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Broadside ballad entitled 'A Ploughman Lad's For Me'


This ballad begins: 'When first I saw young Jocky, / It was at - feeing fair, / Wi' his rosy cheeks and dimpled chin, / And bonny curly hair.' The chorus begins: 'So the ploughman lads for me'. It was written by John Wilson and published by James Lindsay of 9 King Street, Glasgow.

This is one of the few examples in the National Library of Scotland's broadside collection where an author's name appears alongside a song. Whilst the publisher's name was often recorded, the author was usually omitted. This was partly to do with the lackadaisical approach broadside publishers had towards attributing work and also partly to do with the nature of the material. Many of the songs and ballads that appeared on broadsides had their roots in the oral tradition, whereby they were passed down through the generations, and, as a result, often bore no attribution.

Broadsides are single sheets of paper, printed on one side, to be read unfolded. They carried public information such as proclamations as well as ballads and news of the day. Cheaply available, they were sold on the streets by pedlars and chapmen. Broadsides offer a valuable insight into many aspects of the society they were published in, and the National Library of Scotland holds over 250,000 of them.

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Probable date of publication: 1852-1859   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.178.A.2(023)
Broadside ballad entitled 'A Ploughman Lad's For Me'
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