ABSTRACT

BALLAD literature maintained a vigorous life in nineteenthcentury streets. Printed in 'broadside' form, on one side only of flimsy paper, with no consistency as to size, these sheets were essentially simple to produce. Sometimes they carried woodcut illustrations which, with the ad hoc typography used, gave many of them a lively, if somewhat crude, visual appeal. The cries of the sellers - 'Three yards a penny!' or 'Two under fifty for a fardy! ' -as the sheets were hawked around the streets and in public houses were one kind of sales promotion; there were other sellers

I. This section contains the substance of the present author's article 'The Literature of the Streets', first published in The Victorian City, ed. H. J. Dyos and Michael Wolff (1973), Vol. I.