Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 1

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xiv.                                   EXPLANATION OF THE FACSIMILES.
In transcribing old music without bars, it is necessary to know that the ends of phrases and of lines of poetry are commonly expressed by notes of longer duration than their relative value. Much of the music in Stafford Smith's Musica Antiqua is wrongly barred, and the rhythm destroyed by the non-observance of this rule. As one of many instances, see " Tell me, dearest, what is love," taken from a manuscript of James the First's time (Mus. Antiq., i. 55). By carrying half the semibreve at the end of the second bar into the third, he begins the second line of poetry (" 'Tis a lightning from above") on the half-bar instead of at the commencement, and thus falsifies the accent of that line and of all that follows. The antiquarian way would have been, either to print the semibreve within the bar, or, which is far better, a minim with a pause over it. In modernizing the notation, even the pause is unnecessary. "VVebbe also bars incorrectly in the Conmto Armonico. For instance, in " We be three poor mariners," the tune is right the first time, but at the recurrence (on " Shall we go dance the Round, the Eound, the Round ?") he commences on the half-bar, because he has given too much time to the word " ease" in the bar immediately preceding.
Plate 3.—" Green Sleeves," a tune mentioned by Shakespeare, from " William Ballet's Lute Book," described in note b at p. 86. This is the version I have printed at p. 230, but an exact translation of the copy will be found in my " National English Airs," i. 118. It is only necessary to remark that, in lute-music of the sixteenth century, bars are placed rather to guide the eye than to divide the tune equally. The time marked over the lines is the only sure guide for modern barring.
Plate 4.—" Sellenger's Round," from a manuscript in the Fitzwilliam Museum, at Cambridge, commonly known as " Queen Elizabeth's Virginal Book." See also p. 71.
Dr. Burney speaks of this manuscript first "as " going under the name of Queen Elizabeth's Virginal Book," and afterwards quotes it as if it had really been so. I am surprised that he should not have discovered the error, considering that he had it long enough in his possession to extract one of the pieces, and to give a full descrip­tion of the contents, (iii. 86, et seq.) It is now so generally known by that name, that, for brevity's sake, I have employed it throughout the work. Nevertheless, it can never have been the property of Queen Elizabeth. It is written throughout in one handwriting, and in that writing are dates of 1603, 1605, and 1612.
It is a small-sized folio volume, in red morocco binding of the time of James I., elaborately tooled and ornamented with fleurs de lis, &c, gilt edges, and the pages are numbered to 419, of which 418 are written.
The manuscript was purchased at the sale of Dr. Pepusch's collection, in 1762, by R. Bremner, the music-publisher, at the price of ten guineas, and by him given to Lord Fitzwilliam.
Ward gives an account of Dr. Bull's pieces included in this virginal book, in his Lives of the Gresham Professors, fol., 1740, p. 203, but does not say a word of the volume having belonged to Queen Elizabeth. We first hear of it in Dr. Pepusch's possession, and, as he purchased many of his manuscripts in Holland (especially those including Dr. Bull's compositions), it is by no means improbable that this English manuscript may also have been obtained there. I am led to the conjecture by finding the only composer's name invariably abbreviated is that of " Tregian." At the com­mencement of Verstegan's Restitution of decayed Intelligence, Antwerp, 1605, is a