Ballads & Songs of Southern Michigan-songbook

A Collection of 200+ traditional songs & variations with commentaries including Lyrics & Sheet music

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Ballads and Songs of Michigan
(The Twa Sisters, Child, No. 10)
3hild (I, 118-141) has twenty-one versions of this old ballad, none of which ias lines very much like those in stanzas 4 and 8 and the refrain of Michi­gan A. The refrain most similar is in a version in Child's additions and cor--cctions (IV, 448); no similar one has been noted in American texts. Version B lppears to be a very defective and corrupt form of this old ballad. It is an excel-ent illustration of what may happen to a fine ballad during a long course of trans­mission. For additional versions, references, and discussion see Barry, Eckstorm, ind Smyth, pp. 40-46; Bulletin, VI, 5-6; IX, 4-6; X, 10-11; and XI, 16-18; Cox, Dp. 20-22; Davis, pp. 93-104, Greenleaf and Mansfield, p 9; Henry, fAFL, XLV, 1-8; Kittredge, JAFL, XXX, 286-389; Scarborough, pp. 164-165; Sharp, U 2&S5; Stout, pp. 1-2; Archer Taylor, "English, Scottish, and American Ver­sions of the 'Twa Sisters/ " JAFL, XLII, 238-246; and Thomas, pp. 70-73. Version A was sung by Mrs. Charles Muchler, Kalkaska, 1934.
1   Once there lived two sisters fair, Viola and Vinola;
A young man came a-courting both, Down by the waters roiling.
2   The eldest he loved most dearly,
But the youngest he intended for his bride.
3 The eldest he bought a fine gold chain; The youngest he bought a guinea gold ring.

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