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Molly Bawn/Polly Vaughn.. How many do you know?

DigiTrad:
MOLLY BAWN (POLLY VAUGHN 2)
POLLY VAUGHN


Related threads:
polly vaughan (36)
Lyr Req/Add: Molly Bawn / Boating on Lough Ree (38)
DTStudy: Molly Bawn (Polly Vaughn) (156)
polly vaughan dick miles (49) (closed)
Lyr Add: Noreen Bawn (Neil MacBride?) (15)
(origins) Origins: Molly/Maureen Bawn (21)
Chords - Polly Von (17)
Polly Von - poaching (16)
Lyr Req: Polly Von (8)


Mick Lowe 29 Dec 98 - 09:34 PM
Joe Offer 30 Dec 98 - 05:44 AM
Roger in Baltimore 30 Dec 98 - 06:23 AM
Liam's Brother 30 Dec 98 - 09:00 AM
Charlie Baum 30 Dec 98 - 01:55 PM
dick greenhaus 30 Dec 98 - 04:47 PM
Mick Lowe 02 Jan 99 - 08:05 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 04 Jan 99 - 03:27 AM
Martin Ryan 05 Jan 99 - 09:06 AM
Steve Parkes 06 Jan 99 - 03:37 AM
Mick Lowe 07 Jan 99 - 07:07 PM
rich r 07 Jan 99 - 10:07 PM
Wolfgang 08 Jan 99 - 10:13 AM
Lesley N. 08 Jan 99 - 04:39 PM
Lesley N. 10 Jan 99 - 12:40 PM
Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca 10 Jan 99 - 03:59 PM
GUEST,JimmyC 05 Jul 00 - 09:45 AM
GUEST,JimmyC 05 Jul 00 - 10:01 AM
Naemanson 05 Jul 00 - 10:20 AM
rangeroger 06 Jul 00 - 03:03 AM
ard mhacha 28 Jun 01 - 11:11 AM
pavane 08 Aug 01 - 08:04 AM
pavane 08 Aug 01 - 08:07 AM
Matthew Edwards 09 Aug 01 - 08:10 AM
GUEST, GEST 28 Mar 03 - 06:39 PM
Giac 28 Mar 03 - 07:40 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 28 Mar 03 - 11:20 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 28 Mar 03 - 11:31 PM
anais 29 Mar 03 - 10:43 AM
GUEST 27 Apr 03 - 06:57 PM
Malcolm Douglas 27 Apr 03 - 07:38 PM
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Subject: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Mick Lowe
Date: 29 Dec 98 - 09:34 PM

Okay.. Molly Bawn or Ban (excuse the missing accent).. I'm looking for a version where she isn't mistaken for a swan and killed by her lover...
Any help as always is appreciated..
Mick


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Joe Offer
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 05:44 AM

Only three that I could find in the database. It has its own Digital Tradition Identifying Number - search for #308 It also has Laws #O36. Isn't it a Child Ballad? - I couldn't find a Child number for it in the database.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Roger in Baltimore
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 06:23 AM

Mick,

If she isn't mistaken for a swan and killed by her lover, what would the song be about? Perhaps he just "almost" killed her? Seems to me if you take the killing out, you have finished the song. I remain confused.

Roger in Baltimore


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Liam's Brother
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 09:00 AM

Roger hits the nail on the head. The essence of the song is that the woman is mistaken for a swan. The story, by the way, is older than the song itself. The origin is Irish. It isn't in Child collection. Roberts & Barrand recorded a very nice composite version with a text from England and a tune from Maine.

All the best,
Dan


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Charlie Baum
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 01:55 PM

The ballad of Molly Bawn (or Polly Vaughan, etc.) is actually one of the more famous ballads that Child DIDN'T collect. Therefore it has no Child number. The DT (in cooperation with the Ballad_L list) has tried to give numbers to these non-Child ballads beginning the numbering where Child left off.

The story is not only true; it repeats throughout history to this day. It was only within the last five or ten years that someone in Maine actually shot a woman, mistaking her white clothing for a swan or a deer.

Or, if you're looking for something about "Bawn" that's not this ballad, are you conflating it with another Irish song with "Bawn" in the title, perhaps the "Rocks of Bawn" or "Banks of the Bawn". (Bawn, I understand, is Irish for white-like-snow.)

