Gallant Grahams, The
DESCRIPTION: "As I was crossing ower Boyne Water... For the killin' o' an English lord My gude braid sword they've ta'en frae me." The singer complains of being abandoned by the Grahams. He escapes and flees from his home in Carrickfergus
EARLIEST DATE: 1870 (Chambers)
KEYWORDS: homicide home exile prison escape
FOUND IN: Britain(Scotland)
REFERENCES (3 citations):
Ord-BothySongsAndBallads, pp. 441-442, "The Galland Grahams" (1 text)
Greig/Duncan2 245, "The Gallant Grahams" (1 fragment)
ADDITIONAL: Robert Chambers, The Popular Rhymes of Scotland (Edinburgh, 1870 ("Digitized by Google")), p. 312, "The Gallant Grahams"
cf. "Hughie Grame [Child 191]" (lyrics)
NOTES [179 words]: This is clearly related to "Hughie Grame"; about half the material in Ord-BothySongsAndBallads's text, for instance, is standard in "Hughie." The perspective is different, though: The setting seems to be Ulster (where many Scots emigrated, both before and after Culloden). Only one girl would laments the hero's fate, and she makes no attempt to save him. The hero lives. And it is told in first person throughout.
Clearly the relation between the two songs needs more study (though that may be difficult unless additional texts turn up). In the absence of that, I follow standard Ballad Index policy and split the two. But my initial inclination was to lump; they have that much in common. - RBW
Chambers's fragment is the chorus quoted by Ord. Chambers cites as his source Finlay's "Old Ballads." - BS
There is another song called "The Gallant Grahams," about the Marquis of Montrose, which begins "Now fare thee well, sweet Ennerdale/Endrickdale." This appears in Scott's "Minstrelsy," and in Maidment and Whitelaw, but does not appear to have been found in tradition. - RBW
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