite.   Over the years I have tried to find its origin, and now, 65 years later, Google came through! Thanks for contributing the entire song!


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 07 Mar 09 - 05:43 PM

There is an older song 'My Own Blue Bell' on the same theme dating back at least to c1800.
It starts,'My own Blue Bell, my pretty Blue Bell' There are versions on broadsides in the Madden Collection. I'd imagine there will be some in the Bodl as well. It has two 12-line stanzas and a chorus.


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 07 Mar 09 - 06:17 PM

Yes, several sheets of My Own Bluebell, dating from early 1800s, at the Bodleian.

Relationship with "Farewell...." may be by title coincidence only.


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST,Denny Shortliffe
Date: 02 Sep 10 - 11:10 PM

Thank you, thank you, thank you. Following the lead of my hero, Merle Travis, I've been playing this song on the guitar for almost fifty years. I wanted to sing it but never could find the words. (Yes, I googled it and it came up empty! At least, until now.)

I've never tried on 5-string banjo; maybe I should. I DID try to transpose it to autoharp but there's just too many chords and they're spread out all over the instrument. As one musician put it, it "doesn't lie well" on the autoharp.

Thanks again!

Yours from the Great White North,

Denny Shortliffe


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Sep 10 - 08:03 PM

Blue Bell, a wrong wants righting
Brave men must risk their lives ,
foemen in arms are fighting,
each for the victory strives,
there on the hillside lying,
there 'mid the guns loud roar,
Blue Bell your true love's dying
Calling for you once more

Goodbye my Blue Bell, Farewell to you.
One last fond look into your eyes so blue.
'Mid camp fires gleaming 'Mid shot and shell
I will be dreaming Of my own Blue Bell.

words by Edward Madden & Theodora Morse
HAMILTON hILL aND FRANCIS DAY & HUNTER


EBAY ITEM NUMBER 250703331901


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST,SPARKLES THE CLOWN
Date: 27 Sep 10 - 08:05 PM

UPPER POST.. FROM SPARKLES2NDTIMEAROUND AT EBAY


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: Kent Davis
Date: 27 Sep 10 - 09:03 PM

From "Folksongs & Ballads, Volume 2, Phyllis Marks", Augusta Heritage Recordings, 1991 http://www.augustaheritage.com/store.html (It's near the bottom of the page.)

Bluebell

"Belle was the hired girl's name.
The fire she tried to light.
She threw in a can of coal oil
And a handful of dynamite.

There was a loud explosion
O, it was sad to tell.
It blew the stove through the ceiling
And it also blew Belle.

Oh, where it blew Belle
Far, far away,
The house went up in the morning,
And came down next day.

Wherever it blew Belle,
We never learned.
I guess she went to Heaven.
She 'uz too green to burn."

Kent

P.S.

Those of you who have been to the West Virginia State Folk Festival in Glenville, WV, may have met Phyllis Marks or one of her children. She was one of the featured performers at the Friday night concert this year. Her son, Jesse Marks, Jr., helps with the hymn-singing and her daughter, Jane Marks Law, (who died this spring) helped in previous years. Phyllis Marks was born in 1927 at Sand Fork in Gilmer County, West Virginia.

P.P.S.

For another version here on mudcat:thread.cfm?threadid=47610&desc=yes


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell / Blue Bell
From: GUEST,doninark
Date: 04 Nov 10 - 11:57 AM

Thanks to Lin. First time I ever saw the full lyrics. I've been playing it as instrumental on guitar for 30 yrs. It was popularized in the /40s and 50s I think, by Merle Travis, the iconic 'thumbpicker' and one of the most influential guitarists in the 20th century (in my opinion). We have a competition event in AR each spring for 'pickers' in that style and Bluebell is the most popular song played, usually. I always thought it was Civil War but had no real basis for that belief. thanks for clearing it up a bit. Don


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Subject: Lyr Add: MY OWN BLUE BELL (from Bodleian)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 04 Nov 10 - 08:33 PM

From The Bodleian Library broadside collection, Johnson Ballads 1207: (Harding B 16(162a), Harding B 11(3957), and Harding B 11(2577) are similar.)

