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Music from the West.                    197
out into separate parishes, each of which is resolute to take the law of the others, the proceedings of Welsh patrons of art are subject to the inquiry—how far it is self-importantly made a toy?—how far they are willing to fall into the great stream of time which will bear onward ourselves, our pomps and vanities, and our works good only as they instruct and fertilise those who are to come after us?
Gower, Chaucer's predecessor, a Welshman, our first poet, wrote in English. If his countrymen do not discard him as an apostate, is there not here pedigree, precedent, example to every real lover of national Welsh art?
And now, to cross the Channel : and on arriving in the world of Irish music, we find ourselves in a wild world in every sense of the word. The anti­quaries, the claimants—authorities who profess to understand Phoenician, or to date their ancestry from Spain, so beset the inquirer after nationality, that he has to keep a calm head, and a keen pair of eyes in the same, if he looks into the matter.
A wild world, I repeat, but one as lovely as wild ; full of every gracious natural product—a world which knew the fairy charms of harp and pipe and symphony from an early period—a world full of







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