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Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy

DigiTrad:
BLACK JACK DAVEY
BLACK JACK DAVY
BLACK JACK DAVY (IN ATLANTIC CITY)
BLACKJACK DAVEY (2)
BLACKJACK DAVID
CLAYTON BOONE
GYPSIE LADDIE
GYPSY DAVEY
GYPSY LADDIES
GYPSY ROVER
HARRISON BRADY
SEVEN GYPSIES ON YON HILL
THE GYPSY LADDIE
THE GYPSY LADDIE (4)
THE HIPPIES AND THE BEATNIKS
THE LADY AND THE GYPSY
THE WRAGGLE-TAGGLE GYPSIES
WHEN CARNAL FIRST CAME TO ARKANSAS


Related threads:
(origins) Origins: What is your favorite Blackjack Davy? (15)
Lyr Req: Gypsies (Cathal McConnell, Child #200) (5)
(origins) Origins: The Raggle-Taggle Gypsy (127)
Wraggle Taggle Gypsies in translation (3)
Lyr Req: Seven Yellow Gypsies (Dolores Keane) (8)
Chord Req:This version of Black Jack Davey (Heron) (13)
(origins) Origins: Clayton Boone (Child #200) (10)
Lyr Req: Gipsy Countess (8)
Lyr Add: The wraggle taggle Gipsies, O! (16)
Lyr Req: Gypsy Davy (Doc and Richard Watson) (4)
Black Jack Davey Dylan (27)
Black Jack Davy - origin of phrase? (26)
Lyr Req: Hippies and the Beatniks (Miles Wootton) (28)
Origins of raggle-taggle (9)
Lyr Req: The Gypsy Laddie (Tannahill Weavers) (10)
Chord Req: gypsy davy (3)
Lyr Req: Gypsy Laddie (Jean Redpath #200) (8)
Lyr Req: Black Jack Davy (Sheila Kay Adams #200) (6)
Lyr Req: Raggle taggle gypsy (26)
Tune Req: jeannie robertson's gypsy laddies (3)
Lyr Req: Raggle Taggle Gypsie 'O (12)
Tune Req: Raggle Taggle Gypsy Oh ! (7)
looking for Johnny Faw songs (Johnny Faa) (8)
Help: History of Blackjack David-y-ey (30)
Lyr Req: Wraggle Taggle Gypsy (10)
(origins) Origin: Raggle-Taggle Gypsy (6)


Richie 03 Dec 15 - 08:57 PM
Jack Campin 03 Dec 15 - 09:17 PM
Jeri 03 Dec 15 - 09:39 PM
Richie 03 Dec 15 - 09:51 PM
Richie 03 Dec 15 - 10:02 PM
Richie 03 Dec 15 - 10:35 PM
Richie 03 Dec 15 - 10:44 PM
GUEST,Mike Yates 04 Dec 15 - 02:56 AM
Tradsinger 04 Dec 15 - 03:46 AM
Dave the Gnome 04 Dec 15 - 04:43 AM
GUEST 04 Dec 15 - 06:44 AM
Dave the Gnome 04 Dec 15 - 06:51 AM
GUEST 04 Dec 15 - 07:17 AM
Dave the Gnome 04 Dec 15 - 08:24 AM
GUEST,nickp cookieless 04 Dec 15 - 09:23 AM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 01:50 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 02:20 PM
Steve Gardham 04 Dec 15 - 02:32 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 03:03 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 03:12 PM
Jim Brown 04 Dec 15 - 03:41 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 03:45 PM
Steve Gardham 04 Dec 15 - 03:58 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 04:03 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 04:09 PM
Lighter 04 Dec 15 - 04:15 PM
Richie 04 Dec 15 - 04:16 PM
Richie 05 Dec 15 - 07:21 AM
Richie 05 Dec 15 - 07:36 AM
Steve Gardham 05 Dec 15 - 05:46 PM
Steve Gardham 05 Dec 15 - 05:51 PM
Richie 05 Dec 15 - 06:39 PM
GUEST,Ebor Fiddler 05 Dec 15 - 08:19 PM
Richie 06 Dec 15 - 05:33 PM
Paul Burke 06 Dec 15 - 06:37 PM
Ged Fox 07 Dec 15 - 04:51 AM
Steve Gardham 07 Dec 15 - 08:56 AM
Ged Fox 07 Dec 15 - 09:46 AM
Richie 07 Dec 15 - 06:05 PM
Lighter 07 Dec 15 - 06:31 PM
GUEST,leeneia 08 Dec 15 - 12:07 PM
Lighter 08 Dec 15 - 12:37 PM
Richie 08 Dec 15 - 09:30 PM
Ged Fox 09 Dec 15 - 04:37 AM
Jim Brown 09 Dec 15 - 07:01 AM
GUEST 09 Dec 15 - 08:50 AM
Richie 09 Dec 15 - 09:31 AM
Lighter 09 Dec 15 - 09:35 AM
Richie 09 Dec 15 - 10:14 AM
GUEST 09 Dec 15 - 10:47 AM
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Subject: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 08:57 PM

