My Wife Died on Saturday Night
DESCRIPTION: "My wife died on Saturday night, Sunday she was buried, Monday was my courting day, and Tuesday I got married." "Round and round, up and down, everywhere I wander, Round and round, up and down, looking for my honey." That's all, folks.
EARLIEST DATE: 1918 (Cecil Sharp collection)
KEYWORDS: courting marriage wedding death burial floatingverses
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MW,SE)
REFERENCES (2 citations):
Eddy 153 (last of several "fragments of Irish songs" - 1 fragment, which could be this or "The Old Gray Goose (I) (Lookit Yonder)")
SharpAp 202, "A Monday was my Courting Day" (1 text, 1 tune)
Dr. Humphrey Bate & his Possum Hunters, "My Wife Died on Saturday Night" (Brunswick 271, 1928)
New Lost City Ramblers, "My Wife Died on Saturday Night" (on NLCR07, NLCRCD2)
cf. "The Old Gray Goose (I) (Lookit Yonder)" (floating verse)
cf. "Way Down the Old Plank Road" (floating verse)
NOTES: A fragmentary song, really just floating verses and a dance tune. But it's indexed because, compact though it may be, that first verse tells a coherent story. - PJS
This verse, to be sure, is shared with "The Old Gray Goose (I) (Lookit Yonder)." But the rest goes in different directions.
To add to the confusion, there is a nursery rhyme (Baring-Gould-MotherGoose #131, p. 106):
I married a wife on Sunday,
She began to scold on Monday,
Bad was she on Tuesday,
Middling was she on Wednesday,
Worse she was on Thursday,
Dead was she on Friday,
Glad was I on Saturday night,
To bury my wife on Sunday.
To this compare also Opie-Oxford2, #509, p. 410, which begins "Tom married a wife on Sunday, Beat her well on Monday," but the rest almost the same as the Baring-Gould version.
The Baring-Goulds also compare the well-known poem of "Solomon Grundy." - RBW
Last updated in version 2.5
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 2017 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.