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Broadside ballad entitled 'The Wife's Dream'


Verse 1 begins: 'Now tell me, Mary, how is that you can look so gay, / When evening after evening your husband is away?' This sheet was published by James Lindsay of 9 King Street, Glasgow. There is a woodcut illustration included above the title which depicts a desert scene of women and men interacting.

This sheet reveals how a wife has improved marital relations and her own mental health by accepting her husband's neglect and drinking habits with both serenity and cheerful fortitude. There are other broadsides in the National Library of Scotland's collection which offer advice and scenarios to improve relationships and lifestyles.

On a more serious note, there are also sheets of crime reports which feature stories of neglect, brutality and alcohol abuse amongst both men and women. This seems to have been a very real, and fairly open, aspect of nineteenth-century society.

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Probable date of publication: 1852-1859   shelfmark: L.C.Fol.178.A.2(042)
Broadside ballad entitled 'The Wife's Dream'
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