Ten Songs from Scotland and the Scottish Border

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<ul><li><p>Ten Songs from Scotland and the Scottish BorderAuthor(s): Anne G. GilchristSource: Journal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society, Vol. 3, No. 1 (Dec., 1936), pp. 53-71Published by: English Folk Dance + Song SocietyStable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/4521094 .Accessed: 17/06/2014 21:54</p><p>Your use of the JSTOR archive indicates your acceptance of the Terms &amp; Conditions of Use, available at .http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p><p> .JSTOR is a not-for-profit service that helps scholars, researchers, and students discover, use, and build upon a wide range ofcontent in a trusted digital archive. We use information technology and tools to increase productivity and facilitate new formsof scholarship. For more information about JSTOR, please contact support@jstor.org.</p><p> .</p><p>English Folk Dance + Song Society is collaborating with JSTOR to digitize, preserve and extend access toJournal of the English Folk Dance and Song Society.</p><p>http://www.jstor.org </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/action/showPublisher?publisherCode=efdsshttp://www.jstor.org/stable/4521094?origin=JSTOR-pdfhttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsphttp://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>TEN SONGS FROM SCOTLAND AND THE SCOTTISH BORDER </p><p>CONTRIBUTED BY ANNE G. GILCHRIST </p><p>The ten songs which follow are taken-all but " The Beggin'" and " I'm a' doun for lack o' Johnnie "-from a sheet of manuscript airs which for want of a title I have named the Edinburgh MS. It was found amongst the papers of the late Frank Kidson of Leeds, in a bundle sent to me (as described under " Sir Lionel ") by his niece. I have no clue whatever to the sender but the Edinburgh postmark and date Dec. 23rd, I903, on the envelope in which they were enclosed, which bore the trade- stamp " J. and R. Glen, Highland Bagpipe Makers " on the back. Any accom- panying letter has been lost, and as all enquiries in Scotland have failed, and the eight tunes cannot be traced in any printed collection, I have been led to the conclusion that they were selected from some MS. (which from the numbers given had comprised over seventy tunes) for Mr. Kidson's examination and opinion. They are all good tunes, worth preserving-some of special interest as belonging to ballads whose airs are scarce or lost. So they are here printed, with such notes and variants as it seemed to me might be of interest, without prejudice to the original owner's copyright, if he is still living.-A. G. G. </p><p>5. JOCK O' THE SIDE (FIRST VERSION) </p><p>Pentatonic (No 3rd or 6th). From the Edinburgh MS. (No. 56). </p><p>AXI_J ; ;-_I_'___X___1 jztj </p><p>[Now Lid - des - dale has ridden a raid, But I wat better had </p><p>stayed at hame, For Mich - ael o' Win - field he is dead, And Jock o' the Side is </p><p>(a) (a) As noted. </p><p>prison-er ta'en, And Jock o' the Side is prison-er ta'en.] </p><p>53 </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>SECOND VERSION </p><p>Gapped Mode (No 6th). From BRUCE and STOKOE'S Northumbrian Minstrelsy, i882. </p><p>And Jock o' the Side </p><p>pris-on - er ta'en, And Jock o' the Side is pris - on - er ta'eni. (Thirty-seven verses) </p><p>This has been called one of the best ballads in the world! Jock o' the Side was a notorious Border raider of the sixteenth century. Sir Richard Maitland says of him- </p><p>He is weel kend, Johne of the Svde, A greater thief did never ride. </p><p>The ballad, with two others, " Dick o' the Cow" and " Hobbie Noble," was first printed in I784 in the Hazeick Museum, a provincial Miscellany, to which they were communicated by John Elliot of Reidheugh, an antiquary of the western Border. They are all connected, Hobbie Noble having been the man who " loosed " Jock from prison, and seem to have been written by the same hand. The story of Jock's escape rests upon tradition, but Henderson, in his edition of the Border Minstrelsy (I932) identifies it with an incident reported to Wolsey by Magnus, July 6th, I527, though Child was inclined to consider it as possibly a free version of " Kinmont Willie "-another escape ballad. </p><p>The ballad is a very gallant and spirited one, telling how Jock, taking part in a raid, was caught and imprisoned in Newcastle, and how three friends, the Laird's Jock, the Laird's Wat, and Hobbie Noble of Bewcastle (but banished to Scotland) disguised as corn-cadgers, and with thelr horses shod the wrong way to avoid suspicion, set out to rescue him. They cut down a tree en route to serve as a ladder, but finding it all too short on arriving at the town-wall, wrung the neck of the proud porter, possessed themselves of his keys, and rescued the prisoner on the very eve of his decreed execution. And the laird's Jock, hastily hoisting his master on his back with " fifteen