Gypsy Laddie-O (Kenneth Peacock)

See also: Raggle-Taggle Gypsy (Irish Descendants)

And also: The Whistling Gypsy (Leo McGuire)

And also: Roving Gypsy (MacEdward Leach)

Oh when the lord came home that night
Inquiring for his lady-o,
The servant girl she answered him,
"She's gone with the Gypsy laddie-o."

Oh he made haste, his horse and his gait,
And he followed after his lady-o;
'Twas there he spied an old crippled man
A-staggering 'long on a journey-o.

"Have you been east, have you been west,
Have you been north and south-o?
Or have you seen any rich lady gay
A-following the Gypsy laddie-o?"

"Yes, I've been east, and I've been west,
And I've been north and south-o;
And the fairest looking creature
that my eyes ever saw,
She's following the Gypsy laddie-o."

Oh he made haste, his horse and his gait,
And he followed after his lady-o;
'Twas there he spied his rich lady gay
In the arms of a dark-eyed Gypsy-o.

"Will you forsake your houses and land,
Will you forsake your children-o?
And will you forsake your own worthy lord
And follow the Gypsy laddie-o?"

"Yes I will forsake my houses and land,
And I will forsake my children-o,
And I will forsake my own worthy lord,
And follow the Gypsy laddie-o."

He stripped off the lace that she had on,
Which hung from her head to her toes-o;
He stripped her down to her flannel petticoat,
Saying, "Go to the devil with the Gypsy-o!"

####.... Author unknown. Variant of an 18th-century British ballad, Gypsy Laddie [Child ballad #200] The English And Scottish Popular Ballads (1882-1898) edited by Francis James Child (Dover, 1965). Also a variant of a British broadside ballad, Gypsy Laddie, published by W Stephenson (Gateshead) sometime between 1821 and 1838, and archived at the Bodleian Library Broadside Ballads, shelfmark: Harding B 11(1446) ....####
This variant was collected in 1958 by Kenneth Peacock from Isaac Freeman Bennett [1896-1981] of St Paul's, NL, and published in Songs Of The Newfoundland Outports, Vol 1, pp.194-195, by the National Museum of Canada (1965) Crown Copyrights Reserved.

A variant was collected in 1951 from Mrs Thomas (Anastasia Ryan) Ghaney [1883-1959] of Fermeuse, NL, and published as Roving Gypsy in MacEdward Leach And The Songs Of Atlantic Canada © 2004 Memorial University of Newfoundland Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA).

A variant was recorded as Raggle-Taggle Gypsy by the Irish Descendants.

An imitation ballad was composed as The Whistling Gypsy by Leo McGuire of Dublin, IE, ca.1950.

See more Child Ballad variants from NL.


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