Lyrics & Knowledge Personal Pages Record Shop Auction Links Radio & Media Kids Membership Help
The Mudcat Cafesj

Post to this Thread - Sort Descending - Printer Friendly - Home


Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn

DigiTrad:
BRYAN O'LYNN
JOHN BOLYN
TAM O THE LINN
TOM BOLYN
TOM BOLYNN (2)
TOM BOWLING


Related threads:
Lyr Add: Tom Bolynn (3) (45)
(origins) Origins: Brian O'Linn (6)
Lyr Add: brian o Lynn was a bold Brexiteer (3)
Lyr Req: Brian O'Lynne (from Dave Van Ronk) (7)
Lyr Req: Brian O'Linn / Bryan O'Lynn (2)
Lyr Req: Johnny Macree (5)
Lyr Add: Tommy Linn (8)


In Mudcat MIDIs:
Tam o' the Linn (from the Silver Burdett third grade textbook, Music Now and Long Ago)


GUEST,Sharon Pyne-Protsik 31 Jan 02 - 11:23 PM
Frank Maher (extra) 31 Jan 02 - 11:59 PM
GUEST 01 Feb 02 - 12:08 AM
GUEST 01 Feb 02 - 12:16 AM
GUEST 01 Feb 02 - 12:42 AM
Nancy King 01 Feb 02 - 08:50 PM
Joe Offer 22 Dec 04 - 04:22 AM
Joe Offer 09 Jan 05 - 02:59 AM
Malcolm Douglas 09 Jan 05 - 01:50 PM
GUEST,Lighter at work 09 Jan 05 - 05:02 PM
GUEST,Leslie 29 Nov 05 - 10:22 AM
GUEST,murray on saltspring 29 Nov 05 - 06:44 PM
GUEST,Murray etc 29 Nov 05 - 07:02 PM
GUEST,Lighter at work 30 Nov 05 - 08:12 AM
GUEST,diana 28 Aug 08 - 10:03 AM
Jack Blandiver 28 Aug 08 - 11:18 AM
Steve Gardham 28 Aug 08 - 03:35 PM
GUEST,Leslie 01 Feb 10 - 12:50 AM
Lighter 01 Feb 10 - 05:34 PM
GUEST,guest jim 01 Nov 11 - 04:09 PM
Jim Dixon 23 Jan 13 - 08:21 PM
Jim Dixon 23 Jan 13 - 09:14 PM
GUEST,Lighter 23 Jan 13 - 09:32 PM
Lighter 17 Jan 19 - 10:29 AM
Steve Gardham 17 Jan 19 - 02:42 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Jan 19 - 03:57 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Jan 19 - 03:58 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Jan 19 - 04:02 PM
Steve Gardham 17 Jan 19 - 04:04 PM
Lighter 17 Jan 19 - 06:14 PM
Lighter 17 Jan 19 - 06:20 PM
Lighter 17 Jan 19 - 06:43 PM
Lighter 17 Jan 19 - 08:49 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 01:13 PM
Lighter 18 Jan 19 - 01:37 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 01:49 PM
Lighter 18 Jan 19 - 02:37 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 04:13 PM
Lighter 18 Jan 19 - 04:36 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 04:41 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 04:55 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 04:57 PM
Steve Gardham 18 Jan 19 - 05:11 PM
Steve Gardham 19 Jan 19 - 03:19 PM
Steve Gardham 19 Jan 19 - 03:41 PM
Lighter 19 Jan 19 - 04:35 PM
Steve Gardham 19 Jan 19 - 04:37 PM
Lighter 19 Jan 19 - 04:46 PM
Steve Gardham 19 Jan 19 - 04:47 PM
Lighter 19 Jan 19 - 04:49 PM
Lighter 19 Jan 19 - 07:11 PM
Lighter 19 Jan 19 - 07:35 PM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 08:56 AM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 09:23 AM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 09:34 AM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 09:45 AM
Lighter 20 Jan 19 - 10:49 AM
Lighter 20 Jan 19 - 10:51 AM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 01:39 PM
Lighter 20 Jan 19 - 02:19 PM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 05:07 PM
Steve Gardham 20 Jan 19 - 05:17 PM
Lighter 20 Jan 19 - 06:01 PM
Lighter 21 Jan 19 - 08:45 AM
Lighter 21 Jan 19 - 08:46 AM
Steve Gardham 21 Jan 19 - 09:29 AM
Steve Gardham 21 Jan 19 - 10:19 AM
Lighter 21 Jan 19 - 04:38 PM
Steve Gardham 21 Jan 19 - 06:54 PM
Lighter 21 Jan 19 - 08:56 PM
Steve Gardham 22 Jan 19 - 04:35 AM
Lighter 22 Jan 19 - 11:03 AM
Lighter 22 Jan 19 - 11:10 AM
Steve Gardham 22 Jan 19 - 03:53 PM
Lighter 22 Jan 19 - 07:27 PM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Jan 19 - 10:14 AM
Steve Gardham 24 Jan 19 - 10:38 AM
Mick Pearce (MCP) 24 Jan 19 - 10:45 AM
Steve Gardham 24 Jan 19 - 10:46 AM
Steve Gardham 24 Jan 19 - 11:00 AM
Steve Gardham 24 Jan 19 - 11:12 AM
Lighter 25 Sep 19 - 10:20 AM
Share Thread
more
Lyrics & Knowledge Search [Advanced]
DT  Forum
Sort (Forum) by:relevance date
DT Lyrics:













Subject: Brian O'Lynn
From: GUEST,Sharon Pyne-Protsik
Date: 31 Jan 02 - 11:23 PM


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: BRYAN O'LYNN
From: Frank Maher (extra)
Date: 31 Jan 02 - 11:59 PM

BRYAN O'LYNN

Bryan O'Lynn was a gentleman born
He lived at a time when no clothes they were worn,
But as fashion went out, of course Bryan walked in
"Whoo, I'll lead the fashions," says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn had no breeches to wear
He got him a sheepskin to make him a pair,
With the fleshy side out and the woolly side in,
"Whoo, they're pleasant and cool." says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn had no shirt to his back,
He went to his neighbor's and borrowed a sack
Then he puckered the meal bag up under his chin
"Whoo, they'll take them for ruffles," says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn had no hat to his head,
He thought that the pot would do him instead,
Then he murdered a cod for the sake of its fin,
"Whoo, 'twill pass for a feather." says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn was hard up for a coat
He borrowed a skin of a neighboring goat
With the horns sticking out from his oxters, and then
"Whoo, they'll take them for pistols," says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn had no stockings to wear,
He bought him a rat's skin to make him a pair,
He then drew them on and they fitted his shin,
"Whoo, they're illegant wear," says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn had no brogues to his toes,
He hopped on two crab shells to serve him for those,
Then he split up two oysters that matched just like twins,
"Whoo, they'll shine out like buckles," says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn had no watch to put on,
He scooped out a turnip to make him a one
Then he planted a cricket in under the skin
"Whoo, they'll think it's a-tickin," says Bryan O'Lynn.


Bryan O'Lynn to his house had no door,
He'd the sky for a roof and the bog for a floor,
He'd a way to jump out and a way to swim in,
"Whoo, it's very convanient," says Bryan O'Lynn.

Bryan O'Lynn, his wife, and wife's mother,
They all went home o'er the bridge together,
The bridge it broke down and they all tumbled in,
"Whoo, we'll go home by water," says Bryan O'Lynn.

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 5-Feb-02.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: TOMMY LINN
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Feb 02 - 12:08 AM

The last looks like the one already in DT. Here's another.

[from J. Ritson's The North Country Chorister, 1810

Tommy Linn

Tommy Linn is a Sotchman born,
His head is baalf, and his beard is shorn,
He has a cap made of a hare skin;
An elder man is Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn has no boots to put one,
But two calves skins, and the hair it was on;
They are open at the side and the water goes in;
Unwholesome boots, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn has a mare of the gray,
Lam'd of all four, as I hear say;
It has the farcy all overr the skin:
It's a running yade, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn no bridle had to put on,
But two mouses tails, and them he put on;
Tommy Linn had no saddle to put on,
But two urchin skins, and them he put on.

Tommy Linn went to yonder hall,
Went hipping and skipping among them all;
They ask'd what made him come so boldly in,
I'm come a wooing, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn went to church to be wed,
The bride followed after, she hung down her head;
She hung down her cheeks, she hung down her chin;
This is a gloomy quean, say Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linns daughter sat on the 'stair',
Oh, dear father, gin I be not fair!
They stairs they broke, and she fell in;
Your are fair enough now, say Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linns daughter sat on the 'brig',
Oh, dear father, gin I be not trig!
The bridge it broke, and she fell in,
You are trig enough now, say Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn, and his wife, and his wifes mother,
They all fell into the fire together;
They that lay undermost got a hot skin;
We are not enough, say Tommy Linn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Brian O'Lynn
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Feb 02 - 12:16 AM

There are several versions on the Bodleian Ballads website, but they seem to be more recent that the text given by Ritson.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Brian O'Lynn
From: GUEST
Date: 01 Feb 02 - 12:42 AM

In a nonsense medley in the first English songbook, Bassus, 1530, we have the line: "tomlyn whether go yow now.

