Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 2

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IN ITS EFFECTS UPON MUSIC, ETC.                                409
of hands, among religious persons. He'says, " It becometh not, therefore, the persones religious to folow the matter of secular persones, that in theyr congresses, or common meetyngs or departyngs, do use to kisse, take hands, or such other touchings." (Fol. 213, b, 1532.) John Bunyan gives an amusing account of his scruples on the subject, in his Grace Abounding: " When I have seen good men salute those women that they have visited, or that have visited them, I have made my objections against it; and when they have answered that it was but a piece of civility, I have told them that it was not a comely sight. Some, indeed, have urged the holy kiss; but then I have asked them why they made balks ? why did they salute the most handsome, and let the ill-favoured go ? " This last question was, no doubt, rather perplexing to the good men to answer; but here Bunyan proves that very few were troubled by his scruples.
The abandonment of .the custom is said to have been "a part of that French code of politeness, which Charles II. introduced on his restoration." The last traces of its existence are perhaps in one or two letters from country gentlemen, in The Spectator ; one of which occurs in No. 240. The writer relates of him­self, that he had always been in the habit, even in great assemblies, of saluting all the ladies round; but a town-bred gentleman had lately come into the neighbourhood, and introduced his " fine reserved airs." " Whenever," says the writer, " he came into a room, he made a profound bow, and fell back, then recovered with a soft air, and made a bow to the next, and so on. This is taken for the present fashion; and" there is no young gentlewoman within several miles of this place who has been kissed ever since his first appearance among us."
Another custom, to which the Puritans objected violently, was that of men wearing long hair. Prynne wrote a book called The Unlovelinesse of Loveloches, in which he quotes a hundred authorities against it. Of these, one will suffice, from Purchas's Pilgrim: " Long hair is an ornament to the female sex, a token of subjection, an ensign of modesty: but modesty grows short in men as their hair grows long; and a neat, perfumed, frizzled, powdered bush hangs but as a token of vini non vendibilis, of much wine, little wit, of men weary of manhood, of civility, of Christianity, which would fain imitate American savages, infidels, barbarians, or women at the least and best."—(c. li., p. 490.)
To this, Butler, the author of Hudibras, retorted by a song upon the Round­heads. " Among other affected habits," says Mrs. Hutchinson in her Memoirs of Colonel Hutchinson, " few of the Puritans, what degree soever they were of, wore their hair long enough to cover their ears; and the ministers and many others cut it close round their heads, with so many little peaks, as was some­thing ridiculous to behold. From this custom of wearing their hair, that name of Roundhead .became the scornful term given to the whole Parliament party, whose army indeed marched out as if they had been only sent out till their hair was grown." In A full and complete Answer to A Tale in a Tub, 4to., 1642, the author says, " Some say we are so termed (Roundheads), because we do cut our hair shorter than our ears, and the reason is because long hair hinders the sound of the Word from entering into the heart." The following is Butler's song:—







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