New Mile End Fair

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NEW MILE END FAIR. English, Country Dance Tune (4/4 time). C Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. Mile End Fair was instituted by Charles II in 1664 at the request of Thomas Wentworth, Earl of Cleveland, and took place annually at Michaelmas at Mile End Green. It was later amalgamated with Bow Fair (also known as Bow Green Goose Fair). The numerous London fairs, like any entertainment, had a lifespan, and not atypically, died and were revived sometimes several times. The sheer number of the fairs came in for criticism, particularly when they degenerated into public nuisances. The Middlesex Justices took up the issue in 1745, around the time Geohegan's pipe tutor was published. They complained the fairs:

"tended to the ruining of apprentices, servants, labourers, anc Take warning then ye fair, from this Fair's fall ! others," leading to disturbances of the peace gaming," and all sorts of lewd and disList, list, o lio orderly practices." In Bow Fair, as in others in the western parts of London, prizefighting (not an imposture as it came to be) declaration following: " was a particular attraction, especially when women took part in the bouts. The patent for Mile End Fair was apparently for one day only, like that of most of the gatherings.i the powerful interest of the liquor trade, all freely extended their privileges to a week and even more. ...[quoted in Notes and Queries, 1922, p. 306]

Source for notated version:

Printed sources: Geoghegan (Compleat Tutor for the Pastoral or New Bagpipe), c. 1745-46; p. 29.

Recorded sources:




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