The song of "Thom of lyn" was mentioned in The Complaynt of Scotland, 1549, but no text was given.

In Moros' medley in W. Wager's play, The Longer Thou Livest, 1569, we have the single verse:

Tom-a-lin and his wife and his wife's mother,
They went over a bridge together;
The bridge was broken and they fell in.
The devil go with you all, quoth Tom-a-lin.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Brian O'Lynn
From: Nancy King
Date: 01 Feb 02 - 08:50 PM

The late English singer Steve Benbow recorded "Brian O'Linn" many years ago. His version is similar to that posted by Frank above, except the first verse goes:
Ah, Brian O'Linn was a gentleman born,
His hair it was long and his beard unshorn.
His teeth they stuck out and his eyes they sunk in--
"Sure, I'm a wonderful beauty," says Brian O'Linn.

Back in the 60s, I remember my friend Jay Smith singing a verse that ended, " 'Lie close to the wall,' says Brian O'Linn". Think I might have to chase that one down.

Cheers, Nancy


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req: Brian O'Lynn
From: Joe Offer
Date: 22 Dec 04 - 04:22 AM

The entry for this song in the Traditional Ballad Index is titled Brian O'Lynn (Tom Boleyn). I would think the base title should be Tam O the Linn. Here's the Ballad Index entry:

Brian O'Lynn (Tom Boleyn)

DESCRIPTION: Vignettes about Brian/Tom. Each describes a situation he finds himself in and ends with his comment, e.g., "Tom Bolyn found a hollow tree / And very contented seemed to be / The wind did blow and the rain beat in / 'Better than no house,' said Tom Bolyn."
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1849 (Halliwell, citing a book printed c. 1560; reputedly mentioned in The Complaynt of Scotland, 1548)
KEYWORDS: poverty talltale humorous clothes
FOUND IN: Ireland Britain(England(All),Scotland) US(Ap,NE,So) Canada(Newf) Australia
REFERENCES (12 citations):
Randolph 471, "Bryan O'Lynn" (1 text, 1 tune)
Randolph-Legman I, pp. 155-157, "Brian O'Lynn" (2 fragmentary bawdy texts, 2 tunes)
Belden, pp. 501-502, "Tom Bo-lin" (1 text)
Flanders/Brown, pp. 178-179, "Old Tombolin" (1 text, 1 tune)
Kennedy 290, "Brian-O-Linn" (1 text, 1 tune)
SHenry H480a+b, pp. 52-53, "Bryan O'Lynn" (1 text, 2 tunes)
Hodgart, p. 199, "Brian O Linn" (1 text)
BrownII 189, "Bryan O'Lynn" (1 text)
O'Conor, p. 64, "Bryan O'Lynn" (1 text)
Pankake-PHCFSB, p. 35, "O'Brien O'Lin" (1 text)
DSB2, p. 27, "Bryan O'Lynn" (1 text)
DT, TOMBOLYN* TOMBOLY2* JONBOLYN

Roud #294
RECORDINGS:
Thomas Moran, "Brian-O-Linn" (on FSB10)
Tony Wales, "Bryan O'Lynn" (on TWales1)
Notes: Sam Henry claims that Bryan O'Lynn (fl. 1770-1793) was an "apprizer" and grand juror in Cashel during the years specified. - RBW
Randolph-Legman offers good notes on sources to this ballad. - EC
A variant of the melody to this song is a popular fiddle tune in Ireland.
I'm wary of the "Complaynt of Scotland" (1549) citation until I see it. The title given, "Thom of Lyn," and the title "Ballet of Thomalyn," licensed 1558, are both perilously close to "Tam Lin," which is not only the name of a ballad (Child 39) but also a fiddle tune. And in our indexing of "Tam Lin", we note a reference from 1549 -- is that "Complaynt of Scotland"? The plot's getting thicker, says Brian O'Lynn. - PJS
Plus there is the report that Charles Dibdin wrote a piece, "[Poor] Tom Bowling." Could this have given rise to the "Tom Boleyn" version? - RBW
Two of nine broadsides for this ballad as "Bryan O'Lynn" at Bodleian Library site Ballads Catalogue is printed in Gatesheadn between 1821 and 1850, shelfmarks Harding B.11(480), Harding B.25(307). - BS
File: R471

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Instructions

The Ballad Index Copyright 2004 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: ADD Version: Tam o' the Linn
From: Joe Offer
Date: 09 Jan 05 - 02:59 AM

I wonder if they could teach songs like this to third graders nowadays.
-Joe Offer-

Tam o' the Linn

Tam o' the Linn had no breeches to wear,
He got an old sheepskin to make him a pair;
With the fleshy side out and the woolly side in,
"They'll be pleasant and cool,'
says Tam o' the Linn.

Tam o' the Linn had no shirt to his back,
He went to a neighbor's and borrowed a sack;
Then he puckered the meal bag in under his chin,
"Sure, they'll take them for ruffles,"
says Tam o' the Linn

Tam o' the Linn was hard up for a coat,
So he borrowed the skin of a neighbor's goat;
With the horns sticking out from his pockets, and then,
"Sure, they'll take them for pistols,"
Says Tam o' the Linn.

Tam o' the Linn had no hat to put on,
So he got an old beaver to make him a one;
There was none of the crown left and less of the brim,
"Sure there's fine ventilation,"
Says Tam o' the Linn.

Tam o' the Linn had no shoes for his toes,
He hopped in two crab-shells to serve him for those;
Then he split up two oysters that matched like a twin,
"Sure they'll shine out like buckles,"
Says Tam o' the Linn.

Tam o' the Linn had no watch to put on,
So he scooped out a turnip to make him a one;
Then he placed a young cricket in under the skin,
"Sure they'll think it is ticking,"
Says Tam o' the Linn.

Tam o' the Linn to his house had no door,
He'd the sky for a roof, and the bog for a floor;
He'd a way to jump out, and a way to swim in,
"'Tis a fine place to live,"
Says Tam o' the Linn.


Source: Music Now and Long Ago Silver Burdett Textbook, Third Grade, 1956

Click to play


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 09 Jan 05 - 01:50 PM

Two references in the Traditional Ballad Index entry quoted above need to be qualified. Dibdin's Tom Bowling is unrelated to this song group; though it's not impossible that whoever changed "O Lin" to "Bolin" may have had the title of Dibdin's song in the back of his or her mind.

The fiddle tune Tam Lin (various spellings, and not in any case its original name) is modern, though often wrongly described as "traditional"; and needs mentioning only so that it can be excluded as irrelevant.

See also Opie, Oxford Dictionary of Nursery Rhymes, no. 514. The Opies are inclined to go for the Complaynt of Scotland reference ('Thom of Lyn') as relating to this song; it may well have done, but there's no way at the moment of knowing.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,Lighter at work
Date: 09 Jan 05 - 05:02 PM

The Silver Burdett version merely substitutes the name "Tam o' the Linn" for "Brian O'Linn" in what is pretty much the familiar text.
I suspect this was a conscious conflation by one of the editors.

"Recent" traditional versions with "Tom Bolynn" or any kind of "Tom" are extremely rare. Oscar Brand's heavily rewritten and modernized bawdy "Tom Bolynn," recorded in the mid-'50s and now widely known, appears to have been inspired by a non-bawdy New England version in the Flanders collection - IIRC. There's another "Tom" text in Sharp & Karpeles, which is repeated in Lomax & Lomax, "Our Singing Country."
I believe another one appears in Shoemaker's "Folklore of the Schoharie Hills." These derive from an early 19th C. American broadside.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,Leslie
Date: 29 Nov 05 - 10:22 AM

In college in the 1980's, our older alumni taught us a song that went thus:

Annie Boelyn had no panties to wear
So she bought her a sheepskin to make her a pair
With the shiny side out and the wooly side in,
They'll keep me quite warm, said Annie Boelyn.

Well they itched and they scratched and they made Annie sore
Said Annie: "By George, I'll wear them no more!"
With the shiny side out and the wooly side in,
"I'd rather go bare!" said Annie Boelyn.

Always wondered what the origin of that was. In the 1940's and 1950's, I'm sure it was considered quite bawdy.

Leslie


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: TOM O' LIN / THOMAS O' LINN / TOM A LIN
From: GUEST,murray on saltspring
Date: 29 Nov 05 - 06:44 PM

Here's the entry in my Musa Proterva [anthology of Scots bawdry]L\:

TOM O' LIN

(A)

1. Tom o' Lin and his wife and his good mither [= mother-in-law]
They gaed a' to the midden the gither;
Some shat thick and some shat thin —
'I'se for a spoon,' quo' Tom o' Lin.

2. Tom o' Lin's daughter she stood on the stair:
'O', quo' she, 'father, am I nae fair —
There's mony ane married wi' a far dinner skin.' [darker]
'The Deel tire ye out,' quo' Tom o' Lin.

3. Tom o' Lin's daughter she stood on the brig:
'O', quo' she, 'father am I nae trig?'
The brig it brake and she fell in —
'Your tochergude's paid,' quo' Tom o' Lin.

From Thos. Crawford, Love, Labour and Liberty (1976), 19-20, from the St Clair MS. (1781-5) [p. 248, no. (168)]; tune in Kinsley, # 350. Versions of sts. 2 & 3 are in Sharpe, Ballad Book (1823; repr. 1880), p. 44, no. xvi; Scott (ibid., 137-8) has a note on this, with a chorus, as sung by Drummond of Strageth. See also JEFDSS 33, 137-41.

