Welcome to The British Literary Ballads Archive, a site dedicated to a unique genre of literary imitations of traditional ballads. The site contains a growing archive of over 700 poems, as well as short biographical sketches of the poets who wrote them.

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William Carleton (1794-1869)



Born in Tyrone as the youngest son of an Irish peasant, in February 1794. Recently, his novels are beginning to be acclaimed again by those who are intent on searching out the authentic images of Irish peasant life before and after the tragic potato famines of 1840s.  His best known work, Traits and Stories of the Irish Peasantry (1830-35) melancholically and humorously depicts the life of the country people before the famines, and The Black Prophet (1847), in contrast, narrates a bleak story of the potato famine.  His other novels are also worth investigating for their delineation of contemporary issues such as poverty, emigration and religious concerns.  (Y. Y.)

1.Sir Turlough; or the Churchyard Bride