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Word Count: 549
SIR PATRICK SPENCE TO BE A BALLAD OR TO BE A FOLK BALLAD In this essay it will be proved that the ballad Sir Patrick Spence is a folk ballad This will be done by giving the distinctive marks of a folk ballad as listed by MH Abrams in his A Glossary of Literary Terms After giving the marks they will be pointed out in Sir Patrick Spence A folk ballad is a song that tells a story the author is usually unknown because many different people who all added their own changes sang the ballad The narrator tells the story in a dramatic way but with few words and without including his or her own feelings The ballad itself consists of ballad stanzas with four lines and usually the second and fourth line rhyme There is a formula which most ballads follow There should be stock descriptive phrases a refrain in each stanza and incremental repetition The impersonal way of narrating is quite clear in Sir Patrick Spence The story suddenly starts there is no short introduction to be found and the whole tragedy about Sir Patrick who sets out to sail for his king against his instincts and then dies in a storm is told in only eleven stanzas A good example of telling a lot with few to no words can be found in the transition from stanza 4 to stanza 5 The first line that Sir Patrick red A loud lauch lauched he The next line that Sir Patrick red The teir blinded his ee O wha is this has done this deid This ill deid don to me To send me
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