-Charlie Baum


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 30 Dec 98 - 04:47 PM

Actually, Molly Bawn simply means "fair haired Molly" and there are a bunch of Irish songs that contain that name/description. Molly Bawn and Brian Og comes to mind, and I'm sure I can find other, swanless, deathless ditties.


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Mick Lowe
Date: 02 Jan 99 - 08:05 PM

Thanks for all you help guys,
The information given me is very vague to say the least
I quote "In transe I gazed upon Molly Bawn while boating on Lough somethingorother"..
I know it's not much to go on but life isn't made to be easy and I also know how good you guys are at coming up with answers to obscure questions such as this..
All the best
Mick


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 04 Jan 99 - 03:27 AM

The Molly Bawn I have heard doesn't have anything to do with being mistaken for a swan and shot by one's lover. I have heard that song in an English version sung by Chris Foster but it didn't mention any Molly. I think the lady in question in that song is named Polly, and she seems to survive the ordeal.

The Molly Bawn I know or have heard begins:

Tis I am sad and lonely
All in the distant west
Happy dreams of boyhood years
Last night disturbed my rest

Then there is something about boating on a lake with Molly Bawn. The tune is completely different from the one about the short-sighted hunter.


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Martin Ryan
Date: 05 Jan 99 - 09:06 AM

...."If I owned all Portumna...."

Ring a bell?

Regards


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 06 Jan 99 - 03:37 AM

How about this one from way back in the 50's? (Goes to the tune of The garden where the praties grow)

Have you ever been to London, lads? Well, listen to me tale,
I landed in Trafalgar Square and ende up in gaol!
They thought I was a squatter that had come to ban the bomb,
But I'm only a racing pigeon, and me name is Polly Von.

Canon Collins, Michael Osborne, Shelagh Delaney were there as well,
Trying to stop the nonsense that'll blast us all to Hell.
Just then a rousing cheer went up, so I quickly fluttered down,
Where I had me wing shoved up me back by an officer of the Crown!

Next morning, then, in Bow Steet, up before the magistrate.
He said to me, "Me feathered friend, you're in a sorry state.
You're charged with spotting on the Force, 'tis true, and that's no lie,
And with causing active fallout to come dropping from the sky!"

Now, thogh I'm only a racing pigeon, how I wish I was fat and white,
With an olive branch stuck in me gob, and setting wrong to right.
I'd show these human people that, instead of dropping bombs,
They should be standing in Trafalgar Square and only dropping crumbs!

Steve


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Mick Lowe
Date: 07 Jan 99 - 07:07 PM

Tinm
I think you might be on the right track with that
Do you have any more information or is that it?
Cheers
Mick


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: rich r
Date: 07 Jan 99 - 10:07 PM

According to W. K. McNeil (Southern Folk Ballads, Vol 1, 1987) the song is a British broadside that first appeared in print in Robert Jamieson's "Popular Ballads and Songs" (1806) under the title of "Lord Kenneth and Fair Ellinour". He apparently got it from Professor Robert Scott of King's College who in turn transcribed it from a recitation by one of his maids. A version from Scotland was known a "Peggy Baun" In the American oral tradition it is known under a host of titles: Molly Van; Molly Vaughn; Polly Van; Molly Banding; Molly Vanders; Molly Vonder; Molly Bendon; Mollie Bonder; Polly Bon; Polly Bond; Shooting of His Dear. The last title is telling because VAnce Randolph (Ozark Folksongs) has a couple versions in which the young woman is mistaken for a "fawn" in the fatal hunting accident. A number of people (and dogs and cows etc.) a killed each year in the US deer hunting season. The young man is most often, Jimmy, Jimmy Randolph, Jimmy Randall, or Jimmy Rangal.

rich r


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Wolfgang
Date: 08 Jan 99 - 10:13 AM

Thanks, Steve, for posting this. I had transcribed that many years ago, but not having the background I got some of the names quite wrong. I know it from The Exiles and they call it The Pigeon.

Wolfgang


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Lesley N.
Date: 08 Jan 99 - 04:39 PM

When I first saw this thread I wondered if Molly was related to Peggy - because I just finished doing a midi of Peggy. (Which is here if you're interested). The words to this don't have anything to do with swans so I didn't correlate the two. According to Bruce's site Peggy Bawn:

appears in The Scots Musical Museum (1787 - 1802). The song, without music appears in a companion to the Scots Musical Museum dated around 1772.

