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Penguin: Long Lankin

DigiTrad:
BO LAMKIN
FALSE LAMKIN
LAMKIN
LONG LANKIN
YOUNG ALANTHIA


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: Why didn't Lamkin get paid? (84)
Lyr Req: Long Lankin/Lord Lankin (37)
(origins) info req: Long lankin (18)
Lyr Req: Long Lankin (Bill Caddick) (13)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
Long Lankin (from The Penguin Book Of English Folk Songs)


Alan of Australia 19 Mar 00 - 12:22 AM
Snuffy 05 Jul 00 - 03:52 PM
Malcolm Douglas 07 Jul 00 - 03:38 PM
Snuffy 07 Jul 00 - 05:34 PM
GUEST,Phil Cooper 07 Jul 00 - 05:38 PM
Snuffy 08 Jul 00 - 11:28 AM
Llanfair 09 Jul 00 - 04:50 AM
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Subject: Penguin: Long Lankin (tune only) ^^
From: Alan of Australia
Date: 19 Mar 00 - 12:22 AM

G'day,
From the Penguin Book Of English Folk Songs, Ed Pellow's rendition of the tune of Long Lankin (Child #93) can be found here.

Also, search the DT for #93.

Previous song: Lisbon.
Next Song: Lord Thomas And Fair Eleanor.


Cheers,
Alan ^^


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Subject: Lyr/Tune Add: FALSE LAMKIN
From: Snuffy
Date: 05 Jul 00 - 03:52 PM

FALSE LAMKIN

The lord said to his lady, before he rode out,
"Beware of False Lamkin, he's a-walking about"

"What care I for False Lamkin, or any of his kin,
When the doors are all bolted and the windows close pinned."

At the back kitchen window False Lamkin crept in,
And he prick-ed one of the other babes with a bright silver pin.

"O nursemaid, O nursemaid, how sound you do sleep.
Can't you hear one of the other babes to cry and to weep."

"How durst I go down in the dead of the night
Where there's no fire a-kindled and no candle alight ?"

As she was a coming down, a-thinking no harm
False Lamkin he caught her right tight in his arm.

"O spare my life, O spare my life, my life that's so sweet.
You shall have as many bright guineas as the stones in the street."

"O spare my life, O spare my life, till one of the clock.
You shall have my daughter Betsy, she's the pride of the crop."

"Bring me your daughter Betsy, she'll do me some good,
She shall hold the silver basin, to catch your own heart's blood."

Pretty Betsy being up at the window so high
Saw her own dearest father come a-riding close by.

"Dear father, dear father, O blame not on me
For it was the false Lamkin murdered baby and she."

There's blood in the kitchen. There's blood in the hall.
There's blood in the parlour where the lady did fall.

False Lamkin shall be hung on the gallows so high
And the nurse shall be burn-ed in the fire close by.


This Cambridgeshire version of Long Lankin was recorded by the Cambridge Crofters on their 1976 album The Cambridge Crofters (Barleycorn CR76). The notes state:
The song was probably based on a real murder at Balwearie Castle in Scotland, but spread to other parts of Britain because of its vivid description. In few versions is it made clear what Lamkin's motives for murder were: perhaps he is no ordinary robber, but a man with a grudge out for revenge.

I have failed to find Balwearie in my maps and atlases - the closest modern name could be Balkeerie, which is in Tayside near Glamis.

The tune used by the Crofters is much more upbeat than most associated with the Long Lankin theme.

Child #93
VRH

MIDI file: LAMKIN.MID

Timebase: 480

Tempo: 160 (375000 microsec/crotchet)
Key: G
TimeSig: 3/4 18 8
Name: False Lamkin
Start
0000 1 62 127 0479 0 62 000 0001 1 67 127 0479 0 67 000 0001 1 67 090 0479 0 67 000 0001 1 67 090 0239 0 67 000 0001 1 66 090 0239 0 66 000 0001 1 62 127 0479 0 62 000 0001 1 62 090 0479 0 62 000 0001 1 62 090 0239 0 62 000 0001 1 64 090 0239 0 64 000 0001 1 67 127 0479 0 67 000 0001 1 67 090 0479 0 67 000 0001 1 69 090 0479 0 69 000 0001 1 71 127 0959 0 71 000 0001 1 67 090 0239 0 67 000 0001 1 69 090 0239 0 69 000 0001 1 71 127 0239 0 71 000 0001 1 72 090 0239 0 72 000 0001 1 74 090 0479 0 74 000 0001 1 71 090 0479 0 71 000 0001 1 69 127 0239 0 69 000 0001 1 67 090 0239 0 67 000 0001 1 64 090 0479 0 64 000 0001 1 67 090 0319 0 67 000 0001 1 67 090 0159 0 67 000 0001 1 62 127 0479 0 62 000 0001 1 67 090 0479 0 67 000 0001 1 66 090 0479 0 66 000 0001 1 67 127 0959 0 67 000
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:False Lamkin
M:3/4
L:1/8
Q:160
K:G
D2|
G2 G2 GF|D2 D2 DE |G2 G2 A2|B4 GA|
Bc d2 B2|AG E2 G>G|D2 G2 F2|G4 ||