Hi,

I'm putting my collected North American versions of Gypsy Davey on my web-site here: http://www.bluegrassmessengers.com/us--canada-versions-200-the-gypsy-laddie.aspx It's mess but it will get better!!

I'm a bit flummoxed at several words as well as trying to sort the versions in some semblance of order. So I'm enlisting your help!!!

Let's start the words; 1) several versions including one collected by my grandfather in 1933 have as the second line:

A-singing so loud and halely;

Is haily/haley/hailey a word or is it a mistake for "gaily." Frank Proffitt's version (Fol legasy 1962) has:

Who's that gallopin' on the King's highway,
Singin' so gay and haily?

And there are others. I dunno?

2) What or who is an Ingram lord? Ingram appears in several version and most notably perhaps one of the finest in Appalachia as sung by Robert Shiflett in 1961:

Her Ingram Lord came home that night,
Inquiring for his lady,
The waiting maid cried, as she replied,
"She's gone with Gypsy Davey."

Ingram has appeared in several versions. Whatdya think?

Still wondering,

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Jack Campin
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 09:17 PM

hale = strong or healthy, in Scots.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Jeri
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 09:39 PM

Pretty much the same here, Jack. "Hale and Hearty. Hale-ly halely


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 09:51 PM

Thanks Jack and Jeri,

I've got Ingram lord as perhaps "own grim lord" but "grim" doesn't seem right. Antone?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 10:02 PM

Hi,

I've also thought of "own wed(ed) lord" which is better than Ingram but doesn't sound the same.

As far as sorting out the versions from North America, first I'd like to consider this Irish broadside (does anyone know where to find this online? Where and when it was published?):

Dated c. 1868; Barry BBM, 1929, version F.
Broadside in the Williams Collection of Irish Broadsides, Public Library, Providence, R. I.

Dark-Eyed Gipsy, O

I When Charley came home late at night
Enquiring for his lady, O,
She's gone, she's gone, says his own servant man,
And she's followed the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

2 Go, saddle me my milk-white steed,
The brown was e'er so speedy O,
That I may ride the length of the night
Till I find but the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

3 So Charley rode thus through the length of the night
Till the next morning early O,
It's then he met with gay old man
And he both wet and weary O.

4 Where have you been my gay old man
Where have you been so early O?
Or did you see a fair lady,
And she following the dark-eyed Gipsy O?

5 I have been east, I have been west,
I have been north and southwards O,
And the fairest lady I e'er did see,
Was following the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

6 Then he rode east and he rode west,
He rode north and southwards O,
Until he met with his own wedded wife,
And she following the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

7 Will you forsake your houses and lands,
Will you forsake your children O,
Will you forsake your own wedded lord
And follow the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

8 What do I care for houses or lands,
What do I care for my children O?
What do I care for my own wedded lord,
While I follow the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

9 Then she took the garment that she wore
And wound it as a head-dress O,
Saying, I'll eat the grass and drink the dew
And I'll follow the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

Identifiers: 1) Charley 2) dark-eyed Gipsy (dark-eyed gypsy true) 3) "eat the grass and drink the dew" 4) "rode East and rode West"

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 10:35 PM

Hi,

As far as determining age in North American versions (an perhaps this holds true for British versions, I postulate:

1) The versions with Gypsy Laddie (or an approximation) in the text appear to be of greater antiquity. (also)

2) Versions which have "he rode east; he rose west" stanza as found in Child E and inserted in some versions of Child A (ESPB, VII):

E. 12, 13. After 9 of A, says Finlay, some copies insert:

And he 's rode east, and he 's rode west,
      Till he came near Kirkaldy;
There he met a packman-lad,
      And speir'd for his fair lady.

