What characteristics of "Lord Randall," "Get Up and Bar the Door," and "Edward Edward" show that they were intended to appeal to a general audience rather than an elite audience?

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These ballads include the repetitions of words and verses that are typical of folk-songs and folk poetry in general. This is probably the most obvious thing that indicates they are part of a tradition of popular art, having its origin and appeal among ordinary people and not with royalty or...

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These ballads include the repetitions of words and verses that are typical of folk-songs and folk poetry in general. This is probably the most obvious thing that indicates they are part of a tradition of popular art, having its origin and appeal among ordinary people and not with royalty or the upper classes overall.

Both "Edward" and "Lord Randall" also exist in parallel versions in other European languages. In this they are similar to legends which exist cross-culturally and perhaps spring from a common origin, as different languages of Europe do, dating back thousands of years.

Significantly, the poems are written in dialect rather than standard English—even the standard English of the period from which they apparently date. I would also suggest that the violent, tragic themes of the poems are expressed with a raw explicitness that would perhaps appeal most to an audience of ordinary working people, rather than the aristocracy or even the newly-forming middle class of Britain in the late medieval period.

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These are all border ballads from the Medieval Era in England.  As such, they were probably originally sung and not written, as they were meant for the (illiterate) common folk.  In general, ballads will use simple language and short lines, making them more easily understood by all.  They also use dialect, rather than formal language, to appeal more to the lower classes.  Ballads (these included) will use repetition to further stress the importance of certain ideas, events and characters and to make them easier to remember and repeat.  They are generally about sensational crimes, the struggles and hardships of working class life, the often-tragic fate of lovers, or historical disasters; these are all topics to which most people in the lower classes of Medieval England could relate.

In this era, the literature that appeal to the elite were high romances about the deeds of knights and damsels in distress.  They praised lofty ideals and used more formal and flowery language.  Ballads tend to much simpler.

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