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Black-letter Broadside Ballads Of The years 1595-1639

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Leander's love to loyal Hero
Pepys, i, 344, B.L., four woodcuts, four columns.
William Meash1 is another writer quite forgotten by balladry and literature, though he professes an intention of immortalizing the names of Hero and Leander by this ballad. His choice of a tune seems inadvertently to add a touch of burlesque to the story of Hero and Leander. Burlesque, indeed, was not unusual: the story had long been a favourite for puppet-shows, as the parody in Jonson's Bartholomew Fair forcibly reminds us. There is a copy of this ballad—minus title, tune, and signature—in the Percy Folio MS. (ed. Hales and Furnivall, in, 295). Except for some un­important variations in spelling, the scribe followed the printed broadside carefully: most of the other variants in his work (P.) are indicated in the foot-notes. Later ballads on "The Tragedy of Hero and Leander; Or, The Two Unfortunate Lovers" and "An Excellent Sonnet of the Un­fortunate Loves of Hero and Leander," both dating about 1650, are pre­served in the Roxburghe Ballads (vi, 558, 560).
The tune of Shackley Hay dates from March 16, 1613, but is given in Chappell's Popular Music (1, 367) only from a MS. of Charles I's reign. There is, however, a copy of the first stanza and the music in Additional MS. 38,599, fol. 140, that was made from the 1613 issue of the ballad of "Shackley Hay."
John White registered "Hero and Leander" for publication on July 2, 1614 (Arber's Transcript, m, 549).
To the tune of Shackley hay.
TWo famous Louers once there was, whom Fame hath quite forgott. Who loued long most constantly, without all enuious blott;
1 Possibly he was the "William" whose last name is torn off" the Pepysian ballad (1, 306) of "Loves up to the Elbowes. To the tune of Codlings," or the "W.M." who wrote "The Lamentation of Englande," 1 584 (J. P. Collier's Book of Roxburghe Ballads, p. 127; Lord Crawford's Catalogue of English Ballads, No. 1361).
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