This article is compilation of music used in early broadside ballads. Almost none of these ballads were printed with music; thus, discovering this music requires matching tunes to words with only the title as a guide.
I have included both ballads for which the music is known to be written down before 1600, and music from after 1600 which matches ballads known to have been written down before 1600. This list was culled from 3 secondary sources:
Simpson, Claude M. The British Broadside Ballad and its Music. Rutgers University Press, 1966.Livingston is a list of nothing but pre-1600 broadside ballads. She excludes any ballad which does not survive on a broadsheet dated before 1600, and thus she excludes broadside ballads which were republished before 1600 in the various collections in the bibliography. She also excludes broadside ballads whose titles appear in a license before 1600 but the text and title do not survive until later; some authors believe that we could assume that the text did not change in later publications, but this is not proven.
Livingston, Carole Rose. British Broadside Ballads of the Sixteenth Century: A Catalogue of the Extant Sheets and an Essay. Garland Publishing, 1991. ISBN 0-8240-7226-X.
Ward, J. "Apropos The British Broadside Ballad and Its Music", Journal of the American Musicological Society, XX (1967), 28-86.
Simpson is a survey of the music of broadside ballads of all eras. I examined all the entries searching for music which was not already in Livingston. Simplson includes transcriptions in modern notation for all of these tunes. When reading Simpson, I would advise keeping in mind that he is sometimes careless about indicating whether or not a ballad actually survives from the earliest date he gives, or if we know that a ballad with title X was published at an early date, and a later edition with an identical title -- but possibly different words -- survived until the present day.
There are 71 tunes on this list, of which 6 appear only in Livingston, 37 appear only in Simpson, 27 appear in both, and one was brought to my attention by Bruce Olson.
In addition to these 71 tunes, 11 tunes are printed in Thomas Deloney's ballad collection Strange Histories, of which the oldest surviving copy is dated 1602. Thomas Deloney died near April, 1600. Facsimiles of these tunes are all available.
Many of the words to these ballads are also available on-line; see the Sixteenth Century Ballad Page. If the words are in a source that I have only some of the ballads from, then the missing ones are religious in nature.
Most of the music images presented in this page were generated from Simpson's tunes, as rendered by Bruce Olson.
Music: Tune and 4 stanzas in MS Asmole 176, f. 100, reprinted in Kines Songs from Shakespeare's plays and songs of Shakespeare's time, p. 54-55. This broadside was licensed in 1564. I have not seen this tune.
Literary references: Partly quoted in 1569 comedy, also quoted in King Lear III vi.
Words: and tune printed on ballad c. 1525, only a fragment survives. Facsimile printed in King, p. 199. I have not seen this tune, and it's only a fragment anyway.
Secondary: Simpson B007, Ward
Music: in William Ballet's MS lute book p. 56 (late 16th c.) and Playford 1651 [midi]. There is a different tune in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book I, 411 [midi], which Ward notes is also in My Ladye Nevells Booke (before 1591).
Words: "An excellent Song of an outcast Louer" in Handefull of Pleasant Delites 1584. Both Simpson and Ward have some comments as to how to get various words to fit various versions of the music.
Secondary: Simpson B021, Ward
Words: "A sweet lullabie" Arbor of Amorous Devices 1597, ed. Rollins 1936.
Music: There is disagreement as to which tune this goes to: one in Ballet's MS lute book p. 111 (late 16th c) and Morley's First Booke # 18 (1599), and which Ward says is also in Cambridge MS Dd. 6.78.3 fol 18, for lute; and one in a manuscript in the NYPL attributed to Byrd. The words are printed with the last, but the first set have a name somewhat close to the name on the ballad (Baloo), although the ballad has no tune direction.
Secondary: Simpson B023, Ward
Music: in Ballet MS lute book p. 29 (late 16th c.), several others in 1610-1620 range, including variations in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book. Ward notes that this particular piece in the Ballet MS is written in a later hand, and gives a bunch of other references manuscript versions of this tune.
Words: dated "before 1609", other Dutch and later English.
Secondary: Simpson B028, Livingston # 145, 151, 172, Ward
Music: 1577, Bernhard Schmid (the elder), Tabulatur, discussed in Wilhelm Merian Der Tanz in den deutschen Tabulaturbuechern 1927, p. 103. Ward points out that Simpson missed an early manuscript version published in Dolmetsch's Dances of England and France.
