Festive Fayre. 1400-1800   /   Musica Antiqua

Symposium 1157




In Early Times music was in every way as varied as it is today. Sacred, serious, dance, ceremonial, folk, easy listening and so on; human requirements change little over the years.

Until some 250 years ago composers were, in the main, humble craftsmen serving the requirements of their patrons be it Priest, Baron, or wealthy Merchant. There were no distinctions between “Pop” and serious composers, all had to turn their hand to whatever was required of them.

The main differentiation was social, between Court and Country, Gentry and Peasant. From the latter came the great heritage of Folk Music which evolved spontaneously down generations, whilst the former provided the composed music.

The catalyst between the two were the wandering minstrels, highly versatile but often destitute musicians who travelled from village to village, town to town providing entertainment to all and sundry.

This recording presents a selection of popular music spanning some 500 years from the 14th to 18th centuries. However there are common threads which run through all the items, namely, attractive repeatable tunes, a firm beat, and an on-going rhythmic impulse. 200 years on, the ingredients have not changed.

Although there is much early music that requires formidable technical accomplishments, composers also had to produce music of the highest quality that could be performed by lesser mortals. Such are the pieces presented here, the music in many cases being readily available in excellent reasonably priced editions.

By providing full details of publishers and catalogue numbers Musica Antiqua hope that listeners are encouraged to savour the delights of playing music themselves.

Where possible copies of period instruments have been used but specific instrumentation is not called for and the “authentic” spirit of the music can also be realised on modern instruments both acoustic and electronic.

In Festive Mood is mainly instrumental and draws on material from all over Europe including a sequence of rarely heard Polish dances. Songs were often played instrumentally as instanced in 'Renaissance Medley' and 'String and Pipe'.

In Festive Voice by contrast is predominately for voices and instruments and includes many familiar carols in not so familiar arrangements.The old French 'Carole' was a primitive ring dance and is usually credited with being the forerunner of the carol as we know it. Indeed carols were often dance-like in character and were a feature of all the major festivals. Even the Victorians could not resist this aspect on occasions as instanced by “Ding Dong Merrily” an old French Bransle reputedly danced by the downstairs staff after a hard days work! and “Good King Wenceslas” originally a Scandinavian dance-carol celebrating the advent of Spring.

Many of the carols have been taken from the excellent “Penguin Book of Christmas Carols”, a delightful mixture of the “Top Ten”, the familiar and the unusual, together with many tuneful descants written by the editor Elizabeth Poston. Having gained so much pleasure from this collection we would commend it not only for its music but also for its interesting and informative introduction.


1. Morisco   [1:50]   Rauschpfeife, Cittern, Krummhorn, Bongos   –   source: 1
2. Bouffons   [0:53]   Krummhorns, Renaissance Viol, Renaissance Rackett, Bongos     2
3. Pavane   [0:36]   Renaissance Viol, Recorders, Renaissance Rackett     3
4. Bransle l'Official   [0:49]   Rauschpfeife, Krummhorn, Drums, Cymbals     1

5. Masque Dance   [1:05]   William BRADE (1560-1630)  –  Recorders, Guitar, Renaissance Viol, Cornamusa     4
6. Wer war es, der lorbeer brach   (The Crushed Laurel)   [0:52]   J. CLEMENS non PAPA (1510-1556). Two Trios  –  Krummhorns, Gemshorn     5
7. Ich stund an einem Morgen   (I Stood One Morning)   [0:50]   J. CLEMENS non PAPA (1510-1556). Two Trios  –  Recorders     5
8. Es ist ein Schnee Gefallen   (Snow Has Fallen)   [0:46]   Caspar OTHMAYR (1515-1553)  –  Renaissance Viol, Mediaeval Recorder, Recorders     6
9. Die Weiber mit den Flohen   (Women and Fleas)   [0:46]   Ivo de VENTO (1540-1575)  –  Krummhorns,Tulip     7

10. Passtime With Good Company   [1:41]   Attributed to HENRY VIII  –  Voices, Krummhorn, Bass Viol, Drum     8
11. Fuggit Amore   [1:43]   Giovane Domenico da NOLA (1515-1592)  –  Voices     9
12. Wassail Song   [1:41]   Yorkshire Traditional  –  Voices, Recorder, Renaissance Viol     10
13. Bring Us Good Ale   [2:05]   Mediaeval English  –  Voices, Shawm, Drum     11
14. Tourdion Estampie   [1:11]   Pierre ATTAIGNANT. Pariser Tanzbuch 1530  –  Shawm, Bongos, Drum, Cymbals     12

15. Cantiga n.° 10   CSM 7   [1:24]   ALFONSO el SABIO  –  Psaltery     13
16. Leaping and Dancing   [0:41]   Catalan Folk Carol  –  Andalusian Pipe     10
17. Cantiga n.° 5   CSM 166   [1:14]   ALFONSO el SABIO  –  Psaltery, Gemshorn, Cornamuse, Drum     13

