Mudcat Café message #3828898 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #161176   Message #3828898
Posted By: Richie
26-Dec-16 - 09:09 PM
Thread Name: Origins: Died for Love: Sources and variants
Subject: RE: Origins: Died for Love: Sources and variants

"The Deceased Maiden Lover" is an earlier theme of a broadside that Ebsworth calls "Oxfordshire Tragedy." The title is The Constant Lady and false-hearted Squire; Being a Relation of a Knight's Daughter near Woodstock Town in Oxfordshire).

In "The Deceased Maiden Lover" a maiden whose heart has been mortally wounded by a "False man" wanders about picking flowers and herbs for her death bed-- she cries "Alas there's none ere lov'd like me!"

When shee had fild her apron full
Of such sweet flowers as she could cull,
The green Leaves servd her for her Bed
The Flowers pillowes for her head.

In The Constant Lady and False-Hearted Squire the maid performs a similar task:

The Lady round the meadow run,
and gather'd flowers as they sprung;
Of every sort she there did pull,
until she got her apron full.

"Now there's a flower," she did say,
"is named Heart's-ease, night and day;
I wish I could that flower find,
for to ease my love-sick mind.

"But oh, alas! 'tis all in vain
for me to sigh and to complain;
There 's nothing that can ease my smart,
for his disdain will break my heart."

The green ground served as a bed, and flowers,
a pillow for her head;
She laid her down, and nothing spoke:
alas! for love her heart was broke.

Stanzas from "The Constant Lady and False-Hearted Squire" appear in the "Died For Love" Songs and "Constant Lady" is the basis for "Love Has Brought me to Despair" and a stanza is also found in the related "Sailor Boy."

I'm not sure I see a close connection between "Died For Love" and Deceased Maiden Lover." Anyone?