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Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion-Child #18

DigiTrad:
JOVIAL HUNTER or SIR LIONEL
OLD BANGUM
SIR EGLAMORE
WILD BOAR
WILD BOAR (3)


Related threads:
Lyr Add: Bold Sir Rylas: a few new stanzas (4)
Lyr Add: Wild Hog in the Woods (15)
Folklore: the wampus cat (35)
Lyr Add: Wild Hog's Den (10)
Chord Req: Wild Hog in the Woods (4)
Lyr Req: Wild Hog in the Woods (4)


Steve Gardham 03 Oct 17 - 12:47 PM
GUEST 02 Oct 17 - 09:22 PM
Tradsinger 13 Sep 14 - 05:49 PM
GUEST,Deb Nelson 13 Sep 14 - 09:56 AM
John Minear 28 Jan 10 - 05:53 PM
AllisonA(Animaterra) 28 Jan 10 - 04:32 PM
moongoddess 16 Jul 09 - 09:07 PM
Barry Finn 14 Dec 07 - 02:39 PM
GUEST,noexperts 14 Dec 07 - 01:56 PM
Richard Bridge 02 Nov 07 - 09:58 PM
Big Al Whittle 02 Nov 07 - 09:15 PM
Richard Bridge 02 Nov 07 - 08:09 PM
Big Al Whittle 02 Nov 07 - 07:45 PM
Richard Bridge 02 Nov 07 - 07:19 PM
Big Al Whittle 02 Nov 07 - 06:34 PM
Richard Bridge 02 Nov 07 - 12:16 PM
Ferrara 02 Nov 07 - 08:01 AM
Richard Bridge 30 Oct 07 - 10:07 AM
Richard Bridge 30 Oct 07 - 09:56 AM
Ferrara 30 Oct 07 - 07:17 AM
Dave (the ancient mariner) 17 Aug 06 - 01:03 PM
Joe Offer 17 Aug 06 - 12:20 PM
John Minear 21 Nov 04 - 12:05 PM
Lighter 20 Nov 04 - 07:17 PM
Tradsinger 20 Nov 04 - 05:45 PM
John Minear 20 Nov 04 - 08:32 AM
Scoville 19 Nov 04 - 08:56 PM
Lighter 19 Nov 04 - 08:05 PM
Lighter 19 Nov 04 - 07:49 PM
GUEST 24 Jul 04 - 10:09 AM
GUEST 21 Nov 02 - 08:51 PM
John Minear 02 Sep 02 - 07:22 AM
John Minear 01 Sep 02 - 08:18 AM
John Minear 31 Aug 02 - 08:13 AM
John Minear 31 Aug 02 - 08:08 AM
John Minear 30 Aug 02 - 07:33 AM
John Minear 29 Aug 02 - 08:23 AM
John Minear 28 Aug 02 - 11:49 AM
John Minear 28 Aug 02 - 07:41 AM
John Minear 27 Aug 02 - 08:46 PM
John Minear 27 Aug 02 - 07:42 AM
open mike 27 Aug 02 - 06:33 AM
Jon Bartlett 27 Aug 02 - 04:57 AM
John Minear 26 Aug 02 - 08:10 PM
Jon Bartlett 26 Aug 02 - 06:27 PM
John Minear 26 Aug 02 - 07:47 AM
John Minear 25 Aug 02 - 08:16 PM
John Minear 25 Aug 02 - 11:00 AM
John Minear 25 Aug 02 - 07:30 AM
raredance 24 Aug 02 - 11:06 PM
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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Steve Gardham
Date: 03 Oct 17 - 12:47 PM

Fascinating thread. Thanks for reviving it.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: GUEST
Date: 02 Oct 17 - 09:22 PM

Many versions have the line:

"Old Bangum drew his wooden knife"

Why a wooden knife, wouldn't a steel knife be better? Is this some misheard lyric, and if so, what?

Thanks

Geoff


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Tradsinger
Date: 13 Sep 14 - 05:49 PM

'Bold Sir Rylas' was collected in Wiltshire from Daniel Morgan of Cheltenham in probably the 20s. In 1969, the researcher John Baldwin recorded Daniel's son John singing the song. The transcription can be found here. However, in order to hear the recording, you have to make an appointment with Leeds University to hear items from the Leeds Archive of Vernacular Culture Special Collections and go to Leeds to hear it. The other however is that John Morgan was not a skilled singer and although the transcription is accurate, it is a transcription of a poor performance and only hints vaguely at the real tune. Nevertheless it is the only field recording of the song in England. I have just recorded 'Bold Sir Rylas' using a tune based partly on the Morgan tune and partly on a Appalachian version on my CD 'Tom Goblin.'

Tradsinger


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: GUEST,Deb Nelson
Date: 13 Sep 14 - 09:56 AM

Great thread, thanks.
Two things-
When 'marsh' comes in ('threads his way through yonders marsh') I think it's a corruption of 'mast', i.e. beechmast, that Europeans and settlers would take their domestic pigs to visit in Autumn, for fattening.

Meaning- gives me archtypal shivers.
Ceridwen.
Terry Pratchett's 'Hogfather'

Winter, black branches, snow, blood, death.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 05:53 PM

Wow, it's been over five years since I posted to this thread! And look at all of the good stuff that's shown up in the meantime. Animaterra, can you post those lyrics from David Anderson. I'd really like to see them. Regardless of the version or where it comes from or what's become of it, this is a great song and one that never wears out.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: AllisonA(Animaterra)
Date: 28 Jan 10 - 04:32 PM

Welcome, Sam! I hope you continue to enjoy the Mudcat. Some good advice is to keep it cordial, speak of what you know about, and don't feed the trolls.

I popped in to say how much I enjoy this thread. I have been privileged to hear "Wild Boar in these woods", an obvious member of this song family, from David Anderson, an 8th generation mountain man whose ancestors (both Cherokee and white) settled the hills around Brasstown, NC. He's still there, still singing, and whenever he sings this song I get chills.

He's also recorded it on Night Hoots and Morning Songs, a great compilation cd from the John C. Campbell Folk School of Brasstown.


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Subject: Lyr Add: BANGUM AND THE WILD BOAR
From: moongoddess
Date: 16 Jul 09 - 09:07 PM

I learned "Bangum and the Wild Boar" from Michael and Carrie Kline who learned it from Currence Hammonds and Sherman Hammonn in West Virginia.

BANGUM AND THE WILD BOAR
From Currence Hammonds and Sherman Hammons

There are a wild boar in these woods, dillo di, dillo dey,
There are a wild boar in these woods, dillo di,
There are a wild boar in these woods,
        He'll eat your meat and suck your blood,
Come away, quaddle down, quanzio.

Bangum made him a wooden gun
        to shoot that wild boar as he run.

Then Bangum got him a butcher knife
        he swore to take that wild boar's life.

He tracked that wild boar to his den
        where he found the bones of a thousand men.

He raised his horn up to his mouth
        first he blowed it East, then West and South.

That wild boar come with such a dash
        it splintered hickory, oak and ash.

Then Bangum raised his wooden gun
        and he shot that wild boar as he run.

Then Bangum raised his butcher knife
        right there he took that wild boar's life.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Barry Finn
Date: 14 Dec 07 - 02:39 PM

Great thread, I don't know how I missed it these many years. I used to sing a version "Abraham Bailey" & got it from the singing of Peggy Seeger, I now know that it's Sam Harmon's "Wild Boar". I believe it's time for me to refresh this song, what a gem.

It's funny with the mention here of songs sung a bedtime. It was ballads like these that I sung my kids to sleep with. At a festival long ago a friend asked in passing for a song & when I started singing it for him the kids started to cry. I wondered at this & futher investigation I found that they started to cry because it was mid day, they were having a grand time but because I was singing this song they thought it was bedtime for them.

Thanks to all
Barry


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: GUEST,noexperts
Date: 14 Dec 07 - 01:56 PM

Actually, there are still indigenous wild pigs in Western NC, Georgia, Alabama and Mississippi although their range is rather diminished.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 09:58 PM

Yes - but not indegenes, imports


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 09:15 PM

what about the wild boars, are they still there in America?


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 08:09 PM

Whether it is catchy depends, I suppose, on the version you sing.

I do an aptation of the Jon Loomes version (it makes a cracking guitar chord sequence when I get it right), and I think the lyric is very catchy - it got into my brain on about two listens, and it's at least in part why I took it up - that and the repeated vocal lines (incantation, if you like, but in that version it is "(diddly-dit -dee-dee) a noble hunter" which seems not to suggest any necromantic aspect)

On the other hand, could it be simply a personification of the battle of good against evil? These are hardly unknown. The pig seems across many versions to be associated with the witch or witch-wife (which begs the question of who the husband might be) - so is the boar the familiar?

There again - we all know what "long pig" is.

But again, we have a hint at the "False Knight" type riddles with the "3 things" the witchwife demands.

On balance then it seems likely that there is intended to be some occult or spiritual meaning - not my ball park in that I abandoned organised religion a very ling time ago having formed the view that organised religion was often a denial of true spiritualism and mostly a control mechanism.

Or to put it another way - it rocks so I sing it whatever it means.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 07:45 PM

what does the boar represent?

Richard the Third had the white boar as his emblem. I suppose selected for the boar's masculinity, its fighting power, its wild fearsomeness.

This boar, we are repeatedly told, drinks your blood. Despite its noble qualities - this is an evil animal.

The lyric is hardly catchy, It meant something to the people who sang it all thos years - what did it represent? What made it precious to them?

The steady incantation would seem to suggest, perhaps a ritual aspect.

Just random thoughts on reading the thread.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 07:19 PM

What what's all about?


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 06:34 PM

"A rummage on the internet seems to show that boar was first introduced into America in the 16th Century "

are they still there?

any idea what its all about?


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 12:16 PM

My reading (albeit in haste) of the earlier parts of the thread was that there appeared to be several songs with some similiarities, but that there appeared to be a hiatus between the known Scottish version(s) and the known American version(s), to such an extent that it was uncertain that all came fromt eh same source. I have not re-checked.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Ferrara
Date: 02 Nov 07 - 08:01 AM

It was definitely Scottish and English before it came over here, Richard. There's a lot of info in the earlier parts of this thread. In England it was uusually noble and knightly, I think. In the US it tends to be livelier and more "homely."


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 30 Oct 07 - 10:07 AM

A rummage on the internet seems to show that boar was first introduced into America in the 16th Century by Spanish, for food, and again in the 19th century by htose who wanted to hunt it. This makes it seem probable that the song was originally European, but has been preserved and adapted in the USA.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 30 Oct 07 - 09:56 AM

Fascinated to see this thread - I've just picked the song up from Jon Loomes' CD.


