5. Ballad Collection and Lyric Collectives

  1. Charles Mahoney Associate Professor of English
  1. Steve Newman Associate Professor

Published Online: 3 MAY 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781444390650.ch5

A Companion to Romantic Poetry

A Companion to Romantic Poetry

How to Cite

Newman, S. (2010) Ballad Collection and Lyric Collectives, in A Companion to Romantic Poetry (ed C. Mahoney), Wiley-Blackwell, Oxford, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781444390650.ch5

Editor Information

  1. University of Connecticut, USA

Author Information

  1. Temple University, USA

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 3 MAY 2012
  2. Published Print: 26 NOV 2010

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781405135542

Online ISBN: 9781444390650



  • ballad collection and lyric collectives;
  • Romantic poems, ballads happening accidentally - William Wordsworth's “The Solitary Reaper”;
  • Romantic lyric, vehicle of self-consciousness - influential formulations in Geoffrey Hartman's Wordsworth's Poetry;
  • solitariness of Romantic lyric - by collective world bound up with the ballad;
  • Scott's Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border - stylized imitations, as Keats's “La Belle Dame Sans Merci”;
  • speaker's concern in “The Solitary Reaper” - listening to him, rehearsing basic conundrum facing the Romantic poet;
  • Burns, repurposing Scots songs to open up his sources - lyric situations, and potential audience in a final piece touching on the Highlands;
  • Hemans, Spanish Songs and the woman as minstrel;
  • Clare, cheap print and borders of Romantic poetry;
  • ballads' melding of text, music and image - challenging text-centered approach of literary scholarship, persisting in a interdisciplinary age


This chapter contains sections titled:

  • Romantic Encounters with the Ballad: “The Solitary Reaper” and Its Limits

  • Burns and the Case for Scots Songs

  • Hemans: Spanish Songs and the Woman as Minstrel

  • Clare: Cheap Print and the Borders of Romantic Poetry

  • References and Further Reading