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Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r

GUEST,Ian HP 15 Aug 01 - 12:16 PM
MMario 15 Aug 01 - 12:22 PM
Sorcha 15 Aug 01 - 01:12 PM
GUEST,Ian HP 15 Aug 01 - 01:40 PM
Matthew Edwards 15 Aug 01 - 02:03 PM
Matthew Edwards 15 Aug 01 - 08:29 PM
McGrath of Harlow 16 Aug 01 - 08:08 PM
Malcolm Douglas 18 Aug 01 - 11:08 AM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Aug 01 - 01:35 PM
McGrath of Harlow 18 Aug 01 - 03:49 PM
GUEST 18 Aug 01 - 03:52 PM
GUEST,leeneia 18 Aug 01 - 11:33 PM
Matthew Edwards 19 Aug 01 - 06:22 AM
Ian HP 19 Aug 01 - 05:24 PM
GUEST 19 Aug 01 - 07:18 PM
Matthew Edwards 20 Aug 01 - 01:05 PM
Ian HP 20 Aug 01 - 03:12 PM
rich-joy 13 Feb 03 - 05:16 AM
masato sakurai 13 Feb 03 - 06:23 AM
Genie 04 Nov 10 - 05:39 PM
Dave Hanson 05 Nov 10 - 04:13 AM
MGM·Lion 05 Nov 10 - 04:32 AM
GUEST,baz parkes 05 Nov 10 - 04:52 AM
MGM·Lion 05 Nov 10 - 05:05 AM
GUEST 05 Nov 10 - 05:14 AM
MGM·Lion 05 Nov 10 - 05:18 AM
GUEST,baz parkes 05 Nov 10 - 05:32 AM
GUEST,gary Waller 05 Nov 10 - 08:04 AM
GUEST,baz parkes 06 Nov 10 - 05:36 AM
MGM·Lion 06 Nov 10 - 04:17 PM
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Subject: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: GUEST,Ian HP
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 12:16 PM

The song How Shall I Your True Love Know comes, apparently, from Shakespeare's Hamlet. However, I can't find it in my copy of Hamlet. Did Shakespeare write it, or borrow it for the play? If it's not in the text (unless I've just missed it - entirely possible) has it become a tradition to include it, or was it suggested in a footnote? Any clues or info?


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: MMario
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 12:22 PM

Act IV Scene v


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Sorcha
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 01:12 PM

Click hereand read the whole scene. The song is broken up a bit, mixed into the dialog.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: GUEST,Ian HP
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 01:40 PM

Thanks, folks. Does anyone know if Shakespeare wrote the song? I know he borrowed some songs, but he may have written this. I've heard this sung. Is there any way of authenticating the tune, or should I assume the sings used a floating melody?


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 02:03 PM

Shakespeare's song is a variant of the Walsingham ballad which features a pilgrim and his dead lover (although in this case the lady is mourning her dead lover). As the priory at Walsingham was destroyed in 1538, under the orders of Henry VIII, the original ballad must predate this. There is a poem attributed to Sir Walter Raleigh on this theme which begins:

As you came from the holy land
Of Walsingham
Met you not with my true love
By the way as you came?

How shall I know your true love
That have met many one
As I went to the holy land
That have come, that have gone?

Ophelia sings snatches from various lost ballads in this affecting scene, as well as quoting some odd pieces of folklore.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 15 Aug 01 - 08:29 PM

Jan, this is a very intriguing question you have asked. There are various ballads related to this; firstly, one dated to 1465 or 1485 known as the Pynson ballad which recounts the founding of Walsingham priory, secondly there is an old ballad tune Walsingham (there is an abc of this tune in Bruce Olson's Ballad Index #491) Tune index where it is noted as a tune to a song As I Went To Wlsingham referenced az ZN284 in his Broadside Ballad Index. Probably the Ophelia song in Hamlet, and the verses attributed to Sir Walter Raleigh are related to this.
There is also a fascinating anonymous poem of circa 1600 lamenting the destruction of Walsingham which ends:
Weepe weepe o Walsingham
Whose dayes are nightes
Blessinges turned to blasphemies
Holy deedes to dispites,
Sinne is wher our Ladie sate
Heaven turned is to Hell.
Sathan sittes wher our Lord did swaye
Walsingham oh farewell.
I would hazard a guess that the song which goes:
I know my love by his way of walking
I know my love dressed in his jersey blue.
I know my love by his way of talking,
And if my love should leave me, what would I do?
is probably also related. It should be in the DT, if and when that is accessible.
If you have access to a good library I think you should be able to find articles by F W Sternfeld on Shakespeare's use of songs in his plays.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 16 Aug 01 - 08:08 PM

