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 Botany Bay 2

Come all young men of learning, a warning take by me
I'll have you quit night walking and shun bad company
I'll have you quit night walking, or else you'll rue the day
And you will be transported and be sent to Botany Bay

I was brought up in London town, a place I know full well
Brought up by honest parents, the truth to you I'll tell
Brought up by honest parents, who loved me tenderly
Till I became a roving blade, to prove my destiny

My character was taken and I was sent to goal
My parents tried to clear me, but nothing would prevail
Twas at our Rutland sessions the Judge to me did say
The jury's found you guilty, you must go to Botany Bay

To see my poor old father, as he stood at the bar
Likewise my dear old mother, her old gray locks she tore
And in tearing of her old gray locks these words to me she did say
O son ! O son ! What hast thou done, Thou art bound for Botany Bay


This version collected by the great English collector Cecil Sharp early this century. It is closely related to 'The Transport' also in this collection. See also 'Girls of the Shamrock Shore'.

Searchable archives of Irish transports are now available on at The National Archives of Ireland


australian traditional songs . . . a selection by mark gregory