Maria Marten

DESCRIPTION: Maria tells her mother she is going to meet William at the red barn. They are to be married next day in Islip. Maria is never seen alive again. After eleven months her mother dreams the body will be found buried in the red barn. The body is found there.
AUTHOR: unknown
EARLIEST DATE: 1907 (collected from George Hall, according to Palmer)
KEYWORDS: courting homicide dream mother corpse
HISTORICAL REFERENCES:
May 18, 1827 - Maria Marten meets William Corder at the "red barn" and is murdered
Nov 1827 - Corder marries Mary Moore in London
Apr 18, 1828 - Supposedly informed by a dream experienced by Maria's stepmother, Maria's father finds the body
Aug 8, 1828 - Corder convicted and condemned to death. He admits to the crime in his condemned cell
Aug 11, 1828 - Corder executed (source: timeline on pp. 240-241 of Tom Pettitt, "Mediating Maria Marten: Comparative and Contextual Studies of the Red Barn Ballads" in David Atkinson and Steve Roud, Editors, _Street Ballads in Nineteenth-Century Britain, Ireland, and North America: The Interface between Print and Oral Tradition_, Ashgate, 2014)
FOUND IN: Britain(England(Lond,North,South))
REFERENCES (4 citations):
Palmer-EnglishCountrySongbook, #115, "Maria Marten" (1 text, 1 tune)
Roud/Bishop-NewPenguinBookOfEnglishFolkSongs #123, "Maria Marten" (1 text, 1 tune)
ADDITIONAL: Tom Pettitt, "Mediating Maria Marten: Comparative and Contextual Studies of the Red Barn Ballads", in David Atkinson and Steve Roud, Editors, _Street Ballads in Nineteenth-Century Britain, Ireland, and North America: The Interface between Print and Oral Tradition_, Ashgate, 2014, pp. 225 (various fragments of traditional and broadside versions compared)
Flemming G. Anderson and Thomas Pettitt, "'The Murder of Maria Marten': The Birth of a Ballad?" in Carol L. Wdwards and Kathleen E. B. Manley, _Narrative Folksong: New Directions: Essays in Appreciation of W. Edson Richmond_, Westview Press, 1985, pp. 132-178 (8 texts, 1 tune, most of which are "The Murder of Maria Marten" but some of which might be related to this)

Roud #18814
RECORDINGS:
Freda Palmer, "Maria Marten" (on Voice03)
CROSS-REFERENCES:
cf. "The Murder of Maria Marten" (subject) and references there
NOTES [183 words]: For background on the Maria Marten case, see the notes to "The Murder of Maria Marten." Some collectors have thought this a version of that song, heavily corrupted by oral tradition, but broadsides show that both were independently composed. There were, in fact, at least four other Maria Marten broadsides, but it appears only this and "The Murder of Maria Marten" became traditional.
Tom Pettitt, "Mediating Maria Marten: Comparative and Contextual Studies of the Red Barn Ballads", in David Atkinson and Steve Roud, Editors, Street Ballads in Nineteenth-Century Britain, Ireland, and North America: The Interface between Print and Oral Tradition, Ashgate, 2014, pp. p. 242, compares the four traditional versions of this with the original broadside text. He identifies 24 major elements in the broadside. Only one of the four traditional versions retains more than ten of these (we can't say exactly how many, because the transcript has been damaged, but it has 15 of the 17 for which it is extant). Unlike "The Murder of Maria Marten," this song's hold on tradition was clearly very tenuous. - RBW
Last updated in version 4.5
File: RcMariaM

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