Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 1

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34                                                 ENGLISH MINSTRELSY.
A baggepipe cowde he blowe and sowne [sound], And therewithal he brought us out of towne." "
Of the Pardoner (line 674 to 676) :—
" Ful lowde he sang, ' Come hider, love, to me' This Sompnour bar[e] to him a stif burdoun,b Was never trompe [trumpet] of half so gre[a]t a sown" (sound).
Of the poor scholar, Nicholas (line 3213 to 3219) :— " And al above ther lay a gay sawtrye [psaltry], On which he made, a-nightes, melodye So swetely, that al the chambur rang : And Angehis ad Virginem he sang. And after that he sang The Kyngds note; Ful often blessed was his mery throte." Of the Carpenter's Wife (lines 3257 and 8) :—
" But of her song, it was as lowde and yerne [brisk] As eny swalwe [swallow] chiteryng on a berne" [barn]. Of the Parish Clerk, Absolon (lines 3328 to 3335) :— " In twenty manners he coude skip and daunce, After the schole of Oxenfordfe tho, And with his legges casten to and fro ; And pleyen songes on a small Mubible" [Rebec], Ther-to he sang som tyme a lowde quynyble ;d And as reel coude he pleye on a giterne: In al the toun nas [nor was] brewhousne taverne That he ne visited with his solas" [solace].
He serenades the Carpenter's Wife, and we have part of his song (lines 3352—64): " The moone at night fill cleer and bright^ schoon, And Absolon his giterne hath i-take,.
For paramours he seyde he wold awake.....
He syngeth in hys voys gentil and 6mal— ' Now, deere lady, if thi wille be, I pray you that ye wol rewe [have compassion] on me.' Full wel acordyng to his gyternyng, This carpenter awook, and herde him syng."
Of the Apprentice in the Cook's Tale, who plays both on the ribible and gitterne: " At every brideale wold he synge and hoppe ; He loved bet [better] the taverne than the schoppe."
» A curious reason for the use of the Bagpipe in Pil­grimages will he found in State Trials—Trial of William Thorpe. Henry IV., an. 8, shortly after Chaucer's death. " I say to thee that it is right well done, that Pilgremys have with them Doth Syngers, and also Pipers, that whan one of them, thatgoethbar[e]fo[o]te, strikethhis too upon a stone, and hurteth hym sore, and maketh hym to blede; it is well done that he orhisfel[l]owhegyn than aSonge, or else take out of his bosome a Baggepype for to drive away with soche myrthe the hurte of his felow."
1 This Sompnour (Sumner or Summon'r to the Eccle­siastical Courts, now called Apparitor) supported him by
singing the burden, or bass, to his song in a deep loud voice. Bourdon is the French for Drone; and Foot, I Undersong, and Burden mean the same thing, although Burden was afterwards used in the sense of Ditty, or any line often recurring in a song, as will be seen here­after.
0 Ribible (the diminutive of Ribibe or Rebec) is a small fiddle with three strings.
d To sing a "quinible" means to descant by singing fifths on a plain-song, and to sing a '* quatrlhle" to des­cant by fourths. The latter term Is used by Comish in his Treatise between Trowthe and Enformacion. 1528.