Child's, The English And Scottish Ballads

Volume 4 of 8 from 1860 edition -online book

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From Collier's Book of Soxburghe Baliads, p. 163.
" This romantic ballad, in a somewhat plain and unpretending style, relates incidents that may remind the reader of the old story of Titus and Gisippus, which was told in English verse by Edw. Lewicke, as early as 1562: the ballad is not so ancient by, per­haps, thirty or forty years ; and the printed copy that has come down to our day is at least fifty years more recent than the date when we believe the ballad to have been first published. The title the broadside (' Printed for F. Coles, J. W., T. Vere, W. Gilbert son,') bears is, ' Constance of Cleveland: A very ex­cellent Sonnet of the most fair Lady Constance of Cleveland, and her disloyal Knight' We conclude that the incidents are mere invention, but Constance of Rome is the name of a play, by Drayton, Mun-day and Hathway, mentioned in Henslowe's Diary under the year 1600, (p. 171.) The tune of Crim­son Velvet was highly popular in the reigns of Eliza­beth and her successor."
VOL. IV.                            15