Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 1

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322                                  ENGLISH SONG AND BALLAD MUSIC.
In Wit and Drollery, and in several other publications, is a song, entitled The Sunt, commencing—
" Clear is the air, and the morning is fair,
Fellow huntsmen, come wind me your horn; Sweet is the breath, and fresh is the earth That melteth the rime from the thorn." Hunting the Hare is also in the list of the songs and ballads printed by William Thackeray, at the Angel in Duck Lane, in the early part of the reign of Charles II., and it is, in all probability, the song to this tune (commencing—
" Songs of shepherds, and rustical roundelays "), because the tune was then popular, and the words are to be found near that time in Westminster Drollery, part ii. (1672); as well as afterwards in Wit and Drollery, 1682; in the Collection -of Old Ballads, 8vo., 1727; in Miscellany Poems, edited by Dryden, iii. 309 (1716); in Ritson's, Dale's, and other Collections of English Songs.
The first copy of the tune that I have discovered is in Playford's Mustek's Recreation on the Lyra Viol, 1652; the second is in Musick's Recreation on the Viol, Lyra-way, 1661. In both publications it is entitled Room for Cuckolds.
Pennant speaking of Rychard Middleton (father of Sir Hugh Middleton), says, " Thomas, the fourth son, became Lord Mayor of London, and was the founder of the family of Chirk Castle. It is recorded that having married a young wife in his old age, the famous song of Room for Cuckolds, here comes my Lord Mayor I was invented on the occasion."—Pennant's Tours in Wales, ii. 152 (1810). Thomas Middleton was Lord Mayor of London in 1614. Pennant gives the Sebright MSS. as his authority for the anecdote.
In the Pepys Collection, i. 60, will be found, "A Scourge for the Pope; satyrically scourging the itching sides of this obstinate brood in England. To the tune of Room for Cuckolds." It is one of Martin Parker's early songs: " Printed by John Trundle, at his shop in Smithfield," and signed, " Per me, Martin Parker." Another song, which bears this title of the tune, is contained in vol. xvi. of the King's Pamphlets Brit. Mus., and dated in MS., 1659. It is also quoted, by the same name, in Folly in print, or A Book of Rhymes, 1667, in the song, " Away from Romford, away, away."
A third, and perhaps the earliest' name for the air, is Room for Company; apparently derived from a ballad in the Pepys Collection, i. 168, entitled and commencing, " Room for Company, here comes good fellowes. To a pleasant neio tune." Imprinted at London for E. W. This was perhaps Edward White, a ballad-printer of Elizabeth's reign, and of the earliest part of that of James I. '
In Pills to purge Melancholy, vi. 136, there is a song about the twelve great Companies of the city of London, printed to this tune, and commencing— " Room for gentlemen, here comes my Lord Mayor."
In the Roxburghe Collection, i. 538, is, " The fetching home of May; or— " A pretty new ditty, wherein is made known, How each lass doth strive for to have a green gown. To the tune of Room for Company." Printed for J. Wright, jun., dwelling

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