1570-1 "You London Dames, whose passyng fames" Collmann #71
1572 "A pleasant Posie" Collection of 79 Black-letter Ballads
1584 "Maid, wil you marrie" Handefull of Pleasant Delites
1570 "Agaynst Rebellious and false rumors" to the tune of "Black Almain upon Scissillia" Collection of 79 Black-letter Ballads
Secondary: Simpson B040, Ward
Music: Holborne's The Cittharn Schoole (1597) and Ballet's MS lute book p. 27 and p. 113 (late 16th c.) Ward points out some other sources, including a similar tune in Robinson's Schoole of Musicke.
Words: A ballad mentioning this tune licensed in 1594 but no words survive. Another ballad mentioning this tune published by a publisher active from 1603 to 1640. Numerous later ballads.
Secondary: Simpson B043
Music: in Shireburn MS but Simpson thinks it is incomplete; it would require 6 repetitions for each stanza.
Words: Deloney and "A most pleasant Ballad of patient Grissell" Collection of 79
Secondary: Simpson B048, Ward
Music: c. 1595 lute setting in Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11, fol. 82. Ward speculates that the tune is more likely the tune found in Cambridge University MS Dd.9.33 fol 38, without giving a date.
Ballad licensed 1595 but lost. Words in Shireburn MS. Broadside ballad identical to Shireburn verison in Pepys collection.
Secondary: Simpson B051, Ward
Music: in Ballet MS lute book (late 16th c.) and Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal book [midi] (with rhythmic changes...) The Ballet version has been reprinted in Breatchnach, Breandan Folk Music & Dances of Ireland, 1971. Ward points out 3 partbooks in the Cambridge University collection (Dd.5.21 fol 10 recorder, Dd.14.24 fol 9 cittern, Dd.5.20 fol 6 for bass viol.)
Words: Handefull 1584, "A Sonet of a Louer in the praise of his lady. To Calen o Custure me: sung at euerie lines end."
Literary references: in Shakespeare, Pistol uses Irish words as reply to French soldier in Henry IV, iv, 4. Ward points out that Sternfeld talks about this tune in Henry V in "Shakespeare's Use of Popular Song", Elizabethan and Jacobean Studies, 1959.
Secondary: Simpson B056, Ward
Music: Byrd's FitzWilliam Virginal Book and Byrd's My Lady Nevells Booke (before 1591?) [midi]. Ward points out additional sources.
See also "Lord Willoughby" entry, for a ballad mentioning "carman's whistle" but is to be sung to "neighbor Roberte" (Lord Willoughby), which is a different tune. Simpson gives several "Carman's whistle" ballads which don't mention Lord Willoughby, but they are all much later. W. B. Olson has provided one such ballad, which definitely seems to fit Lord Willoughby's music and not this Carman's Whistle. So, in short, there is no evidence this tune was ever used for a ballad.
From Simpson: Contemporary quote, 1592: "I maruell who the diuell is his Printer [who]... would bee so impudent to print such odious and lasciuious ribauldrie, as Watkins Ale, The Carmans Whistle, and sundrie such other." Gerileon of England, book by Anthony Munday; author of this section is Henry Chettle. Similar condemnations of other ballads appear in Kind-Harts Dreame.
Secondary: Simpson B065, Livingston # 120, Ward
Music: 1557 Filippo Azzaiuolo Il primo libro de Villotte alla Padoana (which my library claims is by Antonio Gardane...) Appears many times in other continental and English music sources. Simpson says that B065 above comes from Het Luitboek van Thysius; however, Ward points out Simpson copied from Land's transcriptions of Het Luitboek, which in this case is wrong. Ward also gives some additional sources.
1568 "Philosophers learnings are ful of good warnings" Collection of 79
1584 "A Sonet of two faithfull Louers" Handefull
Tune from Simpson - click here for higher resolution - click here for printable - click here for MIDI
Secondary: Simpson B075 B076
Music: 2 possible tunes given, one 1612 William Corkine's Second Book of Ayres G2v, and one from a MS of unknown age "as old as Shakespeare's time", which is related to Corkine's tune, was published first in Johnson-Steevens Shakespeare, 2nd edition, 1778, I, 298.
Words: Deloney's 1602 "Thrice woe is me vnhappy Queene" which is to this tune or the included "unmelodious and unbarred music", says Simpson.
Literary References: Marlowe poem published 1599 in Shakespeare's The Passionate Pilgrim and in England's Helicon 1600. A stanza is sung in The Merry Wives of Windsor III i.
Secondary: Simpson B090, Ward
Music: This is one of the tunes of "Round of three Country Dances in one", which appears in Lant (1580) and Ravenscroft (1609).
Words: William Elderton wrote a ballad calling for this tune, which is preserved in Bodleian MS Ashmole 48.
