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Linlithgow Palace photographLinlithgow Palace
Linlithgow, Scotland

Ballads Introduction and Index

Nothing, perhaps, serves better as an introduction to the Middle Ages than a glimpse at how it was preserved in verse.

Presented in this section is a selection of ballads covering the fundamental aspects of the era: love, war, heroic deeds and their tragic aftermath, and a look into the supernatural and superstitious nature of the time. In order to preserve the historical integrity of the ballads, they are presented in their original dialects. A synopsis of each ballad, in modern American English, is provided to aid in ease of comprehension of these dialects.

The ballads in this section, with the exception of Blind Harry's Wallace were culled from The English and Scottish Popular Ballads, Edited by Francis James Child and published by Houghton, Mifflin and Company in five volumes during the years 1884, 1886, 1889, 1892 and 1898. These volumes are now in the public domain.

Historical Ballads 

Outlaw Ballads

Romantic Ballads

Supernatural Ballads

Tragic Ballads