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Broadside ballad entitled 'An Excellent New Song'


This ballad begins: 'ONE Morning as I walk'd / In the gay Time of the Year / When Sporting Nymphs do Frisk about / To drink the Water clear.' The text preceding it reads: 'An / Excellent New Song lately composed / INTITULED / The New way of Pittcathly Well. / Or, The Gentlemans Love to his Mistress. / To the Tune of, Pollwarth on the Green.'

Broadsides catered for a market which had neither television, radio nor magazines. Only a small proportion of the population were literate but due to the way these sheets were distributed a large chunk of the populace gained access to the information contained in them. They were sold cheaply and were intended to be read to a group either in a public house or once stuck to the wall. As a result many of these entertaining songs were produced, but very little was recorded about them.

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: 1700   shelfmark: Ry.III.a.10(052)
Broadside ballad entitled 'An Excellent New Song'
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