Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 1

Ancient Songs, Ballads, & Dance Tunes, Sheet Music & Lyrics - online book

Home Main Menu Singing & Playing Order & Order Info Support Search Shopping Discounts



Share page  Visit Us On FB

Previous Contents Next
REIGN OF ELIZABETH.
119
" Why, Sir George, send for Spendle's noise * presently Ha! ere 't be night, I'll serve the good Duke of Norfolk." To which Sir John rejoins:—
" Grass and hay 1 mine host, let's live till we die, And be merry; and there's an end."
Dodsley's Old Plays, vol. v., 271. Dr. Letherland, in a note which Stcevens has printed on King Henry IV., Part I., act ii., sc. 4 (where Falstaff says, " This chair shall be my state, this dagger my sceptre, and this cushion my crown"), observes that the country people in Warwickshire also use a cushion for a crown, at their harvest home diversions; and in the play of King Edward IV., Part II., 1619, is the following passage:— " Then comes a slave, one of those drunken sots, In with a tavern reck'ning for a supplication, Disguised with a cushion on his head." In the Suffolk custom, he who is crowned with the pillow, is to take the ale, to raise it to his lips, and to drink it off without spilling it, or allowing the cushion to fall; but there was, also, another drinking custom connected with this tune. In the first volume of Wit and Mirth, or Pills to purge Melancholy, 1698 and* 1707, and the third volume, 1719, is a song called Bacchus' Health, " to be sung by all the company together, with directions to be observed." They are as follows: " First man stands up, with a glass in his hand, and sings— Here's a health to jolly Bacchus, (sung three times)
I-ho, I-ho, I-ho; For he doth make us merry, (three times) I-ho, I-ho, I-ho. * Come sit ye down together, (three times) (At this star all bow to each other and sit down.) I-ho, I-ho, I-ho; And bringf more liquor hither {three times) (At this dagger all the company beckon to the drawer.)
I-ho, I-ho, I-ho. It goes into the * cranium, {three times) (At this star the first man drinks his glass, while the others sing and point at him.) I-ho, I-ho, I-ho; And f thou'rt a boon companion {three times) (At this dagger all sit down, each clapping the next man on the shoulder.) I-ho, I-ho, I-ho. Every line of the above is to be sung three times, except I-ho, I-ho, I-ho. Then the second man takes his glass and sings; and so round.
About 1728, after the success of The Beggars' Opera, a great number of other ballad operas were printed. In the Cobblers' Opera, and some others, this tune is called I am the Duke of Norfolk ; but in The Jovial Grew, The Livery Bake, and The Lover his own Bival, it is called There was a bonny blade. It acquired that name from the following song, which is still occasionally to be heard, and which is also in Pills to purge Melancholy, from 1698 to 1719:—
» Spindle's noise, i.e., Spindle's band, or company of musicians.