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Origins: She Moves through the Fair

DigiTrad:
SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR


Related threads:
Tune Req: She Moved Through The Fair (17)
She Moved Through The Fair (17)
Lyr Req: She Moves through the Fair (30)
(origins) Origin: She Moved Through the Fair (81)
Lyr Req: She Moved through the Fair (18)
Lyr Req: She Moved through the Fair: Gaelic (38)
Lyr Add: 'She moved through the fair' versions (24)
She moved through the fair - repeats? (6)
Tune Req: She Moved through the Fair (17)
She Moved Through the Fair - advice (70)
Lyr Req: She Moved Through the Faire parody-d (10)
Lyr Req: He Moved through the Fair (35)
Lyr Req: She Moves through the Fair (13)
Lyr Req: she walked through the fair / She Moved.. (9) (closed)
Help: Davey Graham: She moved through the fair (16)
She Moved through the Fair - recordings (13)
Lyr/Chords Req: She Moved through the Fair (6)
Chords Req: She Moved through the Fair (4)


Lisa 25 Feb 97 - 01:12 PM
Valerie 25 Feb 97 - 06:00 PM
Susan of DT 25 Feb 97 - 09:02 PM
LaMarca 26 Feb 97 - 05:29 PM
Martin Ryan 27 Feb 97 - 04:17 AM
Martin Ryan 27 Feb 97 - 04:32 AM
Susan of DT 27 Feb 97 - 04:19 PM
Berna-Dean 28 Mar 97 - 02:05 PM
Murphy@globalbiz.net 02 Apr 97 - 07:50 PM
MARTIN RYAN 03 Apr 97 - 05:01 PM
Kymbo 09 Apr 97 - 04:22 AM
Muriel Doris 17 Apr 97 - 08:59 PM
cleod 03 May 97 - 12:37 PM
dick greenhaus 04 May 97 - 11:07 PM
05 May 97 - 10:20 PM
dick greenhaus 06 May 97 - 02:15 PM
Kim 12 May 97 - 12:57 PM
cleod 19 May 97 - 10:41 AM
Philippa 29 May 99 - 09:35 AM
HåvardR 29 May 99 - 09:43 AM
Philippa 29 May 99 - 09:47 AM
Erin 29 May 99 - 05:40 PM
SingsIrish Songs 29 May 99 - 09:38 PM
SingsIrish Songs 29 May 99 - 09:44 PM
SingsIrish Songs 29 May 99 - 09:59 PM
Marlor 29 May 99 - 10:43 PM
Barry Finn 30 May 99 - 12:14 AM
Brakn 30 May 99 - 07:32 AM
Helen 30 May 99 - 08:29 AM
HåvardR 30 May 99 - 12:20 PM
Dan 01 Jun 99 - 09:42 AM
alison 01 Jun 99 - 10:32 AM
pam 01 Jun 99 - 04:02 PM
Alice 01 Jun 99 - 10:10 PM
Helen 02 Jun 99 - 12:24 AM
Philippa 02 Jun 99 - 01:13 PM
SingsIrish Songs 03 Jun 99 - 01:49 AM
DanMulligan 08 Jun 99 - 10:53 AM
GUEST,Jana 09 Aug 00 - 12:09 PM
Alice 09 Aug 00 - 12:23 PM
Naemanson 09 Aug 00 - 12:53 PM
okthen 09 Aug 00 - 12:55 PM
Lox 09 Aug 00 - 09:22 PM
Malcolm Douglas 09 Aug 00 - 09:36 PM
BigDaddy 10 Aug 00 - 01:33 AM
Alice 10 Aug 00 - 02:00 AM
GUEST,Barry Finn 10 Aug 00 - 02:31 AM
okthen 10 Aug 00 - 04:12 AM
GUEST,JTT 10 Aug 00 - 07:49 AM
IanC 10 Aug 00 - 08:21 AM
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Subject: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Lisa
Date: 25 Feb 97 - 01:12 PM

Hello All,

"She Moves Through the Fair" has been one of my favorite celtic songs for several years, but I have no idea of its origins, or the story behind the song. Perhaps this information does not exist, but if anyone is aware of it, I would much appreciate your help. My favorite verse is the third one, which some singers leave out:

People say no two ere were wed, but one has a sorrow that never was said, and she smiled as she passed me, with her goods and her gear, and that was the last that I saw of my dear.

