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Banks of Green Willow

DigiTrad:
BANKS OF GREEN WILLOW
BANKS OF GREEN WILLOW
BANKS OF YARROW (4)
BANKS OF YARROW (4)
BONNIE ANNIE
BONNIE ANNIE
THE BANKS OF GREEN WILLOW (2)
THE BANKS OF GREEN WILLOW (2)


Related threads:
(origins) Penguin: Banks Of Green Willow (67)
Banks of Green Willow - Cyril Tawney (12)
Lyr Add: Bonnie Annie (Child 24) (14)
Lyr Req: The Green Willow (P Farrell) (5)
Chord Req: Banks of Green Willow (44)
Lyr Add: A Ballad of the Green Willow (Heywood) (3)
The Green Banks of Yarrow (7)
Lyr Req: Banks of Green Willow (from Butterworth) (3)
What is 'Green Willow' (40)


Tim Salt 04 Sep 99 - 04:28 AM
John Moulden 04 Sep 99 - 06:46 AM
Davetnova 11 Mar 05 - 06:12 AM
IanC 11 Mar 05 - 06:28 AM
Nerd 11 Mar 05 - 08:26 AM
Davetnova 11 Mar 05 - 10:25 AM
GUEST,Dictionary freak 11 Mar 05 - 10:54 AM
GUEST,Dictionary freak 11 Mar 05 - 10:57 AM
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Subject: Banks of Green Willow
From: Tim Salt
Date: 04 Sep 99 - 04:28 AM

In the song, Banks of Green Willow, the mother and child are thrown overboard from the ship and "she will swim until she reaches the Banks of Green Willow".

I assume that the Banks of Green Willow is a mythical haven where sailors and others lost at sea go when they die - but am I right? Any ideas?

Tim


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Subject: RE: Banks of Green Willow
From: John Moulden
Date: 04 Sep 99 - 06:46 AM

No, just a place to which a body might drift. Longer versions of this story are given under Child Ballad 24, "Bonnie Annie" - There are many different ways of this song, several are in the Journal of the Folk Song Society. Some were altered by the collectors. The one most people sing is, I think, the version printed by Cecil Sharp in JFS - it seems not to be exactly what he hard from Mrs Overd - some of that is given by Bronson in "The Traditional Yunes of the Child Ballads" (vol 1)


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Subject: Banks of Green Willow
From: Davetnova
Date: 11 Mar 05 - 06:12 AM

In the Martin Carthy version I have when he thows the girl of the ship she tumbles then she "tavers". What does tavers mean? I've only ever come across the word as an adjective meaning belonging in a tavern.


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Subject: RE: Banks of Green Willow
From: IanC
Date: 11 Mar 05 - 06:28 AM

Seems to come from the Penguin version (QV).

See how my love do tumble,
See how my love do taver,
See how my love do try to swim,
That makes my heart quaver.


The version I sing has

Can't you see how she swims, my boys,
Can't you see how her body quivers,
She'll swim till she comes to
The Banks of Green Willow.


Could be an indication.

:-)


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Subject: RE: Banks of Green Willow
From: Nerd
Date: 11 Mar 05 - 08:26 AM

OED: To wander vaguely or aimlessly,

But it is derived from "tave" which means "to toil ineffectually"; "to move the limbs ineffectually."

So I guess in this case, it could either mean "drift" or "flail about, as though drowning"


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Subject: RE: Banks of Green Willow
From: Davetnova
Date: 11 Mar 05 - 10:25 AM

Thanks Nerd.
IanC - I was thinking similarly, it has that look of misheard words but Nerd's explanation fits perfectly.


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Subject: RE: Banks of Green Willow
From: GUEST,Dictionary freak
Date: 11 Mar 05 - 10:54 AM

Having checked Chambers, they give the word as of Scots derivation, alternative spelling taiver, meaning "to wander: to rave - adj: tavert (or taivert) muddles, fuddled, stupid. (cf Norwegian tava, to foil, to fumble)

Seems to me wandering/flailing or even tumbling fits the bill (which is what I always assumed it to be before I looked it up)


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Subject: RE: Banks of Green Willow
From: GUEST,Dictionary freak
Date: 11 Mar 05 - 10:57 AM

Whoops - dodgy digit work there! Should have read
adj: tavert muddled fuddled, stupid
cf Norwegian tava, to toil, to fumble

Sorry!


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