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Subject: Lyr Add: WILD HOG IN THE WOODS (from Dwight Diller
From: Ferrara
Date: 30 Oct 07 - 07:17 AM

I wanted to learn Dwight Diller's version of "Wild Hog in the Woods." A google search on Diller and "wild hog" found this thread. After listening a few dozen times, with John Minear's posted version of the lyrics (23 Aug 02 - 12:10 PM) to help, I've come up with slightly revised lyrics. I think this is pretty close. - Rita F

- BTW "mast" is fruit or nuts, usually after it's fallen from the tree. It usually means a part of the forest that has lots of acorns. Hogs love acorns.



WILD HOG IN THE WOODS
as sung by Dwight Diller

There's a wild hog in yonder woods,
        Diddle oh down, diddle oh day,
There's a wild hog in yonder woods,
        Diddle oh down, oh day.
There's a wild hog in yonder woods,
He cuts your throat, and he drinks your blood,
        Cut him down, cut him down, kill him if you can.

There's a wild hog in yonder mast,
Cut his way through oak and ash.

Bangum, will you huntin' ride?
Sword and a pistol by your side.

Followed that wild boar day and night,
'Fore he'd a-taken that wild boar's life.

Bangum went to the wild boar's den,
Found the bones of a thousand men.

Fought that wild boar sword and knife,
'Fore he could take that wild boar's life.

Fought four hours in that day,
The wild boar fled and he stumped away.

Bangum threw his wee pen knife,
That was the end of the wild boar's life.


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Subject: RE: Origins: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussi
From: Dave (the ancient mariner)
Date: 17 Aug 06 - 01:03 PM

Probably not what you are looking for, but my favourite hotel in the Lake District in England is the Wild Boar. The local legend has a poem/song dedicated to the place. I found this on the internet.

Richard de Gylpyn (the name already undergoing slight change), called "Richard the Rider," performed a signal act of bravery in the time of King John, killing the last wild boar of Westmoreland, which had devastated the land and terrified the people. Some time previously, about 1206, he had accompanied the Baron of Kendal, who could neither read nor write, to Runnymeade, as his secretary, and in recognition of his heroic act the Baron gave him Kentmere Manor, an estate some four thousand acres in extent in a wild portion of the English lake district, about ten miles distant from Lake Windermere, a "breezy tract of pasture land" as Froissart, the French chronicler, records. Gylpyn thereafter changed his coat of arms from that borne by his forefathers to that having the wild boar upon its shield. This adventure of his, his consequent change of arms, are embodied in an old poem called "Minstrels of Winandermere."

Bert de Gylpyn drew of Normandie
From Walchelin his gentle blood,
Who haply hears, by Bewley's sea,
The Angevins' bugles in the wood,
His crest, the rebus of his name,
Pineapple-a pine of gold
Was it, his Norman shield,
Sincere, in word and deed, his face extolled.
But Richard having killed the boar
With crested arm an olive shook,
And sable boar on field of or
For impress on his shield he took.
And well he won his honest arms.
And well he knew his Kentmore lands.
He won them not in war's alarms,
Nor dipt in human blood his hands.

The arms are those used by the Gilpins to the present day: Or, a boar statant sable, langued and tusked gules. Crest: A dexter arm embowed I armor proper, the naked hand grasping a pine branch fesswise vert. Motto: Dictis Factisque Simplex.
Many members of the Gilpin family now reside in the USA.


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Subject: ADD Version: Wild Hog's Den
From: Joe Offer
Date: 17 Aug 06 - 12:20 PM

Here's an interesting version posted in another thread:
    Thread #93861   Message #1810635
    Posted By: Kate Kestner
    15-Aug-06 - 06:13 PM
    Thread Name: Lyr Add: Wild Hog's Den
    Subject: Lyr Add: Wild Hog's Den
    WILD HOG'S DEN
    unknown

    As I rode round to Wild Hog's Den,
    Deedle-o die, Deedle-o day,
    As I rode round to Wild Hog's Den,
    Deedle-o die, Deedle-o day,
    As I rode round to Wild Hog's Den,
    I saw the bones of a thousand men.
    Camewee-quee, quiddle-i-quay
    Deedle-o die-i-day

    We fought for two hours and a half,
    Deedle-o die, Deedle-o day,
    We fought for two hours and a half,
    Deedle-o die, Deedle-o day,
    We fought for two hours and a half,
    And finaly that wild hog run at last.
    Camewee-quee, quiddle-i-quay
    Deedle-o die-i-day

    This is only two verses of a larger song. My great-granny couldn't remember the rest but that it delt with chasing the hog to ground. It came from the Ozarks in Arkansas but Great Grandma Henson had been a Stewart before she married. They (her grandparents) had come to America after the Battle of Culloden. She was born in Ohio and she marreid and moved to Texas. When my grandmother was 4, they packed a covered wagon and moved to northwest Arkansas in 1910.
    Someone once suggested that it might be linked to the Calledonian Hog story. I also once heard a song that envolved a knight hunting this dangerous mad hog and before he finds it, a fairy gives him some magical help. The tune to that one is totally unlike the tune to this, but there are key words that match. I lost track of that song's name.



The Traditional Ballad Index lists the various versions of this song under "Sir Lionel":

Sir Lionel [Child 18]

DESCRIPTION: (Sir Lionel) hears report (from a lady in distress?) of a murderous boar. Meeting the boar, he slays the beast. In the older versions, the boar's keeper then comes out to demand a price, and the knight then slays the keeper also.
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1876 (Christie, _Traditional Ballad Airs, vol. i_)
KEYWORDS: animal fight magic
FOUND IN: Britain(Scotland(High),England) US(Ap,NE,SE,So)
REFERENCES (38 citations):
Child 18, "Sir Lionel" (6 texts)
Bronson 18, "Sir Lionel" (17 versions)
BronsonSinging 18, "Sir Lionel" (6 versions: #1, #2, #3, #4, #5, #10)
Bell-Combined, pp. 344-346, "The Jovial Hunter of Bromsgrove" (1 text); p. 470, "The Old Man and His Three Sons" (1 fragment)
Leather, pp. 203-204, "Brangywell"; p. 204, "Dilly Dove" (2 texts, 2 tunes) {Bronson's #5, 13}
Williams-Thames, pp. 118-119, "Bold Sir Rylas" (1 text) (also Wiltshire-WSRO Wt 322)
BarryEckstormSmyth pp. 434-435, "Sir Lionel" (notes plus a partial reprint of Child A)
Flanders/Olney, pp. 60-61, "Old Bangum" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #17}
Flanders-Ancient1, pp. 226-229, "Sir Lionel" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #17}
Belden, pp. 29-31, "Sir Lionel" (2 texts, 1 tune, plus fragments of 1 stanza and 1 line respectively) {Bronson's #7}
Randolph 7, "Lord Bangum" (1 fragmentary text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #14}
Davis-Ballads 8, "Sir Lionel" (7 texts, 4 tunes entitled "Bangum and the Boar," "Old Bang'em," "Ole Bangim," "Sir Lionel") {Bronson's #12, #10, #8, #15}
Davis-More 10, pp. 72-78, "Sir Lionel" (4 texts, 4 tunes)
Gainer, pp. 24-25, "Old Badman" (1 text, 1 tune)
Scarborough-SongCatcher, pp. 191-191, "Sir Lionel" (1 text reprinted from Scarborough-NegroFS, and found also in Davis and Scarborough-NegroFS, with local title "Old Bangum"; 1 tune on p. 407) {Bronson's #8}
Scarborough-NegroFS, pp. 51-52, "Old Bangum" (1 text, 1 tune, the same as that in Scarborough-SongCatcher) {Bronson's #8}
SharpAp 9 "Sir Lionel" (4 fragments, 4 tunes) {Bronson's #16, #15, #11, #9}
Ritchie-Southern, p. 85, "Bangum Rid by the Riverside" (1 text, 1 tune)
Boswell/Wolfe 8, pp. 18-20, "Old Bangum" (1 text, 1 tune)
Moore-Southwest 10A, "Bangum Rode the Riverside"; 10B, "Old Bangum" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
Leach, pp. 100-103, "Sir Lionel" (2 texts)
McNeil-SFB2, pp. 157-159, "Ole Banghum" (1 text, 1 tune)
PBB 19, "The Jovial Hunter of Bromsgrove" (1 text)
Lomax-SInging, pp. 149-150, "Old Bangham" (1 text, 1 tune)
Lomax-FSNA 272, "Old Bangum" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson't #8}
Niles 13, "Sir Lionel" (3 texts, 3 tunes)
Chase, pp. 126-127, "Old Bangum and the Boar" (1 text, 1 tune)
Abrahams/Foss, p. 60, "Old Bangum" (1 text, 1 tune)
Morgan-Medieval, pp. 117-119, "Sir Lionel" (1 text)
Silber-FSWB, p. 217, "Old Bangum" (1 text)
DT 18, JOVHUNTR* OLBANGUM*
ADDITIONAL: _Sing Out_ magazine, Volume 24, #2 (1975), p, 5, "Quil O'Quay" (1 short text, 1 tune, from the singing of Nimrod Workman)
RELATED: Versions of the Romance "Sir Eglamour of Artois" --
Digital Index of Middle English Verse #2867
Frances E. Richardson, editor, _Sir Eglamour of Artois_, Early English Text Society/Oxford University Press, 1965, (2 parallel texts, of Lincoln Cathedral MS. 91 and Cotton Caligula A.2, with an appendix containing British Library MS. Egerton 2862 and some readings from the other manuscripts; the two main texts are given a common numbering to bring the total to 1375 lines but L in particular omits some of these lines)
Harriet Hudson, _Four Middle English Romances: Sir Isumbras, Octavian, Sir Eglamour of Artois, Sir Tryamour_, second edition, TEAMS (Consortium for the Teaching of the Middle Ages), Medieval Institute Publications, Western Michigan University, 2006. Much of the material in this book is also available online), pp. 101-132, "Sir Eglamour of Artois" (1 text, of 1320 lines, based mostly on British Library MS. Cotton Caligula A.2)
(William Beattie), _The Chepman and Myllar Prints: A Facsimile with a Bibliographical Note by William Beattie_, Edinburg Bibliographical Society, 1950, pp. 53-88, "(no title)" (1 text, a facsimile of the Advocates Library copy)
John Edwin Wells, _A Manual of the Writings in Middle English 1050-1400_, 1916 (references are to the 1930 fifth printing with three supplements), pp. 115-116, "Sir Eglamour of Artois" (a prose summary)

