[SCA-Dance] Halfe Hannikin

Alex Clark alexbclark at pennswoods.net
Thu May 15 19:55:55 EDT 2008

At 11:33 AM 5/15/2008 -0400, White, John wrote:
> > From:  Tim McDaniel
> >
> > I notice that neither "Sides all" nor "turn[e]" say "That againe".
> > I don't think that's significant.  For example, if Playford were read
> > literally, the haying in Whirlygig would have the upper triangle
> > arming while the lower triangle was two-handed turning.  In the case
> > of Halfe Hannikin, I don't see how you could fill the music available
> > with one siding and one turn.
>I like to see the attitude of looking at Playford with the
>filter of common sense, not as if it was some kind of holy
>book of truth ... *grin*

Unfortunately, "common sense" too easily turns out to be an excuse for not 
examining one's unsupported assumptions. It is one thing to recognize that 
there seems to be a discrepancy in the source, quite another to assume that 
the existence of that discrepancy is reason to make any sort of change in 
order to fix it. It is only by trying to find all reasonable explanations 
for such discrepancies that one can find good reason to change a dance in 
any particular way.

In this case, I'm afraid that adding "that againe" would be making an 
assumption that is out of all proportion to the problem that it is supposed 
to solve. We have no clear evidence that the two remarkably similar halves 
of this strain could not have been meant as two playings of the full 
strain, so the music notation does not actually tell us how long the music 
is. It would be better to look to the figures for evidence of how the music 
is played, than to change the figures to fit the music.

Henry of Maldon/Alex Clark 

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