Heart-breaking, isn't it? (I always like sad songs best.]

Thanks for your help,

Lisa


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Valerie
Date: 25 Feb 97 - 06:00 PM

I love sad songs too!

According to the Ossian Publication "Folksongs & Ballads Popular in Ireland - Volume 1" (a jaunty little title, I know), and according to what I believe to be popular mythology, this beautiful tune / song goes back to Medieaeval times.

I have heard that the tune came to Ireland from the Middle East, via Europe, and also that it is a Gypsy melody. I can't say if either (or both) theories are correct though. I've always preferred to think that the tune wandered around continents in search of a home. Van Morrison's version is stunning.

Don't know if this counts as "information", but hope it's of interest.

Valerie


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Susan of DT
Date: 25 Feb 97 - 09:02 PM

In the last verse her ghost visits him, so she died before they could be wed. The verse you quaoted is in the DT.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: LaMarca
Date: 26 Feb 97 - 05:29 PM

The Irish poet, Padraic Colum, had all four verses in one of his collections. He was also a folklorist who produced many fine collections of mythology from different lands, so he was probably setting down a trad. poem rather than claiming he wrote it.

The song is found in the Tinker (non-Romany Irish and Scottish gypsies) tradition; Maggie Barry does a haunting rendition...


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Martin Ryan
Date: 27 Feb 97 - 04:17 AM

There is a lovely North of Ireland version called "Out of the Window" - which is on its way to the DT.I think its in Sam Henry's "Songs of the People" collection.

Colum certainly seems to have tidied up a folk version in writing his poem.His set (which is the standard one sung), has perhaps become a bit hackneyed (despite Van the Man's efforts!).A fine traditional singer called Aine Ui CHeallaigh recently recorded the "Out ofthe WIndow" version

Regards


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Martin Ryan
Date: 27 Feb 97 - 04:32 AM

Mea culpa! The Sam Henry version is already in the DT as "Our Wedding Day"

Regards


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Susan of DT
Date: 27 Feb 97 - 04:19 PM

Can't trust those titles, can you. In general, if you don't find a song by title, try a phrase or unusual word.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Berna-Dean
Date: 28 Mar 97 - 02:05 PM

This Irish folk song is also known as "The Wedding Song", as the last words in many of the verses are "and this she did say, it will not be long love, til our wedding day". As above Martin Ryan already sent you in that direction.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Murphy@globalbiz.net
Date: 02 Apr 97 - 07:50 PM

There is a version of this that a friend I knew long ago had: Paddy Tunny, and he had his version collected in Northern Fermanagh. The first verse is the same as the later Lagan-Valley version that most people know, but the second verse is nice:

She moved away from me as she moved through the fair With hand-clappen dealers whose voice wrent the air her cheeks were as roses and her feet ne'er touch the ground And all that gazed on her were silent around.

There's a rumor that Paddy wrote this verse himself, but what if he did--it's a good song.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: MARTIN RYAN
Date: 03 Apr 97 - 05:01 PM

Paddy Tunney wrote at least that verse!


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Kymbo
Date: 09 Apr 97 - 04:22 AM

Seems that Sinead O'connor does a nice little number on this one on an Megastar Celtic complimation album called 'Common Ground'. Should have the lyrics on it too. Does anyone know if she's made an exclusively folkie CD?


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Muriel Doris
Date: 17 Apr 97 - 08:59 PM

Yet another version called Our Wedding Day in Folk Songs of Britain and Ireland, edited by Peter Kennedy. The words are a bit different than most -- she runs away with someone else -- "I'd lost my wee darling through courting too slow.".

No suggestion as to the origin.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: cleod
Date: 03 May 97 - 12:37 PM

I have the lyrics to this...just e-mail me at cleod@netasia.net and i'll send it to anyone who needs them.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 04 May 97 - 11:07 PM

Hi cleod- Why not post them here, so everybody can share them?


