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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i4              A CENTURY OF BALLADS
known as "The Kynges Ballad." Another ballad popular in this reign, though apparently not written by the King himself, was " Now Robin lend to me thy bow," while mention must be made of Anne Boleyn's "O death, rocke me on slepe," a song whose title suggests that this unhappy lady had some premonition of her ap­proaching end on the scaffold.
Other ballads of the time were u Hey ding-a-ding " (probably the same as " Old Sir Simon the King"), " Have with you to Florida," "Bonny Lass upon a Green," " By a Bank as I Lay ' (a great favourite with Henry VIII, and afterwards reprinted as a Christmas Carol, "Welcome Yule"), "As I went to Walsingham," "Pepper is Black," " Greensleeves" (one of the most famous of the old ballad dances, which is still being printed and sung, though no longer danced), and "Go from my Garden, go." There were, of course, hundreds of topical songs on events of the moment, but those hardly come under the category of ballads, as understood in this book. The best class of ballads confined itself entirely to historical or sentimental subjects.
Towards the end of Henry's reign a reaction against ballads and ballad-singers set in. The persecution began with a proclamation in 1533, when an edict was issued to suppress "fond books, ballads, rhimes, and other lewd treatises
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