Traditionally, an unlimited number of quatrains in either alternating tertrameter and trimeter lines, or
all tetrameter lines with either abcb or abab in terms of rhyme. Utilizes a lot of repetition. (Braid &
- Born from lyrical minstrals, highly complex and quick. They exist to be enjoyed by your average man.
- They attempt to relate some narrative about a famous person/someone of note.
- A lot of the older ones did not have one author, but were instead modified by the many performers
who sung them. This tradition of song is the primary reason why they have so much repetition and
might make use of refrain.
- The ballad is thought of as being a lesser form of poem, because it does not get into deep, spiritual,
philosophical issues but instead tells an interesting tale of physical love, tragedy and folk heroics.
- The simplicity makes it a weaker form: it can't address the mind or spirit.
Example: "The Ballad of Bonny Barbara Allan:"
Bonny Barbara Allan
Broadside ballad version of Bonny Barbara Allan.