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AULD SCOTS BALLANTS.

EDITED BY

ROBERT FORD,
AUTHOR OF "HAME-SPUN LAYS AND LYRICS,” “HUMOROUS SCOTCH
READINGS IN PROSE AND VERSE,” “GLINTS o'

GLENTODDY," ETC.

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ALEXANDER GARDNER,

Publisher to Her Majesty the Queen,
PAISLEY ; AND PATERNOSTER ROW, LONDON.

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PREFACE.

NOTWITHSTANDING the many benefits resulting from the immense popularity of the Scottish daily and weekly newspapers, the universality of the latter has given an effectual check to the circulation of the rude Old Ballad Literature which, fronı fifty to a hundred years ago, formed so important an item in the pack of every itinerant chapman in the land; and to-day the tragic ballads of “Sir James the Rose,” and “Mill o' Tifty's Annie," "The Hunting of Chevy-Chase," the pathetic tale of “Gil Morrice," and the humorous and once popular story of “Thrummy Cap," and others such like, are known chiefly to the literary anii. quary. Some of our rare old chap-ballads, indeed, such as “Thrummy Cap,” “The Wife o' Beith,” “The Herd's Ghaist,” “Young Gregor's Ghost,” and “The Blaeberry Courtship"—none of which, strange to say, has been incorporated in the Standard Collections are fast threatening to become extinct, copies of some of them being already almost unobtainable. This being the case, and considering that the custom hitherto has been to publish the collections of what has been aptly termed “the literature of the common people” at a price almost beyond the limits of the common purse, it occurred to me some time ago that a volume comprising the more popular and entertaining of the old Chap-Ballads, together with the best of those preserved in the Collections, would, if published at a moderate price, meet with approval. In the course of last year I accordingly issued a little collection in paper covers, under the title of “RARE OLD Scotch BALLADS.” That pub

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