Mudcat Café message #34571 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #6015   Message #34571
Posted By: Zorro
10-Aug-98 - 04:11 AM
Thread Name: Greensleeves ... Whence the name?
Subject: GREENSLEEVES ... Whence the name?
A lot of years ago a folk singer/guitar teacher told me that Greensleeves got it's name from a wondering minstrel from somewhere in the UK. It seems that the women who worked in the fields at the time, wore long sleeved white blouses to protect their arms from the sun and that after working all day the sleeves would be green. He fell in love with one of these ladies and was rejected, thus he composed the song. I've played the song and told that story many times, until recently a young man said the name "Greensleeves" came from the wife of Henry the VIII (?) who had scars on her arms and frequently wore green blouses with long sleeves to hide them. The song, then was about her. I like my version better. It sounds more folksy.. but being a purist I'd like to know the origin. Anyone know??