Is Lord Kenneth and Fair Ellinour supposed to be a variant of Lord Thomas and Fair Ellinor? Both melodically and lyrically the Peggy Bawn I found seem to be far from that - but, of course, that's why I enjoy traditional music!


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Lesley N.
Date: 10 Jan 99 - 12:40 PM

Oops - Peggy Bawn appears in *A* musical companion circa 1772. (Wondered how the companion could be earlier than the Musical Museum itself... duh) Apologies to Bruce!


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Tim Jaques tjaques@netcom.ca
Date: 10 Jan 99 - 03:59 PM

Mick, I used to have Molly Bawn, with the words as above, on a Ryan's Fancy LP. I don't think I have it any more. Unfortunately nothing by them is out on CD, except for one unauthorized CD with bad sound.

I can't remember any more of the lyrics except snippets "She was young and beautiful" (what loves in folk songs are anything but?:)) and something about "The days I spent with Molly Bawn/A-boating on Lochree(sp)"

The song about the lady shot as a swan I do have, and could probably dig it out. There are variants of this in the data base under Molly Bawn and Polly Vaughn. I'll see if I can locate the tape I have this on.


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Subject: Lyr Add: MOLLY BAWN AND BRIAN OG (Francie McPeake)
From: GUEST,JimmyC
Date: 05 Jul 00 - 09:45 AM

As per Joe Offer's suggestion, here is another song re Molly Bawn - It is properly known as "Brian Og and Molly Bawn." as Dick Greenhaus stated in his message.

Oh come listen to my story Molly Bawn
For I'm bound for death or glory, Molly Bawn
For I've lsited in the army where no more your eyes can harm me
For they'd kill me though they charm me Molly Bawn

Wisha Brian, you've been drinking now you rogue


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Subject: Lyr Add: MOLLY BAWN AND BRIAN OG (Francie McPeake)
From: GUEST,JimmyC
Date: 05 Jul 00 - 10:01 AM

Sorry about that - I'll get the hang of this yet. Here is the song from the second verse on -

Wisha, Brian, you've been drinking now, you rogue!
I can tell it by your winking, Brian Og.
For you'd ne'er be such a villain as to take the Saxon shillin'
And do their dirty killin', Brian Og.

And sure what would all the boys say, Brian Og,
That you've turned a redcoat heathen, Brian Og?
Go list so, if it please you. Ach! You villain, do not tease me.
Sure you'd drive a cailin crazy, Brian Og.

'Twas yourself that drove me to it, Molly Bawn.
When you read my death, you'll rue it, Molly Bawn.
When I die mid' foemen wrestin’, where the balls like hail are whistlin',
Aye and bloody bayonets bristlin', Molly Bawn.

Sure I done it all to prove you, Brian Og.
Oh I hate—oh no!—I love you, Brian Og.
But keep up your heart, a chara, for I'll buy you out tomorrow,
Though I'll die of shame and sorrow, Brian Og.

And to think that you would doubt me, Brian Og,
And meself so wild about you, Brian Og!
Would you let that thief Phil Dornan come and wed me in the morning?
Faith, you might have give me warnin', Brian Og.

Oh, I'm strong and hale and hearty, Molly Bawn.
Sure I'm just like Bonaparty, Molly Bawn.
And the devil the list I listed, for the sergeant tried but missed it,
And you’re mine now. you've confessed it, Molly Bawn.

Sure I'm killed right out with scheming, Brian Og.
It's meself that thinks it shaming, Brian Og.
Since you didn’t take the shillin' just to save your life I'm willin'
To get wed. Behave, you villain, Brian Og.

HTML line breaks corrected, and some punctuation added. --JoeClone, 19-Apr-02.


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Naemanson
Date: 05 Jul 00 - 10:20 AM

Charlie Baum - The incident in Maine happened this way. The woman pulled on her white mittens, stepped into her own back yard, took a few steps and was shot dead by an experienced hunter who had walked up behind her house in the thick brush. He was shooting at the white flash of her mittens which he thought was the flash of a deer's tale.

The death was ruled an accident. I think she left a husband and child.


