Bonnie Lizzie Baillie
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Lesley Nelson-Burns

This is a fragment of Bonny Lizie Baillie, which was printed in Herd's Ancient and Modern Scottish Songs (1776). It was in a collection of broadside ballads which were probably printed early in the 18th century in Edinburgh.

According to one source Lizzie was the daughter of Baillie of Castle Carey, in Stirlingshire. While on a visit to her sister at Gartartan, Perthshire, they traveled to Inchmahome, an island in Loch Menteith. There she met Duncan Graham and against her parents wishes eventually married him.

This ballad is Child Ballad #227 (Bonny Lizie Baillie).

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

My bonnie Lizzie Baillie,
I'll row ye in my plaidie;
And ye maun gang awa wi' me,
And be a Highland lady,
My bonnie Lizzie Baillie.

I'm sure they wouldna ca me wise,
Gin I would gang wi' you sir,
For I can neither card nor spin,
Nor yet milk ewe or cow, sir,
Said Bonnie Lizzie Baillie.

My Bonnie Lizzie Baillie,
Let nane o' these things daunt ye;
Ye'll hae nae need to card or spin,
Your mither weel can want ye,
My Bonnie Lizzie Baillie.

Now she's cast off her bonnie shoon,
Made o' the gilded heather,
And she's put on her Highland brogues,
To skip amang the heather,
Has Bonnie Lizzie Baillie.

She wadna hae a Lawland laird,
Nor be an English lady;
But she wad gang wi' Duncan Graham,
And row her in his plaidie,
Wad Bonnie Lizzie Baillie.

Related Links
From Songs of Scotland
The Royal Edition, Vol. I
See Bibliography for full information.