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Origins: Isle of St Helena

GUEST,bradfordian 15 Aug 07 - 07:43 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 15 Aug 07 - 10:28 PM
Charley Noble 16 Aug 07 - 08:57 AM
GUEST,Art Thieme 16 Aug 07 - 12:00 PM
Fred McCormick 16 Aug 07 - 01:51 PM
RTim 16 Aug 07 - 02:05 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Aug 07 - 03:37 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 16 Aug 07 - 04:15 PM
bradfordian 26 Aug 07 - 05:17 AM
Rowan 26 Aug 07 - 09:53 PM
Jim McLean 27 Aug 07 - 09:09 AM
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Subject: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: GUEST,bradfordian
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 07:43 PM

In the song (full words in thread here )who was Louise/Louisa?
Presumably, he moved on since divorcing Josephine.

"Louise as she weeps, from her husband is parted
And she dreams while she sleeps and awakes broken-hearted
There is none to console her, though there's many would be with her
While alone she does mourn when she thinks of St. Helena"

I sang the song and someone asked the question, and you sort of feel that you ought to know what you're singing about.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 15 Aug 07 - 10:28 PM

Maria Louisa, an Austrian princess; Napoleon's second wife.

See Remembering the Old Songs,
http://www.lizlyle.lofgrens.org/RmOlSngs/RTOS-SaintHelena.html
See for more on the song.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: Charley Noble
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 08:57 AM

It's doubtful if Louise wasted many tears weeping for her exciled husband, but it's a nice verse. It was a political marriage which did produce the required heir.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: GUEST,Art Thieme
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 12:00 PM

For me the origin of this fine song was Tip Tillet, a song informer for folklorist Frank Warner.

Art Thieme


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: Fred McCormick
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 01:51 PM

Surely you mean Tink Tillet? Wanchese, North Carolina. In any event, the song is known in a great many versions which long predate the Frank Warner/Tink Tillet recording. EG., Gale Huntington (Songs the Whalemen Sang) reports 2 versions found in whaling ship's logs dating from the 1820s., I doubt Tink Tillet's version could be could considered an "original".


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: RTim
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 02:05 PM

From Mudcat's own song list:

BONY ON THE ISLE OF ST. HELENA

Oh, Bony he has gone from his wars all a-fightin'
He has gone to the place where he takes no delight in.
And there he may sit down and tell the scenes that he's seen of
When full long doth he mourn on the Isle of St. Helena.

Oh, Louisy she weeps for her husband's departin'
She dreams when she sleeps and she wakes broken-hearted.
Not a friend to console her, even those who might be with her
For she mourns when she thinks on the Isle of St. Helena.

Oh the rude rushing waves all around the shores a-washin'
And the great billows heaves on the wild rocks are dashin'.
He may look to the moon o'er the great Mount Diana
With his eyes o'er the waves roll around St. Helena.

No more in St. Cloud he'll be seen in such splendor
Or go on with his wars like the great Alexander,
For the young king of Rome and the prince of Gehenna
They have caused him to die on the Isle of St. Helena.

O you Parliaments of England and you Holy Alliance
To a prisoner of war you may now bid defiance.
For his base intrudin' and his base misdemeanors
Have caused him to die on the Isle of St. Helena.

Come all you's got wealth, pray beware of ambition
For it's a degree of fate that may change your condition.
[Be's it best in time]* for what's to come you know not
For fear you may be changed like he on the Isle of St. Helena.

Collected by Frank and Anne Warner from C.K. (Tink) Tillett, 1940
* According to Jeff Warner, this phrase was (originally) [Be
steadfast in time]


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Subject: Lyr. Add: Bonaparte on St. Helena
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 03:37 PM

From Songs the Whalemen Sang:

Lyr. Add: BONAPARTE ON ST. HELENA

Bonaparte is gone
From his wars and his fightings
He has gone to a place
That he never took delight in
He may sit down and tell-o
What great sights he has seen-o
Yet alone he must mourn
On the Isle of St Helena

Where the (Magalene) clouds
Come forth in great splendor
They come forth in crowds
Like the great Alexander
He may sigh to the winds
On the great Mount Diana
Yet alone he must mourn
On the Isle of St Helena

