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Vaughan Williams on Music$
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David Manning

Print publication date: 2007

Print ISBN-13: 9780195182392

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195182392.001.0001

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English Folk-Songs

English Folk-Songs

(p.184) (p.185) Chapter 38 English Folk-Songs
Vaughan Williams on Music

David Manning

Oxford University Press

This chapter deals with English folk song and does not try to touch the sister art of ballad poetry, though many of the conclusions that it attempts are equally applicable to the folk words as to folk tunes. The study of English folk song is of comparatively recent origin. For years musicians and scientists, while fully recognizing the existence of traditional music in every foreign country, and even in Ireland, Scotland, and Wales, denied, for some inexplicable reason, there being any in England. It was considered that England was an unmusical nation, and that music was a sort of hothouse product to be imported from a foreign country and left to drag out a half-starved existence far from its home. It is difficult to see how such an art could be of any benefit to anybody.

Keywords:   folk song, folk tunes, traditional music, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, England, unmusical nation

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