Naval Songs & Ballads - online book

3 Centuries Of Naval History In Shanties & Sea Songs With Lyrics & Notes

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(4)   Sea Songs and Ballads, selected by Chris­topher Stone, with an introduction by Admiral Sir Cyprian Bridge, Oxford, 1906.
(5)  A Sailors Garland, selected and edited by John Masefield, London 1906.
One word as to the text of the ballads and songs contained in this volume. It was at first intended to preserve the exact spelling of the originals. In. the older pieces it was possible to do this because there was usually an authoritative text accessible, which it was easy to follow throughout. But the later ballads, issued on broadsheets and slips, and frequently reprinted again by country printers, swarmed with misprints due to mere carelessness which it would have been unnecessary and un­desirable to reproduce. Moreover, it was often needful to compare several versions in order to obtain a tolerable text. For these reasons a certain number of obvious errors of the press have been corrected. Some variants, with comments on the text of the ballads, and an indication of the source from which the text is derived, will be found in the notes at the end of the volume. It should be noted that in order to save space two lines have often been printed as one.