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Broadsheet featuring the ballads 'Land! Land' and 'We won't go home till Morning'.

Date: 1834 - 1886
Overall: 256 x 189 mm, 0.023 kg
Medium: Woodcut engraving and printed text on paper mounted on card.
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Broadsheet
Object No: 00017373
Place Manufactured:Durham

User Terms

    A broadsheet featuring two ballads titled 'Land! Land' and 'We won't go home till Morning'.
    The sheet is published by G. Walker, Printer, Durham.
    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 and migration.
    HistoryWe wo'nt go Home till

    Brave boys, let's all be jolly !
    A fig for melancholy—
    Since grieving's all a folly,
    'Tis folly to grieve, that's clear !
    While good humour each face is adorning,
    While sorrow in glee we are scorning,
    We won't go home till morning,
    Till daylight does appear !
    We won't go home till morning,
    We won't go home till morning, &c.
    Till daylight does appear !
    Till daylight, &c.
    We won't go home till morning,
    Till daylight, does appear !

    When first the vine was planted,
    A boon to man was granted—
    The world became enchanted,
    And sorrow in fright took wing !
    But to keep her for ever away boys,
    We to Bacchus our homage must pay, boys,
    So here while we may let us stay, boys,
    And out of pure gratitude sing—
    We won't go home, &c.

    Great Jove was a hearty good fellow,
    As poets of old could tell, O—
    With nectar he used to get mellow—
    (And no doubt it was jolly good stuff !)
    Such examples we cannot but follow,
    Then hogsheads of wine let us swallow,
    Till we beat the old gentleman hollow,
    But never cry ' Hold, enough !'
    So we can't go home till morning—
    We won't go home, &c.

    What the pleasure of wine surpasses,
    When bright in the sparkling glasses ?
    'Tis quaffed to the beautiful lasses—
    Oh ! rich are the joys that spring ;
    Since the brightest of pleasure on earth, boys.
    Must in the full wine cup have birth, boys,
    Brave Bacchus will join in our mirth, boys,
    And merrily, merrily sing—
    We won't go home, &c.

    LAND ! LAND.

    The dangers of the deep are past,
    We're drawing near our home at last,
    We see its outline on the sky,
    And join the sailor's welcome cry
    Land ! Land ! Land !

    Oh ! joyful thought for weary men,
    To tread the solid earth again !
    And hark ! the church bells pealing near,
    From spire and turret, loud and clear,
    As if they rang so loud and free,
    To bid us welcome o'er the sea !
    Land ! Land ! Land !

    The cry makes every heart rejoice,
    Is this the country of our choice ?
    Is this the long sought happy soil,
    Where plenty spreads the board of toil ?
    Land ! Land ! Land !

    How gladly through its paths we'll tread,
    With bounding step, uplifted head,
    And through its wilds and forests roam,
    To clear our farms, to build our home :
    And sleep at night, and never dread
    That morn shall see us wanting bread.
    Land ! Land ! Land !

    We've passed together o'er the sea,
    In storm and sunshine, comrades we,
    But 'ere we part, let's gather round,
    And shout with one accord the sound

    Of—Land ! Land ! Land !
    The land of the rivers broad and deep,
    The land where he who sows may reap ;
    The land where, if we ploughmen, will,
    We may possess the fields we till ;
    So gather all, and shout once more,
    The Land ! The Land ! hurrah for shore.

    Broadsheets or broadsides, as they were also known, were originally used to communicate official or royal decrees. They were printed on one side of paper and became a popular medium of communication between the 16th and 19th centuries in Europe, particularly Britain. They were able to be printed quickly and cheaply and were widely distributed in public spaces including churches, taverns and town squares. Their function expanded as they became used as a medium to galvanise political debate, hold public meetings and advertise products or cultural events.

    The cheap nature of the broadside and its wide accessibility meant that its intended audience were often literate individuals but from varying social standings. The illiterate may have also had access to this literature as many of the ballads were designed to be read aloud. In 'Popular Culture in Seventeenth-Century England', Peter Burke notes that the golden age of the broadside ballad, between 1600 and 1700, saw ballads produced at a penny each which was the same price for admission to the theatre.

    The ballads also covered a wide range of subject matter such as witchcraft, epic war battles, murder and maritime themes and events. They were suitably dramatic and often entertaining, but as James Sharpe notes, also in 'Popular Culture in Seventeenth-Century England', some of them were designed as elaborate cautionary tales for those contemplating a life of crime.

    The broadside ballads in the museum's collection were issued by a range of London printers and publishers for sale on the streets by hawkers. They convey, often comically, stories about love, death, shipwrecks, convicts and pirates. Each ballad communicates a sense that these stories were designed to be read aloud for all to enjoy, whether it was at the local tavern or a private residence.
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