Roud #29
RECORDINGS:
Bentley Ball, "Bangum and the Boar" (Columbia A3084, 1920)
Logan English, "Bangum and the Boar" (on LEnglish01)
Samuel Harmon, "The Wild Boar" (AFS 2805B; on LC57) {Bronson's #2}
Frank Hutchison, "Wild Hog in the Woods" (OKeh 45274, 1928)
Eunice Yeatts MacAlexander, "Wild Hog in the Woods" (on FarMtns1)
Jean Ritchie, "Old Bangum" (on JRitchie01)
Lonesome Luke [D. C. Decker] & his Farm Boys, "Wild Hog in the Woods" (Champion 16229, 1931; on KMM)
G. D. Vowell, "Bangum and the Boar" (AFS; on LC57)

ALTERNATE TITLES:
Wild Hog
The Jovial Hunter
Rurey Bain
Bangum and the Bo'
Wild Hog in the Woods
Rackabello
NOTES [2281 words]: Many versions of this song have been stripped down to descriptions of the [boar] hunt and the fight. Others have subplots concerning Sir Lionel's brothers.
The versions of this called "Wild Hog in the Woods" should not be confused with the fiddle tune of the same name, which is unrelated to any tune I've ever heard with the ballad. Great tune, though - PJS
Flanders, in her notes in "Ancient Ballads," makes the astonishing (for her) admission of how different the common version of this is from the alleged roots: "If 'Old Bangum' can be considered as a direct descendant of the romance Sir Eglamour of Artois, it is surely a classic example of degeneration through oral tradition.... Although the Child 'Sir Lionel' is probably related to the medieval romance, scholars have just as probably been over-enthusiastic in relating 'Old Bangum' songs too closely to 'Sir Lionel.' As Belden, 29, suggests, a song-book or music hall rewriting may well lie between the two."
She adds, "The 'Old Bangum' texts are the only American forms of Child 18. They are known in... England as well, and are characterized by a nonsense refrain which Alfred Williams... notes is meant to sound like a bugle."
Note that D'Urfey's version (Bronson's #3; not given by Child) actually calls the hero "Sir Eglamore," although this might be editorial.
Child mentions several analogies to the boar-hunting tale in the romances, including part of the story of "Culhwych and Olwen" in the Mabinogion (in which Culywych is given seemingly-impossible tasks in order to win Olwyn) and the tale of "The Avowing of [King] Arthur."
Louis B. Hall, p. 130 in his introduction to the "The Avowing of Arthur," says the following:
"With the wolf practically extinct in England, the wild boar had no enemies except the hunter, and a number of tales describe that hunt. The boar is a fearsome beast today and was even more so in the fifteenth century. Archaeological evidence indicates that it then stood four feet tall at the shoulder and weighted about 300 pounds. Its two tusks were like butcher knives, and the boar could use them to either stab or rip. Its successive layers of bristles, hide, muscle, and fat were impenetrable to arrows. To attack this beast alone with only spear and sword was exceedingly dangerous."
Of "Culhwych and Olwen" Child has little to say except to compare it with other tales of battles with a boar: "But both these, and even the Erymanthian, must lower their bristles before the boar in 'Kilhwch and Olwen,' Mabinogion, part iv, pp. 309-316." This is true as far as it goes; Ford-Mabinogi, p. 119, observes that "The story ostensibly deals with the love of Culhwych for Olwen, the giant's daughter, and describes how, with the help of his cousin Arthur, the impossible tasks imposed by the giant were accomplished and Olwen won... [but] the story is really about Arthur, his wonder-working retinue, and a series of exploits performed by them, culminating in the pursuit of the great boar, Twrch Trwyth. This last ends virtually in a draw between Arthur and the boar, although the carnage on both sides is great."
But the story may not have started there. Mabinogion/Davies, p. xxiii, points out that Arthur's boar hunt is mentioned in the ninth century History of the Britons. On p. 16 Ford-Mabinogi seems to suggest that the boar in "Culhwych" is a vague memory of a pig-god, which presumably makes his opponent semi-divine as well. This would fit well in a the world of giants and talking beasts of "Culhwych," less well with this ballad.
But Child fails to note that the fuller versions of "Sir Lionel," like "Culhwych," involves a giant, Olwen's father. This is not to suggest any direct dependence -- just that these tales of highly deadly boars often have giants somewhere in the vicinity as well.
Lionel himself is an Arthurian character, but a relatively minor one -- e.g. he does not have an entry in Lacy. Moorman/Moorman, p. 81, says of him, "In the Vulgate Lancelot, BOHORT's brother, LANCELOT's cousin. In the Queste del Saint Graal his fury almost leads him to kill BOHORT." Makes you wonder a little if Lionel and the boar didn't get their parts mixed up.
As for the romance of "Sir Eglamour," according to Hudson, p. 97, "Sir Eglamour of Artois tells a familiar story of lovers separated by a disapproving father, their vicissitudes, and their eventual marriage in a triumph of faithful love." To win the hand of Cristabelle, Eglamour has to accomplish a series of challenges set by her father, including a boar, giants, and a dragon; the father clearly wants Eglamour to fail, and probably die. When Christabelle gets pregnant, she and her son Degrebelle are set adrift. Eventually everyone is reunited after Eglamour has overthrown the wicked father and gone to Egypt to rescue Cristabelle (Hudson, pp. 97-98).
In the romance, the battle with the boar is in the middle of the list of tasks Eglamour must perform. "The boar is... in Sidon, and as Eglamour approaches, he finds the dismembered bodies of the beast's earlier opponents. The boar kills the knight's horse an requires three days to subdue, but his eradication is a great boon to the country which he had ravaged" (Hudson, p. 98).
The romance does have the interestingly "folk-ish" motif of a knight of (relatively) low status winning the hand of a girl of higher status. On the other hand, it is in the 12-line "tail rhyme" format, which for whatever reason is rarely used in romances that have relationships with ballads.
Unlike many Middle English romances, there does not seem to be a French equivalent of "Sir Eglamour." It is suggested that the piece was composed around 1350 in the northern Midlands.
There are no fewer than seven manuscripts and four early printings of the romance, making it among the most popular of all the Middle English tales, even though it has not been popular with modern editors, probably because of the "jingling verse and the general unrealness of the story" (Wells, p. 116). This even though one of the manuscripts to include it is the famous "Percy Folio." The full list of manuscripts (from Richardson, pp. ix-xiv; see also Hudson, p. 100):
- British Library MS. Egerton 2862, c. 1400 (a fragment of the first 160 lines, often denoted "S").
- Lincoln Cathedral MS. 91, c. 1440, the "Lincoln Thornton Manuscript," after scribe Robert Thornton, who copied many romances and a few ballad-ish lyrics ("L").
- British Library MS. Cotton Caligula A.2, c. 1450 ("C").
- Cambridge University Library MS. Ff.2.38, c. 1460 ("F").
- Bodleian Library MS. Douce 261, 1564, from 1564 ("d")
- British Library MS. Additional 27879, the Percy Folio, c. 1650. ("p")
The early prints:
- National LIbrary of Scotland, Edinburgh, printed by Chepman and Myllar, 1508? (incomplete; titled "Sir Eglamore of Artoys") ("e").
- Cambridge University Library. Inc. 5.J.1.2, printed by Wynken de Worde, c. 1530? (fragment of fewer than sixty lines) ("g").
- Cambridge University Library, Syn 7.52.12, printed by Richard Bankes, c. 1530 (fragments totalling fewer than a hundred lines) ("b")
- Bodleian Library MS. Selden d 45(5), printed by William Copland, c. 1555 (this is very likely based on the Wynken de Worde edition, or perhaps an earlier, lost, Caxton edition) ("a").
- British Library, C.21.C.59, John Walley, c. 1570? ("w").
It might perhaps be noted that Richardson's work was done as a thesis under none other than J. R. R. Tolkien (whose knowledge of folklore doesn't get enough attention), and it likely reflects many of Tolkien's opinions.
According to Richardson's descriptions and the stemma on p. xx, the manuscripts form three groups, S+L, the earliest and generally the best; C+F; and the late texts, e+g+w+b+a+d+p (with the Percy Folio p being especially close to a and w; Richardson in fact thinks p is derived from a, the de Worde edition).
Most printed editions have used L as their base text. Richardson prints L and C in parallel columns. Hudson, although agreeing that L is the best text, works from C because it is the fullest.
There is an interesting footnote to this, in that "Sir Eglamour" is one of the few places where we can test the quality of the text in the very valuable Percy folio. According to Richardson's stemma (p. xx), the Percy text is copied, at one remove, from the Bodleian Selden print by Copeland. Richardson, p. xix, calls it the worst of all the texts and lists a number of unique errors. We should perhaps take this with a grain of salt, since Richardson would also allow the possibility that the Percy text is derived from multiple sources, but if Richardson is correct, we should perhaps be cautious in the use we make of the Percy Folio.
Richardson thinks "Sir Eglamour" is a blending of three romance types, which he calls "Tochmarc Emire/The Wooing of Emer," "Degare," and "Octavian." In English, the first of these is best known from "Emare," the second from "Sir Degare" (Digory)." Richardson thinks the "Eglamour" poet knew specifically "Emare," "Sir Degare," and one or the other of the two English "Octavian" romances. The theme of tasks is from the "Tochmarc Emire/Emare" group; Richardson is not sure if his only source is "Emare" or if there is another source as well.
Mehl, p. 77, says sarcastically of the romance, "The story of Sir Eglamour deserves a brief examination, if only on account of its mediocrity and its highly eclectic character." On p. 78, he adds, "It would be easy to find analogues for all these motifs in earlier romance and to demonstrate that Sir Eglamour is a rather synthetic product. There are particularly close links with Guy of Warwick, Octavian, and Sir Ysumbras....
For a bibliography of references to "Emare," see Rice, pp. 253-254; for "Guy of Warwick," see pp. 277-280; for "Octavian," pp. 365-366; for "Sir Degare," pp. 409-414; for Sir "Isumbras," pp. 469-471; for "Sir Eglamour," pp. 415-416. Summaries of most of them are found in Wells.
I can't help but think, if two scholars both agree that "Eglamour" is derivative, but derive it from different sets of romances, then perhaps the actual sources are something different and now lost -- and if perhaps "Sir Lionel" is related to that.
Mehl, p. 82-83, goes on to suggest that "Eglamour" is a "minstrel poem" -- which, in this context, means a poem the outline of which was memorized but the details largely at the performer's choice, most of them being commonplaces or derived from oral tradition. And, of course, anything that borrows from tradition is likely to lend to it as well.
Or perhaps there is another, lost, "Eglamour" romance. The alliterative poem "The Parlement of the Thre Ages," has these lines:
Sir Eglamour of Artas, full euerous in armes,
And Christabelle the clere maye es crept in her graue;
(Turville-Petrie, p. 98; lines 622-623). The "Parlement" (which exists in two copies) cannot be certainly dated, but the best guess is late fourteenth century (Turville-Petrie, p. 67). The context is a list of famous lovers; Tristram and Dido are among the others mentioned.
Richardson, p. xlii, notes in addition a report of an Eglamore play that was staged at St. Alban's in 1442/43. On the same page, Richardson reports a reduced form of the story, in which Eglamour does little except kill a dragon, in Samuel Rowland's 1615 work "The Melancholy Knight," and a version from 1656 in "Wit and Drollery." Finally, Richardson mentions a version "still sung in schools and Boy Scout camps today." In the absence of a footnote, I don't know what that refers to; I would assume it's some version of this song. More secure is the link of the romance with "Sir Cawline" [Child 61], with which it shares plot elements and some lyrics. But it's an open question just how traditional "Sir Cawline" is; see the notes to that song.
Richardson, pp. xlv-v, suggests that "Sir Eglamour" also influenced the romance of "Sir Torrent of Portyngale" -- or, more correctly, that "Eglamour" influenced "Torrent" and that "Torrent" then influenced the manuscripts of "Eglamour." Wells, p. 113, says that "It has been claimed by some that Sir Torrent is a making-over of Sir Eglamour, and by others that the two are from a common source. He lists two main plot elements in both romances, the "Eustache" story of a family that is driven into poverty and exile and threatened with religious persecution and the "Constance" story of a girl whose father abuses her and forces her to flee to a foreign land where she marries a king and is again banished before reuniting with her husband; these themes are also found in the romance of Octovian, although it is clearly distinct textually, and also in Emare.
Alice B. Morgan, "'Honor & Right' in Arthur of Little Britain" (on pp. 371-384 of Benson) observes that the motif of one substituting for another in bed occurs in "Sir Degare," "Sir Torrent," "Sir Eglamour," and "Partenope of Blois," and also in the French "Arthur of Little Britain" (Benson, p. 377), which John Bourchier, Lord Berners, translated into English I the sixteenth century (Benson, pp. 371-374). So someone who researches "Sir Lionel" has a few more romance to dig into, at least casually.
The wooden knife used to kill the boar has folklore analogies. Simpson, pp. 31-32, has a story told of one Sir Goddard Oxenbridge of Brede (although she notes that it is demonstrably not true). He was somehow turned into a carnivorous giant who went around eating children. Nor could he easily be killed; he was said to be immune to normal metal weapons, plus a crow could warn him when he was about to be attacked. The children of Sussex brewed a huge vat of beer, got him drunk, and sawed him in half with a wooden saw. - RBW
Bibliography
  • Benson: Larry D. Benson, editor, The Learned and the Lewed: Studies in Chaucer and Medieval Literature, Harvard University Press, 1974
  • Ford-Mabinogi: The Mabinogi and other Medieval Welsh Tales, Translated and Edited, with an Introduction, by Patrick K. Ford, University of California Press, 1977
  • Hall: Louis B. Hall, The Knightly Tales of Sir Gawain, with introductions and translations by Hall, Nelson-Hall, 1976
  • Hudson: Harriet Hudson, Four Middle English Romances: Sir Isumbras, Octavian, Sir Eglamour of Artois, Sir Tryamour, second edition, TEAMS (Consortium for the Teaching of the Middle Ages), Medieval Institute Publications, Western Michigan University, 2006. Much of the material in this book is also available online)
  • Lacy: Norris J. Lacy, Editor, The Arthurian Encyclopedia, 1986 (I use the 1987 Peter Bedrick paperback edition)
  • Mabinogion/Davies: The Mabinogion, translated [from Welsh] by Sioned Davies, 2007 (I use the 2008 Oxford University Press paperback)
  • Mehl: Dieter Mehl, The Middle English Romances of the Thirteenth and Fourteenth Centuries, originally published 1967 in German as Die mittelentlischen Romanzen des 13. and 14. Jahrhunderts; English version, Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1969
  • Moorman/Moorman: Charles and Ruth Moorman, An Arthurian Dictionary, University Press of Mississippi, 1978
  • Rice: Joanne A. Rice, Middle English Romance: An Annotated Bibliography, 1955-1985, Garland Publishing, 1987
  • Richardson: Frances E. Richardson, editor, Sir Eglamour of Artois, Early English Text Society/Oxford University Press, 1965
  • Simpson: Jacqueline Simpson, The Folklore of Sussex, B. T. Batsford, 1973
  • Turville-Petre: Thorlac Turville-Petre, Alliterative Poetry of the Later Middle Ages: An Anthology, Routledge, 1989
  • Wells: John Edwin Wells, A Manual of the Writings in Middle English 1050-1400, 1916 (references are to the 1930 fifth printing with three supplements)
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Subject: Lyr Add: THE WILD BOAR (Bobby McMillon)
From: John Minear
Date: 21 Nov 04 - 12:05 PM