SLAVONIC FOLK MEDLEY   Anon. 16th Century   [Let's Be Cheerful   #3, 4, 5, 6, 37]
18. Folk Tune   [1:54]   Psaltery, Alto Gemshorn     14
19. Folk Tune   [1:00]   Sopranino Gemshorn, Psaltery     14
20. Polka   [1:05]   Rauschpfeife, Percussion     15
21. I Cannot Forget Thee   [0:45]   Viols, Cornamusa     15
22. Walachian Dance   [1:21]   Rauschpfeife, Xylophone,Krummhorn, Percussion     14

POLISH DANCE SEQUENCE   16     [Let's Be Cheerful   #9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14]
23. A Good Polish Dance   [0:51]   Anon. from the Organ Tablature of Christian Loeffelholz   –   Cabinet Organ, Sopranino Recorder
24. Cantino Polnica   [1:16]   Anon. from a Lute Tablature of 1619   –   Cabinet Organ, Descant Krummhorn
25. Dance   [1:46]   Mikolaj of CRACOW, from Jan of Lublin's Organ Tablature   –   Cabinet Organ
26. “Heyduck” Dance   [1:10]   Mikolaj of CRACOW, from Jan of Lublin's Organ Tablature   –   Cabinet Organ
27. Polish Dance   [1:37]   Anon. from the Lute Tablature of Mateusz Waisselius   –   Cabinet Organ (Regal Stop), Treble Recorder
28. Snatching Dance   [0:49]   Anon. from a 17th Century Lute Tablature   –   Cabinet Organ, Sopranino Recorder


CZECH CAROL COLLECTION   [Let's Be Cheerful   #18, 19, 20, 22, 23]
29. Tydlidom   [0:57]   Cittern, Descant Gemshom, Cornamusa, String Drum     10
30. Bohemian Traditional Carol   [0:53]   Recorders, Viol, Cornamusa     17
31. The Birds   [0:46]   Mediaeval Descant Recorder, Recorders, Triangle     18
32. Furiant   [0:53]   Renassiance Descant Recorder, Cittern, Cornamusa     10
33. The Drummer Boy   [1:19]   Krummhorns, Tabor     19

34. Tydlidom   [1:09]   Walachian Folk Carol  –  Voices, Cittern, Renaissance Rackett, Drum     10
35. As I Rode Out   [1:12]   16th Century English  –  Voices, Recorder, Renaissance Viol, Drum     20
36. Tomorrow Shall Be My Dancing Day   [1:41]   English Traditional  –  Voices, Psaltery, Andalusian Pipe     10
37. Rocking   [2:13]   Czech Traditional  –  Voices     10
38. On Christmas Night All Christians Sing   [1:27]   Sussex Traditional  –  Voices, Psaltery, Krummhorn, Recorder     10

39. Pavanne and Gaillarde “Est il conclud”   [3:05]   Claude GERVAISE, The Attaignant Dance Prints 1557   –   Recorder, Bass Viol     21
40. Pastorale   [2:22]   Antonio VIVALDI   –   Recorders, Guitar     22
41. Pavanne and Gaillarde Premiere   [1:55]   Etienne du TERTRE, The Attaignant Dance Prints 1557   –   Recorders, Bass Viol     23

42. O Bethlehem   [2:20]   Basque Traditional  –  Voices, Recorder, Renaissance Viol     10
43. Lullay, Lullay, Thou Littel Tyne Child   [2:16]   16th Century English, The Coventry Carol     20
      Soloists: Dorothy Uridge, Peter Vaughan; Renaissance Viol, Kortholt, Cornamuse
44. Puer Natus – A Boy is Born in Bethlehem   [1:28]   Michael PRAETORIUS (1571-1621)   –   Voices, Krummhorn, Renaissance Viol     24
45. Puer Natus   [0:22]   Michael PRAETORIUS (1571-1621). Medley For Two Gemshorns   –   Soprano, Alto Gemshorns     24
46. Walk Ye in All the Ways   [0:54]   Adam GUMPELZHAIMER (1559-1625)   –   Two Alto Gemshorns     25
47. Joseph Lieber Joseph Mein   [0:39]   Leonhardt SCHRÖTER (1540-1595)   –   Two Alto Gemshorns     26
48. Joseph Dearest Joseph Mine   [2:09]   16th Century Crib Carol   –   Voices, Recorder, Bass Viol     10
49. Tempus Adest Floridum   [1:40]   Mediaeval Spring Dance Carol     10
      a) Voices, Psaltery, Mediaeval Recorder  —  b) Mediaeval Recorder, Psaltery, Maracas
50. As I Sat on a Sunny Bank   [1:30]   English Folk Carol  –  Voices, Recorder, Bass Viol, Bells     10

