Complete Songs Of Robert Burns - online book

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440                           HISTORICAL NOTES
of the copies are exact reproductions. Every succeeding editor made, alterations here and there, and Shield sImply took his place in the development of the air. To show how he got it and how he left it I subjoin the jiir from Cumming's_ Strathspeys, 1780, and that from Rosina, 1783"."'"
To complete the examination: these transcripts can be compared with the ' music of 0 can ye labor lea (No. 144) and Auld lang syne. Shield certainly changed the character of the air by leaving out the dotted notes in the first portion of the air, and the conspicuous Improvement he effected by some altered intervals was more than lost in weakening the accents by the use of equal notes. The editor of the 1792 copy in the Museum restored the original character, and Improved Shield by raising the climax in the fourth bar by a full tone. Thomson, in Auld lang syne, completed the tune by more melodic steps in the third bar leading up to the climax; and also by a more gradual and easy descent in the fifth bar. The result of my investigation is that the air was selected by Shield as announced in the title-page of his opera, and that he was not the composer of Auld lang syne any more than the restorer of an edifice can be called the architect.
No. 235. O, "Willie brew'd a peck o' maut. Scots Musical Museum, 1790, No. 291, entitled, Willie irew'd a peck 0' maul; Select Melodies, 1825, vi. jj. This convivial song is known almost as well as Auld Lang Syne. It






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