Francis James Child (1825-1896) was to the traditional balladry of the English-speaking world what the Brothers Grimm were to fairytales. His edition of The English and Scottish Popular Ballads (1882-1898) has never been superseded: it is an invaluable resource for scholars in many disciplines, as well as for singers, poets and other writers. Marking the centenary of both the scholar and his work, this volume presents authoritative new research on his editorial practice, his correspondence with key contributors in the British Isles, and the heirs to the ballad research tradition which he established. Other groups of essays debate the aesthetic distinctiveness of the «Child ballads» and interpret them in relation to wide-ranging historical and contemporary cultural contexts. Up-to-date guides to bibliographic, archival and online research resources, and a select discography, are provided for the benefit of students and others approaching traditional narrative song for the first time.