This, and not the ballad of Tam Lin (Child 39), is probably the same song whose tune is mentioned in The Complaynt of Scotland (1549); and the Opies (Ox. Dict. N. R. 413, under "Tommy o' Lin") are probably correct in identifying not only that but the "ballett of Thomalyn" licensed in 1558, with this song. There may well be a connection, however—tenuous at best—and I would conjecture that the song hero took his name (in parody, perhaps) from the hero of the ballad. Other versions vary the name: Brian O'Lynn, etc.

(B)

THOMAS O' LINN

1. Thomas o' Linn was a Scotsman born;
His head was clippit, his beard was shorn;
His breiks were borrowed, his coatie was thin;
And an antique fallow was Thomas o' Linn.

2. His bridle was made of ell's skin tails,
And bits o' it were fu' o' horse nails;
His saddle was made o' a moudiewort's skin;
And an antique fallow was Thomas o' Linn.

3. Thomas o' Linn gaed through the moss,
Seeking a stable to stable his horse;
The potty was deep, and the yaadie fell in,
"Ye're stabled for ance", quo' Thomas o' Linn.

4. Thomas o' Linn and his gude-mither,
They baith fell into the fire thegither;
And them that was neathmaist they gat a het skin:—
"Ye're het eneuch now", says Thomas o' Linn.

5. Thomas o' Linn gaed doun the gate,
Wi' twenty puddings on a plate:
Ilka pudding had a pin, —
"There's walth o' wud here", quo Thomas o' Linn.

6. Thomas o' Linn, he had seven bairns,
They a' gaed to the midden in ane anithers' arms;
Some they drate thick, and some they drate thin, —
"There's dirt aneuch now", quo Thomas o' Linn.

From Kinloch's MS., Burlesque and Jocular Ballads and Songs (Edinburgh, 1827-9), pp. 46-7. Stanza 6 is the connector with version A; drate (present tense drite) is a synonym of shat, "voided excrement". With this stanza cf. a single quatrain collected by Vance Randolph (Arkansas, 1951) in Roll Me In Your Arms, 155:

Bryan O'Linn and his wife and her mother,
They all went out a-shittin' together;
Some shit thick and some shit thin—
Wipe it up with a spoon, says Bryan O'Linn.

The editor, Legman, gives this as a variant or additional stanza to the song, which is only fragmentary, called "John Briney Linn", from another single stanza, collected 1935:

John Briney Linn, his wife an' her mother,
They all went out a-shittin' together;
Some of 'em shit needles an' others shit pins—
It's pretty sharp shittin', says John Briney Linn.

2.1 ell's skin probably = eel's skin; 3.3 potty is a hole cut in a moss from which peats have been dug. SND (s.v. pot, sec. I.8; vol. VII, 210) quotes the Aberdeen Journal, 22 Jan. 1776: "In the Parish of Udny one James Henderson conveying a young Girl home, on his Return mistook his Way, and wandering into a Moss, fell into one of the Pots." ibid., yaadie = yaud (Old Sc. yald), "an
old mare, broken-down horse".

This version resembles that in The Pinder of Wakefield (1632):

A Song

Tom a Lin was a Welch man borne, [text Swelch]
His head was pold, his beard was shorne,
His clothes were ragged, his shirt was thin,
Whoever saw any like Tom a Lin.

Tom a Lin had no more Wiues but one,
Hee had a blacke Daughter her name was Ioane, [text B Ioan]
She was the slipperst of all her Kin [text flippers; =wantonest]
For wantonnesse, say's Tom a Lin.

Tom a Lins wife went ouer a bridge,
The bridge was narrow and shee fell in:
I have lost a good Slut, quoth Tom a Lin,
Who ever saw any like Tom a Lin.

Then Tom a Lin would a wooing ride,
With a good Point Norton by his side,
His Scabbard was made of a fat Eeles skin,
It's a flaunting blade, quoth Tom a Lin.

Tom a Lin had a good balde Mare,
Her heeles were glad, her back was bare,
Her belly set out, her belly set in,
Tis a fleering Iade, quoth Tom a Lin.

Tom a Lin had no boots to weare,
But a good pide Calues skin hornes and haire,
He buckled them on fast to his shin, [text skin]
Come let vs ride, quoth Tom a Lin.

Tom a Lin riding over a bridge,
The bridge was narrow and he fell in,
His foot it slipt, his heeles vp tript,
This is ill lucke quoth Tom a Lin.

Tom a Lin hee got vp againe,
Hee spyed a bonny Lasse walking then,
O I am Iocky wilt thou bee Gin,
Are not wee well married, quoth Tom a Lin?

Tom a Lin hee danct vp the Hall,
Ginny came after ragges and all.
Shee scrapt the scabs all from her skin:
Wee'l haue them fry'd in butter, quoth Tom a Lin.

—The Pinder of Wakefield, ed. E. A. Horsman, Liverpool U. P., 1956, pp. 73-5, emended (by Horsman) as indicated. Ed. notes (p. 93): for other versions see Ritson's North Country Chorister (Durham, 1802), sig. A2, Halliwell's Popular Rhymes and Nursery Tales (London, 1849), p. 271. A variant of stanza 4 is sung by Morus in The Longer Thou Livest, Moore Foole Thou Art (?1568), sig. A2.

See also JFSS no. 33 (VIII.3), 1929, 137-141, where A, G. Gilchrist gives a traditional Bucks version, Christie's tune (Trad. Ballad Airs, I.192), and text from The North-Country Chorister, 1802; the evidence seems to point to its being originally an English satire on the rude Gael.

Legman's annotation to the Randolph texts should be consulted (pp. 156-7)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,Murray etc
Date: 29 Nov 05 - 07:02 PM

OOps - perhaps someone will re-edit that spacewise.
M


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,Lighter at work
Date: 30 Nov 05 - 08:12 AM

Thanks, Murray. That puts Brand's version in starker perspective : much revised, much invented. (One of my favorite melodies, though.)

Leslie, can you tell us what college those Annie Boleyn stanzas came from, and when ?

BTW, Anne's dad was "Thomas Boleyn." FWIW !


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,diana
Date: 28 Aug 08 - 10:03 AM

hey wats up me nothing send a song to marshall school choir teacher mrs rider


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 28 Aug 08 - 11:18 AM

Joy!

Brian O Linn met the Devil one day,
Who showed him a girl lying dead in the hay;
With her he did sport 'til his dick it grew thin;
There's no chance of child, says Brian O Linn


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 28 Aug 08 - 03:35 PM

Just clarifying Malcolm's earlier comment about the song bearing relationship to Tom Bowling. Tom Bowling was a real old salt from York. His real name was Edward Bowling but he was known as Tom to distinguish him from his dad of same name. Apparently he was a renowned singer at Portsmouth in all the pubs which is where Dibdin met him. For more info check out the song provenance at www.yorkshirefolksong.net

So, not Dibdin's brother Tom as is often conjectured.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,Leslie
Date: 01 Feb 10 - 12:50 AM

Ha! I posted the Annie Boelyn verse a few years ago, and I don't know if anyone will see this, particularly "Lighter at Work". I was doing a google search to see if I could come up with anything and ran across my own post that I had forgotten about.

This was the University of Michigan - Ann Arbor. If my memory serves me right, this alum would graduated in the late forties, early fifties, perhaps?

It's interesting that there are SO many versions of this song, and some of the versions are quite scandalous, especially considering their day!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 01 Feb 10 - 05:34 PM

Thanks, Leslie!


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,guest jim
Date: 01 Nov 11 - 04:09 PM

My mom used to sing the Annie Boelyn song to us as kids and she learned it in the KKG house at the university of Wyoming around 1950.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: BRYAN O'LYNN (from Bodleian)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 23 Jan 13 - 08:21 PM

From the Bodleian Library broadside collection, Harding B 26(80); Firth c.20(135), Harding B 11(445), Harding B 15(36a), 2806 b.11(106), and 2806 b.11(217) are nearly identical but omit verse 11.


BRYAN O'LYNN

1. Bryan O'Lynn was a gentleman born.
He lived at a time when no clothes they were worn,
But as fashion walked out, of course Bryan walk'd in.
"Whoo, I'll soon lead the fashion," says Bryan O'Lynn.

CHORUS: Do, do, do, it'll do,
Says Bryan O'Lynn, it'll do.

2. Bryan O'Lynn had no breeches to wear.
He got sheepskins for to make him a pair,
With the fleshy side out and the woolly side in.
"Whoo, they're pleasant and cool," says Bryan O'Lynn.

3. Bryan O'Lynn had no shirt to his back.
He went to a neighbour's and borrowed a sack,
Then he pucker'd the meal bag up under his chin.
"Whoo, they'll take them for ruffles," says Bryan O'Lynn.

4. Bryan O'Lynn had no hat on his head.
He stuck on the pot being up to the deed,
Then he murdered a cod for the sake of its fin.
"Whoo, 'twill pass for a feather," says Bryan O'Lynn.

