Mudcat Café message #3240492 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #87026   Message #3240492
Posted By: Mick Pearce (MCP)
17-Oct-11 - 06:47 PM
Thread Name: Barbara Allen earliest version?
Subject: RE: Barbara Allen earliest version?
Well, as it happens...

The earliest yielded by that search is Johnson: Scots Musical Museum 1787, then Ritson: Scottish Songs 1794.

You can find the Johnson version at Scots Musical Museum v3, the song on p230 (p34 in djvu/pdf file). It is pretty much the same tune (but not exactly the same) as in the Caledonian Pocket Companion, but has the words. (The division into A and B parts is the same but without the repeats in Johnson, so you get one verse to the tune; I presume the musical version has repeats to make it an AABB tune).

(The 2 vols of the Ritson are also available at