E 13    'I hae been east, and I hae been west,
And in the lang town o Kircadie,
But the bonniest lass that ever I saw
Was following a gypsie laddie.'

The town where he meets his "fair lady" is Kirkaldy/Kircadie in the Scottish versions but in the US it's Barley/Bosly/Borzey/Morty. The versions with Gypsy Laddie in the text appear to be of greater antiquity and also have the "he rode east; he rose west" stanza as found in Child E and inserted in some versions of Child A (ESPB, VII):

E. 12, 13. After 9 of A, says Finlay, some copies insert:

And he 's rode east, and he 's rode west,
      Till he came near Kirkaldy;
There he met a packman-lad,
      And speir'd for his fair lady.

E 13    'I hae been east, and I hae been west,
And in the lang town o Kircadie,
But the bonniest lass that ever I saw
Was following a gypsie laddie.'

The town where he meets his "fair lady" is Kirkaldy/Kircadie in the Scottish versions but in the US it's Barley/Bosly/Borzey/Morty.

3) Rare versions that have a charm or spell (not just "charmed the heart of a lady")

4) Rare versions (one) that have lord Cassilis or an approximation

Do you know of any others? What do you think?

The ballad seems to resemble the Irish and Scotch in the North East (New England/ Canada) as well as Child J and K. The older Virginia/Appalachian versions have elements of A-E but seem to have their own form.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 03 Dec 15 - 10:44 PM

Hi,

Sorry- I copied 2) twice in my last post.

Another word I've wondered about is Egyptian and the various variations Gypsum, Gyptian, Gipsom etc.

Do I assume these are related to Child F and the word "Egyptian" or are they a corruption of "gypsy"?

Were the gypsies really Egyptians or just called that? And why?

Thanks

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST,Mike Yates
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 02:56 AM

Here is the opening paragraph to some song notes that I wote a few years back:
Gypsies, the 'Lords of Little Egypt', do not come from Egypt. If they come from anywhere, then it is from the Indus Basin and the Hindu Kush. In the 10th and 11th centuries CE they began the first of many migrations westwards, through what is now Turkey, then through the Balkans and into Europe; or south, along the Mediterranean coast of North Africa and up into Spain. In the mid-thirteenth century Gypsies serving as armourers, blacksmiths and camp-followers of the Tartar invaders of south-east Europe found their blood-brothers already well-established there in considerable numbers. By the year 1427 Gypsies had arrived in Paris. A few years later they were in London. In 1492 the Royal Court of Scotland was to welcome Johnny Faa, one of whose relatives was to later become the 'Gypsy Laddie' of popular balladry. Having persuaded the Court that they were also of royal blood they rather overplayed their hand by claiming appropriate privileges. Such flirtations with royalty, however, were to be short lived. They were soon to become better known, not as members of a foreign nobility, but rather as wandering marauders, and the Scottish Parliament quickly passed laws which said that Gypsies could be apprehended on sight and hanged. It was the Gypsy who was to become the Black Man of Scottish demonology. It was the Gypsy who was to provide Shakespeare with his evil Egyptian sorcerers; and it was the Gypsy, Europe's first 'coloured' race, who was to become the scapegoat for British custom and society.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Tradsinger
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 03:46 AM

Here is what the site www.glostrad.com has to say:

This is a very popular song with a long provenance, with versions dating back to the 18th century. Many theories abound as to the history behind the ballad, but none show a clear audit trail. One interesting line to follow is an apparent prequel called "The Gypsy Countess", sung by James Parsons of Lewdown, Devon and collected by the Rev Baring-Gould in the 19th century. In this ballad, of which only one version has ever been collected, a lord persuades a gypsy girl to marry him. She is reluctant at first but agrees in the last verse. If this were the real prequel to the well-known plot, then the story of the married wife going away with the gypsies would make perfect sense. The issue is clouded by the publication in the 19th century of a broadside entitled "The Gipsy [sic] Countess" in which a nobleman persuades a gypsy girl to marry him, and she eventually agrees. So basically the same plot as James Parsons' version, although worded quite differently.

Whatever the truth behind the ballad, it has endeared itself to traditional singers on both sides of the Atlantic, with literally hundreds of versions being collected.

