land was white,
The seed was black;
It will take a good scholar
To riddle me that..."
"The White Land"
picture book of traditional rhymes and verse
Olde England, some familiar some not-so. Each is illustrated
with b/w line drawings and a full colour plate and - oh - what a treat
this is. Mr Briggs takes us back in time. We see maids at work,
a woman washing clothes, young lads and lasses, society gentleman
and ladies, folks on the road and in
the fields - snapshots of the
era in which these works arose.
Briggs' pallette is beautifully muted. There are lots of earthy,
colours and seasonal shades. Figures are set against tumbling skies,
they trudge along ruddy paths, and ride through frothed waters...
are 23 rhymes and verses represented.
Here are the titles:
Blow, Wind, Blow Wine
Three Young Rats Fishes
Banbury Fair My
Barber, Barber Grey
Robin the Bobbin Bed
The Coachman Goodnight,
By the way, that cover illustration features Robbin
the big-bellied Ben, eating a steeple (and all the good people)...