Traditional Scottish Folk Music

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John Barleycorn

TML # 005334
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John Barleycorn is proclaimed dead but springs to life when the rain/dew falls on him. At midsummer he grows a beard; then men with scythes cut him, bind him to a cart, wheel him to a barn, and brew him into beer. The last verse praises his merits A version of this was remade by Robert Burns, but it is obviously older. - RBW
There were three men come out of the west
Their fortunes for to try
And they have made a solemn vow
John Barleycorn must die (2x)

Fa la la la, it's a lovely day
Fa la la la lay o
Fa la la la, it's a lovely day
Sing fa la la la lay

They plowed him in three furrows deep
Laid clods all on his head
And they have made a solemn oath
John Barleycorn was dead

Well then there came a shower of rain
Which from the clouds did fall
John Barleycorn sprang up again
And so amazed them all
Well then came men with great sharp scythes
To cut him off at the knee
They bashed his head against a stone
And they used him barbarously

Well then came men with great long flails
To cut him skin from bone
The miller has used him worse than that
He ground him between two stones

They wheeled him here, they wheeled him there
Wheeled him into the barn
And they have used him worse than that
They bunged him in a vat

They worked their will upon John Barleycorn
But he lives to tell the tale
We pour him into an old brown jug
And we call him home-brewed ale
This royalty free score was generated by the Traditional Music Library On Line Tunebook (Shareware Version). As-is copies of this score may be freely distributed. Further info from WWW.TRADITIONALMUSIC.CO.UK