Here is Bobby McMillon's version of "The Wild Boar" as he sang it several times this past summer at Elkins, West Virginia, during the Augusta Heritage "Old Time Week". Compare this with Sheila Kay Adams' version printed earlier in this thread. Sheila learned her version from Bobby.

THE WILD BOAR
Egra Bailey had three sons
Fal-a-day, fal-a-day, fal-a-dinks-dum-a-dairy-o
Egra Bailey had three sons,
Willie was the youngest one
Fal-a-day, fal-a-day, fal-a-dinks-dum-a-dairy-o.

Willie would a hunting ride
With a sword and pistol by his side.

As he rode on the/a greenwood side
Up in a tree a lady he spied

What are you doing up in that tree?
And then replied this gay lady.

There be's a wild boar to these woods
He kilt my lord and he drunk his blood.

Oh/Well how shall/can I this wild boar see?
Just wind thy horn, he'll come to thee.

He placed his horn up to his mouth
And he wound it well both north, east, west and south

The wild boar heared him to his den,
He made the oak and ash to bend.

They fit four hours of/by the day
And then the wild boar slank away.

As they rode/rid down by the wild boar's den
There laid the bones of a thousand men.

Yander he comes through the bresh
He's a cutting his way through the oak and ash

They fit two hours of the day,
Then this wild board he did slay.

He met the witch-wife on the bridge
She cried, "you rogue, you've kilt my pig!"

There's just three things I crave of thee
Thy hawk, thy hound, thy gay lady.

Well then these three things you can't have of me
My hawk, my hound, nor/and my gay lady.

In to his locks the witch wife flew
I thought to my soul he was torn in two.

He split the witch-wife to the chin
Then on his way return again.

In the Broomgrove Church his body lies
You may see it as well as I.

They's a piece of corn bread a-laying on the shelf
If you want more sung, you'll have to sing it yourself.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Lighter
Date: 20 Nov 04 - 07:17 PM

All I know about Dee Hicks is that he lived in Tenchtown and was, I think, in his late 60s or early 70s in in 1977. He and his wife had been invited to campus by a grad student to sing some traditional songs. (He also sang "Will the Weaver.")

It would be quite a coincidence if he wasn't related, wouldn't it?


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Tradsinger
Date: 20 Nov 04 - 05:45 PM

I even recorded it myself once! There's a short sound clip on http://www.cmarge.demon.co.uk/gwilym/soundbites.html

Basically, it's the Dwight Diller version which I think he learnt from the Hammons of WV.

Gwilym


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 20 Nov 04 - 08:32 AM

Lighter, thanks so much for this version from Dee Hicks. I had heard about this version from my friend, Bobby McMillon, but had not been able to find it. I think Dee Hicks probably recorded it, but I have not been able to find that recording currently available. Any information on that?

Who was Dee Hicks' father? Didn't this family come from the Beech Mountain Hicks in North Carolina? If so, there may be some connection between this version and that of Rena Hicks of Beech Mountain,NC, and of Sam Harmon (from Cades Cove, TN, cf discussion above). T.O.M.


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Subject: Lyr Add: WILD HOG IN THE WOODS
From: Scoville
Date: 19 Nov 04 - 08:56 PM

The Fuzzy Mountain String Band (forerunners of the Red Clay Ramblers) recorded a version in 1971; the CD is available through the Original Red Clay Ramblers website. I think it's in D minor, but I can't make out all of the words. However, I learned the version below from a friend from Iowa--I don't recall where he learned it--several years ago, and it uses the same tune:

There is a wild hog in these woods,
Diddle-um-day, diddle-um-day,
Is a wild hog in these woods,
Diddle-aye-um-day,
Is a wild hog in these woods,
Eats men's bones and sucks their blood,
Cut him down, cut him down, catch him if you can.

Bangum, will you hunting ride?
Diddle-um-day, diddle-um-day,
Bangum, will you hunting ride,
Diddle-aye-um-day,
Bangum, will you hunting ride,
Sword and pistol by your side,
Cut him down, cut him down, catch him if you can.

Bangum came to the wild hog's den,
Saw the bones of a thousand men,

Bangum drew his wooden knife,
Swore he'd take that wild hog's life,

Bangum heard a dreadful crash,
Wild hog came through the oak and ash,

Bangum drew his gun and sword,
Shot that wild hog as he charged,

Fought for hours in that way,
'Til that wild hog was slain,

Bangum, how well did you fare?
Didn't I live to tell the tale?

Bangum, did you win or lose?
Didn't I earn my belt and shoes?

Was a wild hog in these woods,
Ate men's bones and sucked their blood.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Nov 04 - 08:05 PM

G*$$@^^#d Tab key! Start again:

          There was a hunter in the green
          Dillum down dillum
          There was a hunter in the green
          Kummy koo kwan
          He spied a lady up a tree
          Kummy koo cuddle dan
          Killy ko kwan

          What keeps you here, my gay laydee?...
          I'm kept here by a wild boar....

          How many has he kille of thee?...
          Oh, he's killed my lord and thirty-three....

          How can I this wild boar see?
          Dillum down dillum
          How can I this wild boar see?
          Kummy koo kwan
          Just put your horn up to your mouth
          And blow the wind both north and south
          Kummy koo, cuddle dan,
          Killy ko kwan

          He put his horn up to his mouth...
          And blew the wind both north and south....

          This wild boar came with such a slash...
          That he cleared his way through oak and ash....

          Old Bangum caught him by the tail...
          And with a hick'ry did him frail....

          They fit four hours in the day...
          Oh, till last that wild boar ran away....

          Old Bangum tracked him to his den...
          Thar lay the bones of a thousand men!...

          (Then) Old Bangum drew his wooden knife...
          He rid that wild boar of its life....

          (Then) there came a wild woman out of the woods...
          She says, Now you've killed my sportin' pig!...

          Thar is three things I'll have of thee...
          That's your horse and hound and gay laydee....

          Oh, then she made a pass at him...
          But he split her from the mouth to chin...


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Lighter
Date: 19 Nov 04 - 07:49 PM

This here version might be of some interest. I heard Dee Hicks of Tenchtown, Tenn., sing it in 1977. He said he learned it from his father - I'd guess around 1915.

