A PEPYSIAN GARLAND - online book

Black-letter Broadside Ballads Of The years 1595-1639

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PREFACE
revived old jigs that years before had been carried abroad by English comedians and that survive in Swedish, Dutch, and German versions far earlier than his own1.
But by an extension of the drolls to include farces in prose as well as comic scenes cut from the plays of Shakespeare, Fletcher, and other playwrights, the jig may have been partially forgotten. After the Restoration, however, it was immediately revived. Typical early ex­amples are "A Dialogue Betwixt Tom and Dick, The former a Country-man, The other a Citizen, Presented to his Excellency and the Council of State, at Drapers-Hall in London, March 28. 16602," and Thomas Jordan's "The Cheaters Cheated. A Representation in four parts to be Sung by Nim, Filcher, Wat, and Moll, made for the Sheriffs of London3." Jigs and drolls long survived in the provincial towns after they had been displaced from the London theatres4; and possibly their influence can be traced in the farces with which plays even in the first half of the nineteenth century customarily ended. Cer­tainly their influence is seen in the dances and dialogue songs5 so common in Restoration plays. Few minor forms of literature have had so great an influence, and none has been so neglected by students.
The Garland introduces a number of ballad-writers who have for three centuries been forgotten, in spite of the belief they once must have shared with other members of their tribe that
Who makes a ballad for an ale-house door Shall live in future times for evermore6!
1  See especially Cox's own edition, Actaeon and Diana, etc., and cf. the work of Bolte previously cited.
2  LuttrellCollection, 11,63 (British Museum); The Rump, 1662,11,188 ff.
3  Thomas Jordan's A Royal Arbor of Loyal Poesie, 1664, pp. 34-55.
4  At Norwich licenses were granted to players of drolls on October 21, i67i,and March 9, 1687 (Walter Rye, Depositions taken before the Mayor and Aldermen of Norwich, 1905, pp. 143, 180).
5  Many of them are printed with the music in Wit and Mirth, or Pills to Purge Melancholy (e.g. 1719 ed., 1, 46, 91, 236).
6   Parnassus Plays, ed. Macray, p. 83.
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