Secondary: Simpson B092
Words: by Deloney (first surviving broadside copy 1631, but Deloney died 1600), another copy in Shireburn MS, call for this tune.
Different words "The lamentable complaint of Queen Mary" which was published in 1659 but is about events in 1558?
Different words "Callis, his wofull Lamentation for her haplesse spoyle", about the capture of Calais (1596), in Shireburn MS
Music: under name from above words first found 1621 in J. J. Starter's Friesche Lust-Hof p. 40; in 1662 the same music is printed in Forbes Cantus # 57, along with verses from England's Helicon, which was printed in 1600. This same tune is in the Straloch MS 1627-9, and D. P. Pers's Bellerophon 1633. Ward points out a version from 1638, and one in Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11 fol 51v.
Secondary: Simpson B100, Livingston # 114
Music: and words printed together 1568, Collection of 79 Black-Letter. Ward points out a connection through a song with a similar melody but words from the play Damon and Pythias.
Seems to be more of a recitation than a ballad (although it could be that Ward's source is more lyrical.) For a similar "recitation ballad", see Labandala Shot. See also footnote in Simpson, p. 157. Shanne common place book, BM MS Add. 38599.
Another ballad in Handefull 1584, and a 3rd in the play Damon and Pithias (1564-1565)
For similar recitation-like ballads see Deloney's Strange Histories 1602.
Secondary: Simpson B104
Music: Florid lute arrangement "late 16th c" Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11, fol 8. Ward points out that this ground appears in Ravenscroft's Pammelia n. 30.
It is one of "3 dances in 1" in Lant (1580) and Ravenscroft, but it has obviously been modified to fit in with the other songs.
The Playford 1651 song "Dargason, or Sedony" consistant with the lute arrangement mentioned before. [midi]
Words: Manuscript of words "It was a maide of my countre" to be sung to this song, "16th century", reprinted in a billion places, including Ritson's Ancient Songs (1790), Peele's Works, ed. Dyce.
W. B. Olson also points out a ballad in manuscript "Flee stately Juno Samos fro" to be sung to the tune of "Welshe Syddanen", which he identifies as Dargason. This MS is in the Folger Shakespeare Library MS V.a. 198. Rollins finds a similar title in Analytical Index # 249. A longer version c. 1604-10 is MS V.a. 399.
Secondary: Simpson B123, Livingston # 235
Music: with this title c. 1600 in Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11, fol 70, same tune 1590 Marsh Lute Book, p. 40, with no title, related tune called "The upright esquire" in Folger MS 448.16, fol 18v, dated from the early years of Elizabeth's reign.
Words: 1565 "Ons dyd I aspyre to loves desyre" Songs and Ballads
2 ballads in 1584 Handefull
1590 "Pinnying of the Basket" Collection of 79
Words: and tune printed together on broadsheet. The words are a loose translation of Psalm 72. Discussed in O'Kill p. 28-45, but he only has 1 and 1/2 stanzas of the words.
Secondary: Simpson B144, Livingston # 234, Ward.
Music: Tune published 1596 Barley's New Booke of Tabliture 1596, and Ballet's MS lute book p. 14 and p. 111 (late 16th c.) Also in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book I, 254 [midi]. Additional sources pointed out by Ward.
Words: Ballads licensed as early as 1589; first surviving is from 1590: "A mournfull Dittie on the death of certaine Judges and Justices of the Peace"
Secondary: Simpson B148, Livingston # 229
Words: in SB, so the date isn't certain.
Music: Tune in various manuscripts without date. But I suspect that the La Volta in general can probably be better dated than Simpson dates it, because dance scholars have studied it extensively. The ballad doesn't really match any of the music which he did find.
Ward points out a lot of additional information, and prints two similar melodies which seem to match the ballad much more nicely than Simpson's pick; one is from Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book and the other is from Het Luitboeck van Thysius.
Note: There is a typo in the above images in the 3rd measure, the F should be an E.
Secondary: Simpson B152, Ward.
Music: Dowland's 'Now O now I needs must part' First Booke of Songes or Ayres 1597
Words: Broadside words 1611 and later.
Secondary: Simpson B162
Music: Tune, 1596 William Barley's A New Booke of Tabliture, also many other manuscripts of the same era: Holborne TCS, Morley FBCL, Robinson TSM, Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book.
Words: Ballad licensed 1588 but lost.
Words for a religious parody in 1567 in A Compendious Book of Godly and Spiritual Songs
Words: and tune preserved in Society of Antiquaries, London, #86, reprinted in Harl Misc X 278. Year of publication (1586) printed on the ballad. I have not seen this ballad.