                There was a hunter in the green
                Dillum down dillum
                There was a hunter in the green
                Kummy koo kwan
                He spiexd a lady up a tree


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Jul 04 - 10:09 AM

Sorry for aborted message above. To continue:

This fascinating song seems to imply a missing link. Has anyone found it?

On the one hand are the older versions dating back to the original(?) Sir Egrabell, Sir Lionel, Bold Sir Rylas, etc. and, in the US, the Harmon and Hicks versions with their characteristic English hunting scenes. The English song by a century ago seems to have led itself to burlesque, e.g. Sir Eglamore. But all these are roughly formal ballads with serious intent, at most a bit of mock-heroics. They also tend to include the witch woman / giant verses conjuring up a background story that is longer and more complex.

On the other hand is what might be called the American consensus: the story is reduced to a sketch, and it is turned into a lullaby, titled usually something like Old Bangum (I don't believe I've ever seen that slightly silly title in an English version), etc, with a slow, moody little sing-'em-to-sleep nonsense refrain (dillum down, quilly quo quam, quilo quay, etc.) There is an alternate strain in which something like "come a call, cut him down, kill him" is used, but this seems to be an exception, and the tone remains lullabyish. The few uptempo US versions, including the Wild Hog in the Woods text and tunes, seem to be later developments.

Questions are:

1. Taking melody, text, and implied atmosphere into consideration, where is the breakpoint / missing link between these two?

2. When and how did the (very public-sounding, performance-oriented) ballad, seemingly simply by crossing the ocean, devolve into the moody, cute, warm & fuzzy (and very private-sounding) lullaby?

3. Did U.S. cabin life in pioneer days quickly whittle it down to pint-size, even though many other ballads survived more or less whole? Or is there another explanation?

And 4. Has anyone seen a version that could be the missing link?

Bob Coltman


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: GUEST
Date: 21 Nov 02 - 08:51 PM

I have another version of it that I learned from my Great-grandma Henson who was a Stewart. She lived in Texas when she was a little girl.

When I rode 'round to wild hogs den,
Deedle o die, deedle o day,
When I rode 'round to wild hogs den,
Deedle o die dum.
When I rode 'round to wild hogs den,
I saw the bones of a thousand men,
Camawee quee, quidle aye quay,
Deedle o die dum.

We fought for two hours and a half,
Deedle o die, deedle o day,
We fought for two hours and a half,
Deedle o dum,
We fought for two hours and a half
and finally that wild hog run at last,
Camawee quee, quidle aye quay,
Deedle o dum.

There was more but she had forgotton the rest.
Years later I found another version on a record album called:
Dark Ships In the Forest. The tune is different but it tells a simular tale of a hero hunting a dangerous wild boar. In this version he receives magical help from a fairy. Some of the phrases are key to linking the two songs to each other.

Kathy Kestner


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 02 Sep 02 - 07:22 AM

Well, according to my very rough count, we've managed to post 37 next texts and fragments of "Sir Lionel/Old Bangum" in addition to what was already available on Mudcat. They come from all over the place, from Scotland to New England to the Southern Appalachians to the Ozarks to China. I'm curious though. We don't seem to have anything from either Ireland or Australia. Did Sir Lionel not make it to either place? I'm also still looking for Dan Tate's version. And anything that anyone else comes up with in the future.

This particular thread is just about full and many of its postings are quite lengthy, so if the discussion continues we may need a part two. I'm still looking for history on the song - when did Sir Lionel become Old Bangum? Did this song pass through the American minstrel scene and when? Were there Civil War versions? Nimrod Workman claims in an introduction to his version of "Quilo Quay (The Boddler)" that his grandfather sang this song in the Revolutionary War. Where did "Quilo Quay" come from? It is one of the most unusual versions. Why didn't Bangum ever shoot the old boar with a rifle? Or even the pistol by his side? And what is this business about witchwives having pigs as their familiars? Can we trace any more specific lineages in specific family groupings or geographic areas, like the Harmon/Hicks versions? Did Bangum ever make it out West beyond Missouri and Arkansas and Oklahoma? Are there Canadian versions? Surely we are not done with this yet!


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Subject: Lyr Add: OLD BANGUM (from Jean Ritchie)
From: John Minear
Date: 01 Sep 02 - 08:18 AM

On her CHILD BALLADS IN AMERICA, Vol. 1, put out by Folkways Records, Album FA 2301 (now available from Smithsonian Folkways), Jean Ritchie sings a version of "Old Bangum" learned from her mother's cousin, Ellen Fields.

"OLD BANGUM"

Bangum rid by the riverside
Dillum down dillum
Three young ladies there he spied
Dillum down dillum
Killy ko cuddle down
Killy ko corn.

There's a wild boar in these woods,
Who'll eat his meat, 'll suck his blood.

If you would this wild boar see
Blow a blast, he'll come to thee.

Slapped the horn into his mouth,
Blew a blast both North and South.

Wild boar come in such a rush,
Split his way through oak and ash.

Fit four hours by the day,
At last the wild boar run away.

Old Bangum follered him to his den,
Saw the bones of a thousand men.

Jean sings a very different version on her children's album, JEAN RITCHIE, CHILDHOOD SONGS, put out in 1991 by Greenhays Recordings(marketed by Flying Fish Records). This version sounds British and is called "Olde Bangum". This is one in which Bangum goes after a dragon.

In the introductory notes to her Child ballads, she says:

"Back in the days when Balis and Abigail Ritchie's big family was "a-bornin' and a-growin'," none of them had ever heard of Francis J. Child, nor had anyone else in that part of the Kentucky Mountains, I believe. The word 'ballad', or 'ballit' meant, in our community, the written-down words for a song. I remember hearing one old lady near home say proudly to another, "Now I've got Barbry Ellen up there in my trunk. Joe's Sally stopped in and she writ me out the ballit of it."

"Writing out the ballit" for our family songs was rarely done. All of us, Mom, Dad, and all thirteen children could write, but these old songs and their music were in our head, or hearts, or somewhere part of us, and we never needed to write them down. They were there, like games and rhymes and riddles, like churning-chants and baby-bouncers and gingerbread stackcake recipes, to be employed and enjoyed when the time came for them. Nobody got scholarly about them and I have a feeling that's why they have been genuinely popular all these years.

These old story songs, now. We sang and listened to them, for themselves. For the excitement of the tale, or the beauty and strength of the language or of the graceful tunes, for the romantic tingle we got from a glimpse of life in the long-ago past, for the uncanny way the old, old situatins still stir the present. Heads nodding over Lord Thomas and Fair Ellender. "Ain't that right, no? That's j'st what he ort to a-done to her!"

As I remember, it took a special time for us to appreciate these "big" ballads. Of course, we hummed them about the housework, and when walking along the roads, and in the fields, but that wasn't really singing them out. It had to be a quiet time for that, as when the family gathered on the front porch, evenings, and after awhile the house clatter ended and the talk dwindled and died. Then was the time for Lord Bateman, or The Gypsie Ladie to move into ur thoughts. Or, it could be a time at play-parties when the players dropped down to rest, between spells of dancing, - that was a time to listen to a good long tale."(p.1)


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 31 Aug 02 - 08:13 AM

In the last posting, "Vermont Bangham" should have been a blue click to take you back to rich r's posting, but I didn't do it right. His posting was above on August 21.


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Subject: Lyr Add: OLD BANGHAM
From: John Minear
Date: 31 Aug 02 - 08:08 AM

rich r posted a version from Middlebury, Vermont, where Old Bangum goes after a bear: Vermont Bangham. The Lomaxes publish a very similar version by Adelaide Hemingway of Washington D.C., in OUR SINGING COUNTRY, pp. 149-150. They quote Adelaide Hemingway as saying:

"My grandmother learned to sing 'Old Bangham' from her mother, who had traveled out to the Sioux Indian country from her girlhood home in western Massachusetts. She was a Longley, and the song must have been brought from England when the family came to Massachusetts in the early 1630's. In 1866 my grandmother sailed round the Cape of Good Hope in one of the last clipper ships to come to the Far East. She brought the song to the dry plains of North China, to her new home at Kalgan, the gateway to Mongolia, where she sang it to her six children, lulling them to sleep many a time as they swung along in a mule litter or jolted over the rough roads in a Peking cart.

As a little girl I also was sung to sleep by the minor tones of 'Old Bangham' as our cart went bump, bump, over even rougher Shansi roads which brought us gradually nearer to supper and bed in a willow-shaded Chinese inn or at home in our mission compound." (p.149)

"OLD BANGHAM"

Old Bangham did a hunting ride,
Derrum, derrum, derrum,
Old Bangham did a hunting ride,
Kimmy qua,
Old Bangham did a hunting ride,
A sword and pistol by his side,
Derrum, Kimmy quo qua.

He rode unto the riverside,
And there a pretty maid he spied.

"Fair maid," said he, "will you marry me?"
"Oh, no," said she, "for we can't agree."

"There lives a bear in yonder wood,
He'll grind your bones and suck your blood."

He rode unto the wild boar's den,
There lay the bones of a hundred men.

Old Bangham and the wild bear fought,
By set of sun the bear was naught.

He rode unto the riverside
And there a pretty maid he spied.

"Fair maid," said he, "will you marry me?"
"Oh, yes," said she, "for now we agree."

The Vermont version, sung by Dr. Alfed Ferguson, on July 14, 1942, was one he learned from his mother, whose ancestors came from Massachusetts. This seems to be a Massachusetts version. There are only minor differences between the Hemingway and the Ferguson versions. F. has "Kili-ko" and H. has "kimmy qua" in the fourth lines of each verse. And in the last refrain, this is repeated with "Derrum kili ko ko" in F. and "Derrum, kimmy quo qua" in H. H. adds the last verse where the fair maid agrees to be Bangham's bride. Ferguson's version, which was printed in Helen Hartness Flanders and Marguerite Olney's BALLADS MIGRANT IN NEW ENGLAND, can also be found in Vol. I of Bronson's volumes on the tunes of the Child ballads. It is his #17, on page 274.

Peggy Seeger sings a very nice version of this on Record Four in THE LONG HARVEST series that she did with her husband, Ewan MacColl. She says, "tune learned in childhood, from singing of Dr. Alfred Ferguson, Middlebury, Vermont, 1942..." She changes the bear to a boar. She also prints a version of this song in her book, FOLK SONGS OF PEGGY SEEGER, published by Oak in 1964. There, she says that the song comes "from the singing of Adelaide Hemingway, Washington, D.C..." So it would appear that her version is a collation of both the Ferguson and the Hemingway versions, changing the bear to a boar. Peggy Seeger also recorded Sam Harmon's version of "Wild Boar", and Dorothy Scarborough's version of "Ole Bangum" on THE LONG HARVEST, and Ewan MacColl recorded "Sir Eglamore" from D'Urfey as printed in Bronson.


