Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 2

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ANGLO-SCOTTISH SONGS.                                               615
The Scotch adhered to old notation a longer than the English, especially in writing music on six lines.b
I leave it to Scottish antiquaries to determine, whether corroborative evidence of the date of the manuscripts may not be found among the titles of their own airs. Mr. Dauney even passed over Lesleys Lilt without a suspicion that it de­rived its name from the Scotch general in the civil wars. A march" and another air were certainly named after him before the Restoration.
It is curious to mark the difference between English and Scotch writers on the music of their respective countries; Dr. Burney, like the fashionable English­man, minutely chronicling the Italian operas of his day, and hesitating not to misquote Hall, Hollinshed, and Hentzner, to get rid of the trouble of writing about the music of England; and the Scotch sturdily maintaining the credit of Scotland—some being intent rather upon putting forth fresh claims than too nicely scrutinizing those already advanced, if they tell in favour of their country.
It is time, however, that we should have one collection to consist exclu­sively of Scottish music. Burns and George Thomson confess in their published correspondence, to having taken any Irish airs that suited them, and even in Wood's Songs of Scotland, the publisher's plan has been to include all the best and most popular airs, and not to limit the selection to such as are strictly of Scottish origin.
The separation of the English and Irish tunes from the Scotch in these collections, was nominally attempted by Mr. Stenhouse in his notes upon airs in Johnson's Scots Musical Museum. I say "nominally," for those notes are like historical novels,—wherever facts do not chime in with the plan of the tale, imagination supplies the deficiencies. Mr. Stenhouse's plan was threefold,— firstly, to claim every good tune as Scotch, that had become popular in Scotland; secondly, to prove that every song of doubtful or disputed parentage came to England from Scotland "at the union of the two crowns;" and, thirdly, to supply antiquity to such Scotch airs as required it. All this he accomplished in a way quite peculiar to himself. Invention supplied authors and dates, and fancy inscribed the tunes in sundry old manuscripts, where the chances were greatly against any one's searching to find them. If the search should be m:ide, would it not be made by Scotchmen ? Englishmen care only for foreign music, and do not trouble themselves about the matter; and will Scotchmen expose what has been done from such patriotic motives ? Upon no other ground than this imaginary impunity, can I account for the boldness of Mr. Stenhouse's inventions.
Unfortunately for his fame, two of his own countrymen did not think all this ingenuity necessary .for the reputation of Scottish music. Mr. David Laing, therefore, made a tolerably clear sweep of his dates, and Mr. George Farquhar
• I believe it was the retention of the old form of the      oldest writing, and differing from any other, in the manu-
letler "d" in the musical notation that deceived an acute      scripts.
Scotch antiquary and excellent judge of the age of literary         b Witness Mrs. Agnes Hume's book, dated 1704.
manuscripts. In a portion of the tablature it has a stroke         e I do not mean the tune which Oswald prints in the
through the top (like the Anglo-Saxon letter which cor-      second volume of his Caledonian Pocket Companion under
responds with ourth), and this is also found in the title      the name of Lasly's March, but the Lesleyes March iu
of 'Lady,wilt thou love me?" which appears to be the       Playford's Mustek's Recreation on the Lyra Viol, 1656.







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