Lord Randall, Get Up and Bar the
Door, Edward, Edward
Common Characteristics of Ballads
1. An exciting or tragic subject like love,
death, or supernatural
2. Details are left out
3. Contains 1 or more Refrains – a word,
line, or group of lines that is repeated
throughout the ballad
4. Mysterious events
Lord Randall
 This ballad was written in the Middle Ages. In
the ballad, a young man and his loyal hunting
dogs get sick after eating dinner. Food poisoning
and stomach illnesses were very common
problems in the middle ages. No refrigeration
and unclean habits made it hard to keep foods as
safe as we can today
 This ballad was written in an old Scottish
version of English. Some of the words may seem
incomplete compared to the language we speak
As you read Lord Randall identify the characteristics of a ballad
within it using the chart below and answer the questions that follow.
Ballad Features
Example from “Lord Randall
Sad Story
Missing Details
What is happening in each stanza? (Paraphrase)
What are the incomplete words in the first three stanzas?
What are the modern English spellings of the words in number 2?
What does each refrain tell us?
Why do you believe the author wrote this poem?
The reason that an
author writes.
 Details
such as dialogue, images, or
repeated words can help us guess the
purpose of a piece of literature
 There
are six common purposes for writing.
D – describe something or someone
A – analyze something (examine critically)
T – tell something
P – Persuade someone
I – Inform someone of something (How to)
E - Entertain
NOTE: author’s can have several purposes in one writing they are not
locked into just one
Type of literature
An autobiography by a
woman who grew up in
poverty and became a
successful business owner
A children’s book about a
rabbit who travels in space
A collection of Native
American Myths
A consumer guide about
different types of cars that
are on the market
A book about American
soldiers who fought in
World War II
Author’s Purpose
 The story in this ballad exists in many versions
in Europe, Asia, and the Middle East - perhaps
illustrating the universal theme sometimes
called the battle of the sexes.
 Goodman and goodwife are terms that were
commonly applied to married men and women.
 The story takes place around November 11,
Martinmas, or the feast of Saint Martin of Tours,
which was usually celebrated with a big meal
As you read, note details that help you determine the purposes of the
ballad. Use the chart below to record your findings. In the third row, identify
for each ballad the most powerful and significant detail that led to your
interpretation of the ballad’s purpose.
Most Powerful and
Significant Detail
Get Up and Bar the Door
The difference between
what is expected and what
actually happens
 If
the shortest kid on the basketball team
was the best player or the firehouse caught
on fire this would be ironic because it is not
what we expect to happen
 There
are three types of Irony: Verbal,
Situational, and Dramatic
1. Verbal Irony
Saying on thing but
meaning another
(kind of like sarcasm)
 A man who hunts
humans says “oh yes.. I
have electricity. We try
to be civilized here.
2. Situational Irony
3. Dramatic Irony
When the reader or
When a situation turns out to
audience knows
be the opposite of what you
something the character
does not
 “It’s like rain on your
wedding day”
 “Winning the lottery and
dying the next day”
 When your standing
next to a house that is
 The surprise ending is
falling down and you say, situational irony (SAW)
“Now that is a mansion.”
 We knew that Juliet
wasn’t dead but Romeo
did not
 In horror movies we
know the killer is in the
house when the
characters do not
Listen to the song and identify as many ironic statements as possible. When
finished explain why each statement is ironic.
Edward, Edward
• Edward is a traditional murder ballad existing in several variants.
• In English its versions were collected by Francis James Child as
Child ballad number 13
• It is about a young man who is questioned about the blood on his
• After claiming the blood belongs to different animals he admits to
his mother that he has killed his father.
• He declares that he is leaving never to return and that various
creatures will have to fare without him.
• However, the ballad ends with a twist.
Understanding Irony
Each of the ballads below are Ironic. Identify why each ballad is ironic,
which type of irony is used, and explain why it is ironic.
Lord Randall
Ironic because _________________________________________
Type of Irony ___________________________________________
Explanation of Irony _____________________________________
Get Up and Bar the Door
Ironic because _________________________________________
Type of Irony ___________________________________________
Explanation of Irony _____________________________________
Edward, Edward
Ironic because _________________________________________
Type of Irony ___________________________________________
Explanation of Irony _____________________________________

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