No, John, No

DESCRIPTION: The man asks the girl if she will marry. She informs him that her father has told her to answer all men's questions "No." After several exchanges, he asks something like "Do you refuse to marry me? Do you want me to leave?" She, of course, answers "No."
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1883 (Burne)
KEYWORDS: courting questions rejection
FOUND IN: US(Ap,MA,MW,SE,So) Britain(England(All))
REFERENCES (26 citations):
Broadwood/Maitland-EnglishCountySongs, pp. 90-91, "Twenty, Eighteen" (2 texts, 1 tune)
Kennedy-FolksongsOfBritainAndIreland 138, "No Sir" (1 text, 1 tune)
Cologne/Morrison-WiltshireFolkSongs, pp. 46-47, "No, Sir! No!" (1 text, 1 tune, with the "No sir" refrain of "No, John, No" but the plot of "The Keys of Canterbury," including the "Keys of my heart" ending; it almost certainly combined the two songs)
Hamer-GreenGroves, p. 58, "Oh No John" (1 text, 1 tune)
Randolph 385, "No Sir! No Sir!" (1 text, 1 tune)
Moore/Moore-BalladsAndFolkSongsOfTheSouthwest 102, "The Scottish Merchant's Daughter" (1 text, 1 tune)
Eddy-BalladsAndSongsFromOhio 48, "No, Sir" (1 text, 1 tune)
Stout-FolkloreFromIowa 29, p. 44 "O, No, John" (1 text)
Wolford-ThePlayPartyInIndiana, pp. 73-74=Wolford/Richmond/Tillson-PlayPartyInIndiana, p. 144, "No Sir" (1 text, 1 tune)
McIntosh-FolkSongsAndSingingGamesofIllinoisOzarks, p. 106, "(On yonder hill there stands a lady)" (1 short text, consisting of just the opening lines of either "Wheel of Fortune (Dublin City, Spanish Lady)" or "No, John, No," used as a game song)
Brown/Belden/Hudson-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore3 14, "No, Sir" (2 texts plus mention of 2 more)
Brown/Schinhan-FrankCBrownCollectionNCFolklore5 14, "No, Sir" (3 tunes plus excerpts of text)
Morris-FolksongsOfFlorida, #191, "Oh, No, John" (1 text, 1 tune)
Wyman/Brockway-LonesomeSongs-KentuckyMountains-Vol2, p. 98, "'No, Sir, No!'" (1 text, 1 tune)
Fuson-BalladsOfTheKentuckyHighlands, p. 81, "No, Sir; No" (1 text)
Bush-FSofCentralWestVirginiaVol3, pp. 43-44. "O, No, John" (1 text, 1 tune)
Sharp-OneHundredEnglishFolksongs 68, "O No, John!" (1 text, 1 tune)
Korson-PennsylvaniaSongsAndLegends, pp. 50-51, "Oh, No, No, Sir, No" (1 text, 1 tune)
Carey-MarylandFolkLegendsAndFolkSongs, p. 100, "No Sir" (1 text)
Reeves/Sharp-TheIdiomOfThePeople 68, "O No John" (4 texts)
Lomax-FolkSongsOfNorthAmerica 161, "Uh-Uh, No" (1 text, 1 tune, probably with more than a little of "Wheel of Fortune" mixed in)
Shay-BarroomBallads/PiousFriendsDrunkenCompanions, pp. 154-155, "Oh, No, John!" (1 text)
Silber/Silber-FolksingersWordbook, p. 345, "No John" (1 text)
Olson-BroadsideBalladIndex, ZN2244, "Pretty Betty, now come to me" (?)
ADDITIONAL: Charlotte Sophia Burne, editor, Shropshire Folk-Lore (London, 1883 ("Digitized by Google")), pp. 551-552,652, "The Disdainful Lady" (1 text, 1 tune)

Roud #146
Emisly Bishop, "No Sir" (on FSBFTX13)
Ron & Bob Copper, "No, John, No" (on FSB01)
Sam Larner, "No Sir, No Sir" (on SLarner02)
Pete Seeger, "No Sir No" (on PeteSeeger14)
Stoneman Family, "The Spanish Merchant's Daughter" (Victor V-40206, 1928; on AAFM3)

cf. "The Keys of Canterbury"
cf. "Wheel of Fortune (Dublin City, Spanish Lady)"
cf. "The Nonsense of Men" (theme)
NOTES [57 words]: A Broadwood/Maitland-EnglishCountySongs fragment from Shropshire has the man give up "since I have no more to say"; the woman then says "'O turn again, young man, I'll have you,' But his answer was 'Nay, nay!'." - BS
Reeves/Sharp-TheIdiomOfThePeople #68 is a composite of four texts. However, the original texts are listed on pp. 35-37. - BS
Last updated in version 6.0
File: R385

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 2022 by Robert B. Waltz and David G. Engle.