Folk Songs from the Southern Highlands - online songbook

Southern Appalachians songs with lyrics, commentary & some sheet music.

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Ballads and Songs
2. How can there be a cherry without any stone? How can there be a chicken without any bone ? How can there be a thimble without any ring ? How can there be a baby without any crying ?
3. The cherry in the bloom, it's without any stone; The chicken in the shell, it's without any bone; The thimble when it's rolling, it's without any ring; The baby when it's sleeping, it's not crying.
Obtained from Miss Ronnie Johnson, of the same address as A. This is the same text. The second line of the third stanza has "peeping" for "pipping".
(A possible derivative of Child, No. 2op) Again the reader will be indebted to Mr. Philips Barry for his very in­teresting note on this song. He kindly volunteered to read the text and has generously given permission to quote his comment. It would seem too bad to leave out any of it as every point is made with fine understanding and helps to illustrate the probable deterioration of the ballad. Mr. Barry's full comment, therefore, follows:
"Your ballad of 'The Judge and the Jury' is not to be regarded in my opinion, as an actual version of Child 209, 'Geordie'. The older versions of 'Geordie' make his wife to ransom him as he is about to be hanged. A 'secondary' form of the ballad known as 'George of Oxford', has a sad ending; George is hanged for stealing the king's horses,though as a special favor to his rank, the rope is made of gold or silk, instead of the usual hemp. All American versions of the ballad which I have seen belong to the secondary 'George of Oxford' form. The Vermont version, 'Charley's Escape', is a unique version of 'George of Oxford' with a happy ending; the judge pardons Charley lest his sweetheart die of grief.
"In your ballad the situation is not unlike that of 'Charley's Escape' as you have observed. Mercy tempers justice; judge and jury are swayed by the

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III