“There are twelve months in all the year,
As I hear many men say,
But the merriest month in all the year
Is the merry month of May.”
As we continue to learn about the Middle Ages, we will learn about a popular form of poetry called the ballad. Ballads are lyrical poems. Many popular songs are written in this style.
Ballads tell of an event. They were often used to spread the news, provide entertainment, or create a “bigger than real life” story.
You will choose a topic from the Middle Ages to write your ballad about.
- Ballads often have verses of four lines
- usually have a rhyming pattern: either abab or aabb or abcb (usually the easiest to rhyme)
- repetition often found in ballads
- entire stanzas can be repeated like a song’s chorus
- lines can be repeated but each time a certain word is changed
- a question and answer format can be built into a ballad: one stanza asks a questions and the next stanza answers the question
- Ballads contain a lot of dialogue.
- Action is often described in the first person
- Two characters in the ballad can speak to each other on alternating lines
HOMEWORK – Write a Ballad and post it to the comments here. Minimum length – 4 stanzas (4 quatrains) with a refrain
Here is a popular and classic love sone written in ballad form. Lyrics are below the video.
Here is one of Ol’ King Cole’s favorites:
Are you starting to find the ryhming patterns inherent in ballads? Can you hear the beat? The driving rhythm of the music and the poetry?