The Gleeman

Notes on Tam Lin



This is #39A in the Child cannon. Child (1882-1898)CPB (vol I, pp340-343) has Johnson's The Scots Musical Museum as the source, and additionally states that it was communicated (to Johnson) by Robert Burns. Indeed, in The Scots Musical Museum Johnson does indicate a number of songs that were communicated by Burns, however, Tam Lin is not one of them. (This is not to say that it wasn't!)

Despite this being the source for #39A in The English and Scottish Popular Ballads, the version in Child has clearly been edited. This is understandable as there are a number of  what seem like errors in Johnson's version. For instance, in the first verse (typeset with the air), Johnson has "That wear gowd or your hair, ...", which should be "That wear gowd on your hair, ...". Child has corrected this (although I've left it as was in the air, and only corrected it in the text).

Johnson provides the air with a bass line. I have not added this in with the main entry, although for those who are curious, a .png, .midi, and .ly are available. The mid-bar line break is as the original.

Regarding the text, as with the original, I have used the old-fashioned stye "ſ" for "s", where indicated. However, this means that the text file is unicode rather than ascii. An ascii .text file is available (with modern "s"s!).
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