Sir David Carnegie of Southesk Bart's Strathspey

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X:1 T:Sir David Carnegie of Southesk Bart’s Strathspey M:C L:1/16 R:Strathspey B:Archibald Duff – Collection of Strathspey Reels &c. (1794, p. 2) Z:AK/Fiddler’s Companion K:Bb B,2B2B3c defe d2B2|C2c2c3d edcB A2F2|B,2B2B3c defe d2B2| C3e dcBA B4B4:|f2d2B2f2 (gfga) b3g|f3g gfed edcB A2F2| F2d2B2f gfga b3g|f2d2 {e}d2cB Tc4 B2(de)|f2d2B2f2 gfga b3g| fgab gfed edcB AcAF|{A}G2BG {G}F2BF {G}E2BE {E}D3g|fgab gfed {d}c4B4||



SIR DAVID CARNEGIE OF SOUTHESK BART'S STRATHSPEY. Scottish, Strathspey (whole time). B Flat Major. Standard tuning (fiddle). AAB. The Carnegie family, baronets and earls of Southesk, were patrons of Archibald Duff, and supported many other causes, including Gaelic schools in the Highlands and support for mothers in childbirth. During Duff's time the family was headed by Sir David Carnegie of Pitarrow (1753-1805), 4th Baronet earl of Southesk, and his wife Agnes Murray Elliot (1763-1960). David was a Whig politician and Member of Parliament for the Montrose Burghs and later Forfar from 1784 until his death. Agnes Elliot's father had been Lieutenant Governor of New York through the American Revolution, and had a considerable estate in what is now Philadelphia, which was confiscated at the end of the war. Elliot, however, managed to hold on to the esteem of many of the leading adversaries during the conflict, and received complimentary letters from George Washington, General Knox, and other prominent men when he departed American for England in 1783 at the conclusion of the Peace. His daughter married Sir David Carnegie that same year. The union produced nine daughters before the steadfast Lady Carnegie birthed two sons: Christian Mary (1784-1860), Elizabeth (1784-1884), Jane (1785-1859), Mary (1788-1834), Eleanore (1789-1855), Agnes (1790-1875), Mary (1793-1877), Emma (1794-1882), Madeline (1796-1858), James (1799-1849) and John (1802-1879). Lady Carnegie survived her husband by over fifty years. Many of the Carnegie daughters remained unmarried, and only a few had children. Carnegie was succeeded in Parliament as representative of Forfar by the William Maule of Panmure.

At the time Duff published his collection (1794) the Carnegie daughters were still children; the eldest, Christian Mary, was but ten. Thus, all the tunes Duff wrote for the daughters, including their "favorites", were addressed to young women who he may have been instructing in dance and/or music. Duff's strathspey "Sir David Carnegie of Southesk Bart's" has pride of place as the first tune in his 1794 collection.

Additional notes

Source for notated version: -

Printed sources : - Duff (Collection of Strathspey Reels &c.), 1794; p. 2.

Recorded sources: -



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