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Updated 02/28/2020


Oh! I Hae Seen the Roses Blaw
Gustav Holst

The melody for Oh! I Hae Seen the Roses Blaw is attributed to Gustav Holst (1874-1934) - shown above - Op.46. No.2. Holst was an English composer, arranger and teacher. Best known for his orchestral suite The Planets, he composed many other works across a range of genres, although none achieved comparable success. His distinctive compositional style was the product of many influences, Richard Wagner and Richard Strauss being most crucial early in his development. The subsequent inspiration of the English folksong revival of the early 20th century, and the example of such rising modern composers as Maurice Ravel, led Holst to develop and refine an individual style.

Oh! I Hae Seen the Roses Blaw is one of two tunes identified as being from Northumberland.


Oh! I hae seen the roses blaw
The heather bloom, the broom an a’
The lilly spring as white as snaw
With all their native splendor,
Yet Mary’s sweeter on the green,
As fresh as fair as Flora’s queen,
Mair stately then the branching bean,
Or live the ivy slender.