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OXFORD WAITS. English, Country Dance Tune (cut time). G Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. Waits were groups of professional musicians sometimes employed by municipalities in England to play on public holidays, ceremonial, and state occasions, and to "sound the hours" to the general population. Waits in the town of Oxford were first mentioned in the year 1501 and firmly established by the time of Elizabeth I. They through the first decade of the 18th century, albeit in decline in their latter era. See also "London Waits," "Chester Waits," "Colchester Waits," and "Waits (The)" from Playford's Dancing Master (1665).
Source for notated version:
Printed sources: Walsh (The Third Book of the Compleat Country Dancing-Master), London, 1735; p. 170 (reissued in 1749). Daniel Wright (Wright's Compleat Collection of Celebrated Country Dances), London, 1740; p. 86.