Over the hills and far away

Posted by Masakim on April 28, 2002

In Reply to: Over the hills and far away posted by Armorel on April 28, 2002

: : : : Who said "over the hill & far away"?

: : : was it in a movie, or a cartoon?

: : Older than that. It's a song in an 18th-century play. See link below for more.

: I think it becomes a "known phrase" mainly from the nursery which I learnt as a child:

: "Tom, Tom, the piper's son
: Stole a pig and away he ran
: But all the tune that he could play
: Was Over the Hills and Far Away"

W.S. & C. Baring-Gould, in _The Annotated Mother Goose_ give a longer (26-line) version:

Tom, he was a piper's son,
He learnt to play when he was young,
And all the tune that he could play,
Was, "Over the hills and far away";...

They notes:

The refrain "Over the hills and far away" has been used by English poets and song makers for centuries. It appears in print as early as 1670 in the black-letter broadside, _The Wind hath blown my Plaid away, or, A Discourse betwixt a young Woman and the Elphin Knight_:
My plaid awa, my plaid awa,
And ore the hill and far awa,
And far awa to Norrowa,
My plaid shall not be blown awa....