MacEdward Leach and the Songs of Atlantic Canada
The Broken token
Mrs. Bride Power NFLD 2 Tape 1 Track 3
Tors Cove Audio:

Leach: Okay

Mrs. Power: [sings]

Jenny, Jenny, Jenny, one day
She dressed herself in man' s array
With a sword and pistol down by her side
To meet her true love away did ride

She met young Willie along the strand
And boldly bid him for to stand
Stand and deliver young man she said
Or else this moment your life I’ll have

She snapped a gold watch all from his store
And still kept saying there's one thing more
There's a diamond ring which l see you wear
Give it to me and your life I’ll spare

The diamond ring you shall not have
The diamond ring is a token given
The diamond ring you shall not have
So take my life and the ring I’ll keep

She rose up from her own true love
She being truehearted now just like a dove
Early next morning those couple were seen
A-riding down on her father's steed

His watch and chain it hung by her clothes
Which made this young man blush like a rose
What makes you blush silly thing
Don’t you know l have the diamond ring?

Oh why should you then cherish such an evil thing
If l had my two pistoIs bring
l would have shot you to my surprise
Oh that was only for to know, whether you were my true love or no

And now I have a contented mind
For l know my darling your heart is mine

Female voice:(In background) My goodness that was a good one.


Sources:   Alternate titles "The Sailor's Return"; "The Single Sailor"; "The Single Soldier"; "John Riley (III)"; "Flowery Garden"; Laws N42 ("The Maid in the Garden"); Roud #264; Leach, pp. 701-703 ("A Sweetheart in the Army"); Creighton/Senior, pp. 134-139, ("Broken Ring Song"); Creighton-NovaScotia 28, ("Broken Ring"); Creighton-Maritime, p. 59, ("Broken Ring Song"); Peacock, pp. 584-589, ("Seven Years I Loved a Sailor"); Fowke/MacMillan 65, ("The Sailor's Return"); Randolph 55, ("The Maiden in the Garden"); SHenry H471, p. 317, ("The Broken Ring.")   For a more extensive bibliography please refer to The Traditional Ballad Index ( )

From the Memorial University Folklore and Language Archive (MUNFLA) Song Index and Song Annotation Collection: Etchegary, Andrew MUNFLA 69-12; Nemec, Thomas MUNFLA 69-36; Wareham, W. MUNFLA 70-8; Wareham, W. and Neil Rosenberg MUNFLA 71-1

History: Mid-19 th century broadside ballad found in North America, United Kingdom, and the Bahamas.

Text: Jenny disguises herself as a man and sets out to find her true love.   She meets Willie and at gunpoint demands that he give her his watch and diamond ring. He pulls out these items, revealing him as her lost, true love.

Tune: The major melody is varied in the verses of this song.   The metre is predominantly 4/4 with rubato employed in some phrases.

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