The fact that the Tudor Taliban ransacked Walsingham in 1538 wouldn't necessarily have meant a song about it mightn't have come into existence later, or an earlier one modified. And Shakespeare came from a recusant family.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 18 Aug 01 - 11:08 AM

A long set of As I came from Walsingham appeared in Thomas Deloney's The Garland of Good Will (c.1590s); text and notes (which also refer to other variants, including Shakespeare's) may be seen at Greg Lindahl's  Sixteenth Century Ballads: A work in progress...:

Thomas Deloney's Works


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Aug 01 - 01:35 PM

I note in the introduction the author refers to this, and says of it "Walsingham ...is almost certainly built up on a traditional foundation."

Which seems likely enough, in the light of his pretty ferocious celebration of gruesome public mass executions of Catholics, as shown in a couple of the ballads in the Miscellaneous Ballads section.

I see there is another referance to Walsingham in The Garland of Goodwill, in a Dialogue between Truth and Ignorance.(Ignorance being a Papist of course):

Ignorance

But our Lady of Walsingham was zure an holy Zaint:
And many men in pilgrimage,
did shew to her complaint.
Yea zweet Zaint Thomas Becket,
and many others moe:
The Holy Maid of Kent, likwise
did many wonders zhow,

Truth.

Such Saints are well agreeing,
to your profession sure:
And to the men that made them
so precious and so pure.
The one was found a Traitor,
and iudged worthy death,
The other eke for Treason
did end his hatefull breath.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 18 Aug 01 - 03:49 PM

Which seems likely enough, in the light of his pretty ferocious celebration of gruesome public mass executions of Catholics, as shown in a couple of the ballads in the Miscellaneous Ballads section.

That's ambiguous - of course the "his" here refers to Thomas Deloney, not Greg Lindahl.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: GUEST
Date: 18 Aug 01 - 03:52 PM

[ZN609]
The Contented Couckould.

Come hither thou seaman brave
    sir what do you require,
I prethee tell mee if thou can
    the thing that I desire,
Seeest thou not my true Loue,
    seest not my Louer go downe,
And seest thou not my true louer then
    com through New-Castle Towne.

And metest thou not my true Loue
    by the way as you came
How should I know your true Loue,
    that haue met many a one.
She is neyther whit nor black
    but as the heauens faire
Her lookes are very beautifull,
    none may with her compare.

..........
+ 18 more verses


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 18 Aug 01 - 11:33 PM

I just love it when Mudcatters are erudite.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 19 Aug 01 - 06:22 AM

Thanks GUEST,(is that you Bruce?), for The Contented Couckould.

Anyone want to comment on the notion that when Shakespeare want to portray Ophelia as having completely lost her wits, he has her enter singing folk songs!


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Ian HP
Date: 19 Aug 01 - 05:24 PM

Wow, thanks all. I am now in the middle of following up these wonderful leads. Very grateful. Any more?!


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: GUEST
Date: 19 Aug 01 - 07:18 PM

There are many references to related texts and fragments (most quoted) in Peter J. Seng's 'The Vocal Songs in the Plays of Shakespeare', 1967. However, it's imposible to get precise dates for early copies of related texts, so it's not really possible to find out what the original text really was.

Seng reprinted the copy in the Percy Folio MS (c 1630-45). The earliest extant copy (Bodleian) of 'The Garland of Goodwill' is of 1631, but it's imperfect, and the "Walsingham" text is missing from that copy. The "Contented Couckould" dates between 1601 and 1626, but 'Hamlet' is of 1599-1601, so that broadside version is probably not Shakespeare's source.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 20 Aug 01 - 01:05 PM

It is worth noting that the text of Hamlet given on the website linked to above is defective. Admittedly the play is notorious for its textual problems, but it is careless, to say the least, for the site owners not to indicate the sources of their text.
This would not matter so much perhaps, except that in the very song under discussion, the second to last line is wrongly given as:

"Which bewept to the grave did go"

This should read the opposite:

"Which bewept to the grave did not go"

This reading appeared in all the original texts (Quarto 1 &2, and the First Folio),but was "corrected" by Alexander Pope as being unmetrical.
Why Shakespeare should have inserted this extra syllable into the line is a matter for interpretation; perhaps it is a pointed comment by Ophelia that her father was buried in secrecy "hugger-mugger", without anyone to mourn him.

