This ballad begins: 'WHen Vesperus with Vitage gray, / Had darkened all our Hemisphere,' and ends, unusually, with: 'AMEN'. It was supposed to be sung to its own proper tune.
'The Old World' is a song about the decline of society's morals due to increasing materialism and corruption in the Establishment. Reactionary songs were common after any big revolutions in Scottish society, for example the Reformation, the Union of the Crowns or the Union of Parliaments.
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 published:
1701- shelfmark: S.302.b.2(053)
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