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Lecture 14

ENGL 125 Lecture Notes - Lecture 14: Rhyme Scheme, Quatrain


Department
English
Course Code
ENGL 125
Professor
Michael Collier
Lecture
14

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April 15, 2019
Ballads
Ballad comes from latin, which means “a dance”
Think of ballet
Definition: a short narrative song presented or transmitted orally among illiterate or semi
literate people
A ballad is a narrative folk song that fixes on the most dramatic part of its story and
impersonally lets the story move itself by dialogue and incident quickly to the end
Two main kinds of ballads:
Folk ballads
Transmitted orally
Almost always have a tune
Anonymous
Literary ballad
One that is written by a poet
Uses conventions of a folk ballad
Do not have melodies usually
More ballads than melodies
Kinds of stories that ballads are told are about people, commonfolk
Quite often ballads are based on historical events, used as a way of telling local news
In the retelling, the story is changed, making the story fluid
Have a legendary quality to them as they are passed on
Conventions:
Usually sensational and vivid
Gossip driven
About village conflicts, murder
Fights, disasters
Many love problems
Illegitimate verse
Outlaws
Use formulaic language
By being grounded in local events, they give rise to secular and pagan realm and
immediate documentations of common people
Offer no consolation, never have to do with God
Ballads are still very popular today
Ballads: short narrative songs
Two main kinds of repetition:
Parallelism: repetition of identical or similar syntactic patterns
Incremental repetition: a form of parallelism, but the phrases change slightly
Ballad form:
Anonymous
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