Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 1 of 8 from 1860 edition

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according to the probable antiquity of the story, not the age of the actual form or language. Ex­ceptions to this rule will be observed, partly the result of oversight, partly of fluctuating views; the most noticeable case is in the First Book, where the ballads that stand at the beginning are certainly not so old as some that follow. Again, it is very possible that some pieces might with advantage be transferred to different Books, but it is believed that the general disposition will be found practically convenient. It is as follows : —
Book I. contains Ballads involving Supersti­tions of various kinds, — as of Fairies, Elves, Water-spirits, Enchantment, and Ghostly Appa­ritions ; and also some Legends of Popular Heroes.
Book II. Tragic Love-ballads.
Book III. other Tragic Ballads.
Book IV. Love-ballads not Tragic.
Book V. Ballads of Robin Hood, his followers, and compeers.
Book VI. Ballads of other Outlaws, especially Border Outlaws, of Border Forays, Feuds, &c.
Book VII. Historical Ballads, or those relating to public characters or events.
Book VIII. Miscellaneous Ballads, especially Humorous, Satirical, Burlesque; also some speci­mens of the Moral and Scriptural, and all such pieces as had been overlooked in arranging the earlier volumes.