By Karen McAulay
One of many earliest documented Scottish music creditors truly to move 'into the sphere' to assemble his specimens, was once the Highlander Joseph Macdonald. Macdonald emigrated in 1760 - contemporaneously with the beginning of James Macpherson's well-known yet a lot disputed Ossian venture - and it fell to the Revd. Patrick Macdonald to complete and as a consequence put up his more youthful brother's assortment. Karen McAulay lines the complicated background of Scottish tune gathering, and the book of significant Highland and Lowland collections, over the resultant a hundred thirty years.Looking at resources, authenticity, accumulating method and structure, McAulay areas those collections of their cultural context and lines hyperlinks with modern attitudes in the direction of such wide-ranging subject matters because the embryonic tourism and shuttle undefined; cultural nationalism; fakery and forgery; literary and musical creativity; and the circulation from antiquarianism and dilettantism in the direction of an more and more scholarly and didactic tone within the mid-to-late Victorian collections. recognition is given to a few of the functionality matters raised, both in correspondence or within the paratexts of released collections; and the narrative is interlaced with references to modern literary, social or even political heritage because it affected the creditors themselves. most importantly, this research demonstrates a resurgence of cultural nationalism within the overdue 19th century.
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Additional info for Our Ancient National Airs: Scottish Song Collecting from the Enlightenment to the Romantic Era
W. Chapman (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1924). 24 20 Our Ancient National Airs It cannot, however, be disputed, that the remote Highlanders at this day, are as fond of poetry and music, as the Arcadian shepherds of old. In giving some account of this remnant of primeval manners, we shall confine ourselves to compositions that are confessedly modern, in comparison to the age assigned to Ossian. 26 Thus, in a mere two paragraphs, the author of the dissertation alluded to the Ossian controversy; to Samuel Johnson; to an early idyllic pastoral age; and to the novel idea of oral tradition preserving airs from an illiterate people, though he went on to suggest that Highlanders were more likely to have been hunters than shepherds.
E. Patrick MacDonald], who was no more than ‘a mercenary collector’: My part [said Fraser] has been solely fitting the Music for the eye of the public, which, so far as I can learn, has never been done further than the attempt of a reverend gentleman in Argyllshire, which has been ill-selected, and worse communicated; nor can a professional man venture to amend such, without a perfect knowledge of the real Air, as well as its adaptation to the original Words, so that it tended only to bring these beautiful Originals into contemptible disrepute; nay, even to infer a doubt of their existence, till now brought forward.
598). 51 Steve Newman, ‘The Scots Songs of Allan Ramsay: “Lyrick” Transformation, Popular Culture, and the Boundaries of the Scottish Enlightenment’, Modern Languages Quarterly 63 (2002): 277–314 (p. 287), citing Maurice Lindsay, History of Scottish Literature (London: Hale, 1977), p. 179. 52 Also known in the nineteenth century as ‘the Knockie Collection of Highland Music’ – See Preface to the 1874 edition, by William Mackay. 53 The inference, with its gibe about a ‘professional man’ being unqualified to present this repertoire, is that Fraser was an insider to the tradition, in a way that the MacDonald brothers had not been.