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Subject: Lyr Add: BANGUM AND THE BOAR
From: John Minear
Date: 30 Aug 02 - 07:33 AM

Does anyone know if Dan Tate's Library of Congress recording of "Old Bangum" was even released commercially? I know that he was recorded by a number of people, one of whom was Fletcher Collins.

In the quote from Jody Stecher above, he mentioned that one of his favorite versions was from G.D. Vowell of Harlan, Kentucky. This was recorded by Alan and Elizbeth Lomax in 1937, and is on the record edited by Bertrand Bronson for the Library of Congress called CHILD BALLADS TRADITIONAL IN THE UNITED STATES, Vol. 1, (L57). It's available from the Library of Congress on cassette. [Don't try to order it through the mail, you'll never get it because of the anthrax stuff. Call the LOC, or email them and ask how you can order. The don't accept telephone orders but will maybe work with you otherwise.]

"BANGUM AND THE BOAR"

There's a wild boar in these woods,
Down a dillum down a dillum
There's a wild boar in these woods,
Down a dillum, cuddly down
Caddy-0 squam.

He'll eat your meat and he'll drink your blood,
And drag your bones around the woods

Old Bangum drew with his wooden knife
He swore he'd take this wild boar's life,

How is a body to find him?
Down a dillum down a dillum
How is a body to find him?
Down a dillum cuddly down
Caddy-O squam.

Just clap your horn to your mouth
And blow a blast both North and South

Old Bangum clapped his horn to his mouth
And he blew a blast both North and South

The wild boar came with such a dash
The he cut his way through oak and ash

They fought four hours of the day
And at last the wild boar went away

Old Bangum followed him to the mouth of his den
And he saw the bones of a thousand men

He rolled a stone in the mouth of the wild boar's den
To save the life of a thousand men

After a while a lot of these different versions begin to look the same. But it is worth paying attention to the details because that is where each one is interesting. In this case, "He'll eat your meat and drink your blood, and drag your bones around the woods", and "what's a body to do?" There does appear to be a line missing from this latter verse, but this is how Mr. Vowell sings it. Old Bangum "claps his horn to his mouth". And especially the last verse, where he almost seems to take a Biblical approach in his unique way of dealing with the wild boar, "He rolled a stone in the mouth of the wild boar's den." Mr. Vowell sings his version unaccompanied, and while he seems a bit rushed at times, it is an excellent song.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 29 Aug 02 - 08:23 AM

In the posting above from Ceolas on "Old Bangum" as a fiddle tune, they say: "Another version was recorded for the Library of Congress from Dan Tate." Does anybody have Dan Tate's version? It is not clear in that posting whether the lyrics that they give are from him or not.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 28 Aug 02 - 11:49 AM

Here are some excerpts from an introduction to the romance of "Sir Eglamour of Artois". Child has suggested that his number 18, "Sir Lionel", may be based on this romance.

"Sir Eglamour of Artois tells a familiar story of lovers separated by a disapproving father, their vicissitudes and eventual marriage in a triumph of faithful love. Despite its French locale, the poem seems to be of English origin; it has no known French analogues or antecedents. The romance was probably produced around 1350 somewhere in the northeast Midlands, perhaps in Yorkshire. To judge from the number of surviving manuscripts (six) and prints (four), it was widely known and well liked. The story's appeal is further attested by references to Eglamour in writings from the Middle Ages and Renaissance and the existence of other romances which show its influence: Emaré, Torrent of Portengale, and The Squire of Low Degree. The narrative was dramatized, for a London chronicle records that a play of Eglamour and Degrebelle was performed at St. Albans in 1444. The story circulated in ballads and one episode found in the romance may still live in Kentucky ballad tradition as "Bangum and the Boar...."

The story is given further moral and structural cohesion since the tests Egalmour undergoes form a graduated series developed in a parallel manner. Each combat is more difficult and lasts longer than the preceding one, and in each his opponents are more deserving of destruction. Eglamour easily slays the hart in the giant Arrok's dolorous forest and dispatches him after a day of battle. The boar is further away, in Sidon, and as Eglamour approaches, he finds the dismembered bodies of the beast's earlier opponents. The boar kills the knight's horse and requires three days to subdue, but his eradication is a great boon to the country which he had ravaged. In a further combat, undertaken of his own chivalrous volition, Eglamour defeats the boar's giant owner who has been demanding the king's daughter, Organata. After these trials, the knight requires a month's recuperation. The dragon of Rome is Eglamour's most formidable opponent - the most unnatural and destructive of all. The serpent has ravaged a whole city, the very center of Christendom. In this battle, not only is Eglamour's horse slain, but he himself is wounded, which Edmund Reiss suggests is punishment for his sin. The wound requires a year of healing in the care of the Emperor's daughter."

You can find more here: Sir Eglamour of Artois


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 28 Aug 02 - 07:41 AM

Sandy Paton, in his liner notes for Buna Hicks' "Sir Lionel" on THE TRADITIONAL MUSIC OF BEECH MOUNTAIN, NORTH CAROLINA, Vol. 1, from Folk-Legacy (FSA-22), has done a very nice job of comparing three of these ballads. He talks about the relationship between the Hicks' version and that of Sam Harmon, and then he goes on to say the following.

"Child's text was taken from the recitation of a Benjamin Brown in Worcestershire, England, in 1845, although the date of that recovery has no pertinence to the antiquity of the ballad. Indeed, in his notes, Child remarks that the "ballad has much in common with the romance of 'Sir Eglamour of Artois'."

Sandy goes on to say, "Alfred Williams, in FOLK SONGS OF THE UPPER THAMES, prints a version from North Wilts which also resembles the Child text. A comparison of these several versions proves interesting. The hero in Child's "C" text is "Sir Ryalas"; in Williams' version the name is "Sir Rylas"' in our version (Buna Hicks) he is not named.[In Rena Hicks' version, he is named "Center"]. The refrain lines in Child are quite comparable to ours (one can speculate on the change of something like "Blow your horns, hunter" to the "Blow you horn, Center" sung by Mrs. Hicks), [Rena Hicks' version being the connecting link, which makes "Center" the third Son of Abram Bailey, aka Sir Robert Bolton, etc.] while the Williams text demonstrates the beginnings of the nonsense refrain generally associated with the widely known "Old Bangum" versions of the ballad, in that what Williams describes as an interpretation of the sound of the horn is occasionally inserted ("I an dan dilly dan killy koko an"). In the "old Bangum" versions, of course, the once dramatic battle between the heroic knight and the vicious wild boar becomes farcical, with all traces of magic or witchcraft removed and the poor hero wielding a wooden knife. Child's text has Sir Ryalas attacked by a "wild woman", following his victory over the wild boar, "and he fairly split her head in twain". Williams' Sir Rylas is also attacked by a "wild woman" and he "split her head down to the chin". In our version, the wild woman has become a "witch-wife" whose head is split "to the chin". Our text appears to be nearer to the Child text in some respects, while sharing several variations with the Williams text. Perhaps our version came to Amrica prior to the influence of the anonymous folk artist who first decided to add the sounds of the horn to the ballad, the interpolation of which eventually may have led to the comic "Old Bangum" versions with their odd refrains, so often sounding like a young Latin scholar conjugating his verbs rather than an imitation of a hunter's bugle, and the Williams text represents a surprising recovery of a transitional form of the ballad still being sung in England in the early part of this century. At any rate, all three are parts of a darned rare specimen of the ancient tradition." (pp. 11-12)[the editorial comments in brackets being from TOM]

At this point, we ought to also bring in the version posted above from Sheila Kay Adams, which she got from Bobby McMillon. This verion is closer to the Williams verison and seems to be a part of that transition that Sandy is talking about.

THE WILD BOAR

Bingham Bailey had three sons
Fal-a-day, fal-a-day, fal-a-rinks-dum-a-dairy-o
Bingham Bailey had three sons,
Willie was the youngest one
Fal-a-day, fal-a-day, fal-a-rinks-dum-a-dairy-o.

Willie would a hunting ride
With a sword and pistol by his side.

One day up on the greenwood side
Up in a tree a lady spied

What are you doing up in that tree?
I see you there my gay lady.

There be's a wild boar in these woods
He kilt my lord and he drunk his blood.

And how might I this wild boar see?
Just blow thy horn, he'll come to thee.

He popped his bugle to his mouth
And he blew it long both north and south

Over yander he comes through the bresh
He's a cutting his way through the oak and ash

They fit the fight up in the day
And in the end the boar he slayed

They rode down by the wild boar's den
And spied the bones of a thousand men.

They met the witch-wife on the bridge
"Be gone you rogue, you've kilt my pig!"

Hit's these three things I crave of thee
Thy hawk, thy hound, thy gay lady.

Hit's these three things you can't have from me
My hawk, my hound, my gay lady.

Into his locks the witch wife flew
"You durned old rogue I will kill you!"

He split the witch-wife to the chin
Then hit's up behind and away again.

They's a piece of corn bread a-laying on the shelf
If you want more sung, you'll have to sing it yourself.

This version picks up that verse about "into his locks she flew..." from the Child C version. The tune for this version is much different from the Harmon/Hicks' version, and is much more bouncy.

Sandy, if you happen to be looking at any of this, I'd welcome any additional comments and insight that you may have.


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Subject: Lyr Add: THE JOVIAL HUNTER OF BROMSGROVE
From: John Minear
Date: 27 Aug 02 - 08:46 PM

Here are four versions of "Sir Lionel/Wild Boar" that we have posted that come from a common tradition: Child C from Bromsgrove, "Bold Sir Rylas" from Williams, "Wild Boar" from Sam Harmon, and "The Jobal Hunter" from Rena Hicks. [ We could also add Child D, and the version from Buna Hicks as variations.]

Two are from England and two are from the Southern Appalachians. The Appalachian versions come from a common family source. So there are really three distinct versions here. I don't think that any of them are dependent on the others and that they were all contemporary with each other, and that they all were descended from a common source now lost.

Child 18C "THE JOVIAL HUNTER OF BROMSGROVE"

SIR ROBERT BOLTON had three sons,
[Wind well thy horn, good hunter]
And one of them was called Sir Ryalas.
[For he was a jovial hunter]

He rangd all round down by the woodside,
Till up in the top of a tree a gay lady he spyd.

O what dost thou mean, fair lady? said he;
O the wild boar has killed my lord and his men thirty.
[As thou beest, etc.]

O what shall I do this wild boar to see?
O thee blow a blast, and hell come unto thee.

Then he put his horn unto his mouth,
Then he blowd a blast full north, east, west and south.
[As he was, etc.]

And the wild boar heard him full into his den;
Then he made the best of his speed unto him.
[To Sir Ryalas, etc.]

Then the wild boar, being so stout and so strong,
He thrashd down the trees as he came along.

