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Broadsheet ballad titled 'Richard of Taunton Dean'.

Date: 1828 - 1832
Overall: 257 x 94 mm, 0.022 kg
Medium: Woodcut and printed text on paper mounted on card
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Broadsheet
Object No: 00031090
Place Manufactured:London

User Terms

    Broadsheet ballad titled 'Richard of Taunton Dean'. This ballad was also known as 'Dumble Deary Dum'.

    SignificanceBroadsheets were designed as printed ephemera to be published and distributed rapidly. This also meant they were quickly disposed of with many of them not surviving the test of time. The museum's broadsheet collection is therefore a rare and valuable example of how maritime history was communicated to a wide audience, particularly in the 18th and 19th centuries. They vibrantly illustrate many of the themes and myths surrounding life at sea. Some of them also detail stories about transportation, migration.

    Last new year's morn, as I've heard say,
    Richard he mounted his dapple gray,
    And away he rode from Taunton Dean,
    To court the parson's daughter Jane.
    Dumble dum deary, &c.

    New buckskin breeches, Sunday hose,
    And Dick put on his holiday clothes,
    Besides a new hat upon his head,
    Which was bedeck'd with ribbons red.

    Then on he rode without dread or fear,
    Till he came to the houseof his sweet dear,
    Where he knocked and shouted, and bellowed 'halloo!'
    Be the folks at home? say aye or no.

    A servant quickly let Dick,
    That his courtship might begin.
    H strutted yp and down the hall,
    And loudly for Miss Jane did call.

    Miss Jaen came down without delay,
    To hear what Richard had to say:
    'I do suppose, my dear Miss Jane,
    You know I be Richard of Taunton Dean.'

    'I'm an honest lad, altho' I'm poor;
    I never was in love before;
    My mother sent me here to woo,
    And I can fancy none but you.'

    'Well, if I content to be your bride,
    Pray, how will you for me provide?
    For I can neither card nor spin,
    Then what would your own work bring in?'

    'O I can reap and I can mow,
    And I can plow and I can sow;
    And I goes to market to sell father's hay,
    And I yarns my nine pence every day.'

    'Nine pence a day will never do,
    For I must have silks and satins too;
    Nine pence a day! that won't buy meat!'
    'Adzooks!' cries Dick, 'I've a zack of wheat.

    'Besides, I've a house that's here hard by,
    That's all my own when mother does die:
    And if you'll consent to marry me now,
    I'll feed ye as fat as my father's old sow.'

    Dick's compliments were so polite,
    That all the company laugh'd outright,
    And when he'd got no more to say,
    He mounted old Dobbin and rode away.

    Broadsides were issued by a number of London publishers for selling by hawkers on the street and were a popular form of entertainment in 18th and 19th century England. By their very nature they are extremely fragile and ephemeral ;as a result they are notably scarce in good condition .
    They were also known as 'roadsheet’, 'broadsheet', ‘stall’, ‘vulgar’ or ‘come all ye’ ballads'. In the 19th century many ballads were written about people emigrating. A large number to escape the difficult economic conditions they faced or to try and make their fortunes to bring home.The ballads reflect a deep love of their home place and in many cases the hero - usually male – is pining for a loved one he had to leave behind.

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