Secondary: Simpson B163, Livingston # 81, 82, 83
Music: Tune c. 1570 Francis Willoughby Lute Book fol. 88v, on continent as early as 1546 ("Gentil madonna", Antonio Rotta's Intabolatura de Lauto, First Book). The Inns of Court dance "Turkeylony" is a version of this tune.
Words: Ballad licensed 1567, but lost. (AI 987)
The words published from "an Elizabethan manuscript" printed in the London Times on November 17, 1958 by a collector. Unfortunately no details of its origin were given. W. B. Olson has provided me with one verse.
Moralization "The ioy of Virginitie" 1584 Handefull
Part of the words in the Elizabethan manuscript mentioned above are printed in Much Ado About Nothing V ii, and the opening is echoed in The Rare Triumphs of Love and Fortune 1589, IV.
Music: Tune and one stanza in Bodleian MS Mus. E. 1-5, No. 41, f. 72v, says Livingston. Actually it's in 1-3 and 5 and it's 2 pages long, and I have copies from microfilm from the Bodleian, but have not transcribed it successfully.
Words: A full ballad with similar words from 1569 ballad in Collection of 79 Black-Letter Ballads
Secondary: Simpson B168, Livingston # 200, 223
Words: Words 1584 Handefull
Music: in Ballet's MS lute book p. 104 (late 16th c.), Het Luitboek van Thysius c. 1600 # 70, and various Cambridge University manuscripts. See also tune "Millfield". Ward points out that Greensleeves is more of a ground than a melody.
Secondary: Simpson B187
Music: Two different tunes: one from 1599 also called the "Honey Suckle", the other in Playford 1651 [midi]. Earlier tune is Holborne Pavanes, Galliards 1599, and Cambridge Dd. 2.11 fol 44.
Words: An interlude in Misogonus, II, ii (c. 1576-1577), calls for Heart's Ease. It and 2 ballads in the Shirburn MS appear to fit the Playford tune better than the 1599 "Honey Suckle", although the ballads require stretching (so says Simpson).
Music: Holborne Pauens, galliards, almains, etc, 1599. Also known as The Sailor's Joy.
Words: "The George-Aloe and the Sweep-stake too", Child # 283. AI 955, 1611. I'm not sure if this copy actually survives. Words: also in E. Spenser's Shepherds Calendar 1579 and England's Helicon 1600.
Secondary: Simpson B197
Music: Tune printed with a poem in 1596, William Barley's A New Booke of Tabliture, part III, sig. C3v. A reprint of a different contemporary manuscript is in Giles Earle His Booke, ed. Peter Warlock, 1932, p. 37).
This music is also apparently an alternate tune for "Of King Edward the second, being poysoned" in Deloney's Strange Histories 1602.
Words: Paradise of Dainty Devices 1576 "How can the tree but waste and wither away"
Secondary: Simpson B204
Music: c. 1570 Folger MS 448.16, fol. 12, and german Het Luitboek van Thysius, no. 77, c. 1600
Words: licensed 1565 but lost; moralization thereupon is in A compendious Book of Godly and Spiritual songs 1567. More words in SB, manuscript dated Nov 17, 1600. another in Banquet of Daintie Conceits 1588.
Secondary: Simpson B215
Words: first printed in 1557 Songs and Sonnets (aka Tottel's Miscellany); it's a poem by Lord Vaux. There is a setting of the words with lute accompaniment in BM MS Add. 4900 fol. 62v.
Words: licensed and lost 1563, but words surive in Bodleian MS Asmole 48 reprinted in Wright's Songs and Ballads and another MS.
Also see Rollin's edition of Tottel's Miscellany
Literary references: 3 stanzas of ballad are in Hamlet V i
Another tune "written in the margin of a copy of the Earl of Surrey's poems" is in Songs and Sonnets
Another set of words in Gorgeous Gallery 1578, Rollins, ed.
Ward points out that Sternfeld discusses the text and music in Music in Shakespearean Tragedy, pp. 151-155.
Secondary: Simpson B232
Music: ~ 1571 Folger MS 448.16, fols. 19v-20, and Ballet's MS lute book p 90 (late 16th c.), and Richard Mynshall MS Lute Book fol 8 1599.
Words: in manuscript c. 1592 Bodlein MS Rawlinson Poet 112 fol 18-17v.
More words Deloney "before 1600" "How the Dukes daughter of Cornwall being married vnto King Locrine" (Works, p. 311) (Garland of GoodWill)
Secondary: Simpson B234
Music: The Cittharn Schoole sig. C1v 1597 (Holborne), also Byrd etc etc.