DANCES FROM MUSICALISCHER TUGENDTSPIEGEL 1613   Erasmus WIDMAN   27     [Let's Be Cheerful   #28, 31, 32]
51. Dorothea   [0:52]   Viols, Recorder, Cornamuse, Kortholt, Glockenspiel
52. Maria   [1:35]   Viols, Recorders, Renaissance Rackett
53. Susanna   [1:09]   Viols, Recorders, Renaissance Rackett, Xylophone, Tabor

54. Von Kimmel Hoch   [1:32]   Samuel SCHEIDT (1587-1654)   –   Soloist: Dorothy Uridge; Renaissance Viol, Kortholt, Cornamuse     28
55. All People That on Earth Do Dwell   [2:34]   Voices, Krummhorns, Viol, Rauschpfeife     29
      Arrangements by Louis BOURGEOUS & John DOWLAND


Title of Publication / Editor · Arranger / Publishers
1   Alte und Neue Tanze / Hans Bergese / B. Schott, Mainz · 3573
2   Twelve Dances from Arbeau's Orchesography / Freda Dinn / Schott, London · 11002
3   Six Sixteenth Century Quartets / Walter Bergmann / Schott, London · 5719, RMS 494
4   William Brade Nine Masque Dances / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM TM32
5   Antiqua Chorbuch Vol 2 Book 2 / Helmut Monkemeyer / B. Schott Söhne, Mainz · 4257
6   Music for Crumhorns Vol 1 / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM MCR1
7   The Renaissance Band Vol 5 / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM RB5
8   Musica Britannica Vol XVIII / John Stevens / Stainer and Bell · 5408
9   Giovan Domenico da Nola. Nine Villanelle / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM TM41   (Translation: Alan Robson)
10   The Penguin Book of English Carols / Elizabeth Poston / Penguin Books Ltd
11   Bodleian Library Manuscript
12   Pierre Attaingnant Pariser Tanzbuch / F.J. Giesbert / B. Schott, Mainz · 3758
13   Transcribed from original source
14   From Old Czech Collections. Pieces in two parts / Pavel Klapil / Veb Deutscher Verlag für Musik
15   Slavonic Tunes / Walter Bergmann / Schott· 10839
16   Music of the Polish Renaissance / Jozef M. Chominski, Zofia Lissa Polski / Wydawnictwo Muzyczne · 1955
17   Carols for Choirs No. 2 / C.H.Trevor / OUP
18   The Oxford Book of Carols for Schools / Freda Dinn / OUP
19   "Carol Gailey Carol / Beatrice Harrop / A & C Black Ltd
20   Two Coventry Carols / Richard Rastell / Antico Edition · A.E.0006
21   The Attaingnant Dance Prints Vol. 3 / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM AD3
22   Neun Pastoralen alter Meister // Hermann Moeck, Celle · 2060
23   The Attaingnant Dance Prints Vol. 7 / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM AD7
24   Der Chorsinger Nun Finger und Feid Froh / Gennann Meyer & Karl Votterle / Bärenreiter-Ausgabe · 2713
25   Canons and Rounds / Eric M. Cates / Schott, London · 10100 RMS 11a
26   Hausmusik sur Weihnacht / Albert Rodemann / Hermann Moeck, Celle · 2032
27   German Instrumental Musicof the Late Renaissance / Bernard Thomas / London Pro Musica · LPM GM10
28   Das Gorlitzer Tabulaturbuch / Christhard Mahrenholz / Edition Peters · 4494
29   From Arrangements by Louis Bourgeous and John Dowland

Director: Michael Uridge

MUSICA ANTIQUA was formed in 1962 by Michael and Dorothy Uridge, and Alan and Stella Giles who all had an interest in early music and instruments. Gradually their numbers grew until they had about sixteen regular members at the times these recordings were made. Over the years they have given many performances mainly in and around the South Coast. Highlights have included visits to Coventry and Chichester Cathedrals, and appearances have been made in the Brighton, Portsmouth and Greenwich Festivals. In 1982 and 1984 they made visits to the wonderful city of Dubrovnik in Yugoslavia where they had the privilege of playing both in the beautiful Franciscan Monastery Church and the Ducal Palace.


Michael Uridge, Dorothy Uridge, Pamela Vaughan, Shirley Vaughan, Peter Vaughan, Neil Turner, Jeanette Ward, Heather Saint, Penelope Shone, Jeremy Backhouse, Stella Giles.


