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JUSTICE BALANCE. English, Country Dance Tune (4/4 time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. The melody was first printed in London publisher Charles and Samuel Thompson's Compleat Collection of 200 Country Dances, vol. 4 (1780, pp. 3 & 100). It also can be found in the John Fife music manuscript copybook of 1780-1804 (?). Fife was from Perthshire, Scotland, who may have been a seaman for a time. Justice Balance is a character in George Farquhar's play The Recruiting Officer (1706), a gentle and affectionate satire on provincial life and the human nature of national heroes. Balance is the father of Silvia, who will inherit his fortune when he dies. Interestingly, Farquhar had firsthand knowledge recruiting, for at the time he was writing his play, he was a Grenadier Officer who actually spent some time recruiting in Shrewsbury. The first two bars (repeated in measure 5 & 6) are identical to Turlough O'Carolan's air "Carolan's Draught."
Source for notated version:
Printed sources: Callaghan (Hardcore English), 2007; p. 40.