Peggy wi' the gowden Hair

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PEGGY WI' THE GOWDEN HAIR (Peggy with the Golden Hair). Scottish, Air (whole time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. "Petty wi' the Gowden Hair" was a popular balled published in early 19th century songsters. It was composed by Richard Gall [1] (1776-1801), of Dunbar, a friend of Burns and Campbell. The words, given in Pocket songster, or, Caledonian warbler (Edinburgh, 1823, p. 167), begin:

Ye roses, fa' at my love's feet!
Ye lilies, bend your heads an' die!
Your bonny beauties, lang sae sweet,
Are now for ever lost on me:
For though ye sweetly bud an' blaw,
To busk the valley blooming fair,
There's ae sweet flower excels y a',
Young Peegy wi' the gowden hair.

As with a number of tunes from Air's fifth collection, the melody was entered into the large 1840 music manuscript copybook of multi-instrumentalist John Rook, of Waverton, near Wigton, Cumbria.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Aird (Selection of Scotch, English, Irish and Foreign Airs, vol. 5), 1801; No. 182, p. 68.

Recorded sources:




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