Child, Francis James, 1825–96, American scholar, b. Boston, grad. Harvard, 1846. At Harvard he was professor of rhetoric (1851–76) and English literature (1876–96). He greatly influenced modern methods of Chaucer study. He is best known, however, for his English and Scottish Popular Ballads (5 vol., 1883–98). This is a major source on folklore in which Child defined, with examples, some 305 types of ballads, including complete textual variations.
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