Dutchess of Buccleugh's Favorite

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DUCHESS OF BUCCLEUGH'S FAVORITE. AKA and see "Duchess of Buccleugh (3)," "Shoemaker's Daughter (1)," "Souter's Daughter (The)." Scottish, Slow Strathspey. B Flat Major (Gow, Hunter): D Major (O'Farrell). Standard tuning (fiddle). AB. The composition has been credited to Niel Gow (1727-1807), however, the tune was earlier printed as "Dutchess of Buccleugh's Reell" by Angus Cumming in 1780, and still earlier as "Souter's Daughter (The)" (AKA - "Shoemaker's Daughter (1)) in Neil Stewart's Collection of the Newest and Best Reels &c. (1761).

The strathspey was named in honor of Lady Elizabeth Montagu (1743-1827), daughter of Sir George Montagu, 1st Duke of Montague, and Lady Mary Montagu. In 1767 Elizabeth became the wife of Sir Henry Scott (1746-1812), the 3rd Duke of Buccleugh, with whom she had seven children (although her first born, George, lived only a couple of months), and they resided at Dalkeith House in Midlothian. Sir Walter Scott, friends of the Duke and Duchess, said of her, "she was a woman of unbounded beneficence to, and even beyond, the extent of her princely fortune. She had a masculine courage, and great firmness in enduring affliction, which pressed on her with continued and successive blows in her later years." Thomas Gainsborough (1727-1788) painted her portrait. On March 13, 1810, Nathaniel Gow's Annual Ball was held in the Assembly Rooms in Edinburgh, and the list of ten 'patrons and directors' included 'Her Grace the Duchess of Buccleuch' among other Scottish nobility and society matrons.

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Carlin (The Gow Collection), 1986; No. 39. Gow (Fourth Collection of Niel Gow's Reels), 2nd ed., originally 1800; p. 5. Hunter (Fiddle Music of Scotland), 1988; No. 168. O'Farrell (Pocket Companion, vol. IV), 1810; p. 80.

Recorded sources:




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