Digital Tradition Mirror


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Pennywhistle notation and Dulcimer tab for this song is also available


O Betsy be a lady fair
Just sail-ed over from Lon-don there
A servant's maid she is bound to me
Which suited Betsy to a high degree.

There were a carpenter who had a son,
And Betsy's beauty shines so clear,
It drowed his heart all in a snare.

As they was talking on the bed,
He said, "Betsy, Betsy, I love you dear
And I intend to make you my wife,
So here's old mother, Dear mother rose up

Come Betsy, Betsy, come go with me,
Come wait on me one day or two
So when bus his dear mother returned back,
He says:  Dear mother, you're welcome back,
But what keeps Betsy so long behind?

O son, o son, said she,
Your love to Betsy's great, I see,
But you may love no more, for your love's in vain,
For Betsy's sailing on the main.

O he looked sad and hung down his head,
And all the mirth it died, wouldn't make him glad.
He was heard to cry in slumbering dream'
O Betsy, Betsy, for you I die.

He sent for doctors for one year
To try their skill.
Dear doctor, your skill's in vain,
There's none like Betsy to save my pain.

No soonter than breath went out of her son
She wrung her hands, tore down her hair.
If my son had his breath again,
I'd fetch Betsy from over the main.

From English Folk Songs from the Southern Appalachians, Sharp
Collected from Mitchell Wallin, NC 1916
DT #434
Laws M20

Thanks to Mudcat for the Digital Tradition!

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