Sir Patrick Spence

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X:1 T:Sir Patrick Spence M:C L:1/8 R:Air S:John Rook music manuscript collection (Waverton, Cumbria, 1840, p. 205) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:D AB|=c2c2c2 (3cde|dB B2 d2 zB|B2A2 (Af)(fe)|d4 A2 AB| =c2c2c2 (3cde|dB B2 {c}d3c|B2A2 (Af)(fe)|d4 A2z|| A|f2f2 g3f|e3f a3g|gfed A3B|d4 A2 zA| f2f2g2gf|g2 ga/b/ {b}a2 zg|gfed A3B|d4{ef}A2z||



SIR PATRICK SPENCE. Scottish, Air (2/4 or whole time). D Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. "Sir Patrick Spens" [1] is a Child ballad (No. 58) (Roud 41) of some antiquity about a disaster at sea. It was first published in eleven stanzas in 1765 in Bishop Thomas Percy's Reliques of Ancient English Poetry, based on "two MS. copies transmitted from Scotland". Words and a melody were subsequently printed by John Johnson in the fifth volume of his Scots Musical Museum (No. 482). A different tune with the same title was entered into the 1840 music manuscript collection of Cumbrian musician John Rook. The first three stanzas in the Museum go:

The King sits in Dumfermline toune,
Drinking the blude-rid wine
O quhar wull I get a guid sailor
To sail this schip of mine.

Up and spak an eldern knicht,
Sat at the kings richt kne;
Sir Patrick Spece is the best sailor,
That sails upon the se.

Late late yestreen I saw the new moone,
Wi’ the auld moone in her arme;
And I feir, I feir, my deir master,
That we will cum to harm.



Additional notes

Source for notated version: -

Printed sources : - Johnson (Scots Musical Museum, Book 5), 1797; Song 482, p. 496.

Recorded sources: -



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