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118                  CURIOSITIES OF MUSIC.
he was a remarkably good man anu i, benefactor to his race, and therefore many useful inventions, and wonderful adventures are attached to his name, which cannot be authenticated. Some writers consider him a myth, which is scarcely a tenable position; others have endeavored to prove him to be neither more nor less than the Noah of the Bible. There is little doubt that he made improvements in Chinese music, and, by exaggera­tion, was called its inventor. A Chinese writer in giving to the invention a greater antiquity, beau­tifully says " Music had its cradle in the heart of man."
Chin-noung, successor of Fo-hi, was also a good ruler; his chief works in music seem to have been some alterations in the Che (a sort of Kin) and he was able by his playing to turn the heart of man, from intemperate life, to celestial truth.
Hoang-ti, the next emperor, had music scientific­ally investigated and established natural rules to the art. The reign of Hoang-ti is supposed to have been about 2,600 B. c. In his day music though practised, was not understood in its natural elements.
The Chinese even at that day, based all other sciences on music, and sought to make this art (in a mystical and hyperbolical way) the foundation of all others. The emperor therefore ordered Ling-lun to give his attention to the develop­ment of the laws of music. The fables on the subject of his researches are innumerable; he travelled to the north-western part of China and






E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III