This ballad begins: 'As I came in by Auchendown, / A little wee bit frae the town, / Unto the Highlands I was bound / To view the Haughs of Crumdel.' The publisher and date of publication are unknown, but the number 79 in the bottom right corner suggests it is part of a sequence. A 'haugh' is a low-lying piece of ground.
The battle, fought in 1690 upon the plains of Cromdale in Strathspey, resulted in the army of 1,500 Jacobites, under General Buchan, being defeated by Sir Thomas Livingstone's Hanoverian forces. Strangely, the hero of this song, Montrose, was not even present at the battle!
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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Probable period of publication:
1880-1900 shelfmark: RB.m.143(024)
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