God Speed the Plough

DESCRIPTION: "Here's a health to the farmer and God speed the plough, Send him in his fields a good crop for to grow." "For the farmer indeed is a capital man." They fill the barn with food for the nation. All rejoice, for the "farmer enjoys his life more than a king"
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1888 (Sumner)
KEYWORDS: farming food
FOUND IN: Britain(England)
REFERENCES (10 citations):
Palmer-EnglishCountrySongbook, #22, "God Speed the Plough" (1 text, 1 tune)
RELATED: (versions of the song "I-blessed be Christs sonde"/"God Spede the Plowe All Day"/"The merthe of alle this londe"):
Sidgwick/Chambers-EarlyEnglishLyrics CXLII, pp. 241-242, "(no title)" (1 text)
Brown/Robbins-IndexOfMiddleEnglishVerse, #1405.5
DigitalIndexOfMiddleEnglishVerse #2339
ADDITIONAL: Richard Greene, editor, _A Selection of English Carols_, Clarendon Medieval and Tudor Series, Oxford/Clarendon Press, 1962, #85, pp. 147-148, "(Iblessyd be Cristes sonde)" (1 text)
Rossell Hope Robbins, _Historical Poems of the XIVth and XVth Century_, Columbia University Press, 1959, #37 pp. 97-98, "God Speed the Plough" (1 text)
Celia and Kenneth Sisam, _The Oxford Book of Medieval English Verse_, Oxford University Press, 1970; corrected edition 1973, #152, pp. 382-383, "God Speed the Plough" (1 text)
E. K. Chambers, _English Literature at the Close of the Middle Ages_, Oxford, 1945, 1947, pp. 95-96 (no title)
MANUSCRIPT: {MSArchSeldenB26}, Oxford, Bodleian Library Arch. Selden B.26, folio 19 (with music)

NOTES [61 words]: The refrain "God Speed the Plough" is very old; the manuscript Bodleian Arch. Selden B.26 is from the fifteenth century. There probably isn't a genetic relationship between that song and this, which is why I don't index the Bodleian piece, but one suspects it achieved proverbial status. Many of the references cited for the Bodleian poem will list other citations. - RBW
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File: PECS022

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