Tradsinger


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 04:43 AM

I am pretty sure Egyptian in this context is Gypsy. The same term is used for Jamie MacPherson, as in MacPherson's lament, in this Wiki article -

Forasmeikle as you James McPherson, pannal [accused] are found guilty by ane verdict of ane assyse, to be knoun, holden, and repute to be Egiptian and a wagabond, and oppressor of his Magesties free lieges in ane bangstrie manner, and going up and down the country armed, and keeping mercats in ane hostile manner

I am not sure where the merecats fit in though :-)

Cheers

DtG


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 06:44 AM

D.T.G.

"Keeping mercats in ane hostile manner"

Attending markets in search of trouble    ie. for a fight etc.

As with some of our alcohol-fuelled gangs of the present day.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 06:51 AM

I guessed as much but with the popularity of search the meerkat adverts I liked to dream :-)


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 07:17 AM

Sorry----not having a tv am not up to speed with current marketing trends.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Dave the Gnome
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 08:24 AM

Good on you! No need to apologise.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST,nickp cookieless
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 09:23 AM

Could that be 'Ain (Scots 'own') grim Lord'


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 01:50 PM

Thanks for the replies.

Here's a radical version of the ballad title "Radical Gypsy David" which was collected twice in Virginia- first by John Stone in 1921 (Davis D) and then by Shellans from Vass in 1959.

Here's a stanza from Vass:

Then he caught up his old grey horse,
And he caught up his pony;
He rode all night and he rode all day,
Till he overtook his honey.
The radical Gypsy David,
The radical Gypsy David.

What does "radical" mean here?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 02:20 PM

Mike,

After reading your notes, it seems that a gypsy has spawned, not only The Gypsy Laddie and The Gypsy Countess but probably Child 295 "The Brown Girl" (who is a nut-brown maid) as well as Child 73, Lord Thomas.

Since Baring Gould had a hand (and maybe even an ear) in both The Gypsy Countess and The Brown Girl, does this suggest that they are both about a gypsy girl? Can we also assume that the "brown girl" betrothed to Lord Thomas could also be a gypsy?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 02:32 PM

Richie,
I'm sure you've been told this before. It's certainly been expressed on quite a few threads. 'Brown girl' usually in older ballads is simply referring to hair colour, as opposed to 'fair' or 'black' or 'red'. There is no reason to think that 'brown' in these cases has any connection with gypsy. However there is nothing to stop a source singer putting that spin on it.

Baring Gould certainly wrote 295B and very likely The Gypsy Countess, but 295A dates back at least to the late 18thc under that very title. In fact if I recall correctly the garland it is in is called 'The Brown Girl's Garland'.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 03:03 PM

Tradsinger,

Baring-Gould's MS of the Gypsy Countess is single ballad credited to James Parsons. However in Songs and Ballads of the West, 1892, he attributes the second part which begins:

1. Three gypsies stood at the castle gate,
They sang so high. they sang so low,
The lady sate in her chamber late,
Her heart it melted away as snow,
Away as snow
Her heart it melted away as snow.

to the blacksmith Woodrich. The second part is a version (or rewrite) of The Gypsy Laddie, with a different ending.

Baring Gould says of the prequel by Parsons: Taken down from an old and illiterate hedger, son of a more famous singer. Neither could read or write.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 03:12 PM

Steve,

I thought the first broadside was The Cruel Nymph (Child 295) which is not given by Child. Are you aware of the Irish broadside I posted earlier in this thread. It appears to be a mid-1800s rewrite. Do you know anything about it?

Also can you tell me about early broadsides of Gypsy Laddie?

TY

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Jim Brown
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 03:41 PM

> What or who is an Ingram lord?

Hi Ritchie,
"Her Ingram Lord came home that night" reminds me of Jean Ritchie's version, which has "An English lord came home one night...". That sounds similar to "Ingram lord" and makes more sense. Any chance that the versions with "Ingram lord" could have started from someone mishearing "English lord"? Although I guess it could also have gone the other way, if someone was trying to make sense of "Ingram lord" and rationalized it to "English lord". Are there any other versions with "English lord"?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 03:45 PM

Gypsy Countess Part 2 from Baring Gould; Songs and Ballads of the West. Attributed to the blacksmith Woodrich

1. Three gypsies stood at the castle gate,
They sang so high, they sang so low,
The lady sate in her chamber late,
Her heart it melted away as snow,
   Away as snow
Her heart it melted away as snow.