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Subject: RE: Penguin: Long Lankin
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 07 Jul 00 - 03:38 PM

False Lamkin is almost identical in text and melody to the version collected by Cecil Sharp on 11th. September 1911, from Yarrow Gill (aged 72) at Ely Union, Cambridgeshire, and most recently printed in The Crystal Spring (ed. Maud Karpeles, OUP paperback, 1987).  Lesley Nelson also has a version at her Child Ballad Website,  False Lamkin, which is again virtually identical, though she couples it with a different tune.  Did the "Cambridge Crofters" credit their source?

From the notes to the Penguin Book (1959):

"In Scots versions...the hero is a mason who builds a castle, is cheated of his payment, and makes a terrible retaliation.  In the English versions this idea is lost, and Lambkin, Longkin or Lankin is merely a lawless ruffian.  Yet he is no ordinary robber, for it is not booty that he is after, but revenge.  Is he perhaps a runaway serf with a grudge against his master?  Or is he, as has been suggested, a desperate leper seeking the old folk-cure of the blood of an innocent, caught in a silver bowl?  It is hard to guess the age of this ballad.  Bishop Percy printed a version from Kent in 1775, and in the following year Herd published a Scottish text.  The two versions differ in several details, and it is likely that the ballad was already old then.  The strongest Scots tradition names Balwearie Castle as the scene -and its building in 1464 as the occasion- of the crime.  Tradition is not evidence, but the song is probably based on a real event...Further versions will be found in the Folk Song Journal from Surrey (I, pp 212-3), and Hampshire (II, pp 111-12).  The ballad is studied in the Journal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society vol. I, pp 1-7."  -R.V.W/A.L.L.

This version was collected by Cecil Sharp, from Sister Emma, a nun, at Clewer, Berkshire, in 1909.

Child #93

@revenge @murder @deadbaby @death

Other versions on the DT:

Lamkin
Bo Lamkin
Young Alanthia.

There is a broadside version, including a fragment of staff notation, at the  Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads,  printed between 1819 and 1844 by J. Pitts of Seven Dials, London:  Lambkin  (large image).

There is also an entry at the Traditional Ballad Index:  Lamkin

Malcolm


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Subject: RE: Penguin: Long Lankin
From: Snuffy
Date: 07 Jul 00 - 05:34 PM

Malcolm

The Crofters give no information other than that it is a Cambridgeshire version, but I would assume it to be the Yarrow Gill one. Minor differences in text and tune are probably down to my transcription failures (especially "she's the pride of the crop" - after over 20 years I'm still not sure what they are actually singing.)

Wassail! V


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Subject: RE: Penguin: Long Lankin
From: GUEST,Phil Cooper
Date: 07 Jul 00 - 05:38 PM

To my mind the interesting character in the song is the false nurse. Her "kill her Long Lankin, she was never good to me" speaks volumes about what she felt about her situation.


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Subject: RE: Penguin: Long Lankin
From: Snuffy
Date: 08 Jul 00 - 11:28 AM

After checking out the text of Lesley's version of False Lamkin and re-listening to the Cambridge Crofters, there are several corrections to my original post. These bring it much closer to Lesley's version:

Vs3 & 4 - "other" should be "elder" (my mishearing)

V4 - should probably be "a-trying to weep"

V6 - "a-coming" should be "a-going" (cut & paste error)

V8 - "pride of the crop" should be "flower on the flock" (my mishearing). (Lesley has ""flower of the flock")

V9 - "Bring" should be "Fetch" (cut & paste error)

V13 - "the nurse" should be "his bones" (cut & paste error)

7 out of 10, must try harder.

The backing is guitar, mandolin, fiddle and whistle, apart from V12 (There's blood ...), which is sung a capella.

Wassail! V


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Subject: RE: Penguin: Long Lankin
From: Llanfair
Date: 09 Jul 00 - 04:50 AM

I do Martin Carthy's version, which seems to be the Penguin one. I do it a cappella, on my own, by myself, and haven't failed to silence the whole pub yet!!!!
It's a terriffic story! Bron.


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