The Gresley Papers Music


My Contribution

I've typed in Fallow's transcriptions of the music in the Gresley papers

This is my first swing at getting this music up. I'm sure there are mistakes!

SongMIDI fileNWC filePDF file
ZIP archiveeverything
Prenes a gardMIDINWCPDF
Eglamo?? - No 2 p. 73MIDINWCPDF
Title Ilegible - No 3, p.75MIDINWCPDF
Title Ilegible - No 4, p.75-74MIDINWCPDF
Title Ilegible - No 5, p.74MIDINWCPDF
Northumberland:3 - No 6, p.77MIDINWCPDF
Att???? - No 7, p.77MIDINWCPDF
Esper??:3 - No 8, p.76MIDINWCPDF
Bary??:2 - No 9, p.76MIDINWCPDF
Temper?? 3 - No 10, p.79MIDINWCPDF
La duches - No 11, p.79MIDINWCPDF
Talbott:2 - No 12, p.78MIDINWCPDF
Ly bens distoays - No 13, p.78MIDINWCPDF


An article from somewhere!

An article by Jennifer Nevile of New South Wales, in the May 1998 edition of _Early Music_, Vol XXVI/2, pp 231-244. "Dance in early Tudor England: and Italian Connection?" first introduced people to the new manuscript.

The manuscript was found by David Fallows among the Gresley Papers held in the Derbyshire Record Office, Matlock. He dates it to c1500 +/- 20 years.

Fallows, David: "The Gresley dance collection, c. 1500",
RMA research chronicle, xxix (1996), pp. 1-20.

There are 91 choreographic titles listed, but evidently only 26 actual choreographies.
Jennifer says that it seems to be an amalgam of French and Italian dance elements with more of an Italian flavor. There are English words for both French and Italian steps, but lots of flexibility in step combinations and patterns.
The Matlock dances seem very similar to Italian balli in that they offer a variety of floor patterns for various numbers of dancers. The majority are for two or three dancers, 2 dances are for 4, and seven dances do not specify.
The table of steps she gives has these names for the English steps:
obeysawance (she equates with riverenza)

wholl torne
half torne

flowrdelice (???)
trett (???)
retrett (???)
rak/rakkis (???)
horn pepy

She also gives these terms as directional indicators ("a feature lacking in the French basse danse, but common in both the Italian ballo and bassadanza")

furth / furthright
out / outward
com froo / throth tham / goo throth
contrary hyme
com / mett together
goo behend
goo compas
change places
change handes
torne aboute
move / a mevyng
loke over the shuldyr

Another interesting point is that she says the tunes are "remarkably similar" to Italian balli. They are written moslty in major prolation, share a similar range of notes, and are written in semibreves and minims (unlike French basse danses that are in even breves).

She gives an example of musical repeat schemes for two of the Matlock dances:
_Prenes in gre_ AAA B CC A B
_Northumberland_ AAA B CCC B C DD E

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