My Research

English & Renaissance Studies

Arnhold Program Research

My Arnhold project began as a paper and has evolved into a full website.

View a site presentation.

Come Live With Me: Living the History of a Ballad is dedicated to the study of the poem and the broadside ballad of Christopher Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” using a range of multimedia and interactive tools. You will learn about the printing history of Christopher Marlowe’s poem, its many literary lives, the broadside ballad’s tune and woodcuts, and the responses it continues to inspire. 

Whether you are familiar with Marlowe’s work or have just begun your journey, this site will guide you chronologically through the history of Marlowe’s poem and its relevance today. 

The site is now live!

This page will now serve as an archive of the Project

Original Title: Examining the Manifestations & Transmissions of Christopher Marlowe’s “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love”

Posts Archive List:

Timeline: Christopher Marlowe, “Live with me and be my love” or “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” | February 14, 2015
Replies & Related poetry to Christopher Marlowe’s “Live with me and be my love” or “The Passionate Shepherd to His Love” | March 4, 2015
The Question: My Research Proposal | March 7, 2015
About Christopher Marlowe, Mini-Bio | March 10, 2015
Questioning the tune: Examining the ballad’s tune | March 16, 2015
The Poem & the Ballad | March 17, 2015
Let’s Review & Answer the Questions | November 10, 2015
Back in the Saddle Again | November 10, 2015
Arnhold Research Showcase | June 13, 2015

Statement/About the Project:

How we access and analyze sources is changing, and technology is the reason. EBBA, a project I have worked with and love, is an online database where all of the surviving ballads published during the heyday of the black-letter ornamental broadside ballad of the 17th century are archived. EBBA allows users to search by keyword, title, author, tune, and even by woodcut/impression. This is just one example of how technology and the passion of academics, like the project creator Patricia Fumerton, come together to change the way we research, we learn, and experience.

Ballads themselves are already an example of changing the way something is experienced. Before the printing press, we had manuscripts – a very personal and individual experience. In the Early Modern Period, when broadside ballads began to be printed, suddenly texts, poetry, and stories were spread everywhere. Printed with the names of popular/familiar tunes, they were sold on the street, pasted on walls, and sung in homes and alehouses alike. Ballads combine the personal connection of a manuscript text, with the public and communal experience of a play, and add the element of continual interaction and participation. Not only is there an element of drama and acting to the performance of a ballad but the audience can sing along and be an integral part of the experience.

One of the key reasons Christopher Marlowe’s poem and then ballad “Passionate Shepherd to His Love” / “(Come) Live with me and by my love” has not only survived in but has remained in the cultural thought is that it also recaptures and reinvents. The wonder of this work is its timelessness and ability to adapt to new contextual circumstances. The various manifestations of the work contribute to the meaning of the work itself. Even today there continue to be reinterpretations of the poem: A 1995 adaptation of Richard III, taking place in the 1930’s, reimagined the ballad as a Jazz song – the ballad, as it did in the 17th century, disseminated to a wider population who might have never been exposed to Marlowe’s poem but were introduced to his ballad, through the melody and lyrics.

My hope is that this site will be a space that encourages further research of Christopher Marlowe’s ballad in a way that makes it an interactive experience. This project will help us reimagine how we view and research these kinds of works using the technology available so that what we learn can be disseminated to an audience of our peers and students, and they too can participate in the research-learning experience.

Keywords: Interactive, Digital Humanities, Research, Learning, Cartography, History, Poetry, Broadside Ballads, Printing, Publications, Private vs. Public,

Basic facts:

  • First known publication as a poem in The passionate pilgrim by W. Shakespeare, 1599
  • Tune composed/published in William Corkine’s Second Book of Ayres, 1612
  • First known publication as a ballad printed by the Assignes of Thomas symcock, 1619-1629
  • Replies to the poem dating from 1600 – 1633
  • As both a poem & a ballad there are five versions – differences ranging from only a few words to whole stanzas

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