stane of Spanish iron " still attached to him, carried him down the stair, counting him " lighter than a flee " (fly) ; and though pursued, the party </p><p>54 </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>took to the swollen water of Tyne at Chollerford, leaving the land-sergeant and his lads baffled on the bank, the sergeant calling out for the return of his irons, at least, if not the prisoner ! </p><p>THIRD VERSION </p><p>[DICK O' THE COW] </p><p>From LEYDEN'S Edition of Scott's Minstrelsy, 1833. </p><p>-4-~~~~~~~T di- </p><p>Fal de ral, lal de ial, Ilal de ral la </p><p>Fal </p><p>Ilc de ral de rad - dy, Fal ial de ral la, Fal lal de , al la. </p><p>As the three ballads are said to have been sung to the same tune, the air for" Dick o' the Cow " is here printed from the only edition of Scott's Mlinstrelsy which I have found to contain any tunes. It is one of ten ballad-airs which Leyden, the editor, states are for the first time appended to their texts, and which include those which Sir Walter himself liked the best, being transcribed without variation from the MSS. in his library. Stokoe professed himself unable to believe that this trio of ballads were ever sung to Scott's tune with the Fal de ral refrain; but the version in Caw's Poetical Museum has a burden of "With my fa ding diddle, la la dow diddle "-which is even less heroic. </p><p>For various versions see Child, whose " A" form " John a Side "-which seems to be the oldest-is derived from the Percy MS. (Hales and Furnivall, ii, 203). </p><p>-A. G. G. </p><p>6. SIR JAMES THE ROSE (FIRST VERSION) </p><p>Gapped Mode (No 3rd). From the Edinburgh MS. (No. 45). </p><p>_ _ _ - d 4 </p><p>55 </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>SECOND VERSION </p><p>Pentatonic (No 2nd or 6th). CHRIST1E's Traditional Ballad Airs, i. i6. </p><p>@g0L~~_ -__-E_______-3 </p><p>Of all the Scot - tislh inorth - ern chiefs Of high and war - like </p><p>name, The brav - est was Sir James the Rose, A knight of mei kle fame. </p><p>2. His growth was as the tufted fir That crowns the mountain's brow And waving o'er his shoulders broad His locks of yellow flew. </p><p>* * * * * * </p><p>Sir James loves Matilda, whose father bids her wed Sir John the Graham. The lovers meet at their trysting-place, and Sir John's brother, Donald, craftily hides himself in the underwood " to overhear what they would say." Donald attacks Sir James with insulting words and stabs at him with his sword, crying- </p><p>"This for my brother's slighted love- His wrongs sit on my arm! " </p><p>(A curious phrase.) Evading him, Sir James cleaves Donald's head with his sword, and as he tumbles down, " a lump of breathless clay," </p><p>"So fall my foes," quoth valiant Ross, And stately strode away. </p><p>Then the Graham clan is roused and the ballad ends in a double tragedy. For the whole ballad (twenty-seven double verses) see " Sir James the Rose," Last Leaves of Aberdeen Ballads, lxiv, p. I37. </p><p>There are two distinct forms of this ballad. The one selected by Child begins- O heard ye of Sir James the Rose The young heir of Buleighan ? For he has killed a gallant squire An's friends are out to tak' him. </p><p>56 </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>But Child rejected as too " literary " the one which became most popular in Scotland and most widely sung, which is here represented. It is rather curious that in the forty years since he died so many traditional copies of this rejected version, sung to their traditional tunes, have been noted. It has been attributed to the Scottish poet, Michael Bruce, amongst whose papers it was found, but it now seems possible that it was merely revised, after the fashion of the time, by him. </p><p>The earliest printed text known of this supposed " Bruce " copy appeared in One Hundred and Fifty Scots Songs, London, I768, the year after Bruce's death at the age of twenty-one. This collection contained several ballad texts, and Dr. Keith, who transcribes this copy in his Last Leaves of A berdeenshire Ballads, concludes that both the version preferred by Child and the " Bruce " form have been derived from stall copies, broadsides, and other prints of the second half of the eighteenth century. The copy found amongst Bruce's papers was further revised by John Logan, Bruce's untrustworthy friend, who unblushingly claimed the authorship of several poems now almost certainly known to be Bruce's. </p><p>The basis of each form of the ballad (of which Child's version is the most savage) is the slaying of Sir Donald Graeme by Sir James the Rose, the betrayal of the fugitive, and the revenge of the Graemes by killing the slayer of their clansman. In Child's text, taken from a stall copy of I780 in the Abbotsford library, Sir James' sweetheart, to whom he has fled for hiding, betrays him to his enemies who are hunting for him, and afterwards, stricken with remorse, disappears for ever from human ken. In the ballad which has ousted this version in