5. Bryan O'Lynn was hard up for a coat.
He borrowed a skin from a neighbouring goat,
With the horns sticking out from the oxter's end then.
"Whoo, they'll take them for pistols," says Bryan O'Lynn.

6. Bryan O'Lynn had no stockings to wear.
He bought him a rat's skin to make him a pair,
He then drew them over his manly skin.
"Whoo, they're illigant wear," says Bryan O'Lynn.

7. Bryan O'Lynn had no brogue to his toes.
He hopp'd in two crab shells to serve him for those,
Then he split up two oysters that matched like a twin.
"Whoo, they'll shine out like buckles," says Bryan O'Lynn.

8. Bryan O'Lynn had no watch to put on.
He scooped out a turnip to make him one,
Then he planted a cricket right under the skin.
"Whoo, they'll think it's a-ticking," says Bryan O'Lynn.

9. Bryan O'Lynn to his house had no door.
He'd the sky for a roof and the bog for a floor.
He'd a way to jump out and a way to swim in.
"Whoo, it's mighty convaynient," says Bryan O'Lynn.

10. Bryan O'Lynn went a-courting one night.
He set both the mother and daughter to fight.
To fight for his hand they both stripped to the skin.
"Whoo, I'll marry you both," says Bryan O'Lynn.

11. Bryan O'Lynn went to bring his wife home.
He had but one horse that was all skin and bone.
"I'll put her behind me as nate as a pin,
And her mother before me," says Bryan O'Lynn.

12. Bryan O'Lynn, his wife and wife's mother,
They all lay down in the bed together.
The sheets they were old and the blankets were thin.
"Lie close to the wall," says Bryan O'Lynn.

13. Bryan O'Lynn, his wife and wife's mother,
They all went home o'er the bridge together.
The bridge it broke down and they all tumbled in.
"Whoo, we'll go home by water," says Bryan O'Lynn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: Lyr Add: BRYAN O'LYNN (from Bodleian)
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 23 Jan 13 - 09:14 PM

From the Bodleian Library broadside collection, Harding B 11(480) and Harding B 25(307):


BRYAN O'LYNN

1. Bryan O'Lynn was an Irishman born.
His head it was bauld and his beard it was shorn,
His temples far out and his eyes far in.
"I am a wonderful beauty," says Bryan O'Lynn.

2. Says Bryan O'Lynn, "I've no breeches to wear."
He bought a sheep skin to make him a pair,
The fleshy side out, the woolen side in.
"They're pleasant and cool," says Bryan O'Lynn.

3. Bryan O'Lynn he had an old mare.
Her legs were long and her sides they were bare.
Away he rode through thick and through thin.
"I'm going a-courting," says Bryan O'Lynn.

4. His saddle was made of an old dog's tripe.
His bridle was made of a cow's windpipe.
His spurs they were made of an old rusty pin.
"I'm elegantly mounted," says Bryan O'Lynn.

5. As he rode over Rafley Hill,
He danced and pranced before them all.
They opened the door and bid him come in.
"I'm going to be married," says Bryan O'Lynn.

6. "Sit down; you are a mighty welcome guest.
Which of my daughters do you like best?
The one can card and the other can spin."
"I'll marry them both," says Bryan O'Lynn.

7. Bryan O'Lynn, his wife and wife's mother,
They all went out to walk together,
And through their clothes you might see their skin.
"They're elegantly dressed," says Bryan O'Lynn.

8. Bryan O'Lynn, his wife and wife's mother,
They all went into one bed together
The blankets were thick and the sheets were thin
"Lie close to my back," says Bryan O'Lynn

9. Bryan O'Lynn, his wife and wife's mother
They all went over the bridge together.
The bridge it broke; they all went in.
"They're gone to the devil," says Bryan O'Lynn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 23 Jan 13 - 09:32 PM

An elaborate tongue-twisting version from Edward Vaughan Kenealy in "Fraser's Magazine" (Feb. 1842):        


       Brian O'Linn was an Irishman born,
        His teeth were long and his beard was unshorn;
        His temples far out and his eyes far in,
        "I'm a wonderful beauty," says Brian O'Linn.
                 Fal de ral la ral la la ral lal lee.
        His temples far out and his eyes far in,
        "I'm a wonderful beauty," says ranting, roaring, boring, screwing, augering, gimleting, malleting, hammering, coblering, nailoring, soldiering, sailoring, tinkering, battering, barbering, tailoring, schemering, ramming, damning, boxing, pig-killing, rowing, cursing, grog-drinking Brian O'Linn : "I would leather the Devil," says Brian O'Linn.

        Brian O'Linn had no breeches to wear,
        So they brought him a sheep-skin to make him a pair;
        The woolly side out and the fleshy side in,
        " 'tis pleasant and cool," says Brian O'Linn.
                Fal de ral, &c.

        Brian O'Linn had an old grey mare,
        Her legs they were long and her sides they were bare ;
        Away he rode through thick and through thin,
        " I'm going to get married," says Brian O'Linn.
                Fal de ral. &c.

        Away he rode to the old cuckoo's nest,
        Who said "Which of my daughters do you like best ?
        There is one can card and the other can spin."
        "Hoo! I'll marry them both," says Brian O'Linn.
                Fal de ral, &c.
                                                                        
        "Will you marry me now ?" this damsel replied.
        " I will marry you now, my honey," he cried;
        "And I'll forfeit my life, or it's I will you win:
        Faik ! it's I that will settle you," says Brian O'Linn.
                Fal de ral, &c.
        
        Brian O'Linn, his wife, and wife's mother,
        They all went into one bed together;
        The blankets were broke, and the sheets were thin,
        "Let's lie close together," says Brian O'Linn.
                Fal de ral, &c.

        Brian O'Linn, his wife, and wife's mother,
        They all went over the bridge together;
        The bridge it broke down and they all tumbled in,
        "Bad luck to the mason," says Brian O'Linn.
                Fal de ral, &c.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 10:29 AM

Harding B (11) 480, posted by Jim Dixon above, is dated by the Bodleian to "between 1821 and 1850," making it possibly the next-oldest text after that of ca1785 in "The Distracted Sailor's Garland." (See current "Tom Bolynn" thread.)

The Morning Chronicle (London) (Aug 30, 1823) offers possibly the earliest firmly dated example of the most famous stanza:

“According to the Irish poet, one Brian O’Lin (a King, we believe) was the first man who wore breeches:
        
        Brian O’Lin had no breeches to wear,
        He bought him a sheep-skin to make him a pair;
        The ragged side out and the shaggy side in,
        Make a fine pair of breeches, quoth Brian O’Lin.”

The "King" ref. may be a humorous allusion to "Brian Boru" - whose name appears in place of Brian O'Lynn in a modern bawdy stanza.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 02:42 PM

Have you got the 5-stanza version, c1800 in 'The Siege of Gibralter' chapbook? I got my copy from ECCO but it's probably BL where the original is housed.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 03:57 PM

The Ritson text with a few slight alterations is at BL 11621.c.5 (50) 3
In The Distracted Sailor's Garland, of late 18thc.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 03:58 PM

This is very likely Ritson's source.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 04:02 PM

National Library of Scotland (online) has a 13 st version 'Bryan O'Lin' in a chapbook of late 18thc printed by J Chalmers & Co. Castle St Aberdeen.
Ref NLS LC 2787 (1) item 107117996.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 04:04 PM

First line is particularly interesting 'Bryan O'Lin was a Connaught man born'


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 06:14 PM

Steve, thanks for reminding me of the "Siege of Gibralter" version - which I posted to the other thread just a few days ago! It's hard to keep track of all the dates: a chronology might be useful.

Thanks too for the ref. to the NLS chapbook, which I somehow missed. It bears close examination for being the earliest appearance of the familiar form (unlike the "Siege" text). The Library dates it to "1771-1810."

Speaking of Scotland: Motherwell wrote to C. K. Sharpe on Jan. 19, 1825,

"Have you heard any song of which this forms a verse?

         Dree-an-alin had nae breeks to wear;
         He coft a sheep's skin for to mak' him a pair;
         The rough side out and the smooth side in,
         I'm gallantly mounted, quo' Dreeanalin.

"It seems to be somewhat like the song of 'Tamalin.'"


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 06:20 PM

Steve, I'm unaware of Ritson's version.

Can you post?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 06:43 PM

James Anthony Gardner, Commander, R.N., 'Recollections,'   (1906; in ms., 1836):

“Our gunner [William Philps] was one of the drollest fellows I ever met with—it was his delight to come on the forecastle in the first watch and sing comic songs to amuse the midshipmen assembled there. ‘Arthur O’Bradley’ was one that he used to sing with a great deal of humour. I believe it contained forty verses. ‘Bryan O’Lynn’ was another which I shall relate, leaving out the lines that may not be liked by those endued with fine feelings.   I have left out four verses [? lines—JL] as being rather out of order. I have heard the old gunner sing this when the sea has been beating over the forecastle and the ship rolling gunwale under. We used to get a tarpaulin in the weather fore rigging as a screen, and many a pleasant hour have I passed under its lee, with a glass of grog and hearing long-winded stories. Alas ! how dead are times now.”

