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"Sarie Marais" (also known as "My Sarie Marais" and pronounced "May SAH-ree mah-REH") is a traditional Afrikaans folk song, created during either the First Anglo-Boer War (c. 1880) (less likely) or the Second Anglo-Boer War (ca. 1900). The tune was possibly taken from a song dating from the American Civil War called "Ellie Rhee" (itself perhaps a version of the traditional folk song "Foggy Dew"), with the words translated into Afrikaans.
In the English translation, the song begins: "My Sarie Marais is so far from my heart but I hope to see her again. She lived near the Mooi River before this war began…"; and the chorus is: "Oh, take me back to the old Transvaal, where my Sarie lives, down among the maize fields near the green thorn tree, there lives my Sarie Marais." It continues about the fear of being removed far, "over the sea" (as the Boer men in fact were, by the ruling British authorities, who created the world's first concentration camps).
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Reviews of Sarie Marais [South-African folksong] (choir SSAA)
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