Verse 1: 'The moon is bright - her beauty cheers, / The earth, the sky, the sea, lassie, / And fair as her young light appears, / Still fair art thou to me, bonnie lassie, O.' A note below the title states that 'Copies of this very popular song can always be had in the Poet's Box', (probably Glasgow) and that the ballad should be sung to an original air. The sheet was printed on Saturday June 7th, 1873, and cost one penny.
Bathed in romantic moonlight, the young man who narrates this lyrical ballad is addressing his amorous lines to his sweetheart, who he likens to a 'blooming mountain rose'. Since the ballad-writer personifies the moon, the wind and other natural elements, it is a clever contrast to reverse this process by speaking of his love as a wild rose. The sheet also contains a catalogue of other songs that are available for purchase by post, and details regarding the procedure to do this. Underneath this advertisement, a further note states that the Poet's Box can publish any type of information, and is the cheapest printer in the city.
Early ballads were dramatic or humorous narrative songs derived from folk culture that predated printing. Originally perpetuated by word of mouth, many ballads survive because they were recorded on broadsides. Musical notation was rarely printed, as tunes were usually established favourites. The term 'ballad' eventually applied more broadly to any kind of topical or popular verse.
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Date of publication:
1873 shelfmark: L.C.1269(166a)
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