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Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond

GUEST,Max Tone 27 Sep 01 - 11:45 AM
IanC 27 Sep 01 - 12:07 PM
Malcolm Douglas 27 Sep 01 - 01:56 PM
GUEST,Max Tone (cookieless) 27 Sep 01 - 02:29 PM
Malcolm Douglas 27 Sep 01 - 03:58 PM
GUEST 27 Sep 01 - 04:56 PM
Max Tone 01 Oct 01 - 04:47 PM
Jim Dixon 17 Jan 02 - 10:34 PM
Malcolm Douglas 18 Jan 02 - 10:34 AM
Jim Dixon 01 Feb 11 - 02:45 PM
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Subject: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: GUEST,Max Tone
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 11:45 AM

Hi Folks,
I've found a reference to an old ballad about the sad fate of Lady Jean (or Jane)Drummond of Newton Castle, Blairgowrie, Scotland.
The story, from c. 1600, is about her unrequited love for the son of the neighbouring Laird of Ardblair, possibly Ronald Blair.
Legend has it that she visited the "Corbie Stane" in the nearby River Ericht, where she received a green dress which 'bewitched' her intended.
They were soon married, only for her to die soon afterwards.
Her ghost, dressed in green is now said to haunt the castle.

I've searched the DT/forum for various likely titles, to no avail. Can anyone help?

Rob


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: IanC
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 12:07 PM

There's plenty of versions of the story on the web and one of them mentions an "old ballad" but that's as far as it seems to go. If your reference is the same as mine, then it may be the usual romancing. Somebody may know better, though ...

;-)
Ian


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 01:56 PM

The following, from  Newton Castle  is the most detailed account I can find on the net:

"In love with a man who finally turns to another woman, Lady Jean tried everything to have him back (getting new and very nice clothes, shoes with silver buckles to be more attractive...) and started to sing love songs below the castle, but nothing worked.  So she went to a witch, who told her to dress in the witchin' claith o' green (getting grass, branch and bind them with a reed) then take them, go have a sit near the Corbie Stone and wait.  That is what she did.
After a long wait, she started to hear laughs and felt something pulling her clothes.  She finally fell asleep. When she woke up, in the morning, she was dressed all in green.
Everything happened like the witch said.  Lady Jean had her lover back and they decided to get married very soon.
She could not get her green clothes off and her future husband was intrigued. As soon as the wedding ceremony started, the groom knew something was wrong with the woman.  When he took her hand, he noticed that it was as cold as death.  At this moment, Jean cried awfully, and fell in the floor, dead.  Her body was laid on the nuptial bed.
She was buried near the castle.  The legend says that her gravestone is said to turn on itself three times every Halloween night and that her sad songs can still be heard in the Newton Tower.

The phrase witchin' claith o' green is used on several sites, and is presumably quoted from the common source of the anecdote, which unfortunately few of the site compilers concerned have had the elementary courtesy to acknowledge.  The site quoted above does, however, refer to a book called Scottish Witches.  No author is named, but it would appear to be Charles W. Cameron (Jarrold Publishing. 1990. ISBN: 0711704511; apparantly out of print.)  Cameron was a professional illusionist and writer of popular "occult" books; writers of that kind frequently fail to identify their sources, too, but you never know your luck.  So far, like Ian, I'm inclined to be sceptical.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: GUEST,Max Tone (cookieless)
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 02:29 PM

Thanks, Folks,

Let's hope the reference to a ballad isn't legend, too!
I'm collecting tunes and songs connected to "The Beautiful Mrs. Graham", for a CD to accompany an exhibition of 3 out of the 4 Gainsborough portraits of her, together with pics of her homes, relations, and some of her clothes from the family collection. April-June 2003, National Gallery, Edinburgh.

Her husband, Thomas Graham of Balgowan, was Laird of Newton/Blairgowrie after the Drummonds and before the present MacPherson chiefly line. There's an invite to the opening/CD launch on offer to whoever comes up with the lyrics...........or an e-mail address for Sir William MacPherson of Cluny

Ta, Rob


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 03:58 PM

In 1787, her husband came into possession of the Lynedoch estate, where the reputed graves of Bessy Bell and Mary Gray were situated.  Apparantly, he restored the dilapidated site and did it up quite nicely; I suppose that song is something you might fall back on if you find yourself short of material.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Sep 01 - 04:56 PM

Cheers, Malcolm,

Bessie Bell & Mary Grey already on the list, with Burns' "Humble Petition of Bruar Water......." (which refers to her as one of "Athole's bonnie Lasses" - after meeting her at Blair the previous evening - in his diary, she's 'belle et amiable' -- in his letter to Josiah Walker, she's "The beautiful Mrs Graham"). I've also got "Jeannie Reid's Hoose on the Green Jo", which includes all the covenanting Perthshire Lairds, including Balgowan -- and Cultoquhey, my direct ancestor. Her husband's tutor as a lad was James MacPherson, of Ossianic poems (in)famy. Their neighbours included Carolina Oliphant, Lady Nairne, James Duff (a bit later)and James Moray of Abercairny..............

