Henry's Songbook

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The Weavers

  • (Robin Watson / Duncan)

    But the eighteen-twenty declaration
    Will live to show the world our aim
    No shield of silence can e'er prevent it
    The common rights o' man proclaim

    Fareweel tae you, my ain dear loved ones
    My life is pledged to the weavers' cause
    'Tis better to die in the fight for freedom
    Than suffer the hardship of rich men's laws

    Fo all around us are rogues and traitors
    Though they be kinsmen of Scottish lords
    And in our numbers the king's own agents
    Have sacrificed us to rifle and sword

    And no more I'll see the green banks o' the Leven
    For Australia's rocky shore I am bound
    My sentence is to be transported
    And there my weary life to end

    And although the hangman's noose has spared me
    It's cruel comfort my life will be
    When I think upon my wife and children
    No more, no more again to see

    (as sung by Gaberlunzie)

Susannes Folksong-Notizen

  • [1976:] In the early 19th century, industrial disturbances were cloaked in secrecy. The government kept a shield of silence on the Scottish weavers' uprising of 1820, which they pre-empted by infiltrating the ranks and causing a revolt before the weavers were prepared. Three men were hanged in Glasgow, and are remembered by a monument in Sighthill Cemetery. Many were transported to penal colonies. Robin wrote this song about them.

    (Notes Gaberlunzie, 'Wind and Water, Time and Tide')

  • [1985:] 'Where there was weavin' there was agitatin'' my grandpa used to say. 'The government was afraid of revolt.' (This was about the 1820s and it wasn't so long after the French Revolution.) 'They used to put spies in the pubs so's they could listen-in, then go and clype on the trouble-makers. One got vitriol thrown in his face for being found by the weavers doin' that. Lost both his eyes.' My grandfather used to tell us, as well, how his father was with John Baird and Andrew Hardie the Glasgow Radicals when they got executed at Stirling in 1820, and how he was with Willie Goldie when he got killed in the riots the Scots Guards came to put down. (Blair, Tea at Miss Cranston's 41f)

Quelle: Scotland

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aktualisiert am 4.06.2002