Some of the other songs in this scene are intriguing.Tomorrow is Saint Valentine's day is a typical night-visiting song with the usual roles reversed in that is is the female who appears at the window pleading to come in.The fragment:

They bore him bare-faced on the bier
Hey non nonny, nonny hey nonny,
And in his grave rained many a tear
[A-down, a-down, a-down-a]

has the ring of an old ballad, especially in the alliteration of the first line;bore/bare/bier. The Bonny sweet Robin comes from a common 16th century ballad, while the dirge And will a not come again? is another otherwise unknown song.
Anyway, good luck with your searches Ian.


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: Ian HP
Date: 20 Aug 01 - 03:12 PM

My Norton Shakespeare says in a footnote that "not" was inserted into the song by WS to mirror the fate of Polonius, though I've never really understood how this is so. The tune - as sung by Silly Sisters and by Jean Simmons as Ophelia in Laurence Olivier's film version - how far back does that go - to Shakespeare's time or before - anyone know?


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: rich-joy
Date: 13 Feb 03 - 05:16 AM

these are the words as sung by Roy Bailey (album c. 1971) :

HOW SHOULD I YOUR TRUE LOVE KNOW


How should I your true love know, from another one?
By his cockle hat and staff
And his sandal shoon.

He is dead and gone, lady, he is dead and gone
At his head a grass-green turf
And at his heels a stone.

White his shroud as mountain snow
Larded all with flowers
That bewept to the grave did go
With true love a-showers.

How should I your true love know, from another one?
By his cockle hat and staff
And his sandal shoon.


Roy's reference was "Seeds of Love" edited by Stepehn Sedle (? - my photocopy becomes unreadable here!!)

Anyone able to comment on the tune yet, as IanHP asked above too?

Cheers! R-J


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Subject: RE: How Shall I Your True Love: S'peare song
From: masato sakurai
Date: 13 Feb 03 - 06:23 AM

The Seeds of Love, edited by Stephen Sedley (Essex Music Limited, 1967, p. 174).


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Subject: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakespeare)
From: Genie
Date: 04 Nov 10 - 05:39 PM

Here's at least one tune:

Sandy and Elizabeth LaPrelle - "How Shall I Your True Love Know?"


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: Dave Hanson
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 04:13 AM

According to Stephen Sedley in 'The Seeds Of Love' the tune came down through the theatrical tradition and may be 16th or 17th century.

Sedley, incidently was a High Court Judge.

Dave H


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 04:32 AM

... Lord Justice Sedley: Later tho, Dave; not at time he compiled Seeds Of Love. He was tho already at the bar with a flourishing practice. Man of parts indeed.

Any info on antecedents of Ophelia's other song in same scene, "Tomorrow is St Valentine's Day"?

Interested btw in above point that Shax indicated Ophelia's madness by having her sing folksongs! Are we all mad, do you think? Or in any event would Will have thought so? Any views on this?

~Michael~


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: GUEST,baz parkes
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 04:52 AM

FWIW I've always thought of them as songs she would have heard in her childhood...a time of innocence, perhaps, before the world around her, a world of absolutes, fell apart.
I have no academic justification for this at all...it's just very pleasant to speculate without the prospect of the threat of an academic sausage machine at the end..

Baz


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 05:05 AM

But Baz, are they not rather unlikely and inappropriate for childhood songs? ~ far from 'innocent', esp the St Valentine's one. I've often, somewhat idly and facetiously, speculated that perhaps she got them from her brother who worked in the wicked city of Paris!

~Michael~


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: GUEST
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 05:14 AM

But as children,we hear, remember,and absorb without fully understanding don't we?

I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed this sort of speculation :-)

Baz


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 05:18 AM

Depends how sheltered a childhood one had, I suppose, Baz. I like this sort of speculation too ~~ so will aver that I cannot see Polonius as the sort of father who would suffer his innocent daughter to be exposed to such adult iniquity!

~M~


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: GUEST,baz parkes
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 05:32 AM

may need to root through the garage to find a text...:-))

Baz


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: GUEST,gary Waller
Date: 05 Nov 10 - 08:04 AM

There is an authoritative account on the Walsingham ballad and its offshoots in a number of the essays in Janes and Waller (eds). Walsingham in Literature and Culture (Ashgate 2009), especially the essays by Bradley Brookshire (on the music) and Alison Chapman (on the poetry).


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: GUEST,baz parkes
Date: 06 Nov 10 - 05:36 AM

@mike

Unless of course he was that bound up with ensuring the success of Leontes, he entrusted Ophelia to a nurse...one he hired from Verona, say...

Baz


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Subject: RE: Origin: How Shall I Your True Love Know (Shakesp'r
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 06 Nov 10 - 04:17 PM

Baz ~ suspect you meant Laertes. Leontes is in The Winter's Tale!

~M~


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