                                  BRYAN O’LINN
        
        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        They all hid under a hedge together ;
        But the rain came so fast they got wet to the skin—
        We shall catch a damned cold, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        They went in a boat to catch sprats together ;
        A butt end got stove and the water rushed in—
        We’re drowned, by the holy, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        They all went on a bridge together ;
        The bridge it broke and they all fell in—
        Strike out and be damned, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        They all went out to chapel together ;
        The door it was shut and they could not get in—
        It’s a hell of a misfortune, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        They went with the priest to a wake together,
        Where they all got drunk and thought it no sin—
        It keeps out the cold, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife and wife’s mother,
        They went to the grave with the corpse together ;
        The earth being loose they all fell in—
        Bear a hand and jump out, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        When the berring [sic] was over went home together ;   
        In crossing a bog they got up to the chin—
        I’m damned but we’re smothered, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        By good luck got out of the bog together ;
        Then went to confess to Father O’Flynn—
        We’re damnation sinners, says Bryan O’Lynn.

        Bryan O’Lynn and his wife, and wife’s mother,
        Resolved to lead a new life together ;
        And from that day to this have committed no sin—
        In the calendar stands SAINT BRYAN O’LYNN.


A unique text - except for the bridge.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 17 Jan 19 - 08:49 PM

Just noticed that Ritson is posted far upthread.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 01:13 PM

Jon
Local version East Yorkshire, 1972.

Brian O'Lynn had no trousers to put on
They made him a pair from a sheepskin,
The woolly side out and the fleshy side in,
It sticks to me arse said Brian O'Lynn.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 01:37 PM

Thanks. Steve. The precise words may be local, but the concept (that the makeshift breeches/ trousers/ pants are highly uncomfortable and that Brian is outspoken enough to say so coarsely) is widespread.

Another version has "It'll tickle my bottom," and Brand's bawdier "Tom Bolynn" rewrite has "It tickles my balls."

Such lines must be very old (or often reinvented) because the humor in the original ("They're pleasant and cool") is largely ironic.

Of *course* the woolly side in would be uncomfortable, and if Brian can be made to say so in a humorously crude way, so much the better.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 01:49 PM

Re the Aberdeen printing: James Chalmers were father and son so the company under that name extends from 1740 to 1810 (not to be confused with James Chalmers of Dundee who covered a similar period). I've seen a J. Chalmers & Co piece printed in 1800. The son died in 1810. On the cover of the chapbook is a very crude woodcut of Mussel-mou'd Charlie, a famous ballad seller in Aberdeen. His dates are 1676 to 1782. Looking at the typography and layout I'd guess c1790 to 1800.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 02:37 PM

That's helpful.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 04:13 PM

I'm assuming you have the Coverley and Deeming copies which are almost identical as you would expect.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 04:36 PM

I do not. If they're nearly identical to Chalmers, the dates would be good enough for me.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 04:41 PM

I'm a little confused unless there are 2 copies of Distracted Sailor's Garland in the BL which would seem to be the case. Anway the references I have are 11621 C. 3. (G50). 3, and 11621 c. 5 (50). Either way the C 3. is from a bound book of garlands, collected by John Bell, Newcastle (91 garlands bound together) On the back of G5 is written by Bell presumably 'The old garlands in these volumes are printed by J. White and by T. Saint who died in 1788. Bought these 2 volumes of Lilley, October, 1848.' But looking at the first 2 G1 was printed by Randall of Stirling and G2 by Scott of Greenock, so I'd say we were looking at around 1800 in reality. Certainly some of the higher numbers from G5 onwards are earlier.

I also have a slip version Bryan O'Lin of 14 sts from the Madden Collection c1800 which is quite different in some respects, unfortunately no imprint.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 04:55 PM

Sorry, Jon.
I meant they are almost identical to each other both being Boston printers, Coverley the earlier, but you'd be best placed to find their dates. I think if I remember rightly Coverley was near the beginning of the century and Deeming more towards the middle but I could be wrong.

Any not already posted I'll try to find time to post here but I'm not sure what's already been posted. Perhaps a list as you suggest.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 04:57 PM

I've copied all of the broadsides I have and am moving on to other early versions in collections.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 18 Jan 19 - 05:11 PM

Have you got the NY version from 'Hooley's Opera House Songster' c1863, p66.
Bryan O'Linn, sung by S. S. Purdy 3 stanzas 'No breeches/over the bridge/watch-turnip' but the chorus appears to be a partial attempt to rationalise an Irish one.

Pachuly a lany, Kopunea Baduls,
Porcha galore McChanna Maugre;
Strawberry domicile up and go lean,
O Bully Slaguttereh, how have you been?

I think I have seen something like this printed by Goggin of Limerick, perhaps a Macaronic chorus.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 03:19 PM

Jon
I've now pulled together all of the pre-1900 versions I can find. Phew!
I gave each repeated stanza a letter of the alphabet which I used up before I got to the common 19th century broadsides. I'll continue with an analysis but there are so many different stanzas it might be better just to analyse the regular core stanzas for now. As I hinted at earlier it's impossible to separate the Toms from the Brians as they both existed at an early stage, late 18th century. However, if we just look at extant versions then what evidence there is would suggest that Tom came first, and perhaps 'Brian' was an attempt to move the skit from Scots/Welsh to Irish. The Aberdeen printing from about 1790 in which 'Bryan the Scotchman' becomes 'Bryan the Connaughtman' would perhaps back this up. Please do correct me if you disagree, or if I miss something.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 03:41 PM

Okay
Let's look at pre-1800. Please add any in I have missed.

I'm dismissing the 1630 Bassus reference as apart from the name 'tomlyn' the rest of the line bears no resemblance to a verse of our song. I'm assuming that 'Tomlyn' was a common name, the common surname 'Tomlinson' would imply this.

Complaynt of Scotland (1549) we only have a title 'Thom of Lyn' which I think most scholars are agreed upon is very likely our song. We know the song existed about then anyway. It also doesn't tell us the song was Scottish as there are several English pieces mentioned in The Complaynt. (How many 'Lyn's are there? Norfolk? Pure conjecture.)

Wager's play of 1569 gives us the name 'Tom-a-lin'. I'm assuming the play was written in London. Where was Wager from? He gives us probably the most stable stanza, 'over the bridge' (along with the first) and the regularly used format for other stanzas.

If I've got this right 'The Pinder of Wakefield' 1632 is the first reasonably full version 'Tom a Lin' is first then a 'Welch man' so our earliest recorded first verse is a skit on the Welsh. We need to know more if possible about this version if I've got the date right.


Realistically we now have a great jump to the late 18th century....


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 04:35 PM

Yes, Steve, there are two Distracted Sailors, dated by ECCO ?1765 and ?1775. The "Tommy Linns" are identical in both except for some capitalization and spelling.

So far is I can tell, Wm. Wager is a mystery. No biographical info is known, including his birthplace. He wrote two or three other pieces in the mid- to late 1560s.

There's King's Lynn in Norfolk, known as "Bishop's Lynn" till ca1540. There's also a Civil Parish of Lynn in Co. Westmeath, and an electoral ward of Linn in Glasgow. Was this formerly a town/estate unto itself? I find no historical information on it.

Henry the Minstrel's "Acts and Deeds of...Sir William Wallace" (ca1475: I've modernized the spelling) mentions "John of Lyn" several times, but allegedly John's family was from Bishop's Lynn.

These are the only "Lyn/Lynn/Linn/Lin/Lynnes" that I've discovered.

Much more to come on the name "Tom o' Lyn" (and vars.)

The 1863 "Hooley's" is much abbreviated.

Dave Van Ronk's version, learned from his mother (see the "Bryan O'Lynne [sic]" thread) also has a nonsense chorus, much less elaborate:

Shawla guh hawla guh thamma guh thoo
Shawla guh hawla guh thamma guh thoo
Shawla guh hawla guh thamma guh thoo
Balli shly gattery howsh munnaveen.

The last line is clearly derived from or related to Purdy's last line.

All for now. I have much more than this.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 04:37 PM

I've seen 2 copies of The Distracted Sailor's Garland in the BL and copied out the text, but unfortunately I don't have a copy of the garland itself to hazard a guess as to the date. The Opies in ODNR say c1765 which seems a little early to me, very likely before 1788 when Saint of Newcastle died, who likely printed it. Not all of the garlands in the John Bell Collection are mid-century. I'd have to have a good look at the illustrations and typography to give an estimate. The ballad with it mentions an 'Admiral Lake' going off to fight in Spain, which could be Admiral Leake who died in 1720. (not much help). This is a 'Tommy Linn' but all of the other late 18th century copies are 'Bryans'.

Anyway this version (9 stanzas) has 5 stanzas in common with the 1632 one (9 stanzas). 7 of the 1632 stanzas survive in later versions and all of the TDSG stanzas are found in later versions, so we are heading towards some stability around this period.

The rewritten version (1794) in Commander Gardner's reminiscences can only really tell us the ballad was well-known by then as only 2 of the 9 stanzas relate to other versions. All of the stanzas start with 'Bryan O'Lynn and his wife, and wife's mother'. The 3rd is the broken bridge, and the 4th is them going to chapel and being shut out.
He claims to have left out 4 stanzas which were 'rather out of order'. I strongly suspect he was making most of them up, or perhaps the old gunner did.

