Isle of St. Helena


“Isle of St. Helena,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed March 2, 2024,

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Isle of St. Helena


This item is part of the I. G. Greer Folksong Collection which consists of more than 300 individual song titles and their variants as collected by Isaac Garfield Greer (1881-1967) from informants, primarily in Ashe, Wilkes and Watauga counties. The collection includes manuscripts, typescript transcriptions produced by Dr. Greer’s clerical staff, and handwritten musical notations. Songs range from traditional Child Ballads, traditional English and Scottish ballads as well as their American variants, to 19th century popular music to musical compositions of local origin.


Ballads, English
Napoleon I, Emperor of the French, 1769-1821--Songs and music
Exile--Songs and music

Alternative Title

Bonapart's Retreat, Napoleon, Bone Part, Napoleon Bonaparte


W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University


Greer, I. G. (Isaac Garfield), 1881-1967








Bonapart On The Isle of St. Helena

Bony he is gone from the wars of all fighting,
He has gone to the place he never took delight in.
Oh these he may sit down, and tell the scenes he’s seen oh!
While forlorn he doth mourn on the Isle of St. Helena.
Louisa does mourn for her husband departed,
She dreams when she sleeps, and she wakes broken hearted.
Not a friend to console her, even those that nigh be with her,
But she mourns when she thinks of the isle of St. Helena.
Come all ye that have got wealth, pray beware of ambition,
For it is a decree in fate that might change your condition.
Be ye steadfast in time, for what is to come ye know not,
For fear you might be changed, like he on the isle of St. Helena.
The rude rushing waves, all around the shore are washing,
And the great billows heave, and the wild rocks are dashing.
He may look to the moon of the great Mount Diana.
With his eyes over the waves that are around St. Helena.
No more in the clouds, he will be seen in such splendour,
Or go on with his crowds with the great Alexander,
For the young king of Rome, and the Prince of Ganak,
Says he will bring his father home from the isle of St. Helena.
The Parliaments of England, and your Holy Alliance.
To a prisoner of war you may now bid defiance,
For your base intrigues, and your baser misdeameanors,
Have caused him to die on the Isle of St. Helena.

Scholarly Classification

Brown, Older Ballads - Mostly British - 146

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