Fifty "Bab" Ballads by W. S. Gilbert
Fifty "Bab" Ballads - Much Sound and Little Sense
THE "BAB BALLADS" appeared originally in the columns of "FUN,"
when that periodical was under the editorship of the late TOM HOOD.
They were subsequently republished in two volumes, one called "THE
BAB BALLADS," the other "MORE BAB BALLADS." The period during
which they were written extended over some three or four years;
many, however, were composed hastily, and under the discomforting
necessity of having to turn out a quantity of lively verse by a
certain day in every week. As it seemed to me (and to others) that
the volumes were disfigured by the presence of these hastily
written impostors, I thought it better to withdraw from both
volumes such Ballads as seemed to show evidence of carelessness or
undue haste, and to publish the remainder in the compact form under
which they are now presented to the reader.
It may interest some to know that the first of the series, "The
Yarn of the NANCY BELL," was originally offered to "PUNCH," - to
which I was, at that time, an occasional contributor. It was,
however, declined by the then Editor, on the ground that it was