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Wiltshire Community History

Folk Song Information

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Book TitleAuthorDateNotes
Song TitleLakes of Cold Finn
Roud No.189
Collected FromPotter, Henry
Collected ByWilliams, Alfred
Alternative Title
Source PrimaryWSRO: 2598/36 Packet 2 - Oxfordshire: Williams, A: MS collection No Ox 295
Source SecondaryWilts and Gloucestershire Standard, 8th January, 1916, p 2, Part 13, No. 8
Song Lyrics
Verse 1

It was early one morning young William arose,
Straightway to his comrades' bed chamber he goes,
Saying - "Comrades, loyal comrades, let nobody know,
It is a fine morning, and a-bathing we'll go."

Verse 2

So they walked right along till they came to a lane,
And the first that they met was a keeper of game;
He advised them in sorrow to turn back again,
For their doom was to die on the watery main.

Verse 3

Young William stepped in and he swam the lake round,
He swam round the island but not the right ground,
Saying - "Comrades, loyal comrades, don't you venture in,
There's depths of false waters in the lakes of Cool Finn."

Verse 4

Next morning, next morning, when his uncle went there,
He rode round the island like one in despair,
Saying - "Where was he drowned? Or did he fall in"
For there's depths of false waters in the lakes of Cool Finn.

Verse 5

The day of his funeral there will be a grand sight,
There will be four and twenty young men all dressed in white;
They will carry him along and will lay him on clay,
Saying - "Adieu to young William!" and they'll all march away.
Print Song Lyrics
Williams, Alfred: Ms / WGS: 'I am unable to locate the Lakes of Finn, or to suggest the locality referred to in the song. The piece is old, and not very well known. I have heard of it at Latton. The copy of obtained of Henry Potter, Standlake, Oxfordshire.'

Transcribed and edited by Chris Wildridge, 2010.



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