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From:
Date: 05 May 97 - 10:20 PM

Hi,

It's interesting that this song should raise so much interest. Seamas Ennis traced as a version of the Bold Forester, but indeed, it goes back to a version found in South Uist--in the Gaelic, I'm afraid. I don't suppose anyone wants the words?

Dave Murphy


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 06 May 97 - 02:15 PM

Speaking for the Digital Tradition, we ALWAYS want the words.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Kim
Date: 12 May 97 - 12:57 PM

I know a version of She Moves Through The Fair that is on an old album by Alfred Deller, the countertenor. The album is called The Cruel Mother. I'm looking for a CD version of it as the LP my dad bought at a concert in Elsinor Castle in 1959 is a little beat up now. I know the lyrics are on the back of the cover, I'll post them if they are legible.Many of the songs on this are from the Childs collection.


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Subject: Lyr Add: SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR
From: cleod
Date: 19 May 97 - 10:41 AM

In response to Mr.Greenhaus...thanks for the suggestion, but it's not that easy to do on my computer...anyway, I'll just post the short (more popular) version, as opposed to the long one, which has bags of lyrics...here goes...

SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR

My young love said to me, "My mother won't mind
And my father won't slight you for you lack of kind."
And she stepp'd away from me and this she did say,
"It will not be long, love, till our wedding day."

She stepp'd away from me and went thro' the fair,
And fondly I watch'd her move here and move there,
And then she went homeward with one star awake,
As the swan in the evening moves over the lake.

Last night she came to me, she came softly in,
So softly she came that her feet made no din.
And she laid her hand on me and this she did say,
"It will not be long, love, till our wedding day."


I got this from a book but Sinead O'Connor also sang this on "The Long Black Veil" with The Chieftains.
Line Breaks
added.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Philippa
Date: 29 May 99 - 09:35 AM

Dave Murphy (5.5.97) Yes, I'd like the S Uist version! Is it to be found in Margaret Fay Shaw's book? I'm familiar with the English language song as sung by Paddy Tunney, Áine uí Cheallaigh and Jane Cassidy (Sam Henry collection) and , of course, as arranged by Padraic Colum, but I didn't know of a gaelic coneection.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: HåvardR
Date: 29 May 99 - 09:43 AM

Hmm! This might be sligthly blasphemous, but has anyone heard the parody "She fell trough the flare (floor)"?

Håvard


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Philippa
Date: 29 May 99 - 09:47 AM

Håvard, there's a space for you here:


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Erin
Date: 29 May 99 - 05:40 PM

Mary Black sings another version on the album "Collected". ' Does anyone have the lyrics??


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Subject: Lyr/Chords Add: SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR
From: SingsIrish Songs
Date: 29 May 99 - 09:38 PM

In all the times I've heard this song sung, it seems everyone leaves out verse three (which Lisa mentioned) and it changes the feel of the song immensely! So I am going to post the lyrics again with verse three and chords as well... --SingsIrish Songs

SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR

  D--(C----Bm---C----D)---------C------------D---
My young love said to me, "My mother won't mind
--------------------(Bm)-----------C------------D---
And my father won't slight you for your lack of kine."
---------------------(Bm)--------C------------D---
And she stepp'd away from me and this she did say:
----(C---Bm--C--D)-------------------C-------D---
"It will not be long, love, till our wedding day."


She stepp'd away from me and she moved through the fair,
And fondly I watched her go here and go there,
Then she went her way homeward with one star awake,
As the swan in the evening moves over the lake.

The people were saying no two were e'er wed,
But one has a sorrow that never was said,
And I smiled as she passed with her goods and her gear,
And that was the last that I saw of my dear.

I dreamt it last night that my young love came in,
So softly she entered, her feet made no din,
She came close beside me and this she did say,
"It will not be long, love, till our wedding day."

 and 
added to space chords.
-Joe Offer-


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Subject: Chords Add: SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR
From: SingsIrish Songs
Date: 29 May 99 - 09:44 PM

Guess that idea with the chords didn't work! Here's the proper placement...

(D)My (C)young (Bm)love (C)said (D)to me, "My (C)mother won't (D)mind
And my father won't (Bm)slight you for (C)your lack of (D)kine."
And she stepp'd away (Bm)from me and (C)this she did (D)say:
"It (C)will (Bm)not (C)be (D)long love till our (C)wedding (D)day."