2. They sang so sweet, they sang so shrill,
That fast her tears began to flow,
And she laid down her golden gown,
Her golden rings, and all her show,
   All her show &c

3. She plucked off her high-heeled shoes,
A-mde of Spanish leather, O
She would in the street, with her bare, bare feet;
All out of the wind and weather, O.
Weather, O! &c

4 She took in her hand but a posie,
The wildest flowers that do grow.
And down the stair, went the lady fair,
To go away with the gypsies, O!
The gipsies O! &c

5 At past midnight her lord came home,
And where his lady was would know.
All servants replied on every side,
"She's gone away with the gipsies O!"
    The gipsies O! &c

6 Then he rode high, and he rode low,
He rode through hills and valleys O,
Until he spied his fair young bride
Who'd gone away with the gipsies O,
The gipsies O! &c

7 O will you leave your house and lands,
Your golden treasures for to go,
Away from your lord that weareth a sword.
To follow along with the gipsies, O!
      The gipsies O! &c

8 O I will leave my house and lands,
My golden treasures for to go.
I love not my lord that weareth a sword,
I'll follow along with the gipsies O!
                   The gipsies O! &o:

9 'Nay, thou shalt not!' then he drew, I wot,
   The sword that hung at his saddle bow.
And once he smote on her lily-white throat,
And there her red blood down did flow
    Down did flow, &c

10 Then dipp'd in blood was the posie good,
That was of the wildest flowers that blow.
She sank on her side, and so she died,
For she would away with the gipsies 0!
                   The gipsies O!
For she would away with the gipsies 0!


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 03:58 PM

Difficult to say which came first as they're both late 18thc but The Cruel Nymph does have 2 extra verses.

There are plenty of late 18thc versions of Gypsy Laddie. Roxburghe Ballads (Ebsworth) dates the version there at c1720. In the 19thc it was widely printed on broadsides in a variety of forms in Ireland, England and Scotland.

Re Irish copies, the earliest is probably Baird of Cork, 14v, FL 'There lived three Gipsies in the North' Titled 'Gipsey Laddie O'.

Birmingham of Dublin c1860 printed 'A Much admired Song called The Dark-eyed Gipsy O' 10v, FL 'There were three Gipsies in the east'.
I don't have a copy of a broadside with the first line 'When Charley came home late at night'. As it lacks the usual intros it very likely came from oral tradition. In fact I don't think I've seen any broadsides this side of the pond with a Charley in them. If there is no imprint how do they know it's an Irish broadside?


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 04:03 PM

Jim,

"English" lord makes sense but it is not traditional, in my opinion. I know of no other versions from North America that have this. I consider this version a recreation from print or possibly a traditional version. The use of "gypsy laddie" is also questionable, since it is very rare and not found, to my knowledge, in that region.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 04:09 PM

Steve,

According to Barry BBM in 1929:

The Williams Collection of Irish Broadsides, in the Public Library of Providence, R. I., contains the original of it, purchased some sixty years ago in Ireland.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Lighter
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 04:15 PM

My guess is that "radical" means nothing in particular and is a mishearing or mondegreen of "raggle-taggle."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 04 Dec 15 - 04:16 PM

Steve,

Barry compares his E version with the Irish broadside text;

E. [Dark-Eyed Gipsy O] Taken down, without title, from the recitation of Mrs. Rose Robbins, Northeast Harbor, 1926.

1 Charles rode home in the middle of the night,
Inquiring for his lady O.
"She's gone, she's gone," cried his own servant maid,
"She's following the dark-eyed gipsy O."

2 "Go saddle, go saddle my milk-white steed,
The fastest of my horses O,
And I will ride the length of a night;
I'll find out that dark-eyed gipsy O."

3 He rode east and he rode west,
He rode south and northward, too,
Until he espied a gay old man,
And he was tired and weary O.

4 "Would you forsake your house and lands,
Would you forsake your children, too?"
"I'll eat of the grass and I'll drink of the dew
And I'll follow the dark-eyed gipsy O."

5 She took off her mantle, she tied it round her waist,
She look-ed gay and bonnie O,
Saying, "I'll eat of the grass, I'll drink of the dew
And I'll follow my dark-eyed gipsy O."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 07:21 AM

Hi,

Lighter I agree with you on Radical Gypsy David.