We can't date accurately the 3 printed texts, but there are some clues to chronology. The slip in the Madden Collection 'Bryan O'Lin' (14 sts) without imprint is almost verbatim the Aberdeen version (13 sts) with same title except that it has one more stanza:, (7th)

Bryan O'Lin had no hat for to wear,--
You shall have one, I vow and declare;
They bought him one of the riddle too thin,-
It's the rim of the world, says Bryan O'lin.

The start of the slip version is the usual 'Bryan O'Lin was a Scotch-man born' and the Aberdeen (copy?) has 'Bryan O'Lin was a Connaught man born'. All of the stanzas in these 2 versions are found in some form in later versions.

Then we have the 'Siege of Gibralter' garland with 5 stanzas, 'Bryan O'Lynn', again no imprint but very likely printed in Scotland or Newcastle. The first, second and 5th stanzas occur elsewhere but the other 2 I haven't seen elsewhere yet (not checked oral versions)
St 1.
When B O'L would a wooing ride,
He'd a good Scotch Woola hung by his side:
Its sheath it was made of a good elk's skin
I'm a huffring young fellow, says B O'L. (as already suggested perhaps the influence of Bryan Bohru here)

St 2 the church door shut as already mentioned

St 5 the broken bridge stanza.
If I get time I'll have a look at the early 19th century versions tomorrow.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 04:46 PM

Thank you for all this, Steve. Almost too much to handle. "Brian" must have been one of the most popular songs of 1800-1850. I've found many passing refs. in books and newspapers.

For example, from William Johnson Neale's "Cavendish" Vol. 1 (of 3), p. 67 (London: Henry Colburn and Richard Bentley, 1831):

“An old Irish sailor was sitting next me [in the foundering boat] who had been cracking his jokes on all around, and the first thing I heard amid the din of waters, was his gruff voice chaunting a snatch from the humorous ballad of Brien [sic] O'Linn; it was,

             The bridge tumbled down, and they all fell in,
             ‘Strike out and be d----d!’ cried Brien O’Linn.

These sailors are without parallel, joking and swearing in the very arms of death.”


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 04:47 PM

Jon
Cross posted. Have you actual copies of the DSGs? I assumed they were exact copies of each other. If you can send me actual copies I can give a better idea as to date. If they are not exact copies then the earlier one could be White and the second copy Saint's reprint. I have some of their work and might be able to compare things like woodcuts and style.
This would also partially explain the estimated dates by the BL. I have a lot of the ECCO material but this has obviously been added since I last got a batch. I don't have access online.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 04:49 PM

I'll get to work on a chronology and post something tomorrow.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 07:11 PM

From the ca1765 DSG:

Tommy Linn is a Scotchman born,
His Head is bald and his Beard is shorn,
He has a cap made of a Hare Skin,
An Elderman is Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn has no Boots to put on,
But two Calves Skins and the Hair it was on,
They are open at the Side, and the Water goes in,
Unwolsome Boots, says Tommy Linn.                           [sic

Tommy Linn has a Mare of the Gray,
Lam’d of all Four, as I hear say;
It has the Farcy all over the Skin,
It’s a running Yade, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn no Bridle had to put on,
But two Mouse’s Tails that he put on;
Tommy Linn had no Saddle to put on,
But two Urchin skins, and them he put on.

Tommy Linn went to yonder Hall,
Went hipping and skipping among them all;
They ask’d what made him come so boldly in,
I’m come a Wooing, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn went to Church to wed,
The Bride follow’d after hanging down her Head,
She hung down her Cheeks, she hung down her Chin,
This is a glooming Quean, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn’s Daughter sat on the Stairs,
Oh, dear Father, gin I be not fair;
The Stairs they broke, and she fell in,
You are fair enough now, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn’s Daughter sat on the Bridge,
Oh, dear Father, gin I be not trig;
The Bridge it broke, and she fell in,
You are trig enough now, says Tommy Linn.

Tommy Linn, and his Wife and his Wife’s Mother
They all fell into the Fire together;
They that lay undermost got a hot skin,
We are not enough, says Tommy Linn.                  [sic

By way of contrast, ca1775 has no common-noun capitalization. Also,

2.2 calf's skins 2.3 The arey 2.4 Unwholesome 5.4 I am   6.4 queen

OED has "gin" from 1590, marking it Scots, English regional (esp. northern), and Northern Hiberno-English.

But all its exx. before 1842 appear to be Scots.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Jan 19 - 07:35 PM

Tomalyn is listed as place in County Clare by John Speed, Abraham Goss, Dirck Gryp, "A prospect of the most famous parts of the vvorld" (London: William Humble, 1646. p. 144.)


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 08:56 AM

Jon,
As I wrote earlier 'Tomlinson' is a very common surname so Tomlin and similar spellings must have been at one time a very common Christian name. (Mary Poppins--David Tomlinson was the father.

The capitalisation and lack thereof is a common indicator of age in street lit. Up to about 1780 it was very common to capitalise most nouns, but not consistently so, even in the 17th century, so the later non-capitalisation is another indication of their differences in age. Obviously this is not a hard and fast rule and some capitalisation carried on into the 19th century in outlying places.
I would still like to see a copy of the c1765 garland again. It's possible I have it on an ECCO disc somewhere but finding it would take me ages. Do you have the actual references to the 2 copies? So that I can compare with my references.

Yes, once we get into the late 18th century northern England/Scotland is where it turns up and then back to England in the 19thc printings.
All we can say regarding likely origins is that the song was known in London and Scotland in the 16th century.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 09:23 AM

The first ms copy from the late 18thc is as given above the St Clair 3st ms. Am I right in saying this is the first appearance of the 'shit' stanza? St2 'daughter on the stairs' is in DSG and St3 the everpresent 'broken bridge'. Quite expectedly Sharpe when he published the St Clair version in his 'Ballad Book' in 1823 omitted the 'shit' stanza. Whole sets of 'new' stanzas start to appear in the 1820s in Scottish collections. Robt Chambers gives 2 quite different versions.

Popular Rhymes of Scotland 1826 (MY copy is 1844 but I'm assuming the song was in the first edition.) 4sts
1. puddings on plate
2. no breeches
3. fell in the fire
4. horse in the moss.

The Scottish Songs Vol 2. 1829 3 sts split into 6
1. sold sow, bought gryce
2. puddings on plate
3. fell in the fire (long fa la la chorus.

In a new edition of Sharpe's Ballad Book ed by David Laing in 1880 there is another version which fits in well here. 4sts with a 'fa-linkum feedledum' chorus.

1. mixture of usual first line with cap which is 'right side out wrong side in.
2. daughter on the stair
3. broken bridge (daughter)
4. horse in the moss.

Also in here needs to go the Kinloch version from 1827-9. 6 sts
1. usual 1st v.
2. bridle and saddle
3. horse in the moss
4. fell in the fire
5. puddings on plate
6. shit

BTW the 'shit' stanza could well be 17thc. I have similar pieces much longer which were printed then which go into much scatalogical detail one being an early version of 'The Slattern Wife'/'Robin-a-Thrash' Roud 2792, also found in these early Scottish collections.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 09:34 AM

Before moving on to the mid 19thc broadsides it's worth a look at the Nathaniel Coverley, Boston broadside reissued by Deeming of Boston. It takes us back to Tom Bolin again. There are 15sts (Thomas Coll. Vol 1, 21.) If I remember aright Coverley was c1820. The first 3 sts follow the late 18thc North British copies already referred to, and indeed most of the sts are found there (9) in some form or other but there are others from the general stock and some new ones as well.
4. no boots
7. mounted mare, sword and buckler, courting

new
12. after wedding dinner
14. after broken bridge wife gets out of water and goes off to search for TB
15. TB hides in a hollow tree.

It will be interesting to see if these new sts crop up in later American oral versions.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 09:45 AM

Coverley
Just had a quick Google and there was father and son and the dates I've seen are 1776-1814. In light of that the broadside is more likely c1810 going on style.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 10:49 AM

Am working on chronology. Daunting!

63 instances of "Tom Boleyn [etc.]" alone! And "Bryan" is more common.

Both DSG's are from the BL. ECCO gives the English Short Title Catalogue number of the ca1765 as T034706, and the ca1775 as T034707.   No shelf numbers or the like.

Sir Walter sang a good version, though undoubtedly improved by him.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 10:51 AM

Thanks for note on ca1810 second ed.

Is "ca1765" still acceptable?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 01:39 PM

If they were both printed in Newcastle, as seems likely, and one White and the other Saint then those dates would be fair, but again I'd rather have another look to be certain. When I'm in the BL feverishly copying things out by hand with a pencil and paper, I don't have time to take note of the finer points of printing. As far as I can tell, if they are the same copies that I have seen they are
c1765. 11621 c 2 13, song 3.
c1776 11621 c 5 50, song 3.

The later one contains the following:
the Distracted Sailor's complaint for his sweet-heart marrying with another in his absence, they being betrothed together.
Nancy's to the Greenwood gone.
Tommy Linn.

Because of the title I presume the earlier one has the same 3 songs.

The problem with ECCO is the entries as you say don't contain the original shelfmarks, nor do most of them make it obvious which library they have come from, and you have to rely on library stamps where evident.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 02:19 PM

The earlier ed. contains the same songs, but oddly the long title is:

"The distracted sailor's garland. Beautified with two delightful New Songs. I. The distracted Sailor's Complaint for his Sweetheart marrying with another in his Absence, they being betrothed together. II. A new Scots Song, called, Nancy's to the Green Wood gane. III. Tommy Linn. Licensed and entered according to Order."

