+2 votes
in Celebrities by


HE: Good morning, pretty maid,
       Where are you going?
SHE: To range these fields so fair,
         There's no man knowing,
HE: I think too bold you are,
      To range these fields so fair,
      In danger everywhere,
      Thou charming maiden.

SHE: A charming maid I am,
        Sir, she replied.
        Without any guile or care,
       To no man tied;
       My recreations are, to range
       These fields so fair;
       To take the pleasant air,
       Thou boasting stranger.

HE: A farmer's son I am,
      Your nighest neighbor,
      Great store of wealth I have,
      By honest labour;
      So if you will agree,
      Soon married we will be,
      For I'm in love with thee,
     Thou charming maiden.

SHE: A farmer's wife must work,
         Both late and early,
         Like any foreign Turk,
        Therefore believe me.
        I don't intend to be
        A servant bound to thee
        To do thy drudgery,
        Thou boasting stranger.

The tune can be accessed on a MIDI file at the link above.

2 Answers

+2 votes



"A farmer's wife must work... like any foreign Turk" :O

Xenophobic too, perhaps. :D

+1 vote

Tink I looked at it twice (or thrice), and I think I get it -- it's the foreign Turk part?

Well, when that song was first sung, "Turk" was so far-off land that it really carried aura of mythology. So you might as well sing about Narnia, Shangri-La, or Valhalla...and it's just a way of describing something that also has the benefit of rhyming handily.

However, if there are actually people from Turkey around and you are singing that song, and nutso listeners are using the song as a foundation for harassing the Turkish people, then yes I would clean up my speech!


Far-off land...? On the contrary, Virginia, Turkey was the evil empire of the time, having overrun Greece, the Balkans, and having besieged Vienna twice, a lot closer to England than, say, America.

The Turks were also a subject for Mozart and Beethoven.

In glee club in grade school, we used to sing this very song, but I don't think the 4th stanza was included in the song book, at least I don't recall ever singing it. I think our version ended with the farmer boy's proposal. :D

Oh, and as for the convenient rhyme, she could have said:

         A farmer's wife must work,
         Both late and early,
         And so, you silly jerk,
        Therefore believe me...
:ermm: :) :D

Tink those are just delightful -- I have loved the Mozart piece always, but never even connected with the reference!

Oh and as for Evil Empire of the Day, well I think I just opened my eyes and made a connection...Turkish-of-that-day = Ottoman! :O