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|Sharp gives little information as to the origins of this English tune, except that it was a broadside ballad. He has two versions of the tune which are very similar in both tune and verse. This is the first. The second is at As I Walked Through the Meadow (Version 2).||
As I walk'd thro' the meadows
To take the fresh air,
The flowers were blooming and gay;
I heard a fair damsel so sweetly asinging
Her cheeks like the blossom in May.
Said I, Pretty maiden, how came you here
In the meadows this morning so soon?
The maid she replied: For to gather some may,
For the trees they are all in full bloom.
Said I: Pretty maiden, shall I go with you,
To the meadows to gather some may?
O no, sir, she said, I would rather refuse,
For I fear you would lead me astray.
Then I took this fair maid by the lilywhite hand;
On the green mossy bank we sat down;
And I placed a kiss on her sweet rosy lips,
While the small birds were singing around.
And when we arose from the green mossy bank,
To the meadows we wander'd away;
I placed my love on a primrose bank
While I pick'd her a handful of may.
Then early next morning I made her my bride,
That the world might have nothing to say;
The bells they did ring and the birds they did sing,
And I crown'd her the sweet Queen of May.
One Hundred English Folksongs
See Bibliography for full information.