Despite the short title, there are three new songs, not two.

Unless "Tommy Linn" was not new.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 05:07 PM

I think White is claiming Nancy and Tommy are the 2 new songs. What is interesting is 'A new Scots Song'. If the garland had been printed in Scotland would they have used that description? Makes it more likely to be White.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 05:17 PM

We can't really glean that much from looking at the oral versions. They are as you would expect very diverse. Most American versions are influenced by the Coverley/Deeming broadside. Surprisingly few versions, but very widespread. About the same number of American and British versions.

I've done a quick survey of stanza frequency. The most frequent is 'sheepskin breeches' with 33, closely followed by 'broken bridge' with 32. The usual first st comes in at 22 and then we have 'horns for pistols' at 19, latecomer 'turnip watch' at 18, and 'grey mare' at 17 and then there's a drop to 13 'in the bed'. There are about 30 sts that occur more than once.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Jan 19 - 06:01 PM

Steve, my impression of the frequency of the breeches and the bridge stanza match yours. That of the others sounds right too.

BTW, the surname O'Linn may have nothing to do with a geographical place.

The genealogy sites call it an anglicization of Irish "O Floinn," i.e. "Flynn" and "O'Flynn."

Texts with "Barney O'Flynn," etc., exist, prob. as a rationalization of he less familiar "O'Linn."


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 08:45 AM

References to "Tom a Lynn" to 1700:

ca1475 Blind Harry the Minstrel, Acts and Deeds of Wallace, mentions “John of Lyn” (a pirate) and “Thomlyn of Wayre.” James Moir (1889) speculates that “Thomlyn” is an error for “John Lyn.”

1549 Complaynt of Scotland mentions tale of “Yong Tamlene” and “dance” of “Thom of Lynn.”

1558 Lost “Ballet of Thomalyn” licensed.

1569 Wager, “The Longer Thou Livest”: one stanza of the song (about the bridge).

ca1593 “Tomalin” is the frustrated narrator of Thomas Nashe’s comic-erotic poem, “Choice of Valentines.”

1617 Nicholas Breton, “Machiavel’s Dog,” mentions “Tom a Lin” as an avatar of the spellbinding tale-teller.

1621 Richard Johnson, History of Tom Thumbe: “Nor shal my story be made of the mad merry pranckes of … Tom a Lin, the Divels supposed Bastard.” Also mentions “the lusty Pindar of Wakefield.”

1627 “Tomalin” is a fairy in Michael Drayton’s Nimphidia, the Court of Faery (1627).

1632 The Pinder of Wakefield: earliest full text of “Tom a Lin,” a “Welch man borne.”

1646 “Tomalyn” mentioned as a place in Co. Clare.

1658 “Tomalin” is the name of the demonic familiar of Mother Sawyer, the protagonist of “The Witch of Edmonton: a known true story composed into a tragi-comedy, by divers well-esteemed poets, William Rowley, Thomas Dekker, John Ford, &c.”


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 08:46 AM

I doubt that Blind Harry's "Thomlyn" is relevant here.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 09:29 AM

I think they're all relevant in establishing that Tomlin (and derivatives) is simply a well-established Christian name, but that's just my opinion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 10:19 AM

A few observations on some of the sts that don't occur in early versions. Considering the earliest date I have for 'bed/blankets' is c1840 a count of 13 is quite good going, but the 'turnip/watch' doesn't turn up until 1858 and that scores 18 hits. Of course we have no way of knowing how old these stanzas are.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 04:38 PM

"Tom o' Lynn," 1700-1830:

Ca 1765 Distracted Sailor’s Garland, “Tommy Linn”

ca1775 Distracted Sailor’s Garland ed. 2

1781-85 St. Clair ms., 3 stzs. Scots “Tom o’ Lin.”

1802 Ritson, North Country Chorister (text from Distracted Sailor?)

1810 The Farmer’s Magazine (Edinburgh), 2 lines of “Tam o’ the Lyn.”

1810-14 Coverly broadside, “Tom Bolin,” 15 stzs.

1810-14 Mass. broadside “Tom Bolin, and the Maid of Boston.”

1816 Scott, “Old Mortality”: “Ye ken what the auld sang says,
                   Take turn about, mither, quo Tam o' the Linn.”

1822 Earl of Somerset, “Blighted Ambition,” bridge stz., “Tom o’ Lyn.”

1823 C. K. Sharpe, “A Ballad Book,” 2 stzs “Tam o' the Lin.”

1824 Scott gives 6 stzs. in a note to Sharpe, “Tam o’ the Linn,”
learned before 1812 from James Drummond of Strageath.”

1825 Morning Chronicle (London) reports boxing match involving Jemmy Wilson, who called himself “Tommy O’Lynn.”

1826 Chambers “Tam o’ the Lin,” 1 stz. (fell in the fire), from recitation in Lanarkshire.

1828 New England Galaxy mentions “Tom Bolin, a personage of great notoriety in the world of song.”

1827-29 Kinloch ms., 6 stzs. “Thomas o’ Linn,” 2 resembling Sharpe’s.

1829 Chambers, "Scottish Songs," 3 stz. ‘Tam o’ the Linn, same stanza form as Scott’s, mostly different words.

1830 Scott sings three stanzas of “Tom o’ the Linn” or “Thomas O’Linn” to John Leycester Adolphus of London, who also had of it “boyish recollections.” Adolphus was struck by the excellence of Scott’s “set.”

1830 Columbian Register (New Haven, Conn.): 1 stz. with chorus: “I’ll sleep in the middle”

1830 Daily National Journal (Washington, D.C.): 1 stz. “Tommy Linn…hot skin.”

1830 Boston Saturday Morning Transcript: “The good old ballad that we knew when we were knee-high to a mosquito.” Full text, like Coverly


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 06:54 PM

You've missed out the Gardner 1794 set which contains 2 genuine sts.
and The Siege of Gibraltar set of 5 sts from about 1785. Do you want me to post them?


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 21 Jan 19 - 08:56 PM

I do have the Siege of Gibraltar but don't' think I 'm familiar with Gardner.

If you don't mind posting the latter, it would be helpful and interesting.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 22 Jan 19 - 04:35 AM

17th 6.43. You posted it.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 22 Jan 19 - 11:03 AM

Uh-oh. Didn't recognize Gardner's name in the "Tom..." context. And forgot that the "Siege" had a "Brian." Too much information to keep track of while working on other things.

So far all references are to "Tom" forms. Especially interesting is the 1621 remark that Tom a Lin is "the supposed devil's bastard." (Like Merlin.) There must have been some folklore tradition behind this, possibly related (by confusion?) with the "Tam Lin" ballad.

(Might as well remind everyone that the Irish reel "Tam Lin" was composed ca1974 by Davey Arthur and has nothing to do with the present discussion.)

I have so many "Brian O'Linns" that I'll have to list them separately - if I can find time.

They begin in the late 18th C. and are mentioned (no text) in America in 1793. I believe that the "Siege" version of the previous decade is the earliest.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 22 Jan 19 - 11:10 AM

"Tom Boleyn," etc., 1830-1900.

1830 Columbian Register (New Haven, Conn.): 1 stz. with chorus: “I’ll sleep in the middle”

1830 Daily National Journal (Washington, D.C.): 1 stz. “Tommy Linn…hot skin.”

1830 Boston Saturday Morning Transcript: “The good old ballad that we knew when we were knee-high to a mosquito.” Full text, like Coverly.

1832 The Day (Glasgow) 1 stz. (“gryce”), perh. with new humorous final line, also allusion to “dochter” and bridge.

1833 Salem (Mass.) Gazette, breeches stz.

1834 Arkansas Times and Advocate: full Coverley text with two added stzs.

1839 Wreck of schooner “Tom Bolin” off coast of Massachusetts.

1842 Kellogg Crosswell diary. (Pa.), printed in E. Garner, Folklore of the Schories Hills (1937), 15 stzs. like Coverly, with tune.

1846 Mass. Poetaster Albert White, Poems, has bullfrogs croaking “Tombolin, Tombolin, Tombolin.”

1849 Republican Farmer and Democratic Journal: identical but for one phrase with 1834 Ark. Times.

1851 Joanna Baillie’s humorous “Tam o’ the Lin,” 9 stzs., a complete rewrite (written perh. as early as ca1780).

1853 Literary World (London), two humorous paragraphs about “Tom Bolin” and the bridge.

1854 "Marsh’s Selection; or Singing for the Million": full text like Coverley, with tune.

1858 The Child’s Friend and Family Magazine mentions “Tom Bolin,” poss. as a broadside.

1869 Saturday Evening Post, bridge stz. but with kittens: “May the rats go with you, said Tom Bolin.”

1872 Sarah Emory, Three Generations, gives 3 ½ stzs. of “Tom Bolyn,” whole song called “vulgar.”

1876 Christie reprints Chambers’s text with a tune sung in Buchan “from time immemorial,” app. Collected before ca1850.

1890 G. W. Russell, “Up Neck” in 1825: 1 stz (bridge) “from an elderly lady.”

1892 Elizabeth Ward, Old Times in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts: 4 trad. stzs “The Song of Tombolin”; claims song was written about “an eccentric individual who lived here [about 1740] by the name of Tombolin.”

