Hehe, the Aussie flag we would really like to see...
...courtesy of mythos' blog; she got inspired by my posting of Redgum lyrics, and now I return the favor! So hoist the Leunig flag high, everybody (with the possible exception of Bill, at Gawith, who would rather stick with Advance Australia Fair and the usual, boring flag!) lol
OK, anyone know the real name of the Jolly Swagman (that infamous suicidal sheep thief)?
>WE HAVE suggested that the jolly swagman who went Waltzing Matilda was
named Andy...as in "Andy sang as he watched, Andy waited till his billy boiled..." (Column 8, October 6). Tony Winton, of Mosman, demurs: "It's well known he was a Mexican, as in 'Juan's a jolly swagman...'." November 22, 1999
>On 23 November, the Herald quoted Alexander Tolnay of Berlin, who said that, reflecting the origins of the poem, the Swagman really must have been a German rather than someone of Spanish extraction. So his name would have been Hans ('Hans a jolly swagman ...'). (The SMH page is no longer available. This reference comes from Roger Clarke's Waltzing Matilda page.)
>WRONG! Wrong! Wrong! says Robert Leong, of Cherrybrook. "My great-grandfather's third cousin came to Australia to build the railroads and go gold prospecting, and all his descendants know that Wong's The Jolly Swagman..." November 24, 1999
>VISITING us from Aylesbury, Buckinghamshire, Mrs L. Jackson has been interested in the claims on who was the jolly swagman (Column 8, Monday). She writes: "I am surprised you don't know it was an English royal, travelling incognito, as in One's a Jolly Swagman." November 30, 1999
>Swagman's relatives hit back
>MR WESLEY BONE, of Mosman, would like us to stop publicising his namesake, Wes, the Jolly Jumbuck. "Hasn't he suffered enough?" December 2, 1999
>The swagman's brother
>ASKS Peter Crowther, of Clovelly: "Is there some family connection between Juan, The Jolly Swagman and Raul Britannia?" December 4, 1999
>MICHAEL Robinson, of San Jose, California, reports: "My father has kept me up to date on your research concerning Juan the royal swagman, and Wes the jolly jumbuck. However, I have yet to hear anything about Wal. Hardly anybody in the story says anything without immediately pausing and requesting Wal, sing 'Matilda'." December 6, 1999
>Su jumps into the action here. Actually, when she was a small child, she really did think that the swagman's name was "Wal". The chorus would thus be "Wal, sing Matilda". (My parents used to buy wine from a wine merchant by the name of Wal Cooper. I must have gotten him into the story somehow.) I might have even thought that Wal was a fan of Harry Belafonte, whose song Matilda was a big hit at one time.
>Ian Taylor, of Randwick, says that back in the UK, his mother, Rosemary Taylor, of Croydon, Surrey, was watching the closing ceremony on TV with his three-year-old niece, Amy. "According to my mum, Amy thought the Bananas in Pyjamas were best - and that song about 'Waltzing the Builder' who waits for his beans to boil." October 13, 2000