Aberdeen and elsewhere, the treachery is transferred from Matilda to her faithless little page, who discloses Sir James's hiding place. After defending himself bravely he is slain, and Matilda draws out the sword still sticking in his side, falls on the point, and dies on his body. This second version is a long ballad of about fifty verses, found almost complete, and not much corrupted, even after its emigration with Scots folk to Nova Scotia and Maine. See W. Roy Mackenzie's Ballads and Sea-Songs of Nova Scotia, (where a modal tune is also given for the ballad), and British Ballads from Maine (edited by Barry, Eckstorm, and Smyth). </p><p>In Child's text the scene is located in Perthshire, at Bulechan; in Aberdeen copies, on the banks of the Ugie above the Abbey of Deer, where the saugh-tree (willow) where the lovers met used still to be pointed out by the singers of the lovers' fate. The hero is called both James the Rose and James the Ross, and as there were distinct clans of both Rose and Ross in Scotland, the confusion increases, and it seems doubtful whether there is any historical foundation for the story, though it was printed as an " Ancient Historical Ballad "-the " Bruce" version-in the Weekly Magazine and Edinburgh Amusement, I770. </p><p>It is certain that this version was widely known and sung in Aberdeenshire, and also in New Brunswick. Dr. Keith prints in Last Leaves six tunes and variants, and had obtained seven others-variants of his Tune I. In Johnson's Museum,. </p><p>57 </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>vol. iii, p. 280, is a variant, set to " Hardycanute," and another tune is in R. A. Smith's Scotish Minstrel, ii, 30. And none of all these tunes fits Child's version, which, as will be seen, is in a different metre, though Christie has a tune for it in his Traditional Ballad Airs. As for Christie's double tune, printed above, the proba- bility is that it is a combination of two different airs, the first strain being one tune to the ballad and the second, another, according to his habit of " arranging " tunes in eight-line stanza form.-A. G. G. </p><p>The following versions of Sir James the Rose (or Ross) were noted in Newfound- land. The text is very similar to the I768 version printed in Last Leaves and the versions noted in Nova Scotia and Maine.-M.K. </p><p>THIRD VERSION </p><p>Sung by Mr. PAT. KILEY at Gaskiers, Noted by MAUD KARPELES. St. Mary's, Newfoundland, July 29, ig3o. </p><p>S-h==fi=a=t__ - r -. _ </p><p>F-- _ _ </p><p>1- -- _ </p><p>I </p><p>I. It's all those Scot - tish lords and chiefs Of high war - like name, The </p><p>brav- est is Sir James the Ross, That knight of ma - ny fame. </p><p>FOURTH VERSION </p><p>Sung by Mr. JAS. WALSH at Ferryland, Noted by MAUD KARPELES. Newfoundland, August I, 1930. </p><p>Of all the Scot - tish north - ern chiefs of hiigh and war - like </p><p>(a) </p><p>fame, The brav - est was Sir James the Ross, A </p><p>(a) </p><p>knight o might -&gt;l y fame. gb . r </p><p>knight of might -y fame. </p><p>This content downloaded from on Tue, 17 Jun 2014 21:54:35 PMAll use subject to JSTOR Terms and Conditions</p><p>http://www.jstor.org/page/info/about/policies/terms.jsp</p></li><li><p>FIFTH VERSION </p><p>Sung by Mr. BILL KENNEDY at Trepassly, Noted by MAUD KARPELES. Newfoundland, August 2, 1930. </p><p>@$w ~~~~~~I ,- M - = - </p><p>0 yes, Sir, he's at Lon - don cross. If man and horse prove good. 'Tis </p><p>false, said he, your page told me, He sleeps here in this wood. </p><p>7. MARY HAMILTON (FIRST VERSION) </p><p>From the Edinburgh MS. (No. 75). </p><p>[Yes - treen the Queen had four Mar - ies, To - night she'll hae but three. There was </p><p>Ma - ry Bea - ton and Ma - ry Sea - ton And Ma - ry Car-mi-chael and me. . </p><p>The real origin of this ballad, which first appeared in print in i802, as " The Queen's Marie," in Scott's Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, is difficult to trace with certainty. Child prints no less than twenty-eight versions (Scott had collected eight), but it is now almost extinct in Britain, though traditional versions have been in recent years found in Aberdeenshire, in the State of Maine where a strong Scottish element remains and in Virginia. Historically, the surnames of the four Maries, companions from her childhood, who accompanied Mary to France in I548, returning to Scotland -with her in I56I, were Beaton, Seton, Fleming, and Livingston. Mary Beaton married Alexander Ogilvie, Mary Livingston (who was the first to leave the Queen) married John Sempill, Mary Fleming married Lord Lethington, and Mary Seton- the last to leave the Queen-died in a French convent, unmarried. It is obvious that as the fourth Mary's name of the ballad is hardly ever given in the texts the singer was free to name her according to his belief or fancy. </p><p>The ballad seems most likely to have been based upon a court scandal denounced as a " haynous murther " in his History of the Reforma...</p></li></ul>