“The Flower of France and England, O”


"As I was on my rambled, I came from Dover to Carlisle..." The singer goes to "The Grapes" to lodge. One of the serving girls is very pretty -- "the flower of France and England,O"; they are much attracted to each other and before long are married


Most scholars believe that the reference in the third line of the song to the town being "full of rebels" refers to the Jacobite Rising of 1745 (and Prince Charles's army did indeed spend time in Carlisle). But there is no other hint of this, and indeed, there were earlier conflicts (going back to the Wars of the Roses and even before) which might cause the singer to find "rebels" (i.e. people who disagreed with his politics) in Carlisle. - RBW


  1. Ord, pp. 188-190, "The Flower of France and England, O" (1 text)
  2. Roud #5532
  3. BI, Ord188


Author: unknown
Earliest date: 1930 (Ord)
Found in: Britain(Scotland)