Drowsy Sleeper, The [Laws M4]

DESCRIPTION: A young man comes to his love's window and bids her ask her parents' permission to marry him. They will refuse it; her father is prepared to kill him. Depending on the version, he leaves, or one or the other lover (or both) commits suicide or die of grief
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: before 1830 (broadside, Bodleian Harding B 17(183a))
KEYWORDS: courting father mother death suicide
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MA,MW,NE,SE,So) Canada(Mar,Newf) Britain(England(West,Scotland))
REFERENCES (46 citations):
Laws M4, "The Drowsy Sleeper"
VaughanWilliams/Palmer, #49, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
Sturgis/Hughes, pp. 38-39, "The Shining Dagger" (1 text, 1 tune)
Belden, pp. 118-123, "Bedroom Window (The Drowsy Sleeper)" (6 texts plus two fragments which might float, 1 tune)
Randolph 52, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (6 texts, 3 tunes)
Randolph/Cohen, pp. 83-85, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune -- Randolph's 52D)
Eddy 31, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (3 texts plus a fragment, 4 tunes)
Gardner/Chickering 22, "Who Is Tapping at My Bedroom Window?" (1 text plus an excerpt and mention of 3 more, 2 tunes; some of the unprinted texts may have "Silver Dagger" elements)
Peters, p. 214, "Wo Is That Under My Bedroom Window?" (1 text, 1 tune)
Musick-Larkin 18, "Awake Ye Drousy Sleeper" (1 text)
BrownII 71, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (2 texts plus 3 excerpts; the "B" text is a "Silver Dagger" mix; the "D" excerpt contains "Fair and Tender Ladies" verses)
BrownSchinhanIV 71, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (4 excerpts, 4 tunes)
Chappell-FSRA 45, "Wake Up" (2 texts)
JonesLunsford, p. 210, "Awake, O Awake" (1 text, 1 tune)
Joyner, pp. 53-54, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
Morris, #193, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
Hudson 46, pp. 161-162, "Willie and Mary" (1 text); also 37, pp. 151-152, "Annie Girl" (1 text, which conflates 2 verses of "The Drowsy Sleeper" [Laws M4], 2 or 3 of "Wheel of Fortune (Dublin City, Spanish Lady)" or "No, John, No: or similar, and 3 verses probably of "Pretty Fair Maid (The Maiden in the Garden; The Broken Token)" [Laws N42])
Moore-Southwest 88, "Wake Up You Drowsy Sleepers" (1 text, 1 tune)
Scarborough-SongCatcher, pp. 139-142, collectively titled "Awake! Awake!" but with inidividual titles "Katy Dear, or Willie Darling," ""Mollie Dear, Go Ask Your Mother," "Drowsy Sleepers," Little Willie" (4 texts; 2 tunes on p. 399)
Sulzer, p. 17, "Raft-man's Song" (1 fragment, 1 tune)
Doerflinger, p. 314, "Who's That at My Bedroom Window? (The Drowsy Sleeper)" (1 text, 1 tune)
Brewster 28, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (2 texts plus a fragment and mention of 3 more, 2 tunes)
Peters, pp. 159-160, "Awake, Arise, You Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
Greenleaf/Mansfield 24, "Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
Peacock, pp. 733-734, "Who Is At My Window Weeping?" (1 text, 1 tune)
Mackenzie 30, "Who Is At My Bedroom Window?" (1 text, 1 tune)
Leach, pp. 727-730, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (2 texts)
Leach-Heritage, pp. 183-184, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text)
FSCatskills 51, "Awake, Awake, Ye Drowsy Sleepers" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
ThompsonNewYork, pp. 390-391, "Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text)
Warner 188, "Wake, O Wake, You Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
McNeil-SFB1, pp. 72-73, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text, 1 tune)
SharpAp 57, "Awake! Awake!" (10 texts, 10 tunes)
Sharp-100E 47, "Arise, Arise" (1 text, 1 tune)
Sharp/Karpeles-80E 46, "Arise! Arise!" (1 text, 1 tune, from different informants)
Sandburg, p. 144, "Kind Miss" (1 short text, 1 tune, primarily "Wheel of Fortune" but with one verse of "The Drowsy Sleeper")
Ritchie-SingFam, pp. 200-201, "[Drowsy Sleeper]" (1 text, 1 tune)
SHenry H722, pp. 343-344, "The Sweet Bann Water" (1 text, 1 tune, erroneously listed in the text as Laws M34)
Graham/Holmes 73, "The Sweet Bann Water" (1 text, 1 tune)
Botkin-NEFolklr, pp. 549-550, "The Shining Dagger" (1 text, 1 tune)
LPound-ABS, 21, pp. 51-52, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (1 text; the second text is perhaps influenced by "The Silver Dagger")
JHCox 348, "The Drowsy Sleeper" (2 texts)
Darling-NAS, pp. 114-115, "Awake, Awake, My Old True Lover" (1 text); also pp. 115-116, "Oh, Molly Dear" (1 text, very mixed, with verses from this song, from "East Virginia, and some floaters); also pp. 116-117, "Who's That Knocking" (1 text, even more mixed and with a "Little Sparrow" verse)
Silber-FSWB, p. 193, "Don't Sing Love Songs" (1 text)
ADDITIONAL: James P. Leary, Compiler and Annotator, _Wisconsin Folklore_ University of Wisconsin Press, 2009, article "Kentucky Folksong in Northern Wisconsin" by Asher E. Treat, p. 239, "O, Mary Dear, Go Ask Your Mother" (1 text, 1 tune, sung by Pearl Jacobs Borusky)

