Popular Music Of The Olden Time Vol 2

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

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700                                  ENGLISH SONG AND BALLAD MUSIC.
might give the impression, that" God save the King " was a national song in 1692. " The victorious flotilla slowly retired, insulting the hostile camp with a thundering chant of 'God save the King'" (iv. 240, 1855). I am enabled, through his lordship's kindness, to give the original words, from Foucault's report to the French Minister of Marine, in M. Capefigue's Louis XIV., cap. xxxix.:
" Us eurent l'audace d'avancer dans une espece de havre, ou il y avoit vingt batimens marchands, deux fregates lfigeres, un yacht, et un grand nombre de chaloupea, tous fiehoues pres de terre, et bruldrent huit vaisseaux marchands: ensuite ils entrerent dana plusieurs batimens, qu'ils enrent la liberty et le loisir d'appareiller et d'emmener avec eux, en criant God save the King. Sans la mer qui se retiroit, ils auroient bruli ou enleve' le reste."
This, therefore, like all the rest, is the shout of " God save the King," and not the song or hymn.
Were I to sum up the case from the evidence before us, I should say :
That the first four theories may at once be discarded.
That there is an air very like " God save the King" in a manuscript of Dr. Bull's compositions, dated 1619, but no tittle of evidence to connect the words with that period.
Now, as to their having been written for James II.:
Benjamin Victor asserts that " the very words and music " are an old anthem that was " sung at St. James's Chapel, for King James II., when the Prince of Orange was landed." Arne does not say ' anthem," but " for the Catholic Chapel of James II." If sung at the Roman Catholic Chapel, the words would have been in Latin. Quere, was there any Protestant Chapel at St. James's in 1688 ? The words have never yet been found in any collection of the words of anthems, whether in print or manuscript, and although custom sanctions our applying the title of " national anthem " to God save the King, it is not, strictly speaking, an anthem, but a song or hymn. No musician of the reign of James II. (or even of George II.) would have entitled such a composition an anthem; neither could Dr. Bull have intended that for sacred music which he arranges as an air in one part of his manuscript, and as a dance-tune in another. The words of anthems are taken from the bible, or from some authorized form of prayer, and are never in rhyme.
This is not the only seeming inaccuracy in Victor's statement. He says, " Twenty men appear at the end of every play, and one, stepping forward from the rest, begins singing;" whereas, according to Dr. Arne's score,a each part was first sung as duet, and then repeated in chorus. The printed copies of the time are all for two voices.
The words of " God save the King" were inapplicable to the period of the accession of James II., because he had then no enemies to scatter j and, when he landed in Ireland (after his flight from England), he, to please the native Irish, adopted an Irish air as his March,b while the native " pipers and harpers played,
" Dr. Arne's manuscript score of " God save the King "      ten by Thomas Duffett, and printed in his New Poems.
is in the possession of Mr. Oliphant. It is for male      Songs, Sec, 8vo., 1676. It is the air to which Allan
voices only, accompanied by horns, violins, tenors and      Ramsay wrote the song of " Farewell to Lochaber," or
basses.                                                                               " Lochaber no more," and which had been known in Scot-
» This air was known in England, from the reign of      land before Ilamsay's publication, as " King James's
Charles II. down to 1730, as " Since Celia's my foe." It      March to Ireland," or " King James's March to Dublin." derived that name from a " song to the Irish tune " writ-







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