Where the great white-top waves
On the rocks they are dashing
and proud foaming billows
On the shores they are washing
He may sigh to the winds
On the mount of Diana
Yet alone he must mourn
On the Isle of St Helena

Louisa she mourns
From her husband she is parted
And she dreams when she sleeps
And awakes broken hearted
There is none to console her
Though there's plenty would be with her
Yet alone she mourns
When she thinks on St Helena

Come all you that have great wealth
Now beware of ambition
Or by some degree or other
You might change your condition
Be steadfast in time-o
What is to come you can not tell-o
Or by chance you might end
On the Isle of St Helena

George 1829
Galaxy 1827
"Gale Huntington, 1964 (2005), "Songs the Whalemen Sang," pp. 205-207, with brief score. Mystic Seaport.
"The version in the George journal is slightly more complete than the Galaxy version. But both are garbled in places. A. L. Lloyd sent me a very nice version of the song collected in 1904 from one Henry Burstow of Sussex. That version is called "Boney's in St. Helena.""
Greanleaf pp. 168-169; "Napoleon the Exile".
JFSS vol. 2 pp. 88-90; "The Island of St. Helena."
JAF vol. 13 p. 140; vol. 35 pp. 358-359; "Bonaparte on St. Helena."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 16 Aug 07 - 04:15 PM

Lyr. Add: BONAPARTE ON ST. HELENA (2)

Bony, he is gone from the wars of all fighting,
He has gone to the place he never took delight in,
Oh, there he may sit down and tell the scenes he's seen, ah!
While forlorn he doth mourn on the Isle of St. Helena.

Louise does mourn for husband departed,
She dreams when she sleeps, and she wakes broken-hearted;
Not a friend to console her, even those that might be with her,
But she mourns when she thinks of the Isle of St. Helena.

Come all ye that have got wealth, pray beware of ambition,
For it is a decree in fate that might change your condition,
Be ye steadfast in time, for what is to come ye know not,
For fear you might be changed, like he, on the Isle of St. Helena.

The rude rushing waves all around the shores are washing,
And the great billows heave, and the wild rocks dashing,
He may look to the moon of the great Mount Diana,
With his eyes o'er the waves that around St. Helena. [surround?]

No more, in St. Clouds, he will be seen in such splendor,
Or go on, with his crowd, with the great Alexander
For the young king of Rome, and the Prince of Ganah,
Says he will bring his father home from the Isle of St. helena.

The Parliaments of England and your Holy Alliance,
To a prisoner of war you may now bid defiance,
For, your base intrigues and your baser misdemeanors
Have caused him to die on the Isle of St. Helena.

Song sheet, H. De Marsan, New York.
Bodleian, Ballads Catalogue: Harding B18(51); c. 1860.
A more coherent version, printed in the U. S.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: bradfordian
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 05:17 AM

Thanks for the info mudcatters. Sorry late in getting back here. Just for completeness, Reference here to Louise, where it says that Bony was exiled to the island of Elba from where he went walkabout.(or should that be sailabout?) It was on his second exile that he was sent to St Helena for another holiday (after working so hard!)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: Rowan
Date: 26 Aug 07 - 09:53 PM

"it says that Bony was exiled to the island of Elba from where he went walkabout."

Leading to the old palindrome
Able was I ere I saw Elba

Cheers, Rowan


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Subject: RE: Origins: Isle of St Helena
From: Jim McLean
Date: 27 Aug 07 - 09:09 AM

There is a verse in Catnach's ballad-sheet version:

Since Anna she weeps for her husband departed,
She dreams when she sleeps, and she wakes broken-hearted,
Not a friend to console her, those that might, they will na,
She may mourn when she thinks of the Island of St. Helena.

So who was Anna?

Another verse, slightly different from those posted:

The rude rushing waves of our shores is a-washing,
And the great billows heave, on the wild rocks dashing,
He may look on the main, when he thinks on Lucanna,
With his heart full of woe in the Island of St. Helena.

Are these names all the same, Louise/Louisa/Anna/Lucanna?


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