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poet, who beguiled the weariness of the march or the encampment by his minstrelsy, grave or gay ; and the imperfect fragments which survive to us, provoke our regret that so few of them have been preserved.
All that we can claim for the writers of these songs, is a manifest spirit of devotion to the cause, and defiance to its enemies. The poesy of their productions is meagre. They did not write for fame ; but, in the language of one of the most honest and homely of them, " from a great desire to state the truth, and their opinion of it, in a quiet way, just set their poetical lathes a-turning, and twisted out ballads and songs for the good of the common cause."
In the compilation of this work, a few pieces have been included which do not strictly belong to the class of songs or ballads ; as in the case of the "Stamp Act Repeal," "Gentle Shepherd,"