Mudcat Café message #3898720 The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #9631   Message #3898720
Posted By: Richard Mellish
11-Jan-18 - 04:46 AM
Thread Name: Origins: Maid of Australia / Maids of Australia
Subject: RE: Origins: Maid of Australia / Maids of Australia
It seems better to continue discussion of this particular song here rather than in what should be a much more general thread.

I'm interested that we have at least one version collected in Australia that does refer to "Hawkesbury" rather than "Oxborough", "Oxberry" or suchlike. However it looks somewhat degenerate in other respects: fewer verses, and verse 2 line 3 referring to "kissing and caressing", which makes much better sense later in the story, after he has helped her from the water. This suggests that the Aussie version had knocked around in the tradition for a bit, so "Oxborough" could be original and "Hawkesbury" a rationalisation by an Aussie singer.