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The Tale of Balen by Algernon Charles Swinburne
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Ancient Poems, Ballads and Songs of the Peasantry of England edited
by Robert Bell. 1857 John W. Parker and Son edition. Scanned and
proofed by David Price, email ccx074@coventry.ac.uk
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Ancient Poems, Ballads and Songs of the Peasantry of England.
Taken down from oral recitation and transcribed from private
manuscripts, rare broadsides and scarce publications.




INTRODUCTION.



IN 1846, the Percy Society issued to its members a volume entitled
ANCIENT POEMS, BALLADS, AND SONGS OF THE PEASANTRY OF ENGLAND,
edited by Mr. James Henry Dixon. The sources drawn upon by Mr.
Dixon are intimated in the following extract from his preface:-


He who, in travelling through the rural districts of England, has
made the road-side inn his resting-place, who has visited the lowly
dwellings of the villagers and yeomanry, and been present at their
feasts and festivals, must have observed that there are certain old
poems, ballads, and songs, which are favourites with the masses,
and have been said and sung from generation to generation.


This traditional, and, for the most part, unprinted literature, -