“The Belfast Sailor”


A Belfast lass asks her sailor lover to stay at home. The ship sails for Newfoundland "till taken slaves to end our days all in a Turkish galley." They are tortured. The sailor writes "the Turks they are so cruel ... so fare thee well, my jewel"


Laws re O26: "A merchant ship from Bristol is captured by a Turkish rover and all its men are made slaves." The ballads have no lines in common.

Broadsides Bodleian Harding B 22(147) and Bodleian Harding B 25(1167) mention in passing that her father is a rich merchant. - BS

Cross references

  • cf. "The Turkish Lady" [Laws O26] (theme)
  • cf. "La Jeune Fille si Amoureuse (The Girl So In Love)" (theme)


  • Bodleian, Harding B 22(147), "The Lass of Belfast", J. Pitts (London), 1802-1819; also Harding B 25(1167), "Lovers All"


  1. Ranson, p. 105, "The Belfast Sailor" (1 text)
  2. BI, Ran105


Author: unknown
Earliest date: before 1820 (broadside, Bodleian Harding B 22(147))
Found in: Ireland