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Matthew Edwards Origins: On Yonder Hill There Sits a Hare (34) RE: Origins: On Yonder Hill There Sits a Hare 05 Jul 21


Thanks to the publication of the new book about Geordie Hanna I've been inspired to follow the late Fred McCormick's example and learn this song, and I've found it is a real joy to sing. I can't emulate Geordie's own masterful phrasing, but it has such a great tune with words to relish. The book is available from the Geordie Hanna Traditional Singing Society:- Geordie Hanna - The Man and the Songs, by Martin J. McGuinness

I found another precedent to the song besides the one discovered by Jim Dixon ten years ago. It comes from an 1884 American novel Woodbourne - A Novel of the Revolutionary Period in Virginia and Maryland, by Colonel Joseph Mayo.
In Chapter II, set in Virginia in 1775, a horseman witnesses a fox hunt and then hears "a pair of lusty lungs bawling away at a song with a stentorian gusto which set at defiance all the laws of melodious concord
On yonder hill there sits a hare,
        Opressed with sorrow, grief and care,
        Because her prospects are so bare;
                Halloo, boys, halloo!


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