Here's a link to another Irish Broadside dated 1867:

http://ballads.bodleian.ox.ac.uk/static/images/sheets/15000/12697.gif

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 07:36 AM

Here's another Irish version that has "Lord Charles":

https://books.google.com/books?id=0-o2AQAAMAAJ&pg=PA42&dq=Dark-eyed+gipsy+O&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0ahUKEwjgjoWt3cTJAhXDQSYKHXJYD7sQ6AEI

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 05:46 PM

Hi Richie,
Apologies. Now I've had a chance to look at the Irish broadsides, Birmingham does indeed have 'Charley' but the version you posted seems to start at the second verse. Here are the first 2 verses of 10 on his sheet titled ' A much admired song called the Dark-Eyed Gipsy O.'
There were three Gipsies in the east,
They sung so blyth and bonny O,
They sung so sweet so very sweet,
That they charmed the heart of the lady O.

Then Charley came home late at night,
Enquiring for his lady O,
She's gone she's gone says his own servant man,
And she's followed the dark-eyed Gipsy O.

Why the Williams copy lacks the first verse I don't know.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 05:51 PM

Richie
Your Bodl link didn't do anything for me though I can easily find it. It's very likely the same copy I've just posted. The other link doesn't seem to be available other than the first line. Wouldn't mind a copy of the journal anyway.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 06:39 PM

Ty Steve,

I think the title is: A much dmired ong call the Dark-eyed gipsy O

Haha! Sorta like I type :)

The point being the ballad with "dark-eyed gipsy/gypsy may be of Irish origin or based on an Irish print copy.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST,Ebor Fiddler
Date: 05 Dec 15 - 08:19 PM

1) "Ingram" may very well be correct and not a mondegreen as there was a northern Family of that name, who had money in the early 17th Century and possibly earlier.

2) In an American version of "Lord Thomas and Fair Eleanor", I remember the heroine insulting the Brown Girl, whom Lord Thomas has just wed, saying "Wow, she's wondrous brown!" and I don't think she's referring to her hair, especially as the Brown Girl responds by knifing Fair Ellender!

3) I prefer the version which Mick Waterson used to sing (Seven Little Gypsies), in which it was fairly obvious that the Gypsy gang had bespelled the Lady, so in retaliation, her husband has them all hanged.

Chris B.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 06 Dec 15 - 05:33 PM

TY Chris,

Interesting take on Ingram-- not sure if a proper name would precede lord tho.

His bride is definitely brown-skinned and thought to be inferior - a gypsy? it's possible.

As far as I know there's only one North American version where the gypsies are hanged - it's one of the finest versions and was collected by Fowke in 1962. Found in most North American versions is "charmed the heart of a lady." It's not "won the heart" or something else. To me charmed indicates a spell although that meaning may have become lost to future generations.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Paul Burke
Date: 06 Dec 15 - 06:37 PM

Brown doesn't necessarily refer to hereditary skin colour. To have white skin was a sign of aristocracy, of not being exposed to sun and wind in manual work. So the brown girl with the houses and land had worked for her wealth, at the cost of her appearance.

Same reason female office workers of the 60s had often unfeasably long fingernails. And why there's a market for artificial suntan potions- being brown now implies (for pink skinned folk) the wealth and leisure to go to sunny climes.

Somewhere in this lot there are several references to the banning or expulsion of Gypsies (with as contorted spellings as can be imagined, which is why I've left you to find them) from the city of Edinburgh in the 16th century. I don't recall them as being accused of seducing noble ladies though.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Ged Fox
Date: 07 Dec 15 - 04:51 AM

If Lord Thomas etc has any historical context, then maybe it relates to the period after the Norman conquest when Mediterranean-type followers of William gained housen and lands at the expense of fair-haired Saxons.

"Songs of the West" versions:
Gypsy Countess pt1
Gypsy Countess pt2


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 07 Dec 15 - 08:56 AM

That's a very big 'If', Ged.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Ged Fox
Date: 07 Dec 15 - 09:46 AM

And a very tentative maybe - but I think the Norman/Saxon conflict a more plausible interpretation than gypsies, negroes or even upwardly mobile working women.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 07 Dec 15 - 06:05 PM

Hi,

It's interesting to note that at least two version of Gypsy Davy in America have Lord Thomas (Sharp D; Shellans).

Another word I've been wondering about is: riley

The water was dark and riley.

