Although this West Country song can be construed as a variation of the world famous "Widdicombe Fair
," it is sufficiently different to be considered a separate composition. Information on it can be found in Volume II of the 1974 Oxford University Press edition of Cecil Sharp's Collection Of English Folk Songs
, which was edited by Maud Karpeles.
"Midsummer Fair" was sung to the collector by John Gartell age 63 at Castle Cary, Somerset, on December 28, 1907, and earlier, by 61 year old Joseph Cornelius at Shepton Beauchamp, Somerset, on August 16, 1904.
In the Gartell version, the grey mare is ridden to Portsdon Fair with "Uncle Tom Tobly and all", while in the Cornelius version, although Tom Pearce is featured, there is no mention of any uncle.
Alexander Baron - London, England