Foggy Dew (I), The (The Bugaboo) [Laws O3]

DESCRIPTION: The singer courts the girl and takes her to bed "to keep her from the foggy dew." In the morning they go their separate ways. In due time the girl bears a son. The further course of the song varies; in some texts he marries her, in some she dies
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1689 (broadside, EngBdsdBA Pepys 5.250)
KEYWORDS: courting seduction weaving pregnancy bastard
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MA,MW,Ro,SE,So,SW) Britain(England(Lond),Scotland(Aber)) Canada(Newf,Ont) Australia
REFERENCES (31 citations):
Laws O3, "The Foggy Dew (The Bugaboo)"
GreigDuncan7 1495, "The Foggy Dew" (7 texts, 7 tunes; excludes 1495d)
Reeves-Sharp 33, "The Foggy Dew" (8 texts)
Kidson-Tunes, p. 167, "The Foggy Dew" (1 fragment)
Palmer-ECS, #93, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
RoudBishop #44, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Randolph 105, "The Foggy Dew" (4 texts plus a fragment, 2 tunes)
Randolph/Cohen, pp. 99-101, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune -- Randolph's 105A)
Randolph-Legman I, pp. 257-263, "The Foggy Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Cray, pp. 61-64, "The Foggy Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Logsdon 38, pp. 203-206, "The Boogaboo" (1 text, 1 tune)
SharpAp 137, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Morris, #84, "The Bugaboo" (1 text, 1 tune)
Cambiaire, pp. 57-58, "A Gentleman's Meeting (Down by Yon Riverside" (1 text, which starts out as "Pretty Little Miss" [Laws P18] but ends with 'The Foggy Dew (The Bugaboo)" [Laws O3]; Roud lists it as a version of Laws P18, but it appears that the larger part of the text is O3 -- though the material in the middle could be from either)
Sandburg, pp. 14-15, "Foggy, Foggy Dew"; 460-461, "The Weaver" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
Combs/Wilgus 107, pp. 183-184, "The Bugaboo" (1 text)
Hubbard, #53, "Fear of the Buggerboo" (1 text, 1 tune)
Kennedy 174, "The Foggy Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Lomax-FSNA 43, "The Foggy Dew-I"; 44, "The Foggy Dew-II" (2 texts, 2 tunes)
ThompsonNewYork, pp. 421-422, "The Buggery Boo" (1 text)
Meredith/Covell/Brown, pp. 123-125, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Peacock, pp. 518-519, "Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fowke-Ontario 43, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Shay-Barroom, p. 26, "The Foggy, Foggy Dew" (1 text)
Arnett, pp. 37-38, "Foggy, Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
PBB 83, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text)
Darling-NAS, pp. 126-137, "The Foggy Dew" (1 text)
Fireside, p. 32, "The Foggy, Foggy Dew" (1 text, 1 tune)
Silber-FSWB, p. 159, "The Foggy, Foggy Dew" (1 text)
BBI, ZN2840, "When first I began to court" (?)
DT 333, FOGGYDEW* FOGGDEW2 FOGGDEW5 BOGLEBO*

Roud #558
RECORDINGS:
Bob Atcher, "Foggy, Foggy Dew" (Columbia 20538, 1949)
Mrs Freeman Bennett and Mr Everett Bennett, "Foggy Dew" (on PeacockCDROM) [one verse only]
Phil Hammond, "The Foggy Dew" (on FSB2, FSB2CD)
Bradley Kincaid, "The Foggy Dew" (Decca 12024, n.d.)
A. L. Lloyd, "The Foggy Dew" (on Lloyd3, Lloyd5, Lloyd12)
Pete Seeger, "Foggy Dew" (on PeteSeeger32)
Doug Wallin, "The Foggy Dew" (on Wallins1)

BROADSIDES:
EngBdsdBA 22085, Pepys 5.250, "The Fright'ned York-shire Damosel" or "Fears Dispers'd by Pleasure" ("When first I began to court"), I. Millet (Little-Brittain), 1689, accessed 08 Dec 2013.
CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "Sligo Town" (theme, floating lyrics)
cf. "Boodie Bo" (theme and many lines)
NOTES: This ballad should be [called] "The Foggy, Foggy Dew" to distinguish it from the Irish lyric love song "The Foggy Dew."
The original of this ballad is traced to a broadside ballad dating to 1815 in the collection of the antiquarian bookseller John Bell of Newcastle now in the King's College Library. See A.L. Lloyd, Folk Song in England (London, 1967). - EC
It will be observed, however, that the item ZN2840 in the Broadside Index dates to 1689. I have not been able to verify whether this is actually "The Foggy, Foggy Dew" itself or something similar. - RBW
In the very closely related "Boodie Bo" the singer has Boodie Bo dress in white (like a ghost) to frighten the girl he had courted unsuccessfully. When they go to bed and she starts to leave Boodie Bo returns and frightens the girl again. The story continues from there.
Reeves-Sharp #33 is a composite of four texts; the remaining six texts are in the discussion of the ballad on pp. 45-57. Page 45 has a text from Folk Songs from Somerset for which Sharp and Marson note, "Mr Marson has re-written the words, retaining as many lines of Mrs Hooper's song as were desirable." Reeves-Sharp: "In fact no more than six of the twenty-seven lines are more or less as dictated by the two sisters ...." and prints the original.
The Pepys [broadside] entry resolves item ZN2840 in the Broadside Index. This is "The Foggy Dew." The girl is afraid because "on the stairs she saw a spright it was the Bogulmaroo." The usual sexual encounter follows -- "we lay abed next day till ten" -- but they marry the next day "and did her pleasures renew ... ev'ry time she smiles on me I think of Bogulmaroo." The "Boodie Boo" is closer to Pepys than is Laws O3. One feature that both Pepys and "Boodoe Bo" lack is the common "Foggy Dew" verse "All through the first part of the night We did sport and play And through the latter part of that night She in my arms did lay." - BS
Ruth Binney, Nature's Way: lore, legend, fact and fiction, David and Charles, 2006, pp. 244-245, briefly sums up the legends about boggarts and bugaboos: "The bug-a-boo, also called the bodach or bugbear, will, it's said, kidnap naughty children. It comes down the chimney with no warning. Like the boggart, it probably gets its name from the Middle English word bogge, meaning 'terror.'" Yet boggarts are also reported at times to be helpful. That perhaps applies here: The bugaboo got the girl in trouble but the ending is happy. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.2
File: LO03

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