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: rangeroger
Date: 06 Jul 00 - 03:03 AM

The hunter in Maine was first charged with murder,but was acquited in trial.Maine law does not allow shooting within 100 yards of a residence and he was right at that distance.
I followed the case in the papers as we had just had an incident in Idaho where a man was killed as he sat on a stump smoking a cigarette. The person who shot him thought he was a bear. He got jail time and had his hunting priveledges revoked for life.
rr


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: ard mhacha
Date: 28 Jun 01 - 11:11 AM

Hello All I am sure that Francie McPeake was the scribe of Molly Bawn and Brian og. This song is not to be confused with Molly Bawn Leary the poor dame who was mistaken for a swan, and some short-sighted duck-killer shot her. Francie also wrote My Singing Bird and Will you go lassie go. The McPeakes a talented music family from Belfast, made a number of records in the 60`s. Slan Ard Mhacha.


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: pavane
Date: 08 Aug 01 - 08:04 AM

There are versions of BOTH songs in the Bodleian Ballad Library, both under the name of Molly Bawn. The 'swan' version also appears as Molly Whan.

Molly Whan

Molly Bawn (no swans!)


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: pavane
Date: 08 Aug 01 - 08:07 AM

Sorry, one appears to be a THIRD song of the same name!


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Matthew Edwards
Date: 09 Aug 01 - 08:10 AM

Can't access Supersearch at present to verify. However, there is a variant of I'm a Rover, and Seldom Sober sung by Davie Stewart where Molly turns up (alive and unaccompanied by swans!).The chorus goes:

I'm often drunk, and seldom sober
I'm a constant rover from town to town
And when I'm dead and my days are over,
O, lay me down, my Molly Bann.

I'm not sure her life in this song is much to be envied; her lover is an alcoholic rambler, who tends to turn up late at night, when she is trying to sleep. He demands to be let in as he is exhausted and soaked to the skin!
The song is on Davie Stewart Topic 12T293, reissued on CD by Greentrax as CDTRAX 9052. There is a similar song by John (Jacko) Reilly but its not currently available.


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: GUEST, GEST
Date: 28 Mar 03 - 06:39 PM

Hmmmm.... :-) http://www.wtv-zone.com/phyrst/audio/nfld/04/molly.htm


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Giac
Date: 28 Mar 03 - 07:40 PM

Here's a blicky:

Molly Bawn

Thanks for the link, GUEST, GEST.

Mary


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Subject: Lyr Add: MOLLY BAN
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 28 Mar 03 - 11:20 PM

I have not sung this in years and I am writing the words from memory but it goes something like this:      


      Molly Ban
   (1)
Now I am sad and lonely, here in this distant west
The happy thoughts of bygone days at night disturb my rest
Forever in this heart of mine, forgot it never shall be
Were the days I spent with Molly Ban, a-boating on Loch Righ (Ree)

    (chorus)
For she was tall and slender and gentle as a fawn
Her eyes they shone like diamonds bright or the stars of early dawn
A smile she had for everyone but her kisses were only for me
'Twas chance I gazed on Molly Ban a-boating on Loch Righ

   (2)
The day she said she'd be my own, so happy then was I
And pleasant dreams of childhood years , so swiftly they passed by
Some day she planned to be my bride, but alas t'was not to be
For an angel claimed her for his own and took her from Loch Righ

   (3)
Oh I have lived a lonely life, my hair's a silver hue
A plaintive voice rings in my ear in a tone I can't subdue
A lovely form still lingers there and a face I think I see
Of my darling Molly Ban a-boating on Loch Righ


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 28 Mar 03 - 11:31 PM

The lyrics in Giac's clicky are the way that I heard Ryan's Fancy do it. Mine were as I most commonly knew it, but very much the same song.
I even recall hearing a version in Gaelic but I can't remember it.
                     Sandy


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: anais
Date: 29 Mar 03 - 10:43 AM

one of those swan-free "molly bawn"s sounds a wee bit like "little maggie"! i heard on gaelic radio in doolin a lovely song called "una bawn", so lovely i named my fiddle after it! any word as to whether it has a similar tragic plot? i'd love to know...sorry for the thread creep...


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: GUEST
Date: 27 Apr 03 - 06:57 PM


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Subject: RE: Molly Bawn.. How many do you know?
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 27 Apr 03 - 07:38 PM

For more on Una Bawn, see this earlier thread: Una Bhan/Fair Una


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