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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Alfred Tennyson (1809-92)


 
Born in August 1809 at Somersby, Lincolnshire. He is best known as a successful poet laureate, appointed after the publication of In Memoriam A. H. H. (1850), a series of elegiac poems written over seventeen years inspired by the death of Arthur Hallam. His ambitious national project resulted in producing a sequence of twelve narrative poems based on the Arthurian legend, Idylls of the King (1859-85). Wide-ranging in subject and in style, the poet evolved himself to the end of his literary carrier; above all, he excelled in experimenting with various genres such as lyrics, narrative poems, domestic idylls, elegies, dramas, and ballads. His experimental ballads gain a distinct charm by skilfully mixing the ancient spirit of the traditional ballads with the poet’s individual sensibility and his peculiar sense of modernity. (Y. Y.)

1. The Charge of the Light Brigade
2. Edward Gray
3. The Goose
4. King Charles’s Vision
5. Lady Clare
6. The Lady of Shalott
7. The Lord of Burleigh
8. Mariana
9. Mariana in the South
10. The Revenge
11. The Sisters