The Story of the Harp in Wales by Osian Ellis

By Osian Ellis

Osian Ellis appears to be like on the improvement of the device, from the emergence of the straightforward frame-harp to the refinements of the triple harp. He tells of the lives and talents of the musicians themselves, from the harpists of the center a while via to the well-known figures of the eighteenth and 19th centuries - Blind John Parry and John Thomas - and people of more moderen years. This publication has whatever for everybody, giving a huge define of the tale of the harp in Wales, and but together with incisive insights into a few facets that have no longer earlier than been coated in such an available type.

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Extra info for The Story of the Harp in Wales

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Huw Machno, in a cywydd to Robert ap Huw seeking a harp: Ceimion wrachïod cymwys Yn siarad pob teimlad dwys. ) However, I would like to propound the theory that these gwrachïod were intended on the Welsh harp to press on the string to cause it to sharpen by a half-tone or a whole-tone. This would cause the strings to become oblique, bent, awrylleddf. According to the grammars there are no oblique strings in the Cras gywair; we may surmise, therefore, that this was the basic tuning of the harp: g a a c d e e g.

The Cras gywair, then, gives five modal pentatonic scales. I have added the sol-fa equivalents; to readers of sol-fa they reflect very clearly the modal modal qualities of scales, and this subtlety must have been important in medieval timesso important, in fact, that one harper was drummed out of the profession by his fellows for his arrogance in daring to play before them in keys or scales that were forbidden by their laws of music! Robert ap Huw gives a diagram for tuning Lleddf gywair Gwyddyl, which, according to one treatise, is the same as Lleddf gywair.

Hardly any two manuscripts agree on the spellings of these names, thus emphasizing that the art was normally transmitted by word of mouth and came to be written down only during the sixteenth century. , with their chord symbols, which, of course, do not fit those particular variants. Fortunately, this confusion does not persist, and his second cwlwm, Mac y mwn byr, follows on page 28 of the manuscript. This, and the following cwlwm in the Mac y delgi metre, are written out in full, but all the other twenty-one metres show only the first cainc.

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