Mudcat Café message #3513398 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #150417   Message #3513398
Posted By: Steve Gardham
09-May-13 - 11:13 AM
Thread Name: Origins: Child Ballads: US Versions Part 5
Subject: RE: Origins: Child Ballads: US Versions Part 5
'I've moved on to 275 Get Up and Bar the Door. Seems like many of the collected US versions are questionable. Cox, Combs, Gainer, Brown A and B, plus Niles are all questionable- I've pointed this out even tho I hate doing it. Should I?'

Firstly, why do you hate doing it?
Secondly, if there is a good reason to be suspicious then I would say you have an obligation to your readers to make this clear, even if it's only repeating soe's suspicions.

Personally I'd say the whole transmission of the song carries some doubt. Versions vary very little. It's a nice little joke but it hardly fits in with Child's criteria. I think he only included a few pieces like this as examples. There are thousands of similar pieces of similar age that he could have chosen. I'm not saying it didn't exist in oral tradition but like some others it seems to have enjoyed more of a print tradition than an oral tradition.