Words: A poem appears in England's Helicon 1600, which earlier appeared in the rare book A pleasaunte Laborinth called Churchyardes Chance. Imprinted at London by Iohn Kingston, 1580.
There's another ballad printed 1603 which also appears in SB.
Secondary: Simpson B245
Music: c. 1600 lute tab "Jiggy Joggy" Cambridge University MS Dd.9.33, fol. 77.
Words: SB around that date "The second part of Jeamye", which is to the tune "Gigg-a-gogge, or Woddycocke"
Secondary: Simpson B251, Ward
Music: Het Luitboeck van Thysius fol 435, c. 1600, also in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginial Book. The name is what is given to the tune by Playford 1651.
Words: A song in Shakespeare's Winter's Tale begins with the words "Jog on" and fits the tune.
Secondary: Simpson B255, Ward
Music: c. 1570 imperfect lute tab Folger MS 448.16, fol 7 titled "The Antyck". Under title "John, Come Kis Me Now" in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book I, 47, [midi] and many other sources. Ward says this piece is more of a ground than a melody, and gives other pre-1600 references. He also shows a relation to the Arbeau dance "Les Bouffons".
Words: -- one stanza of original preserved in moralization in A compendious Booke of Godly and Spiritual Songs 1567
Literary References: "numerous allusions to its use as a dance tune" throughout the 17th century.
Secondary: Simpson B263, Livingston # 56, 75, 76, 111
Music: c. 1545-1585 BM MS Add. 30513, fol 123., reprinted in an appendix in The Mulliner Book: A Commentary, Denis Stevens. Another keyboard rendering c. 1570 in Thomas Dellis' MS Lute Book (yes, there are keyboard pieces at the end of this lute manuscript...)
Words: Elderton 1559 and on.
Secondary: Simpson B267, Livingston # 217b
Music: in various 16c. lute manuscripts: Thomas Dellis' p. 14, Marsh MS Lute Book p. 368, Lord Middleton's MS Lute Book fol. 22v. 2nd and 3rd sets fit the ballads better, 1st has the most obvious melody line.
Words: in Handefull 1584
c. 156-1577 interlude in Misogonus II, v
1586 Collmann #87
A Deloney ballad c. 1590 in Garland of good Will can be recited or sung to this tune: "To be sung in the old ancient sort, or else to the Tune of Labandalashot."
1600 mournful song in comedy Looke about you
Secondary: Simpson B285, Livingston # 156, Ward
Music: c. 1600 Ballet's MS lute book p. 103, and Net Luitboek van Thysius no. 382 "Engelsche Volte".
Words: BM Huth, A collection of 79 black-letter ballads, "A very proper Dittie: To the tune of Lightie Loue.
Also, Shirburn MS, reprinted in SB, "The poore people's complaynt".
Literary References: Alluded to in Shakespeare Two Gentlemen of Verona I, ii.; Much Ado About Nothing, III, iv.
Secondary: Simpson B288, Ward.
Music: c. 1600 Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11 fol 9 (lute tab). Numerous additional sources in Ward.
Words: in the Shireburn Ballads and broadsides preserved from 1655. However, the words don't match the tune above.
Secondary: Simpson B293, Livingston # 247, Ward
Music: Robinson's Schoole of Musicke 1603, German c. 1600 Het Luitboek van Thysius, no. 78.. It appears twice in Byrd: My Ladye Nevells Booke and Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book II, 190 [midi].
German tune and text for the jig "Rowland", 1599, translated p. 220 of The Elizabethan Jig.
Words: English words of "Lord Willoughby" published a billion times but no early copies survive, says Simpson. The battle should have been in the 1585-1590 period.
Other ballads to this tune:
1590 "The Carmans Whistle" in Rawlinson Poet MS 185 (c. 1590) (tune direction "neighbor Roberte", a reference to the jig Rowland).
1600 "The wonderfull example of God shewed vpon Iasper Coningham"
Secondary: Simpson B297, Ward
Music: apparently related to French 15th century "L'homme arme", a branle. Published in Jan Fruytier's Ecclesiasticus 1565 (transcription ed. D. F. Scheurleer, 1898, p.95). Two versions in Het Luitboek van Thysius c. 1600 Nos. 8, 106. Ward adds additional sources.
Words: "A proper new Dity: Intituled Fie vpon Loue and al his lawes." in A Handefull of Pleasant Delites 1584
A modern edition of Handefull (1954) has music edited to fit the Handefull verse
Secondary: Simpson B298, Livingston # 121, Ward
Music: in Marsh Lute Book p. 61, Ballet's MS lute book p. 83, both "late 16th century". Ward adds a couple of pre-1600 sources and notes that the ground of Ravenscroft's "Round of Three Country Dances In One" (Pammelia # 74) (also in the Lant MS, KC1) is related.
