Miller Boy, The (Jolly is the Miller I)

DESCRIPTION: Playparty: "Happy is the miller boy who lives by the mill, The mill turns around with its own free will, Hand on the hopper and the other on the sack, Lady keeps a-going, gents turn back." Other verses about courting, milling, weather
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1719? (Pills to Purge Melancholy) (American version 1903/Newell)
KEYWORDS: playparty nonballad miller
FOUND IN: Britain(England(West),Scotland(Aber)) US(Ap,MA,MW,Ro,SE,So) Canada(Ont)
REFERENCES (17 citations):
Wolford, pp. 67-70=WolfordRev, pp. 179-180, "Miller Boy" (1 text, 1 tune)
GreigDuncan8 1604, "There Was a Jolly Miller" (1 text, 1 tune)
Randolph 518, "The Miller Boy" (5 texts, 2 tunes)
Morris, #132, "The Jolly Miller" (1 text, 1 tune)
BrownIII 75, "The Miller Boy" (3 one-stanza fragments)
BrownSchinhanV 75, "The Miller Boy" (1 tune plus a text excerpt);also p. 522, "The Jolly Miller" (1 short text, 1 tune)
Hudson 153, pp. 300-301, "The Jolly Miller" (1 text)
Cambiaire, p. 137, "The Miller's Boy" (1 text)
Neely, p. 197, "Happy is the Miler" (1 short text)
Opie-Game 75, "Jolly Miller" (4 texts, 1 tune)
Newell, #40, "Happy is the Miller" (3 short texts)
DT, OVRHILL5*
ADDITIONAL: Robert Ford, Children's Rhymes, Children's Games, Children's Songs, Children's Stories (Paisley, 1904 (2nd edition, "Digitized by Google")), p. 70, "The Jolly Miller"
Mrs. L.D. Ames, "The Missouri Play-Party" in The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. XXIV, No. 93 (Jul 1911 (available online by JSTOR)), p. 306 "The Jolly Old Miller" (1 text, 1 tune)
Charlotte Sophia Burne, editor, Shropshire Folk-Lore: A Sheaf of Gleanings (London, 1883 ("Digitized by Google")), #I.11 p. 512, "The Jolly Miller" (1 text)
Marjorie Kimmerle, "'The Jolly Miller' in Colorado and Elsewhere" in Western Folklore, Vol. XVIII, No. 2 (Apr 1959 (available online by JSTOR)), p. 106 "The Jolly Miller" (4 texts)
F.W. Waugh, "Canadian Folk-Lore from Ontario" in The Journal of American Folklore, Vol. XXXI, No. 119 (Jan 1918 (available online by JSTOR)), #638 p. 54 ("Happy is the miller who lives by himself") (1 text)

Roud #733 and 4348
RECORDINGS:
Pete Seeger, "Jolly is the Miller" (on PeteSeeger22) (on PeteSeeger33, PeteSeegerCD03)
CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "The Old Man at the Mill" (one verse)
cf. "How Happy's the Mortal" (first verse, more or less)
SAME TUNE:
The Miller (square dance call) (Welsch, p. 109)
NOTES: Wolford traces this piece back to Pills to Purge Melancholy, and Randolph reports that Gomme has English versions. But they don't look like the same item to me. - RBW
GreigDuncan8 is almost identical to Ford, and very close to the verse Gomme 1.290-293 version IV; all seven of Gomme's one verse versions are the same song as GreigDuncan8 and seem to agree with the description.
Opie-Game points out the similarity between "The Jolly Miller" and "How Happy's the Mortal," printed in Wit and Mirth, or, Pills to Purge Melancholy (q.v.); Farmer says his copy from Pills to Purge . . . was dated 1707. - BS
Last updated in version 4.1
File: R518

Go to the Ballad Search form
Go to the Ballad Index Song List

Go to the Ballad Index Instructions
Go to the Ballad Index Bibliography or Discography

The Ballad Index Copyright 2016 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.