Maid of Llanwellyn

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Melody - Seq. by Barry Taylor
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Joanna Baillie

I've no sheep on the mountains
Nor boat on the lake
Nor coin in my coffer
To keep me awake
Nor corn in my garner,
Nor fruit on my tree
Yet the maid of Llanwellyn
Smiles sweetly on me.
2. Rich Owen will tell you,
With eyes full of scorn
Threadbare is my coat,
And my hosen are torn
Scoff on, my rich Owen,
For faint is thy glee
When the maid of Llanwellyn
Smiles sweetly on me.
3. The farmer rides proudly
To market and fair
And the clerk at the ale house
Still claims the great chair
But of all our proud fellows
The proudest I'll be
While the maid of Llanwellyn
Smiles sweetly on me.


This song was published by George Thomson of Edinburgh, 1757-1851, who paid F. J. Haydn in Vienna, 2 ducats each, for some 200 tunes, to give old British Isles' folk tunes real class. He then got some more tunes from Beethoven, who quit, disgusted with the pay.

"In her 'Maid of Llanwellyn', Miss Baillie's lyric spoke of the beautiful lakes in Wales. When Thomson objected, saying that Wales had no lakes, Miss Joanna Baillie haughtily answered that since lakes would not rise out of the earth for their convenience, and since she was unwilling to alter the line, they would just have to hope that their readers would be as ignorant as she had been when she wrote it."

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