This piece begins: 'The Duke of Hamilton he Rides up and down / To the Court but cannot Prevail, / The way is so rough, that he cannot win through, / Good Day to my Lord Lawderdale'. At the bottom is noted that the sheet was first printed in 1678, but this reprint dates from 1718.
This is a delicious piece of gossip and satire. Each line offers an opinion on different members of the Scots nobility of the time, and they are not always complimentary. All those mentioned are male. There are some allusions to contemporary politics, for instance, the Jacobites, but in the main it is the nobles' characters which are the focus.
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.
View Transcription | Download PDF Facsimile
Date of publication:
1718 shelfmark: Ry.III.c.36(123)
View larger image