This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1907 edition. Excerpt: ... the background or not, the ballads give vast preference to the maternal as compared with the paternal relation. It is a justified suspicion of her son's sweetheart which makes the mother put those swift and throbbing queries in "Lord Randal." Mother, wife, and brother give the last consolations to Clerk Colvill; no father appears, and a tendency to neglect that important personage may be remarked in the ballads throughout. Advice comes chiefly from the mother, as one notes in the best version of " Lord Thomas and Fair Annet;" the addition of the father in some other versions is perfunctory; while in "Edward," the part of Orestes is reversed. Tradition, to be sure, would always set the matter right, if facts permitted, and the nearest way was to make the mother and her counsels as odious as might be. The hard-hearted mother-in-law personates her son, and ruthlessly turns his true-love from Gregory's door, in a familiar and pretty ballad known in several versions and by different titles,--"The Lass of Roch Royal." Poor Isabel, or Annie, goes baflled to her death, and Love Gregory wakes:--" ' O wo be to you, ill woman, And ane ill death mott you die! For you might have come to my bedside, And then have wakened me.' " The same complication, only that the mother's pains and benefits here concern her daughter and bafie the lover, has wandered into a tragic ballad, "The Mother's Malison, or Clyde Water." In fact, both motives appear. The man's mother begs him not to tempt his fate. Like the mother of Johnie Cock, who, however, spares malison and only expresses fears, Willie's mother offers him in incremental stanzas, with...
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