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: SingsIrish Songs
Date: 29 May 99 - 09:59 PM

Thanks for fixing that Joe!

Mary


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Marlor
Date: 29 May 99 - 10:43 PM

Hi Lisa: I have to agree. It's one of the most hauntingly beautiful songs I've ever heard. Canada's CBC used to have a program hosted by a gentleman named Max fergusson. H'e play that song every onece in a while. I was blown away the first time I heard it.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Barry Finn
Date: 30 May 99 - 12:14 AM

Harvard, if you have the parody "She Fell Through The Floor" it would be far more scandelous if you didn't post it here, now. Barry


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Brakn
Date: 30 May 99 - 07:32 AM

My favourite version was by Sandy Denny when she was with Fairport Convention.

Mick Bracken


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Helen
Date: 30 May 99 - 08:29 AM

Hi all,

An Australian singer, Kavisha Mazzella does a lovely version of this too on her CC called Mermaids at the Well

Helen


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: HåvardR
Date: 30 May 99 - 12:20 PM

This is somewhat embarassing, I was sure I had the lyrics for the parody written down at home, but I haven't. (blushing, and hoping someone will rescue him)

The chorus however , as far as I remember, goes:

She stepp'd away from me and she fell through the flare,
Through the linoleum and down the stairs
And she stepp'd away from me and this she did say:
AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaiiiiiiiii (bump)

sorry, Håvard


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Dan
Date: 01 Jun 99 - 09:42 AM

Can anybody tell me how I can get the tune to this. I love the words but have no idea how it goes. Thanks.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: alison
Date: 01 Jun 99 - 10:32 AM

Dan,

Go to the she moved through the fair Lyrics in the database and scroll to the bottom... click where it says "Click here to play"... you'll hear the tune.....

slainte

alison


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: pam
Date: 01 Jun 99 - 04:02 PM

Hello out there...

I'm stepping out onto the thread for the first time with my little circus umbrella over my head for balance, so try not to laugh me off the page for this.

I'm brand new to traditional music, and I love She Moves Through the Fair as well. I just can't get it out of my head that it's fundamentally the same song as My Lagan Love (except for a lovely chord change in the b figure of Lagan). They're both very sweet and I've been wondering whether there's something in the origin of the two that accounts for the similar melody...Ah well to paraphrase Father Mulcahy in M*A*S*H, "...i'ts all just Sleepy Lagoon played fast."

By the way, it's pretty amazing that there's a place like this to have this sort of conversation!! Nice to be here.

Pam


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Alice
Date: 01 Jun 99 - 10:10 PM

It's good to have you here, Pam. Yes, I noticed a few notes of similarity between the two.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Helen
Date: 02 Jun 99 - 12:24 AM

Hi all,

Here is a
midi file of She Moved Through the Fair http://members.aol.com/ReelyKEELY/midi.html

I suspect it might be a Barry Taylor sequence but it isn't credited with any names for the sequencing.

Helen


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Philippa
Date: 02 Jun 99 - 01:13 PM

Dave Murphy (5 May 1997) - yes, I do


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: SingsIrish Songs
Date: 03 Jun 99 - 01:49 AM

I just came across this post at rec.music.celtic I quote:

"Anúna [Anuna] are currently preparing to record this piece - and have confirmed with MCPS in Dublin that Padric Colum only wrote one verse of the four existing verses, therefore the traditional version has only three verses, not four as with Colum's version:
"My young love..." "She stepped away..." & "Last night..."

Can anyone give me any further verses or preferably information on this song?

Thank you

Michael McGlynn http://www.anuna.ie "

That would explain why that third verse is so often left out...

SingsIrish


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: DanMulligan
Date: 08 Jun 99 - 10:53 AM

A very interesting variation on this tune was recorded on Ashley MacIssac's CD, Hi, how are you today? It is titled "Sad Wedding Day" on this CD, and is sung in gaelic. Dan


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: GUEST,Jana
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 12:09 PM

Hello,

Love all the info on She Moves. But no one has really touched on the actual story behind the song. Has this man married another and she's coming in the night to haunt him? "The people we're saying no two were ere wed" He didn't marry the girl moving through the fair. Anyone know?

