Maid of Llangollen
X:1 T:Maid of Llangollen M:2/4 L:1/8 R:Air S:Kerr - Merry Melodies, vol. 3, No. 374 (c. 1880's) Z:AK/Fiddler's Companion K:D A|d2 e>f|d2 AA|d2 e>f|d3f|gfed|dBcd|Afed|e3:| |:a|gfed|dBcd|Afed|e2a2|gfed|dBcd|Afea|d3:|
MAID OF LLANGOLLEN. Scottish, Air (2/4 time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. The "Maid of Llangollen" was an English song (Llangollen is a Welsh name) dating at least back to the early decades of the 19th century.
Tho' lowly my lot and tho' poor my estate,
I see without envy the wealthy and great;
Contented an proud a poor shepherd to be,
While the maid of Llangollen smiles sweetly on me,
While the maid of Llangollen smiles sweetly on me.
The song was written by Brinley Richards, inspired by a Welsh beauty. Mrs. Edwards was, in later life, proprietress of the Hand Hotel in Llangollen. After she died in September, 1885, the Red Dragon, the National Magazine of Wales, printed this remembrance:
Many visitors to the beautiful Vale of Llangollen, says the Pall Mall Gazette, will hear with regret of the death of the kindly old lady who kept the "Hand" Hotel in the village, and who made it a point personally to say good-bye to all her visitors, and to recommend them not to leave the place without seeing Plas Newydd. Her old-world courtesy (however early in the morning it might be, she wore a black silk dress) was very pleasing. No doubt she was the subject of Brinley Richards's' song "The Maid of Llangollen," but the celebrated "maids of Llangollen" existed before Mr. Brinley Richards or the good hostess of the "Hand." The story of Lady Eleanor Butler and Miss Ponsonby, two Irish ladies of rank and wealth, who settled down in Llangollen about 1778, and lived there in solitude for the rest of their lives, is, or should be, known to everyone who visits the upper waters of the Dee. Plas Newydd, their quaint and picturesque old house, now converted into a kind of museum, is to be seen; photographs of them and pamphlets narrating their history are to be got in Llangollen, where, although they have been dead for about sixty years, the memory of their good works is still green. These are the real "maids of Llangollen,"....