To carry out a simple search, type the term that you want to find in the Search box next to the Advanced Search tab, and press enter.
For a more refined search of songs or tunes use the Advanced search function. To carry out a search on two or more terms at once, e.g. Collector+Roud Number, select each term as above and then click search.
Be sure to clear previous searches before starting a new one by clicking on the x next to each search term at the top.
Although there are several copies printed in the seventeenth century none of them can definitely be dated prior to the 1670s. This ballad is quite likely the original and it continued in cheap print throughout the following 2 centuries. A seventeenth century rewrite followed hot on the heels of the original and some time in the eighteenth century it was rewritten and extended in Scotland, probably by a broadside hack. The ballad has been popular and widespread in oral tradition throughout the last 3 centuries and more.