Non-Standard conjoined subject noun phrases

Robin Hamilton robin.hamilton2 at BTINTERNET.COM
Thu Feb 25 23:59:16 UTC 2010

I only recently thought fully to pursue the link Mark provided, and have
now, much belatedly, done so ...

> The Digitrad Results *0.7742* - VAN DIEMANS LAND (YOUNG MEN
> *0.7742* - HENRY THE
> These two lyrics are the same,

Well, there is one quite a significant difference --  "Van Dieman's Land"
(SongID=7522) has the line, "Me and five more went out one night into Squire
Dunhill's Park," whereas the version I quoted at the end of my post from a
Bodleian text, corresponding to "Henry the Poacher" (SongID=2594) has them
invading Squire Duncan's park.

> except that "Henry the Poacher" has two
> additional introductory verses.

It would be more accurate to say that VAN DIEMANS LAND (YOUNG MEN BEWARE has
somewhere *lost the "Come all you {sic -- never "ye"} [variants] ..."
introductory stanza of virtually every poaching ballad ever written.  If it
*had originally begun, as the DigiTrad version SongID=7522 would have it,
"Me and five more went out one night to Squire Dunhill's park," I would have
been rather excited, as the cant ballad with which I began *does (uniquely)
begin thus, with no introductory "Come all you" address.

What of course characterises these two variants of the last of the four
versions of poaching ballads that I adduced is that the focus is more on the
experiences of transportation than it is on the act of poaching.  Thus we
find here (but not in the other three poaching ballads I dealt with), the
appearance of the term "trepanned" (lost by the time SongID=7522 reaches
Digitrad, admittedly), a term more usually found as part of the cant lexis,
but here apparently considered to be Standard Spoken Colloquial English.
Interesting, that.  I should perhaps have made more of this than simply
in my post, "No survey of poaching ballads would be complete without someone
trepanned or transported ..."

Other than that ... how did you enjoy the play, Mrs. Lincoln?  <g>


The American Dialect Society -

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