Roud #22620 and 22621
Dillard Chandler, "Awake, Awake" (on OldLove, DarkHoll)
Lester A. Coffee, "Awake, Arise, You Drowsy Sleeper" (AFS, 1946; on LC55)
Kelly Harrell, "O! Molly Dear Go Ask Your Mother" (Victor 20280, 1926; on KHarrell01 -- with several verses from "East Virginia" inserted in the song)
Frank Knox, "Silver Dagger" (on MUNFLA/Leach)
New Lost City Ramblers, "Little Satchel" (on NLCR17, NLCRCD2)
Oaks Family, "Wake Up You Drowsy Sleeper" Victor 23795, 1933; on TimesAint01, KMM)
Ken Peacock, "Who Is At My Window Weeping?" (on NFKPeacock)
B. F. Shelton, "Oh Molly Dear" (Victor V-40107, 1929; on ConstSor1)
Wilmer Watts & the Lonely Eagles, "Sleepy Desert" (Paramount 3282, 1931; on TimesAint03)

Bodleian, Harding B 17(183a), "The Maidens Complaint ," T. Birt (London), 1828-1829; also Firth c.17(25), "Awake, Drowsy Sleeper"; Harding B 28(233), "The Drowsy Sleeper"; Harding B 25(452), "Cruel Father" or "The Maiden's Complaint"
cf. "The Silver Dagger (I)" [Laws G21]
cf. "I Will Put My Ship In Order" (plot)
cf. "Greenback Dollar" (plot)
cf. "Go From My Window (I)"
cf. "One Night As I Lay on My Bed"
Silver Dagger
Awake, Awake
NOTES [143 words]: I put [the Silber "Don't Sing Love Songs" text] under "Drowsy Sleeper" rather than "Silver Dagger" because, although a dagger is mentioned, no one uses it. - PJS
In the absence of any other basis, this is a good criterion. The two songs have cross-fertilized heavily; drawing the line can be extremely difficult, especially for fragmentary forms. - RBW
Broadside Bodleian Harding B 28(233): she refuses bread and water; "single I will go to my grave." Broadside Bodleian Firth c.17(25): she says she will go to Botany Bay to be with Jim and asks for her portion of 500 pounds; father gives in and says "you and your true love shall be married, And that will ease you of all your pain." - BS
Musick-Larkin is the English "Drowsy Sleeper" (I) (not Laws M4 "Drowsy Sleeper" (II), nor the Scottish "I Will Put My Ship In Order"). I plan to break all this out. - BS
Last updated in version 4.3
File: LM04

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