Words: "Fain would I haue a pretie thing to give vnto my Ladie", Handefull of pleasant Delites 1584
2 songs from 1566 reprinted in Thomas Wright's Songs and Ballads "I rede howe that the marbell stone", "When Troylus dwelt in Troy towne"
"The glyttering showes of Floras dames", A Gorgeous Gallery of Gallant Inventions 1578, ed. Rollins
"A proper new Balad in praise of my Ladie Marques", 1568, in Collection of 79 Black-Letter Ballads
Secondary: Simpson B311, Livingston # 200
Words: Ballad naming it licensed 1581 (Similar title to Child #180). First surviving copy of tune is Playford 1651 [midi]. The 1581 ballad is for "Millfield, or els to Greensleeues", which might indicate that Millfield was a better known tune at the time.
Secondary: Simpson B313, Livingston, # 220, Ward
Music: guessed to be from before 1584 due to the name. Tune written down in Het Luitboek van Thysius no. 311, Morley's First Book of Consort Lessons 1599, and Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book I, 234 and 238 [midi]. Ward adds a billion other early versions.
Words: "A ioyful new Ballad, Declaring the hapie obtaining of the great Galleazzo", 1588. RB IV, Deloney's Works p. 458, Naval Songs and Ballads. On CD.
Secondary: Simpson B336, Ward
Music: in 2 "late 16th century" manuscripts: Cambridge University MSS Dd.3.18 fol 33 and Dd.14.24 fol 37. Ward points out a better melody line.
Words: There might be a lost ballad registered in 1581 as "The Millers daughter of Mannchester", copied into SB
Deloney's "How Wat Tiler and Iacke Straw, rebelled against king Richard the second" Strange Histories, doesn't fit this music despite calling for it, says Simpson. Ward, having repaired the melody line, says it fits nicely.
Secondary: Simpson B362, Ward
Music: 1596 (nice-looking tune!) William Barley's A New Booke of Tabliture part II sig. C4v. Also in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Book II. Ward points out one more in Het Luitboeck van Thysius.
Words: close to 1600, zillions of later ballads. Simpson says: "This is the most popular single tune associated with ballads before 1700."
Secondary: Simpson B365, Ward
Music: in Ballet's MS lute book p. 26 (late 16th c.) Ward points out additional sources and says this is a ground.
Words: in SB; ballad licensed 1586 but no broadsides survive
Literary References: allusion to tune in Twelfth Night II iii.
Secondary: Simpson B369, Livingston # 137, Ward
Music: Playford 1651 [midi] and mid-17c keyboard setting. Ward adds a 1580's version, four variations, in the Marsh lute book.
Words: Called for in "A Ballad intituled, Prepare ye to the plowe" in Collection of 79 Black-Letter Ballads
Literary References: Tune name alluded to in play Have you Saffron-Walden 1596, along with Rogero, Greensleeves, and Peg a Ramsey.
Secondary: Simpson B371, Ward
Music: early 17c (Benjamin Cosyn's MS Virginal Book p. 64; 1923 edition p. 22). Ward adds a vesion in the Cambridge University MS Dd.4.22 fol 9.
Words: Ballads licensed 1600 and 1560 but only later editions (perhaps only having the same title) survive.
This tune is called for in a 1601 song "Come to me pritty Lasse", in the jig Michael and Frances (C. J. Sisson, Lost plays of Shakespeare's Age, 1936)
Secondary: Simpson B380, Livingston # 187
Music: in The Whole Booke of Psalmes 1562 p. 201. This is supposedly a MIDI of that tune.
Words: Religious ballad in Collier's Broadside Black-Letter Ballads 1577. [ Note that Livingston says Collier was a fraud. ]
Secondary: Simpson B381, Livingston # 127
Music: in The Whole Booke of Psalmes 1562 p. 350. This is supposedly a MIDI of that tune.
Words: Religious ballad in Collection of 79 Black-letter Ballads, dated 1579.
Secondary: Simpson B382, Ward
Music: 1549 in Phalese, Pierre. Carminum quae Chely vel Testudine canuntur, Liber primus H1v.
Words: "Historie of Diana and Acteon" in Handefull of Pleasant Delites 1584
Note: the above images have a typo in the first measure, it should be 4 quarter notes.
Secondary: Simpson B384, Livingston # 116, Ward
Music: Many tunes of different lengths for this? See dance literature for Inns of Court. One in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book p. 217. [midi]. Ward points out a huge list of versions in a PhD thesis.
