Unquiet Grave, The [Child 78]

DESCRIPTION: After a young man dies/is killed, his lover mourns by his grave for a year and a day and beyond. This prevents the dead man from resting. He comes to his sweetheart begging for release
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: before 1832 (broadside, Bodleian 2806 c.17(460))
KEYWORDS: ghost mourning freedom
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MA,NE,SE) Britain(England(All),Scotland) Canada(Newf)
REFERENCES (41 citations):
Child 78, "The Unquiet Grave" (7 texts)
Bronson 78, "The Unquiet Grave" (43 versions+9, mostly tunes only, in addenda)
Bronson-SingingTraditionOfChildsPopularBallads 78, "The Unquiet Grave" (5 versions: #10, #27, #35, #36, #41)
Leather-FolkLoreOfHerefordshire, pp. 202-203, "Cold Blows the Wind; or, The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune, from different informants) {Bronson's #12}
Williams-FolkSongsOfTheUpperThames, p. 76, "Cold Blows the Winter's Wind" (1 text) (also Williams-Wiltshire-WSRO Wt 370)
Reeves-TheEverlastingCircle 136, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Broadwood-EnglishTraditionalSongsAndCarols, pp. 50-55, "The Unquiet Grave (I, II, III)" (3 texts, 3 tunes plus an excerpt on pp. 119-120)
Gatherer-SongsAndBalladsOfDundee 24, "How Cauld Those Winds" (1 fragment, which appears to be this although Gatherer's informant treated it as a whaling song)
Hamer-GarnersGay, p. 56, "Cold Blows the Wind (The Unquiet Grave)" (1 text, 1 tune)
Roud/Bishop-NewPenguinBookOfEnglishFolkSongs #130, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune) {cf. Bronson's #21}
Brocklebank/Kindersley-DorsetBookOfFolkSongs, p. 10, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #42}
Flanders/Olney-BalladsMigrantInNewEngland, pp. 232-233, "Cold Blows the Wind" (1 text, 1 tune)
Flanders-AncientBalladsTraditionallySungInNewEngland2, pp. 184-186, ""The Unquiet Grave (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's }
Davis-MoreTraditionalBalladsOfVirginia 22, pp. 157-160, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Brown/Belden/Hudson-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore2 24, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Ritchie-FolkSongsOfTheSouthernAppalachians, p. 58, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune)
Greenleaf/Mansfield-BalladsAndSeaSongsOfNewfoundland 10, "The Unquiet Grave" (2 texts, 2 tunes) {Bronson's #36, #31}
Wells-TheBalladTree, pp. 154-155, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #36}
Peacock, pp. 410-412, "The Unquiet Grave" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
Karpeles-FolkSongsFromNewfoundland 10, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune)
Blondahl-NewfoundlandersSing, p. 111, "The Auld Song From Cow Head" (1 text, 1 tune)
Leach-TheBalladBook, pp. 262-263, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Leach-HeritageBookOfBallads, pp. 51-52, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Quiller-Couch-OxfordBookOfBallads 34, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Friedman-Viking/PenguinBookOfFolkBallads, p. 32, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune)
Grigson-PenguinBookOfBallads 31, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Sharp-OneHundredEnglishFolksongs 24, "The Unquiet Grave (or Cold Blows the Wind)" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #35}
Karpeles-TheCrystalSpring 30, "The Unqiuet Grave, or Cold Blows the Wind" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #40}
Broadwood/Maitland-EnglishCountySongs, pp. 34-35, "Cold Blows the Wind" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hodgart-FaberBookOfBallads, p. 146, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Whiting-TraditionalBritishBallads 30, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Niles-BalladBookOfJohnJacobNiles 32, "The Unquiet Grave" (3 texts, 3 tunes)
Hirsh-MedievalLyric-MiddleEnglishLyricsBalladsCarols #44, "The Unquiet Grave" (4 texts [3 from Child, 1 from Niles])
Abrahams/Foss-AngloAmericanFolksongStyle, pp. 40-41, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, 1 tune) {Bronson's #36}
Silber/Silber-FolksingersWordbook, p. 218, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Darling-NewAmericanSongster, pp. 31-32, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
Morgan-MedievalBallads-ChivalryRomanceAndEverydayLife, pp. 26-27, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)
NorthCarolinaFolkloreJournal, Laura L. Buchanan, "Child 78: An Explication of ''The Unquiet Grave,'" Vol. XXXVII, No. 1 (WInter/Spring 1990), pp. 15-24, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text, Child's A, with exposition)
ADDITIONAL: Charlotte Sophia Burne, editor, Shropshire Folk-Lore (London, 1883 ("Digitized by Google")), pp. 542-543,651, "Cold Blows the Wind" (1 text, 1 tune)
Walter de la Mare, _Come Hither_, revised edition, 1928; #371, "The Unquiet Grave" (1 text)

Roud #51
Omar Blondahl, "The Auld Ballad from Cow Head" (on NFOBlondahl04) [fragment]
Jim Keeping, "The Unquiet Grave" (on PeacockCDROM)
New Lost City Ramblers, "The Unquiet Grave" (on NLCR16)
Jean Ritchie, "The Unquiet Grave" (on JRitchie02)

Bodleian, 2806 c.17(460), "The Weeping Lover," W. Wright (Birmingham), 1820-1831; also 2806 c.17(461), "The Weeping Lover"; Firth c.18(123), Harding B 11(634), "Cold Blows the Wind"
cf. "The Twa Brothers" [Child 49] (lyrics)
The Wind Blew Up, the Wind Blew Down
The Resurrected Sweetheart
The Green Grave
The Restless Dead
The Restless Grave
Charles Graeme
Cold Falling Drops of Dew
Cold Blows the Winter's Winds
NOTES [140 words]: Bronson speculates that a version of this inspired the carol "There blows a colde wynd todaye, todaye" (c. 1500; in MS Bodl. 7683=Ashmole 1379; Brown/Robbins Index #3525; for texts see Greene, #45, pp. 105-107, #45; Stevick-MEL 93; Luria/Hoffman #166, though the latter two offer noticeably different texts of the same unique original). I must say that I find this a stretch; the similarities are slight indeed. Greene says that "There blows a colde wynd" appears to be a parody of a secular song on the grounds of internal evidence, offering this as the most likely source of the parody.
The notion that excessive mourning (usually meaning mourning for more than a year and a day) results in the ghost being unable to rest is at least hinted at in several other songs, the most noteworthy being "The Wife of Usher's Well" [Child 79]. - RBW
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File: C078

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