Thanks!


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Alice
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 12:23 PM

she died before they could marry, so her ghost came in at night to him (she came so softly that her feet made no din)


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Naemanson
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 12:53 PM

I always thought that the bride to have died before the wedding. That's why: (a) her feet made no din; and (2) the song exists in the first place.

I doubt the song would have been created in the first place if they got married and lived happily ever after. And if it had been written about an actual marriage I doubt people would have kept the song alive without that element of tragedy.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: okthen
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 12:55 PM

i'm dredging this up from an aged memory but i was told that the couple were engaged to be married but she died before the wedding day

"and she made her way homeward with one star awake

as the swan in the evening moves over the lake"

she was shot by mistake by hunters who thought she was a swan

the night visiting lore is that an engaged couple would spend the night together before the wedding and that if anything happened to either of them the ghost of the departed would visit the other.

i can't remember the titles but there are songs where on the "night before" although the parents would turn a blind eye to the situation they would also tie pots and pans etc. beneath the bed so that the couple could sleep together but not energetically!

cheers

bill


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Lox
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 09:22 PM

There's a film starring Daniel Day Lewis about a dentist (passionately obsessed with oral hygiene) who goes to work in South America. I think Argentina, to be precise, but can't quite remember.

Anyway, he sings "She moved...etc..." in Irish whilst in the bath (steady now!).

It's a good film, but it's been a while since I saw it, so if anyone else has seen it and can remember the name, please post it.

You will then hear it as it was meant to sound (though abridged to a certain extent)


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Malcolm Douglas
Date: 09 Aug 00 - 09:36 PM

The "swan" image is just that; a poetic image of a sort particularly popular in Ireland, usually with no deeper significance.  So far as being mistaken for a swan and shot goes; well, that's a completely different story.

Malcolm


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Subject: Lyr Add: SHE MOVED THROUGH THE FAIR
From: BigDaddy
Date: 10 Aug 00 - 01:33 AM

Okay, to muddy the waters a little more:

My young love said to me, "My mother won't mind,
And my father won't slight you for your lack o' kine."
And she stepped away from me and this she did say,
"It will not be long love till our wedding day."

She stepped away from me and she moved through the fair
And fondly I watched her move here and move there,
As homeward she went with one star awake
As a swan in the evening moves over the lake.

The people were saying, "no two were e'er wed,
But one has a sorrow that ne'er can be said."
She passed close beside me with her goods and her gear
And that was the last that I saw of my dear.

Last night she came to me, my dead love came in.
So softly she entered, her feet made no din.
She stepped close beside me, and this she did say:
"It will not be long love, 'til our wedding day."

I feel it's important to establish the fact that she's dead by the last verse. And the way I learned it (as written here) does that.

HTML line breaks added. --JoeClone, 23-Jul-02.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: Alice
Date: 10 Aug 00 - 02:00 AM

okthen/bill, I think your memory has mixed this up with another song,click here MOLLY BAWN.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: GUEST,Barry Finn
Date: 10 Aug 00 - 02:31 AM

Still wouldn't mind if someone posted the parody "She Fell Through The Floor". Thanks, Barry


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: okthen
Date: 10 Aug 00 - 04:12 AM

Alice

you may well be right about mixing the two songs up but,i'm pretty sure that's how i heard the story. maybe the person who told me had them mixed up?

i'll try and research this from C SHARP HOUSE but that could take a while

cheers

bill


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: GUEST,JTT
Date: 10 Aug 00 - 07:49 AM

Padraic Colum told me when I was a child that he had written She Moved Through the Fair and was extremely chuffed to find it listed as "traditional" and "anonymous" within his lifetime. He saw this as a high compliment.


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Subject: RE: She Moves Through the Fair
From: IanC
Date: 10 Aug 00 - 08:21 AM

JTT

The Contemplator looks useful on this.

"The original words were an old ballad from Donegal which was collected in 1909. The words were "reworked" by Padraic Colum to this version. Alternate titles and variants include, Our Wedding Day and Out of the Window."

Cheers!
Ian


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