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Wiltshire Community History

Folk Song Information

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Book TitleAuthorDateNotes
Song TitleBotany Bay Music Note (Music Score Available)
Roud No.261
Collected FromUnknown
LocationBritford
CountyWiltshire
Collected ByHill, Geoffry
Alternative Title
TuneHill, Geoffrey
Date
Source Primary
Source SecondaryHill, Geoffry: Wiltshire folk songs and carols, 1898
Recording
 
Song Lyrics
Verse 1

Come all young men of learning,
A warning take by me.
I'd have you quit night walking,
Or else you'll rue the day.
I'd have you quit night walking,
Or else you'll rue the day.
Oh, when you are transported,
And going to Botany Bay.

Verse 2

I was brought up in London Town,
A place I know right well.
Brought up by honest parents,
With whom I loved to dwell.
Brought up by honest parents,
And reared so tenderly.
Till I became a roving blade,
Which proved my destiny.

Verse 3

My character was taken,
And I was sent to jail.
My friends they tried to clear me,
But nothing could prevail.
My friends they tried to clear me,
But the judge to me did say.
'The jury find thee guilty,
Thee must go to Botany Bay'.

Verse 4

To see my aged father,
As he stood at the bar,
Likewise my tender mother,
Her old grey locks she tore.
My broken hearted mother,
Who unto me did say.
'Oh son, Oh son, what have thee done,
For to go to Botany Bay'.

Verse 5

There is a girl in London Town,
A girl I know right well.
And if I ever get my freedom,
Along with her I'll dwell.
If I ever get my freedom,
I'll marry her the day.
I'll shun all evil company,
Then adieu to Botany Bay.
 
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Notes
Hill, Geoffry: 'Sung by a Britford man, whose forefathers had been in the parish for generations. It was sung with great feeling, and naturally; for Botany Bay was to the English labourer who stole a sheep, a stern reality.'

Transcribed and edited by Chris Wildridge, 2010.

Music Score

Score for Botany Bay

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