[DWJ] Fwd: Re: Tune of "Angel of Caprona"

Philip Belben philip at axeside.co.uk
Thu Jul 13 08:26:37 EDT 2017

On 13/07/2017 10:33, Jameela Lares wrote:
> There are numerous hymns that would fit it, actually, since eight
> syllables in a line is "long meter," as opposed to alternating eight and
> six, which is "common meter" and why almost all of Emily Dickenson's
> poems can be sung to "The Yellow Rose of Texas" or a slightly scrambled
> "Good King Wenceslas."

Except that Angel of Caprona is not long metre.  Long metre is four (or 
a multiple of four) lines of eight syllables, i.e. 8888, iambic.  Common 
metre, as you point out, is 8686 iambic.  (To me the reference tune for 
common metre is "Winchester Old" (While shepherds watched their flocks 
by night))

Angel of Caprona is not only trochaic rather than iambic, it is in the 
unusual metre of 8887 - three lines of eight syllables and one of seven. 
  The few tunes that fit (taken from a few hymn books pulled not very 
randomly from my shelves) are:

Quem Pastores (Jesus, good above all other)
Old Yeavering (Like a mighty river flowing)
Charing (Father, who on man dost shower)

The metrical indexes of hymn books don't always distinguish between 
these and the iambic and dactylic 8887 metres, both of which also have 
tunes available, albeit in fewer books.

The kitchen song, by contrast, is not 8887 but 8787, which is why it 
fits "Ode to Joy".  That sort of mangling of metre is something I 
imagine Angelica would be good (?) at, but it seems the Montana kids can 
do it too...

And Men of Harlech starts out 8885, which is why it seems to work fairly 
well, but it then gets weird.


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