(When Ye Gang Awa, Jamie)

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Lesley Nelson-Burns

This ballad is also known as The Duke of Athol and The Duke of Athol's Courtship. It appeared in George Kinloch's Ancient Scottish Ballads (1827).

The Duke of Athol appears as an appendix to Child Ballad #232 (Richie Story). Child felt it was "too well known to require citing" (Child, Vol. IV, 299). Richie Story dated from 1802.

For a complete list of Child Ballads at this site go to Francis J. Child Ballads.

Another male/female courtship song is Madam, Will You Walk?.

(thole = bear)

When ye gang awa, Jamie
Far across the sea, laddie,
When ye gang to Germanie,
What will ye send to me, laddie?

I'll send ye a braw new gown, Jeanie,
I'll send ye a braw new gown, lassie,
And it shall be o' silk and gowd,
Wi' Valenciennes set round, lassie.

That's nae gift ava, Jamie,
That's nae gift ava, laddie,
There's ne'er a gown in a' the land,
I'd like when ye're awa, laddie.

When I come back again, Jeanie,
When I come again, lassie,
I'll bring wi' me o' gallant gay,
To be your ain gude man, lassie.

Be my gudeman yoursel', Jamie,
Be my gudeman yoursel', laddie,
And tak' me ower to Germanie,
Wi' you at hame to dwell, laddie.

I dinna ken how that wad do, Jeanie,
I dinna see how that can be, lassie,
For I've a wife and bairnies three,
And I'm not sure how ye'd agree, lassie.

Ye should hae telt me that in time, Jamie,
Ye should hae telt me that lang syne, laddie,
For had I kent o' your fause heart,
Ye ne'er had gotten mine, laddie.

Your een were like a spell, Jeanie,
Your een were like a spell, lassie,
That ilka day betwitch'd me sae,
I couldna help mysel', lassie.

Gae back to your wife and hame, Jamie,
Gae back to your bairnies three, laddie,
And I will pray they ne'er may thole
A broken heart like me, laddie.

Dry that tearfu' e'e, Jeanie,
Dry that tearfu' e'e, lassie,
I've neither wife nor bairnies three,
And I'll wed none but thee, lassie.

Think weel, for fear ye rue, Jamie,
Think weel, for fear ye rue, laddie;
For I have neither gowd nor lands,
To be a match for you, laddie.

Blair in Athol's mine, Jeanie,
Little Dunkeld is mine, lassie,
St. Johnstoun's bower, and Huntingtower,
And a' that's mine is thine lassie.
Related Links
Our National Songs and
The English and Scottish Popular Ballads
See Bibliography for full information.