The Theme of Seduction

  • Merryn Williams


The seduction of village girls was a theme deeply rooted in rural tradition, going back as far as the very earliest ballads, yet in accordance with varying attitudes towards rural civilisation it was possible to treat this theme in widely differing ways. The Lancashire poet Edwin Waugh (1817–90) expressed the most traditional, romantic attitude:

The woods were gay and green again; The sun was smiling on; But the charmer of the rural glen For evermore was gone: Now, mouldering near the churchyard way, All stricken in her pride, The white rose of the valley lay, With an infant by her side.1


Unmarried Mother Rural Civilisation Weekly Orgy Unrequited Love Virginal Daughter 
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  1. 1.
    Edwin Waugh, Poems and Lancashire Songs (London, 1859) p. 101.Google Scholar
  2. 6.
    W. L. Courtney, (The Feminine Note in Fiction (London, 1904) p. 198.Google Scholar

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© Merryn Williams 1972

Authors and Affiliations

  • Merryn Williams

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