MY OWN BLUE BELL

My own Blue Bell!
My pretty Blue Bell!
I've left the bowers where roses dwell;
My wings you view
Of your own bright hue,
And, ah! never doubt that my heart is true.
Though oft, I own,
I've carelessly flown
To flirt with the jessamine newly blown.
I now have done
With folly and fun,
For there's nothing like constancy under the sun.

My own Blue Bell, &c.

Some belles are blues,
Invoking the Muse,
And talking of vast intellectual views;
Their crow-quill's tip
In the ink they dip,
And they prate with the love of a learned lip.
Blue belles like these
May be wise as they please,
But I love my Blue Bell that bends in the breeze;
Pride passes her by,
But she charms my eye,
With a tint that resembles the cloudless sky.

My own Blue Bell, &c.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MY OWN BLUE BELL
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 04 Nov 10 - 08:48 PM

This version has a few significant differences.

From The Vocal Annual, or Singer's Own Book for 1831 (London: Thomas Tegg, 1831), page 137:


MY OWN BLUE BELL.

My own blue bell!
My pretty blue bell!
I never will rove where roses dwell;
My wings you view
Of your own bright hue,
And, oh! never doubt that my heart's true blue!
Though oft, I own,
I've foolishly flown
To peep at each bud that was newly blown;
I now have done
With folly and fun,
For there's nothing like constancy under the sun.

My own blue bell, &c.

Some belles are blues
Invoking the Muse,
And talking of vast intellectual views;
Their crow quills [tip]
In the ink they dip,
And they prate with the lore of a learned lip.
Blue bells like these
May be wise as they please,
But I love my blue bell that bends in the breeze;
Pride passes her by,
But she charms my eye,
With a tint that resembles the cloudless sky.

My own blue bell, &c.


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell? / Blue Bell
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Sep 13 - 12:45 PM

It seems clear that the famous Merle Travis instrumental is based on the 1904 march Blue Bell. (I re-linked it here since Masato's link above is no longer valid.) The head (main theme) of the Travis instrumental is clearly taken from the chorus of the 1904 Madden/Morse march. Travis' bridge to the tune may be based on the opening part of the march but I haven't spent the time to investigate this.

Thom Bresh clearly thought it was a Civil War tune and I'm guessing he would cite Merle as his source for that information. It seems odd that Merle would have taken the trouble to work this tune up as an original instrumental. I'm guessing he originally picked it up from Mose Rager who may have picked it up from Kennedy Jones and he simply trusted the attribution that came with it.

I've also always thought it odd that the word bell is nearly always used in the title rather than belle. But now I see the original title used bell and not belle. I've seen the Travis instrumental variously called Farewell My Blue Bell, Goodbye My Blue Bell, and just Blue Bell. And of course blue bell is sometimes used as a single word, bluebell.

I still have two different recordings our own Justa Picker made of the Travis instrumental, one the way Merle played it and one the way Doc Watson played it. I sure miss Justa.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell? / Blue Bell
From: Mark Clark
Date: 04 Sep 13 - 12:48 PM

I was the "GUEST" above. The site has been unreliable and I didn't realize I'd been logged out.

      - Mark


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell? / Blue Bell
From: GUEST,Robert Godridge
Date: 14 Nov 13 - 05:16 AM

I believe this is a boer war song and here are 2 contemporary cylinder recordings.
http://cylinders.library.ucsb.edu/mp3s/10000/10948/cusb-cyl10948d.mp3
and
http://cylinders.library.ucsb.edu/mp3s/2000/2660/cusb-cyl2660d.mp3


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Subject: RE: Origin: Farewell, My Bluebell? / Blue Bell
From: Mark Clark
Date: 14 Nov 13 - 03:41 PM

Thank you, Robert, very much. Nice to hear what they thought it should sound like.

      - Mark


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