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The Bedesman and the Hodbearer

The Bedesman and the Hodbearer



Edited by Mary Ellen Brown


Detailed Description

The Bedesman and the Hodbearer is the second in the Elphinstone Institute's Occasional Publications Series on the culture and traditions of North and North-East Scotland. The intriguing title describes the epistolary relationship between Aberdeen pawnbroker William Walker and Harvard Professor Francis James Child, during the last decade of the nineteenth century. Edited and introduced by Professor Mary Ellen Brown, Director of the Institute for Advanced Study at the University of Indiana, the book brings together for the first time the two halves of their correspondence: from the Houghton Library at Harvard and from Aberdeen University's Historic Collections, Special Libraries and Archives. Child's monumental The English and Scottish Popular Ballads (1882-1898), the standard text for ballad studies, was published without an introduction, which he had intended to remedy but for his untimely death in 1896. This fascinating correspondence helps the reader to gain an insight into Child's method of working, as well as the remarkable friendship the two men established.