Words: Ballad "Of the horyble and woful destruccion of Ierusalem", 1568, reprinted in Collmann (#5).
Secondary: Simpson B386, Ward
Tune: According to Simpson, the song with this name was first published by D'Urfey in 1683. However, the refrain is the same as Ravenscroft's 1611 "A wooing Song of a Yeoman of Kents Sonne". There is also a version which comes from "an unidentified 16th century MS" printed in J. Stafford Smith's Musica Antiqua 1812, I, 32. The refrain of this tune matches Ravenscroft, and the tune for the verse is somewhat similar to D'Urfey's tune, which is also similar to the beginning and end of the tune for the verse in Ravenscroft.
And finally the refrain "And every day I cannot come to woo" is in Taming of the Shrew II, i.
Ward piles on, noting numerous other appearances of this tune, and indeed has published a study of the "Quoth Joan to John" jig series.
Secondary: Simpson B395, Ward
Music: This tune is suggested for use by many broadside ballads and Child ballads starting in 1650. Simpson knows that the opening of the early 17th century tune (given in Cambridge MS dd. 9.33 fol. 81v and Will Forster's MS Virginal Book p. 430) is echoed in Ravenscroft's Pammelia n. 22. However, Ravenscroft's tune also appears in Lant's 1580 manuscript. The tune is one of "3 country dances in one", and so it must have been altered to fit with the other tunes.
Child has several 15th century manuscript predecessors to the 17th century broadsides. These ballads are numbered 117-154 in Child.
Ward adds references to several older versions of the tune, including one before 1571, Folger MS v.a.159 fol 5, and points out that the tune is similar to the treble line of Ravenscroft's "We be souldiers three".
XXX I should go look through Bronson and see what he says about this tune.
Secondary: Simpson B397
Music: c. 1600 in Het Luitboek # 319, also 2 books by Robinson.
Words: by Deloney "The Widdowes solace" Garland of good Will (Works, p. 330)
Secondary: Simpson B398, Livingston # 186, 228, 230, Ward
Music: Dallis MS Lute Book 1583 p. 20 (built on the "Ruggiero bass", which dates back to 1532). Also Marsh Lute Book c. 1590, p. 305; Cambridge Dd 3.18 fol 1 (lute) Dd. 14.24 fol 1 (cittern). Ward points out that the ground is important, and gives it and several other references to early versions.
Words: "A faithfull vow of two constant Louers" Handefull
"Lamentation of Follie" Collmann #43
"A Larke sometimes did Breed" Collmann #10
Secondary: Simpson B401, Livingston # 132, 146, 150, 185
Music: Playford 1651 [midi]. Are there literary references to this tune name as a dance?
Words: "Roowe well ye marynors" etc licensed 1565, but does not survive.
"A proper sonet" Handefull of Pleasant Delites 1584
Collmann #75, 70, and 69, 2 religious, one about Antwerp's fall
"A Ballet, diclaring how euerye christian ought to prepare them selffe", re-published in 1875 German work.
Literary references: mentioned in a comedy Looke about you 1600
Secondary: Simpson B416, Ward
Music: in Ballet's MS lute book p. 101 (16th c.) and other early lute books, Playford (1670), Byrd's Fitzwilliam [midi], Het Luitboek # 389, Cambridge Dd 3.18 fol 5 (lute). Ward adds a billion other early versions.
Words: Used in song in John Pickering's interlude Horestes 1567, "Farre well adew, that courtlycke lyfe, To ware we tend to gowe". Used in lots of other songs, and broadside ballads starting in 1623.
Tune from Simpson - click here for higher resolution - click here for printable - click here for MIDI
Secondary: Simpson B421 B422, Ward
Music: in Ballet's MS lute book p 84 (late 16th c.) (inaccurately notated, says Simpson), is different from Playford 1651 [midi]. Is also a Child tune, says Bronson. Ward construts a melody from several sources.
Words: Various words, licensed early but none surviving before 1616.
Secondary: Simpson B427, Livingston, # 192, 208, 209, 214, Ward
Music: 1597 Holborne The Cittharn Schoole D3 and Cambridge Dd. 4.23 fol 6 (also cittern). Ward adds some additional sources and commentary.
Words: "A new Ballade, declaryng the daungerous shootyng of the Gunne at the Courte". In Harleian Miscellany X. Apparently 1579.
"The lamentation of Englande...", Collier's Broadside Black-Letter Ballads, supposedly 1584. Remember that Livingston says Collier is a fraud. Another ballad in Collier.
