The Captain's Apprentice
was collected in 1906 by D Hammond and published in The Hammond And Gardiner Manuscript which in turn was published by Frank Purslow in his Marrow Bones
. The tune and song were taken down in Caracombe, Dorset, from Mrs Sartin with additional text from George House of Beamington, Dorset.
I started to sing this song after joining the Tyneside Maritime Chorus
in early 2011 and the version they sing is very close in tune and lyrics to the one given here. There are no end of versions under different titles but this is the one I prefer.
It tells the story of a sea captain who cruelly kills his apprentice, is apprehended by his crew and his sentenced to death for his misdeeds, Just the stuff for a bedtime story!
This song may be found in the Tyneside Maritime Chorus songbook