This shows up at least 6 times or so.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Lighter
Date: 07 Dec 15 - 06:31 PM

"Riley" = "roily," i.e., "turbid, muddy."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 08 Dec 15 - 12:07 PM

My unabridged dictionary says

riley= turbid, irritated, vexed. Colloquial U.S.
==========
Do you say "all riled up" meaning to become angry suddenly? I say that once in a while.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Lighter
Date: 08 Dec 15 - 12:37 PM

Yes. But not "riley."


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 08 Dec 15 - 09:30 PM

Hi,

A Question in two parts:

Has the lady been put under a spell?

Can we assume that if we agree that the lady has been put under a spell that the choices she makes are no longer her own?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Ged Fox
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 04:37 AM

No


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Jim Brown
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 07:01 AM

> Has the lady been put under a spell?

That seems to be the implication in some of the Scottish versions in Child (A, B, C, D, F) where they "cast their glamour o'er her" etc. According to the Dictionary of the Scots Language (http://www.dsl.ac.uk), glamour = "Magic, enchantment, witchcraft; a spell, esp. one affecting the sight, as in phr. to cast (the) [glamour] ower someone('s een)". On the other hand the mondegreen in Child G ("They called their grandmother over") might suggest that already in the 18 century not everyone got the meaning, at least outside Scotland. "Charmed" could also mean there was magic involved, but it doesn't have to. According to the Shorter Oxford English Dictionary, the non-magical meaning of "charm" as "powerfully attract, fascinate" also goes back to Middle English.

> Can we assume that if we agree that the lady has been put under a spell that the choices she makes are no longer her own?

Maybe that one should be left for the lawyers, but poetically speaking I think it makes more sense if we assume that their magic (real or metaphorical) couldn't have such an effect on her if she wasn't already open to the possibility of running away. Child B has an interesting ending from this point of view: she declares herself free of the Gypsies' influence, but still won't go back to her husband.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 08:50 AM

In another thread, a few years back, I gave the explanation as to why the lady "cam trippin doon the stairs" when she heard Johnie Faa singing---no magic involved, she recognised the song and the singer from her previous involvement with Sir John Fall of Dunbar.
As a niece of the then King and daughter of an Earl, a scandal of a child born out of wedlock could not be entertained so she was married out of hand to Kennedy of Cassillis who was created an Earl the year after the marriage, no doubt as part of an agreed marriage settlement, by the King her uncle.
The first child born to the lady, a son, did not live to reach adulthood and therefor did not become the second Earl of Cassillis.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 09:31 AM

Hi,

Guest- you write as if this was a historical event. Please provide more details, TY.

I thought the singing was a form gypsies' magic and seduction. It seems to me that ur-ballad is about her seduction by magic and that she was under a spell which caused her to give away her valuables and leave her husband. Perhaps the original intention of the ballad is that she is under a spell and not responsible for her actions.

Obviously this changed (Child B) and was not understood (Child G, many American versions) but it seems that the spell and the effects of the spell have been ignored and that she ran off with Gypsy Davy on her own accord- and, is responsible for that action.

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Lighter
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 09:35 AM

"Glamour" is certainly enchantment.

MacColl's version includes the odd word "comprols," defined in the notes as "spells."

But I can't find this word in either the OED or the Scottish National Dictionary.

Unlike "glamour," it's presumably some sort of mistake.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: Richie
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 10:14 AM

Thanks Lighter,

In regards to the Guests post 8:50 AM, Kyle Davis Jr. writes this in More TBVa, 1960:

Later Scottish tradition and some of the ballads themselves have identified the lady as the wife of the mid-seventeenth-century Earl of Cassilis, apparently without any foundation whatever-- except that the first line of some texts of the ballad have the gypsies come to the "castle-gate."

Do you agree?

Richie


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Subject: RE: Origins: Help with Gypsy Davy
From: GUEST
Date: 09 Dec 15 - 10:47 AM

The folk in the West of Scotland, where she resided after her marriage, did not know of her previous involvement with Sir John Fall and when she absconded with Johnie Faa when he came through from the East, in the guise of a gypsy, they assumed he had "cast the glamourie oure her o" with his song, as an explanation for her strange conduct.

Richie.
Names and dates are all as given by me in a previous thread and can be checked in the historical records of the families involved.

Note 1----there was a letter found, from the 17th.C Earl of Cassilles to the Earl of Eglinton, which completely rules out the usual historical explanation given with this ballad as having taken place in the first part of the 17th. C.

Note 2----Fall, Hall etc. are to this day pronounced, by speakers of Scots, as Faa, Haa etc. here in the West of Scotland


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