1893 Daily News (London): “There is an English hero called Tom o’ the Linn”; prints initial stz.

1895 Baring-Gould, A Book of Nursery Songs and Rhymes: 2 texts of ”Tommy-a-Lynn” (“a Dutchman born”), coll. in Devonshire.

None of these lists should be considered complete.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 22 Jan 19 - 03:53 PM

Jon,
Have you anything that positively recognises 'Tam Lin' before 1769? If not it's highly unlikely to have any connection to our song here. The tentative supernatural connection you make here could, I suppose, have influenced the writer of 'Tam Lin' in the middle of the 18th century. Just an opinion.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 22 Jan 19 - 07:27 PM

"Tom Boleyn," etc., 1896-2019:

1903 Sharp coll. “Brian O Lynn or Tom Boleyn” in Somerset. Text recollected from Brian O’Linn broadside.

1906-07 Sharp coll. 1 stz (“Thomas A Lynn…I’ll marry them both”) in Somerset.

1907 4 stzs. of “Wiley Bolin” coll. in E. Tennessee by E. C. Perrow.

1912 The Hardware Reporter (St. Louis): “I’ll sleep in the middle.”

1917 Sharp coll. 2 texts to different tunes in Hyden, Ky.

1930 George Brown coll. 4 stzs (and 1 new one), with tune and refrain (“Old Tombolin”) from lady whose father, born 1800, had sung the song. Pub. In H.H. Flanders & Brown, “Vermont Folk Songs and Ballads” (1931).

1940 Courier-Journal (Louisville, Ky.) 1 stz. : “Tom Bo-lin…no watch to wear.”

1940 Downes & Siegmeister, “Treasury of American Song,” “Tombolin” adaptation of Brown-Flanders.

1945 Helen Flanders coll. 14 stzs., with tune, in Middlebury, Vt.

1957 Oscar Brand, LP “Bawdy Songs and Backroom Ballads,” Vol. IV. Bawdified rewrite, at least partly inspired by Flanders-Brown.

ca1958 Brand’s polite version on LP “Laughing America.”

1962 folkie group The Swagmen record adaptation of Brand, LP “Meet the Swagmen.”

1966 Helen Vita, German-language adaptation of Brand on LP “Freche Chansons aus dem alten Frankreich” [!]

1979 Brand records his own new song, in old form, about “Tam O’Lynn…a leprechaun king.”

1980s “Annie Boleyn had no panties to wear”: 2 stzs. reported by “Leslie” to Mudcat in 2005. “Jim” replies that his mother had learned it ca1950.

1989 G. Legman receives "Xeroxlore" copy of "Tumble O'Lynn's Farewell," a new song about AIDS partly inspired by "Tom Boleyn."

2011 “Nicole” reports same 2 stzs of “Annie Boleyn,” app. Adapted from Brand. Another online report (1 stz.) from Martin Wainwright.

2014 Oakland group Starboard Watch performs Brand, with 1 stz. added from “Bryan O’Linn.”


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Jan 19 - 10:14 AM

Your list omits this short version from Belden Ballads and Songs Collected by the Missouri Follk-lore Society, 1940. It's short so I'll give it all here. Belden's notes include the following: The first of the following stanzas from Missouri is found in most versions; the other I have not seen elsewhere


TOM BO-LIN

Not title. Secured by Miss Hamilton in 1912 from Mary Morrison of the Kirksville Teachers College, who traced it back to her great-grandmother, born near Richmond, Virginia, in 1801.

Tom-bo-lin had no breeches to wear;
He bought a sheepskin to make him a pair.
With the skin side out and the woolly side in,
Make a fine summer suit for Tom-bo-lin.
  Larry-ho-ho, ho-larry-ho.

When you go to old Ireland, you know,
This is the way to milk an old ewe:
One at the head and one at the hams,
Two little boys to knock off the lambs.
  Larry-ho-ho, ho-larry-ho.



Mick


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 Jan 19 - 10:38 AM

Hi Jon,
Looking at your lists, I'll try to send you copies of any you haven't got if that's useful to you. I'll start with the earliest stuff. I can't see the 2 really long versions c1790, the one without imprint which is probably the earlie and the Aberdeen print which is almost identical but lacks one verse.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Mick Pearce (MCP)
Date: 24 Jan 19 - 10:45 AM

I've just noticed a 1786 entry in Ford: Broadsides, ballads, &c. printed in Massachusetts 1639-1800 (1922, many copies at archive):

2457. [Cuts.] Tom Bolin: | Together with | Collin and Phebe.
I A Couple of excellent New Songs; with good Tunes. [Printed
and] Sold at the Office Street, next Liberty Pole. 1786.
— Cash for Linen Rags. aas


There are also 2 entries for 1800:

3370. [Cut.] Tom Bolin.
Tom Bolin was a Scotchman born,
His shoes worn out, his stockings were torn,
+ AAS. EI

3371. [Cut.] Tom Bolin, | And the Maid of Boston.
Where Charles's tide encircling leaves
The sweets of Boston's fertile shore,
HC


AAS= American Antiquarian Society, Worcester
EI = Essex Institute, Salem
HC = Harvard College

3371 looks like it could be the same as your 1810-14 entry above, but with earlier date.

Mick


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 Jan 19 - 10:46 AM

Also I can't see the 4st version in Chambers' Popular Rhymes of Scotland 1829.

There is in Scottish Tradition, by David Buchan a 4st version said to have come from Sharpe and reprinted by David Laing in 1880.

You don't mention Deeming's Boston reprint of Coverley which might have helped to spread that version in America.

You haven't yet included the many broadside printings c1840-70.

It will be easier for me to put up my own lists as it would take me longer to compare.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 Jan 19 - 11:00 AM

British. 1890-1972. All Brians unless otherwise marked.
Alfred Williams. Oxon 7sts 1910s
Irish Street Ballads, Dublin 10sts c1841
My own recordings, E Yorks, 3 sts 1972
ditto             E. Yorks, 1 st 1972
Folk Song Journal, 33, p137, Edmondson, 7sts, Lancashire, 1910
English Folk Singer/New Penguin Book of FS, Todd of Derby, 6sts, 1960s
Songs of the West, Dart, 7sts, (Tommy) Devon 1890s
Kennedy, p644, 5sts, Co. Leitrim, 1954

Sam henry/Huntington Songs of the People, p52, 10sts, N Ireland.
Songs and sayings of an Ulster Childhood, Kane & Fowke, p32, 3sts, 1930s
Cecil Sharp Mss, Warren, Somerset, 1905, 1 st
My own recordings, E Yorks 2sts, 1920s
Voice of the People CDs Vol22 track 13, 5sts, Fuller, 1952, Sussex.


Australia
single st 'sheepskin' Folk Songs of Australia, Meredith Anderson, p14.


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 24 Jan 19 - 11:12 AM

N. America.
Belden as Mick says Tom B
Our Singing Country, Lomax/Seeger, p117, 10sts based on Coverley, Ky 1937
Pankake, p35, 4sts, 'O'Brien O'lin. c1960, Minnesota
Texas FS Owens p110, 2sts, 1952
Leach, LLC, p272, 3sts, Labrador, 1960
Hubbard, p322, Utah, 1947, 2sts
Wells, The Ballad Tree, p167, 6sts, Ky 1938 (Tom)
Sharp, Vol 2, p202 11 sts, Ky, Pace 1917, + 1 st from Morgan
Vermont FSB, p178, 5sts, Coolidge, 1930 (Old Tom B)
Brown, Vol II p459, 5sts, battle, 1910, NC
In The Pines, p306, 3sts, Nelson, 1959, Ky


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate

Subject: RE: Lyr Req/Add: Brian O'Lynn & Tam o' the Linn
From: Lighter
Date: 25 Sep 19 - 10:20 AM

Charles Hoy Fort, "Ructions" (short story ca.1906) [takes place in N.Y.C.]:

" 'Bryan O'Lynn, his wife and wife's mother, all went over the bridge together.' Mary Ann Thornton capering on a table, screeching, 'Bryan fell out and his wife fell in! `She's gone to the divil!' said Bryan O'Lynn!'

        "Cousin Mary Ellen, lively as anybody, sour jeering side of her mouth tucked away and smiling side dominating, taking up the next stanza:

'Oh, Bryan O'Lynn had no breeches to wear!
Bought a sheep's skin and made him a pair;
Fleshy side out and woolly side in--
"They itch like the divil!" said Bryan O'Lynn.' "

[Fort is better known as an indefatigable collector of weird events; see "The Book of The Damned" and its sequels.]


Post - Top - Home - Printer Friendly - Translate
  Share Thread:
More...

Reply to Thread
Subject:  Help
From:
Preview   Automatic Linebreaks   Make a link ("blue clicky")


Mudcat time: 13 December 12:02 PM EST

[ Home ]

All original material is copyright © 1998 by the Mudcat Café Music Foundation, Inc. All photos, music, images, etc. are copyright © by their rightful owners. Every effort is taken to attribute appropriate copyright to images, content, music, etc. We are not a copyright resource.