A paraphrase of the refrain in Nashe's Summer's Last Will and testament 1600.
Secondary: Simpson B444, Ward
Music: 1581 (in Caroso's Il Ballarino), and a billion english sources (Ballet, Holborne, Robinson, also Ferrabosco, ya ya). Simpson doesn't mention Arbeau; Ward points out that Arbeau's dance tune, while a completely different melody, is built on the same ground.
Words: "Two freends that had a stocke of Corne" Anthony Munday's Banquet of Daintie Conceits 1588
Literary References: In Dekker's Old Fortunatus 1600 the title is mentioned and the dance is perhaps danced
Secondary: Simpson B471, Ward
An interesting kettle of worms, from a dance point of view.
Music: Various lute fantasias etc. Marsh Lute Book p. 139 c. 1590, Ravenscroft Deuteromelia has "Tomorrow the Fox will come to town" and "Willy prethe goe to bed" [pdf, lilypond, midi, postscript] Playford 1653. Cambridge Dd. 3.18 fol 12v (hard to find melody).
Simpson has an error in the text here. He says that the "Trenchmore" in "The West-Country Jigg: Or, A trenchymore Galliard" suggests a fast, tripping rhythm. If you look at the ballad, it actually seems to be a place-name.
Ward points out that this tune is actually a ground, which would explain it being mentioned as a galliard, while Playford has it as a duple country dance.
Secondary: Simpson B491, Ward
Music: 1596 William Barley's A New Booke of Tabliture, sig. D2, 1597 Holborne The Cittharn Schoole sig. C3v. Two settings in Byrd, one in My Ladye Nevells Booke n. 31 [midi].
Ward has a 5 page note on this music, giving numerous pre-1600 sources.
Modern sources: Dart and Coates Jacobean Consort Music, Music Britannica IX, 1955, p. 200.
Various ballads which may or may not be pre-1600
Tune from Simpson - click here for higher resolution - click here for printable - click here for MIDI
Secondary: Simpson B494, Livingston # 237
Music: Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book II, 236, Will Forster's MS Virginal Book p. 460, etc. etc. Also accompanying part for bass viol in Cambridge University MSS Dd. 5.20 fol 7 and treble recorder in Dd.5.21 fol 6v.
Words: Words in c. 1590 broadside ballad in Collection of 79 Black Letter Ballads
c. 1590 version "As Watkine walked by the way" in MS Rawl. poet 185. (c. 1590) is significantly different but quite related.
Secondary: Simpson B496, Livingston # 133, Ward
Music: mid 17th c. keyboard variations Paris Conservatoire MS Res 1186 fol. 25. Ward has a different melody which fits the ballads better.
Words: 1569 "a newe wel a Daye as playne master papeste as Dunstable waye" Collection of 79
1601 "A lamentable Dittie composed vupon the death of Robert Lord Deuereux late Earle of Essex" (Collmann # 37)
Secondary: Simpson B518
Music: Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book II, 275, Ravenscroft's Deuteromelia 1609. [midi]
Words: licensed 1588 but no surviving copies. Ravenscroft (1609) has words. [pdf, lilypond, postscript]
Literary References: Dekker's Old Fortunatas 1600 [ allusion to "Who's the foole now?" ]; Anthony Brewer's Love-sick King 1655, Act III [quotes the beginning]; Dryden's Sir Martin Mar-All, 1668, IV, i [quotes the beginning]
Secondary: Simpson B521, Livingston, # 210, Ward
Music: Ballet's MS lute book p. 112 (late 16th c.)
Words: "A fameous dittie" 1584 Collection of 79 Black-Letter Ballads; also "Those that will run a Vertuous race" first licensed 1586, words from 1600 edition in Collmann # 84
Secondary: Simpson B524, Ward
Music: Folger MS (1570?), facsimile in Shakespeare Quarterly IX , 420. Ward has an article about this tune.
Words: in 17th c., Othello IV iii (fragments), music above doesn't quite fit these, but later music does.
Secondary: Simpson B526, Livingston # 221
Music: "late 16th c manuscripts" Folger MS 1601.1 fol 3, Ballet's MS lute book p. 112, Cambridge MS Dd.2.11 fol. 68v. Titled "Wosleys Wilde" in Byrd's Fitzwilliam Virginal Book II, 184 [midi]..
Words: "The Queenes visiting of the Campie at Tilsburie", 1588, in RB IV and Deloney's Works
3 more sets of pre-1600 words for "Wilson's Tune" don't fit this tune.
Return to the Pre-1600 Ballads Project.
Gregory Blount of Isenfir (Greg Lindahl)