A Century Of Ballads 1810-1910, Their Composers & Singers

With Some Introductory Chapters On Old Ballads And Ballad Makers - online book.

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A CENTURY OF BALLADS
Ewe bleateth after lamb,
Loweth after calf [the] cow ;
Bullock starteth, buck verteth, Merry sing, Cuckoo, Cuckoo, cuckoo !
Well singst thou, Cuckoo,
Nor cease thou never now.
The next ballad which claims our attention is the Song of Agincourt, dating from Henry V's reign. "When the King entered the City of London in triumph after the battle," says Chap-pell, "the gates and streets were hung with tapestry representing the histories of ancient heroes ; and boys with pleasing voices were placed in artificial turrets, singing verses in his praise. But Henry ordered this part of the pageantry to cease, and commanded that for the future no 'ditties should be made or sung by minstrels or others' in praise of the victory as his : ' for that he would whollie have the praise and thankes altogether given to God.'" The Song of Agincourt appeared soon afterwards, and was a favourite piece with the minstrels of the day.
It begins
Deo gracias, Anglia, Redde pro victoria :
"Return thanks, O England, to God for the victory," thus conforming, in the letter at any rate, to the King's injunctions.
Another ballad which in all probability dates
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