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'Twas one midsummer morning,
As I walked o'er the grass,
I had no thought of 'listing
Till a soldier did me pass.
He kindly then invite of me
To drink a flowing bowl;
He advanced, he advanced,
He advanced, he advanced,
He advanced me that morning
Five guineas in bright gold.

O may he never prosper,
O may he never thrive,
In anything he ventures
So long as he's alive.
The very grass he treads on
The ground refuse to grow,
For that he alone, for that he alone,
For that he alone, for that he alone,
For that he alone has caus-ed
My exile, grief and woe.

O now that I'm enlisted
And parted from my love,
I'll write her name, and carve it,
Throughout the greenwood grove,
Where the hunter long doth holloo,
The hounds so sweetly cry,
To remind me, to remind me,
To remind me, to remind me,
To remind me of my true love
Until the day I die

abc | midi | pdf
Source: Baring-Gould, S, and Fleetwood Sheppard, H, A Garland of Country Song, London,1895

Baring-Gould's notes are as follows:

A song sung throughout England. Dixon gives it in his "Songs of the Peasantry of England", 1857, as taken from the recitation of his brother, and as popular in Durham. Bell adds verses from a broadside printed by Keys, of Devonport. It is found in "The Duke of Gordon's Garland" in the British Museum (11621, A. 6) in seven stanzas. In "The Northumbrian Minstrelsy", 1882, it is included with the air. So also in Mr Kidson's "Traditional Tunes", 1891. He says of it, "The song is apparently of the date of the latter part of the eighteenth century, and as some reference is made to the Hollanders, may perhaps be more distinctly referred to the period of an expedition to repel French encroachments in Flanders and the Netherlands in 1793. "The tune is no doubt older than this date, and may have belonged to an earlier song, now lost, or which changed its tune." The original song is somewhat confused. It begins with the lamentation of the Recruit, and then goes off into that of the fair maid who loved him. I fancy it is a compilation of two songs. The air as given above should be compared with a singularly refined and graceful form of the same, taken down in Cornwall and given as "The Green Cockade" in "Songs of the West." The song is oftener called "The White Cockade." There is an old posset bowl in the possession of a family in Altarnum, Cornwall, on which is a fiddler with his dog, and the legend, "Fiddler, give us the White Cockade." It is, of course, possible that this may be the Scottish, or so-called Scottish, tune of this name; but as the posset cup is of Barum ware, unless I am misinformed, it is more likely that it refers to the English Tune of this same name.

I have not given the entire song as it occurs on Broadsides and in Garlands, as a portion of it was used in "Songs of the West" for the Cornish air and the words are those of the bereaved mistress and not of the Recruit. For this - the version most known throughout England - I have taken only three verses and have slightly altered the wording of verses 2 and 3 to adapt it to the Recruit. I may add, that as sung, it is as a duet of male voices - that is to say, as sung in the form of the air above.

Baring-Gould provides the song for a single voice and two voices; the ABC provided is only for the single voice.

Roud: 191 (Search Roud index at VWML) Take Six

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