Mudcat Café message #3515070 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #150417   Message #3515070
Posted By: Steve Gardham
14-May-13 - 03:32 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Child Ballads: US Versions Part 5
Subject: RE: Origins: Child Ballads: US Versions Part 5
Richie,
There are 2 versions from the Harris sisters. From what I can make out one version is simply titled 'Robin' and the other, the one Child published, is indeed titled 'Robin He's gane to the wude' but both versions start 'Robin he's gane to the Wast' probably meaning 'west'.

Why this is so is a mystery, unless perhaps the transcriber knew it as the 'wude' title and decided to use this as a master title. Whatever the problem it is not Child's mistake.

My info comes from 'The Harris Repertoire' ed. by Emily Lyle et al.

Whatever you decide to do with this ballad you should be aware it has become crossed with another ballad called 'The Slattern Wife' which has almost as long a pedigree. You can listen to and see a version called 'Willie went to Westerdale' on our Yorkshire Garland website at www.yorkshirefolksong.net . You will note that the chorus in particular is close to hybrid American versions.