O what dost thou want of me? the wild boar said he;
O I think in my heart I can do enough for thee.
[For I am, etc.]

Then they fought four hours in a long summers day,
Till the wild boar fain would have gotten away.
[From Sir Ryalas, etc.]

Then Sir Ryalas drawd his broad sword with might,
And he fairly cut his head off quite.
[For he was, etc.]

Then out of the wood the wild woman flew:
Oh thou hast killed my pretty spotted pig!
[As thou beest, etc.]

There are three things I do demand of thee,
Its thy horn, and thy hound, and thy gay lady.

If these three things thou dost demand of me,
Its just as my sword and thy neck can agree.
[For I am, etc.]

Then into his locks the wild woman flew,
Till she thought in her heart she had torn him through.
[As he was, etc.]

Then Sir Ryalas drawd his broad sword again,
And he fairly split her head in twain.
[For he was, etc.]

In Bromsgrove church they both do lie;
There the wild boars head is picturd by
[Sir Ryalas, etc.]
------------------------------------------------

"BOLD SIR RYLAS", from Alfred Williams

Bold Sir Rylas a-hunting went
I an dan dilly dan,
Bold Sir Rylas a-hunting went
Killy koko an,
Bold Sir Rylas a-hunting went,
To kill some game was his intent
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

He saw a wild woman sat in a tree:
Good lord, what brings thee here? said she.
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

There is a wild boar all in this wood,
He'll eat thy flesh and drink thy blood,
As thee beest a jovial hunter.

What shall I do this wild boar to see?
Why! Wind thy horn and he'll come to thee,
As thee beest a jovial hunter.

He put his horn unto his mouth,
And blew it east, north, west, and south
I an dan dilly dan killy doko an.

The wild boar heard him to his den,
And out came with young ones nine or ten
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

Then bold Sir Rylas this wild boar fell on
He fought him three hours by the day,
Till the wild boar fain would have run away
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

Now, since thou hast killed my spotted pig
There are three things I will have of thee:
That's thy horse, thy hounds, and thy fair lady,
As thee beest a jovial hunter.

Now, since I have killed thy spotted pig
There's nothing thou shalt have of me,
Neither my horse, hounds, nor fair lady,
As I am a jovial hunter.

Then bold Sir Rylas this wild woman fell on
He split her head down to her chin,
You ought to have seen her kick and grin
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.
-----------------------------------------------

"WILD BOAR", from Sam Harmon

Abram Bailey he'd three sons
[Blow your horn center]
And he is through the wildwood gone
Just like a jovial hunter

As he marched down the greenwood side
A pretty girl o there he spied
[As he was a jovial hunter]

There is a wild boar all in this wood
He slew the lord and his forty men

How can I this wild boar see?
Wind up your horn and he'lll come to you
[As you are etc]

He wound his horn unto his mouth
He blew East, North West and South
[As he was etc]

The wild boar heard him unto his den
He made the oak and ash then far to bend

The fit three hours by the day
And at length he this wild boar slay

He meets the old witch wife on the bridge
Begone you rogue, you've killed my pig
[as you are etc]

There is three things I crave of thee
Your hawk, your hound, your gay lady

These three things you'll not have of me
Neither hawk nor hound nor gay lady

He split the old witch wife to the chin
And on his way he went ag'in
Julst like a jovial hunter.
------------------------------------------------

"THE JOBAL HUNTER" from Rena(Nathan) Hicks

Abe and Bailey had three sons;
The youngest was called Center.
He's gone to the Green's woods hunting
Just like a jobal hunter.

As he walked up the Green Brier Ridge,
Blow your horn, Center,
There he met a Gaily-Dee,
Just like a jobal hunter.

She says, "There is a wild boar in these woods;
Blow your horn, Center,
For he has killed my lord and forty men,
As you are the jobal hunter.

He says, "Oh, how am I to know?"
Blow your horn, Center,
Blow your horn north, east, west and south,
As you are the jobal hunter."

He blowed his horn nothr, east, west, and south,
Blow your horn, Center.
The wild boar hear him unto his den,
Just like a jobal hunter.

And as they crossed the White Oak Mountain,
Blow your horn, Center,
On their way they went again,
Just like a jobal hunter.

As he slayed the wild boar,
Blow your horn, Center,
The oak and ash they did bend,
As he was a jobal hunter.

They met the old witch wife on a bridge,
Blow your horn, Center,
"Begone, you rogue; you've killed my pig,
As you are the jobal hunter.

She says, "These three things I crave of yourn,
Blow your horn, Center,
'S your 'hawk, your hound, and your Gaily-Dee,
As you are the jobal hunter."

He says, "These three things you can't have of mine."
Blow your horn, Center.
"Is my 'hawk, my hound, and my Gaily-Dee,"
Just like a jobal hunter.

He split the old witch wife through the chin,
Blow your horn, Center.
And on their way they went again,
As you are the jobal hunter.
-----------------------------------------------------


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Subject: Lyr Add: BOLD SIR RYLAS
From: John Minear
Date: 27 Aug 02 - 07:42 AM

Jon, thanks for the background on Bob Webb. It's so easy to separate the songs from the singers and lose at least half of what is important. If the tradition is alive, it's got feet somewhere. And it seems to me that that is especially the case with this song.

open mike, I'd like to see what Robin and Linda Williams do. I used to live near Boulder, CO, and they had something like what you describe with regard to the Kinetic Sculpture Race.
----

In his liner notes for Buna Hicks' version of "Sir Lionel", which is in the DT as Rena Hicks' version, Sandy Paton compares Buna Hicks' song with one collected by Alfred Williams on the Upper Thames, and then compares these to the Bromsgrove version (Child C). I'd like to share Sandy's discussion, but first I'll post Williams' version. I went to the library yesterday and found his book, as well as Robert Bell's EARLY BALLADS, which contains the Brosmsgrove version. Here is "Bold Sir Rylas", pages 118-119, in FOLK-SONGS OF THE UPPER THAMES, collected and edited by Alfred Williams, and published in London by Duckworth & Co. It was published in 1923, but the songs had been collected between 1914 and 1916, the War having interrupted the publication process. No tune is given.

BOLD SIR RYLAS

Bold Sir Rylas a-hunting went
I an dan dilly dan,
Bold Sir Rylas a-hunting went
Killy koko an,
Bold Sir Rylas a-hunting went,
To kill some game was his intent
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

He saw a wild woman sat in a tree:
Good lord, what brings thee here? said she.
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

There is a wild boar all in this wood,
He'll eat thy flesh and drink thy blood,
As thee beest a jovial hunter.

What shall I do this wild boar to see?
Why! Wind thy horn and he'll come to thee,
As thee beest a jovial hunter.

He put his horn unto his mouth,
And blew it east, north, west, and south
I an dan dilly dan killy doko an.

The wild boar heard him to his den,
And out came with young ones nine or ten
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

Then bold Sir Rylas this wild boar fell on
He fought him three hours by the day,
Till the wild boar fain would have run away
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

Now, since thou hast killed my spotted pig
There are three things I will have of thee:
That's thy horse, thy hounds, and thy fair lady,
As thee beest a jovial hunter.

Now, since I have killed thy spotted pig
There's nothing thou shalt have of me,
Neither my horse, hounds, nor fair lady,
As I am a jovial hunter.

Then bold Sir Rylas this wild woman fell on
He split her head down to her chin,
You ought to have seen her kick and grin
I an dan dilly dan killy koko an.

Mr. Williams says that this is "A very old song, formerly popular in North Wilts, especially around Bradon, where it is still sung by the local traveller and dealer, Daniel Morgan. Morgan's great-grandfather was a squire, and he disinherited his son and also attempted to shoot him, lying in wait for him for three days and nights with a loaded gun, because he courted a pretty gipsy girl. In spite of the squire's opposition, however, his son married the gipsy lass and left home to travel with his wife's kindred and earn his living by dealing, and attending the markets and fairs. Daniel Morgan, of whom I obtained Sir Rylas, is a witty and vivacious man. He lives amid the woods of Bradon, the relic of the once large forest of that name, in which the famous Fulke Fitzwarrene is said to have defied the King at the time of the Barons' War. I have spent pleasant hours in the cottage, during the dark winter evenings, listening to the old man's songs, which he sang sitting on a low stool cutting out clothes-pegs from green withy, while his wife sat opposite making potato nets. The "I an dan dilly," etc., is meant to interpret the sound of the bugle horn." (page 118)

While this song was published in 1923 and Sam Harmon was recorded by Herbert Halpert in 1939, it is clear that Sam didn't learn his version from Mr. Morgan, but that they are two shoots off of an older stem, both probably coming from the 19th century. Sam Harmon's family left the Beech Mountain area of North Carolina in 1880, and probably carried the song from there, since a version of it remained behind and was later recorded from Buna Hicks by Sandy Paton. Nathan Hicks, who was Rena's husband, also knew a version.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: open mike
Date: 27 Aug 02 - 06:33 AM

robin and linda williams do a versiion of wild hog in yonders wood-- and as i recall the people who put on the Kinetic Sculpture Race (http://www.humguide.com/kinetic/index.shtml) also sponsor a wild boar hunt which is a period costume and general all out spectacle as i remember seeing an article about it in the "Go For The Glory" souvenier booklet about the sculpture race- which is a kooky race of human powered vehicles which are amphibious--this is remotely related to boars .


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Jon Bartlett
Date: 27 Aug 02 - 04:57 AM

We ran a weekly coffeehouse (the Green Cove) here in Vancouver BC in the early seventies. I met Bob Webb (who at that time was singing with Dick Owings) at the San Diego Folk Festival run by Lou Curtiss at about that time; we sang a bunch of shanties together (and I think Andy Wallace was there too). I suggested that he come up to Vancouver to sing and he did. He eventually moved here, and got married (he and I and our spouses did a big joint wedding). He wrote a scholarly book on whaling here, too, and a history of the banjo (for MIT Press, which really impressed me!). He moved back east and worked I believe in a whaling museum on the east coast. I don't know where his "Wild Boar" came from, tho I think it's the most interesting (from a musical point of view) of the versions we have here in the Ballad Collection. He's got a website site these days at http://www.bobwebb.net/recordings.html


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 26 Aug 02 - 08:10 PM

Jon, thanks very much for letting us know about your posting of "Wild Boar". Since I'm interested in how these songs travel, can you say a little about Bob Webb and where he might have found the song? Your second point is fascinating. I would vote with Grundtvig making "Sir Lionel" number one. Although it would be hard to do that without knowing any of the American "Bangum" songs. I've never understood why Child ignored the American songs. I confess I have not read any studies about him. But surely he knew of the existence of American balladry - even at Harvard! (I can only say that because my daughter is an alum, and yes I'm bragging, about her, not about Harvard).

