Young Waters

Young Waters

Young Waters is Child ballad number 94. [Francis James Child, "English and Scottish Popular Ballads", [http://www.sacred-texts.com/neu/eng/child/ch094.htm "Young Waters"] ]

ynopsis

The queen sees Young Waters ride to court. A clever lord asks her who the comeliest man is, and she says Young Waters. The king is angry that she did not except him. She tries to appease him, but the king throws Young Waters in prison and executes him.

Commentary

The ballad is often supposed to be based on a historical occurrence, but no such event has been located that matches it. [Francis James Child, "The English and Scottish Popular Ballads", v 2, p 342, Dover Publications, New York 1965]

A very similar Scandinavian ballad names King Magnus I of Sweden and his wife Helvig as the king and queen. Folke Lovmandson finds favor with many ladies of court, especially the queen; a page stirs the king's suspicion; the innocent knight is rolled down the hill in a barrel set with knives. [Francis James Child, "The English and Scottish Popular Ballads", v 2, p 343, Dover Publications, New York 1965]

References

External links

* [http://www.pbm.com/~lindahl/ballads/early_child/sidebar3.html The history of "Young Waters"] with questions of literary vs. oral transmission


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