Flowers of Mason's Court (The)
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FLOWERS OF MASON'S COURT, THE. English, Country Dance Tune or Jig (6/8 time). B Flat Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB. The tune is unique to London publishers Samuel, Ann and Peter Thompson's Compleat Collection, vol. 5 (1788). The jig was entered into the large 1840 music manuscript collection of multi-instrumentalist John Rook of Waverton, near Wigton, Cumbria, as "Flowers of Masons." Rook's truncated title would seem to change the meaning of the original title (Thompson, 1788) which perhaps referred to Mason's Court in Stratford-upon-Avon, a medieval building in Rother Street, reputed to have been built around 1450 and to be oldest dwelling-house in the town. There were also Mason's Courts in London, Dublin, and other towns. Mason's Court in London was named for William Mason and was a superior development of around 1720, with eleven good-sized three-story houses, many of them double fronted and five bays wide. They became Osborn Place in the 1780s when (New) Mason’s Court was formed, to the south. The early Mason's Court was occupied by French Hugeonot refugees, skilled tradesmen who set up in the silk industry that spilled over from Spitalfields.
Source for notated version:
Thompson (Compleat Collection of 200 Favourite Country Dances, vol. 5), 1788; No. 103, p. 52.