Tunes include Donald Dow's "The Hon Mrs Graham of Balgowan's Reel", which is what got me started on the project, then "Lord Lynedoch's Strathspey", "General Graham's March", plus dozens of related tunes.

Keep in touch.

Rob


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: Max Tone
Date: 01 Oct 01 - 04:47 PM

refresh


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 17 Jan 02 - 10:34 PM

There is this song posted in an old thread: The Green Lady. Not sure if it's relevant to Lady Drummond, though.


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Subject: RE: Lyr Req: 'Green' Lady Jean Drummond
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 18 Jan 02 - 10:34 AM

Posted by me, and completely unrelated, or I'd have mentioned it here!


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE GREEN LADYE O' NEWTON
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 01 Feb 11 - 02:45 PM

From The History of Blairgowrie by John A. R. Macdonald (Blairgowrie: Printed at the Advertiser Office, 1899), page 142:

^^
THE GREEN LADYE O' NEWTON.

1. The ladye Jean sits in her bower,
Her cheeks are like the snaw;
She winna work, she canna play,
Sin' Ronald's gaed awa'.

2. "Gae bring tae me the crimson silk,
Gae bring tae me the blue;
Gae bring my siller-buckled shoon,
My satyne boddice new.

3. "An' busk me in my cramasie,
But an' the velvet black,
My perlin's fine, an' gowden kame,
To wile my fause love back."

4. Up an' spak a grey auld wife,
Was fourscore years an' mae:—
"Licht, licht's the luve that can be coft
Wi' gowd an' buskins gay.

5. "But an' ye be young Ronald's bryde,
A sair darg ye maun dree:
For the witchin' claith ye canna buy
Wi' the red an' white monie.

6. "Gae cut a bout o' the kirkyard grass,
An' a branch frae the rowan tree
That stands by itsel' on the Gallows Knowe,
Whar they hanged the murderers three.

7. "Gae twist an ell-lang rashy wyth,
An' tak' them doon alane
Tae the Coble Pule, 'tween the licht an' the dark,
An' sit on the Corbie Stane."

8. She has ta'en her a bout o' the kirkyard grass,
An' a branch frae the rowan tree,
That stands by itsel' on the Gallows Knowe,
Whar they hang'd the murderers three.

9. She has twisted an ell-lang rashy wyth,
An' sits in her bower alane,
Wi' her heart in a lowe, at the thocht o' her luve,
An' she waits till the day is gane.

10. An' at nicht she gaed tae the Coble Pule,
The licht an' the dark atween,
An' a' that nicht, frae dark tae licht,
She sat wi' steekit een.

11. She hadna sat an oor ava,
Never an oor but ane,
Whan she heard the win' sough thro' the trees
Wi' an eerie, eerie grane.

12. An' next she heard the howlets' cry
Within the saughen wud,
An' next the water kelpies' rout
Aboon the Ericht's flood.

13. An' then she heard, jist at her lug,
A gruesome, eldritch lauch;
An' then a voice cam' up the stream
Frae oot the Mill o' Haugh:—

14. Warlock wabsters, ane an' a',
Weave the witchin' claith;
Warp o' grass an' weft o' rash—
Weave the web o' death."

15. But aye she sat, an' aye she sat.
Nor spak' the lang nicht thro',
She was deadly cauld, an' her heart was glad
Whan the early gor-cock crew.

16. An' at the dawin' o' the day,
Whan she oped her steekit een,
She wis dinket out frae head tae heel
In the witchin' claith o' green.

. . . . . .

17. There's mirth an' daffln' in Newton Ha'—
The lady Jean's a bryde;
She's cled in a gown o' the witchin' claith,
An' she stands at Ronald's side.

18. "Wae's me for you, my ain true love,
That ever this should be;
But a mortal cauld is at my heart,
I fear that I maun dee.

19. "An' I hear a soon' that I heard afore,
Whan a' my leafu' lane,
Thro' the mirk midnicht tae the inornin' licht
I sat on the Corbie Stane."

20. They hae ta'en her up tae a chamber hie,
An' sune she steekit her een;
They hae streekit her corpse on the brydal bed,
In her brydal bed o' green.


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Mudcat time: 26 September 11:03 AM EDT

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