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Annotation:Noble Squire Dacre

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'''NOBLE SQUIRE DACRE.''' English, Scottish; Air (6/8 time) or March. England, Northumberland, North West. G Major(most versions): A Major (Cocks). Standard tuning (fiddle). AABB. "This beautiful air is possessed of that uncommon characteristic appertaining to some of our oldest and best national melodies, that is, if played slowly it awakens the emotional feelings of the listeners, and if played in quick time it appeals as effectively to their saltatory powers. Sir Walter Scott, in a letter to Mr. John Ball of Gateshead, dated 7th March, 1816, says: 'The Dowager Lady Penicuick (a sister of noble Squire Dacre) tells me that when any of the family was buried the bag-piper played that tune at the funeral, as they play the family lament to this day in the Highlands.' There is no doubt that the Dacres, like the other noble families of the district, maintained their family minstrels; and Sir Walter Scott utilized, in an appropriate and happy spirit, the information he received from lady Penicuick, in his poem of 'The Lay of the Last Minstrel,' canto IV., stanza 14:--
''Lord Dacre's billmen were at hand-''<br>
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''Printed sources'': Bruce & Stokoe ('''Northumbrian Minstrelsy'''), 1882; p. 161. Cocks ('''Tutor for the Northumbrian Half-Long Bagpipes'''), 1925; No. 12, p. 10. G.H. Davidson ('''Davidson's Instrumental Gems'''), London, n.d.; p. 14. Riddell ('''Collection of Scotch Galwegian Border Tunes'''), 1794; p. 15.

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