John Reilley, Lyric Variant 03


“John Reilley, Lyric Variant 03,” Appalachian State University Libraries Digital Collections, accessed August 15, 2022,

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John Reilley, Lyric Variant 03


One leaf typewritten and handwritten in pencil on the front and handwritten in pencil on the reverse. The document is in good physical condition. The document was laminated. The upper left corner, the upper right corner, and the lower right corner are folded into the laminate. There is a minor tear at the middle top edge. There are three textual corrections handwritten in pencil. A stanza handwritten in pencil was added to the song text. The document "John Reilley" Variant 4 is located at the bottom of the front side and on the reverse side.


Ballads, English Ballads, Irish Courtship -- Songs and music Love -- Songs and music Homecoming -- Songs and music Sailors -- Songs and music

Alternative Title

John Reilly. George Reilly. John Riley. John Riley's Courtship. George Riley. The Constant Damsel


I.W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection. Appalachian State University W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection. Appalchian State University

Date Created



I. G. Greer


The images and audio files contained in the "So Mote It Ever Be: The Folksong Heritage of North Carolina's Northern Blue Ridge Mountains" collection are available for free personal, non-commercial, and educational use, provided that proper citation is used (e.g. I. G. Greer/W. Amos Abrams Manuscript Files Series, Folksong Files Subseries. W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection. Special Collections. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC). Any commercial use of the materials without the written permission of Appalachian State University is strictly prohibited. Please contact the Appalachian State University W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection with specific questions or with requests for further information.








John Reilly

As I walked out one morning early,
That I might meet the bracing air.
'Twas there I spied a young Irish lady,
Who seemed to me like diamonds fair.

I stepped up to her and kindly asked her
If she would be a young sailor's bride.
Oh, no , said she , I' , too young too marryed I will not marry
I'd rather lead a single life.

Oh whats the reason
that you wont marry
You differ from all fe-
male kind
I could h

Oh no, kind sir, if I may tell you,
I could have been married full three years ago
Unto a man that they call John Reilly,
And he was the cause of my overthrow.

And when he found that her love was loyal,
Kisses he gave her, both one, two, and three.
I am the man thatthey call John Reilly
And I was the cause of your overthrow.

Come , let us marry, and no longer tarry,
I've laid up riches in great store.
We'll sail the ocean, and meet promotion,
For I do vow I'll leave you no more.

Classification Title

John Reilley, Lyric Variant 03

Document Title

John Reilly

Scholarly Classification

Brown Older Ballads - Mostly British - 93 Randolph, 56 Cox, 95

Dimensions - Original

216 mm x 357 mm

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Transcription Date


Transcribed By

Paul L. Robertson

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