Here are the four examples collected by Cecil Sharp in this country. One is from North Carolina, from the Big Laurel country in Madison County; one is from Woodridge, Virginia; and two are from Kentucky.

The first one was sung by Mrs. Tom Rice, on August 16, 1916, at Big Laurel. It has a very unusual tune.

Bangry Rewey a courting did ride,
His sword and pistol by his side.
Cambo key quiddle dow, quill o quon.

Bangry rode to the wild boar's den
And there spied the bones of a thousand men.

Then Bangry drew his wooden knife
To spear the wild boar of his life.

-----
The next one was sung by Mrs. Betty Smith and Mr, N.B. Chisholm, on September 27, 1916, at Woodridge, Virginia. It doesn't say whether they sang the song together or not. That would have been unusual.

There is a wild boar in these woods,
Dellum down, dellum down,
There is a wild boar in these woods,
He'll eat your meat and suck your blood.
Dellum down, dellum down.

Bangrum drew his wooden knife
And swore he'd take the wild boar's life.

The wild boar came in such a flash,
He broke his way through oak and ash.

--------
This one was sung by Mrs. Mollie Broghton, at Barbourville, Knox County, Kentucky, on May 10, 1917.

I went out a hunting one day,
Dellum down, dillum,
I went out a hunting one day,
And I found there where a wild boar lay,
Come a call, cut him down,
Quilly quo qua.

I hunted over hills and mountains,
And there I found him on his way.

The wild boar came in such a dash,
He cut his way through oak and ash.

I called up my army of men;
He killed one, two three score of them.

----
And finally, from Miss Violet Henry, of Berea, Madison County, Kentucky, Sharp collected this version on May 21, 1917.

O Bangum would a hunting ride,
Cubby kye, cudda'
O bangum would a hunting ride,
Cuddal down
O Bangum would a hunting ride,
Sword and pistol by his side,
Cubby kye, cuddal down, killy quo quam.

There must have been more verses to this last one, although Bronson does not add any and he usually does if he finds more in Sharp's notes. I find that to be a very frustrating thing about Mr. Sharp, that often he would only print a verse or two. I understand about repetition and costs. But there are so many times when I wish I had the whole song from a particular person. I understand that in some cases they were recorded in his notes, but he chose not to publish the whole thing. Unfortunately his notes are a long way off and not easily accessible. I wonder if anyone will ever publish any more of his Amercian materials.

All four of these songs are reprinted in Bronson's Volume I, of his book on the tunes of the Child ballads.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: Jon Bartlett
Date: 26 Aug 02 - 06:27 PM

Two points: the first post to this thread gives the DT versions. I posted the "Wild Boar" thread (and this should be added to DT if some Joe-clone with the proper authorization is reading this) from the singing of Bob Webb, learned from him in the mid 70's.

The second point: (and far more intriguing). Child worried long and hard over how to organize his collection, and wrote several times to Grundtvig in Denmark asking for his suggestions (since Grundtvig was the Danish "Child" who had pulled together and organized all extant Danish ballads in a fashion similar to Child). Grundtvig suggested Sir Lionel (= Bangum) as Child 1, a representative of the class of heroic ballads in interleaved couplet form, which he thought the oldest. His suggested list is Appendix B to Sigurd Hustvedt's "Ballad Books and Ballad Men" (Harvard UP, 1930). Appendix A is the complete correspondence between Child and Grundtvig, and is a great read.


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Subject: Lyr Add: SIR LIONEL
From: John Minear
Date: 26 Aug 02 - 07:47 AM

Here is the last of the four versions of "Sir Lionel" given in Arthur K. Davis' MORE TRADITIONAL BALLADS FROM VIRGINIA, pp. 73-74. This comes from Miss Margaret Purcell, of Greenwood, Virginia, in Albemarle County. This is right next to Crozet, and just up the road from me. It was recorded in May of 1934. It had been printed previously with a slightly different tune and text in TRADITIONAL BALLADS OF VIRGINIA, pp. 127-28, 558-59.

Old Bangem would a hunting ride,
Dillum down dillum,
Old Bangem would a hunting ride,
Dillum down,
Old Bangem would a hunting ride,
Sword and pistol by his side,
Cubby ki cuddie down,
Killy quo quam.

"There is a wild boar in this wood,
Will eat your meat and suck your blood."

"O how shall I this wild boar see"
"Blow a blast and he'll come to thee."

Old Bangem blew both loud and shrill,
The wild boar heard on Temple Hill.

The wild boar came with such a rush,
He tore down hickory, oak and ash.

Old Bangem drew his wooden knife,
He said that he would take his life.

"Old Bangem, did you win or lose?"
He said that he had won the shoes.

MMario has the earlier version as example 2 in his listings from Bronson above, collected in 1913. I don't see any difference in the text. This version comes from Miss Purcell's great-grandfather, from around 1760. Where is "Temple Hill"? And does winning one's "shoes" mean the same as "winning one's spurs"?


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 25 Aug 02 - 08:16 PM

This is a good summary of both Bronson and other sources with regard to "Sir Lionel", from MORE TRADITIONAL BALLADS OF VIRGINIA, edited by Arthur Kyle Davis, Jr., 1960, pp. 72-73. Obviously, there has been some progress since this was written, but probably not much, and that was 42 years ago now! When were most of our resourcs printed? Has there been much of anything in the last 30 or 40 years?

"Child prints four more or less full texts and two fragmentary ones, none of them having much in common with the American ones. His texts are all English, except one which is Scottish. A few English texts have been found in recent tradition (see Margaret Dean-Smith) but none in Scotland (see LAST LEAVES). Coffin indicates rather meager gleanings in America. Sharp prints four tunes with very brief texts from the Southern Appalachians. Only one two-stanza text (no tune) appears in the Brown Collection (II, 46). TRADITIONAL BALLADS OF VIRGINIA prints seven texts and four tunes. From more recent collection in Viriginia, there are six additional items, including four tunes, three of them from records....

Bronson (I,265-74) prints seventeen tunes (with texts) and divides them into three groups: Group A, of only two members, one mid-nineteenth-century Scottish and one twentieth-century American[Harmon], either retains the more dignified romantic tone of the ballad or the interlaced refrain concerning the hunter; Group B, with only a single specimen from D'Urfey, harks back to the seventeenth-century ballad of "Sir Eglamore" and has a distinctinve stanzaic pattern with interlaced refrain lines; and Group C contains fourteen numbers, two British and the rest American, all collected in this century and representing the "Bangum and the Boar" tradition, with stanzaic patterns and elaborate nonsense refrains with suggest either the "Sir Eglamore" pattern or a crossing with "The Frog's Wedding." The four texts with tunes from TRADITIONAL BALLADS OF VIRGINIA all fall into Group C.

After a quick survey of older and more recent versions, chiefly with respect to words and stanzaic patterns, Bronson concludes: "Obviously, there has either been a complete break here with older tradition, or the traditional antecedents are not represented in the examples printed by Child." He inclines to the latter alternative, and supports his case by an account of what has happened to the narrative before the proceeds to his musical analysis and classification indicated above."


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 25 Aug 02 - 11:00 AM

Here is a version from Middle Tennessee (you know that there are three Tennessees: East Tennessee, Middle Tennessee, and West Tennessee, with very different cultures and histories). It comes from FOLK SONGS OF MIDDLE TENNESSEE, The George Boswell Collection, edited by Charles K. Wolfe, and published by the University of Tennessee Press in Knoxville. Sorry, once again I don't have a date, but it's not real old. The head notes say:

"This version was collected from Clara Hamner in Clarksville on December 10, 1953. She had learned it from her mother, Marion Henry Hamner, who had been born in Clarksville in 1908. Marian(sic)Henry had learned it from her mother, Clara McCauley, born in the Clarksville area around 1882."

There is a wild boar in these woods,
Dellum dare, dellum,
He'll grind your bones and suck your blood,
Dellum dare, dellum,
Kitty ki, kum, (cudle down - on some verses).

Old Bangum, will you ride,
With sword and pistol by your side?

For to seek the wild boar in his den,
And there you'll find the bones of a thousand men,

Old Bangum took his wooden gun,
For to shoot the wild boar as he run,

Old Bangum took his wooden knife,
For to take away that wild boar's life,

Old Bangum took his wooden horn,
Old Bangum took his wooden horn,

Old Bangum blew both loud and shrill,
The wild boar heard on Temple Hill,

The wild boar came with such a rush,
He tore his way through brake and brush,

They fought all day and they fought all night,
The wild boar fled in the morning light,

He tracked the wild boar to his den,
And there he saw the bones of a thousand men,

Old Bangum slew that wild boar then,
And he saved the lives of a thousand men.

There is a tune, and you will find all of this on pages 8-10. It is interesting that Bangum does take a gun with him on this particular hunt, but that it is a "wooden" gun, along with his "wooden" knife and horn. Little boys have wooden knives, guns and perhaps horns. It is also interesting that by slaying this boar, Bangum saves the lives of a thousand men, even though a thousand have already paid dearly.


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Subject: RE: Wild Boar: History, Lyrics & Discussion
From: John Minear
Date: 25 Aug 02 - 07:30 AM

rich r, thanks for the two versions from the Southwest. I especially like these two verses from the last one:

Old Bangum on this wild boar fell,
They fought three hours like fiends from hell.

Long come an old witch inquiring of her spotted pig,
If you kill me I'll make you dance a jig.

And the first verse is interesting, in that Bangum is also a bowman. I've seen somewhere, in a footnote that I can't find, that the "wooden knife" is really a "woodsman's knife". That takes a lot of the charm out of the song for me. I much prefer a "wooden knife". It is interesting that Bangum never uses his pistol, even when he rides out with a "sword and pistol by his side". In fact I don't know of any versions where Bangum shoots the wild boar with a firearm.


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Subject: Lyr Add: OLD BANGUM
From: raredance
Date: 24 Aug 02 - 11:06 PM

OLD BANGUM
(sung by A H Pittser of Shamrock) from Ballads and Folk Songs of the Southwest

Old Bangum would a-hunting go,
Come away cuddle down.
Old Bangum would a-hunting go,
Come away.
Old Bangum would a-hunting go;
No braver man ever drew a bow.
Cuddle down, kill-a-quaw-queen.

Old Bangum put his horn to his mouth,
And blew a blast both east and west.

The wild boar heard him in his den,
And he made the oak tree come to an end.

There is a wild boar in the woods,
He'll kill you and suck your blood.

Old Bangum on this wild boar fell,
They fought three hours like fiends from hell.

Old Bangum drew his wooden knife,
And freed the wild boar of his life.

They tracked this wild boar to his den,
And found the skulls of a thousand men.

Long come an old witch inquiring of her spotted pig,
If you kill me I'll make you dance a jig.

rich r


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