This is another misnamed tale, for the story is about Janet. Oh, Tam LIn has been through a great deal, but that’s another story!
In this one, it is Janet who challenges the words on the well; Janet who calls Tam Lin; Janet who smiles and takes his hand, promising her maidenhood; Janet who returns at midnight; Janet who braves the lizard, the snake, the lion, the bear, the cold iron, the molten lead; Janet who rescues her love; Janet who takes Tam Lin home to marry.
I am willing to compromise; I call the tale “Janet and Tam Lin.”
Which Tam Lin? Consider a novel, a YA, and a juvenile retelling:
Dean, Pamela, Tam Lin, with an introduction by Terri Windling. Firebird (Reissue) 2006.
Jones, Diana Wynne, Fire and Hemlock. HarperTeen, 2002.
Yolen, Jane, Tam Lin, illustrated by Charles Mikolaycak. HMH Books for Young Readers, 1998.
My version of Janet and Tam Lin is on my Web site.