Dorothy Uridge — Soprano
Peter Vaughan — Bass
Neil Turner — Cabinet Organ
Michael Uridge — Renaissance Woodwind


Anne Metherell, Mary Kelly, Pauline Barstow, Stella Giles, Anne Clark, Heather Saint, Ursula Staunton, Mary Britain, Penelope Shone, Peggy Titmus, Dorothy Uridge, Christine Constable, Jane Weaver, Neil Turner, Stephen Powell, Peter Vaughan, Jeremy Backhouse.

Taken from recordings made in the Parish Church of St Mary's, Goring-by-Sea, West Sussex by kind permission of the Vicar, The Rev. P H E Bennett, during 1980, 1981, and 1983. Produced and edited by Anthony Hodgson and Michael Uridge. Engineered and balanced by Anthony Hodgson, assisted by Peter Parsons. Mastered by Bob Auger Associates and Gemini Sounds.

Cover Design: Becca Smith

Copyright: This recording with its notes is copyright. It may not be broadcast, copied, hired out or publicly performed without written permission.


It is hardly surprising given the size of Europe and the hazards of travel and communication during Mediaeval and Renaissance times that the variety of instruments is inexhaustible. A craftsman was responsible for every instrument and thus each was a unique product. Since it is only occasionally that composers specified instrumentation, performers were left to choose their own in accordance with availability, ability and personal preference.

All the instruments used are replicas and by modern craftsmen. The Early Music Shops in Bradford and London offer a comprehensive service and sponsor a biannual November exhibition normally held in the New Horticultural Hall in London.


The most versatile of the wind instruments, were in constant use from the 12th to 18th centuries. During this time, they evolved considerably to accomodate developing musical requirements until they were gradually superseded by the more expressive transverse flute during the 17th and 18th centuries. Their development can be traced as follows:

The Mediaeval Recorder

Examples have been discovered and dated back to the 14th century and modern copies produced. They had a very wide parallel bore with large finger holes, producing a chuffy yet powerful tone. This means that they are at their best in the lower octave, intonation in the upper octave becoming especially difficult. As much Mediaeval music has a limited melodic range, this is not a disadvantage. The principal sizes of mediaeval recorder correspond to the Sopranino descant and treble as we know them today.

The Renaissance Recorder

Also had a parallel bore modified to give a clear powerful bell-like tone with an extended reliable range. They were ideal instruments for playing in consort and with other instruments and voices.

The Baroque Recorder

Has a conical bore and a clear range of over two octaves. It was developed specifically for solo use in such forms as sonatas, trio sonatas and concerti. Most modern examples have a characteristic reedy tone but surviving 17th century instruments by makers such as Bressan produce a tone quality nearer to that of the transverse flute.


Are recorders made from the horns of goats, deer and cattle. Because they have a very wide bore, they cannot be overblown and they normally have a range of only 9 notes. They are very easy to play and possess a unique tone quality that always brings forth appreciative comments.


Were very popular during the Renaissance and are played by blowing through a slit in a windcap onto a double reed placed in the top of the instrument. Basic fingering is similar to the recorder but over-blowing is impossible because the player has not direct control over the reed. Like nearly all Renaissance instrtunents they were produced in families for consort playing.

Krummhorns (Bent horn)

Have the appearance of an up-turned walking stick and produce a characteristic and appealing buzzy sound, ideal for consort playing and accompanying voices. A consort of krummhoms is an experience in itself although comments concerning the arrival of a swarm of bees are not unknown.


Is effectively a straight krummhorn but producing a quieter sound. There is some mystery concerning this instrument because no originals have yet come to light whereas there are numerous surviving krummhorns. In Mediaeval times, cornamuse referred to a bag-pipe type of instrument and the Renaissance cornamuse as we know it today is basically a bagpipe chanter. There is contemporary written evidence of their existence.

Kortholt (Short wood)

Again similar but quieter in sound to the krummhom. These instruments are characterised by having connected twin-bores, which not only halves the length of the instrument for a given basic pitch but also allows an extended range of an octave and a sixth.

Renaissance Rackett

The parallel bore concept pushed to an extreme of 9 connecting bores placed in parallel to produce an instrument able to play the 3rd F below middle C whilst being less than a foot in length. This is neither a windcap nor a free reed instrument as the player's mouth acts as the windcap with the lips resting on a pirouette surrounding the reed. The rich buzzy quality is very effective when doubling other bass instruments and voices.

Rauschpfeife (Shrieking pipe)

This is a shawm (see below) played through a windcap as opposed to placing the reed direct into the mouth. Its conical flared bore gives it a raucous strident quality. The sopranino Rauschpfeife is especially suitable for topping a loud consort or playing a rowdy dance.



This family of loud outdoor instruments, from the smaller members of which the oboe was developed in the 17th century, are still very much in use all over the Middle and Far East today. Indeed, shawm bands are still to be found in Spain and Brittany. A full shawm band is an exciting sound with the family ranging from the one foot schalmei to the 10ft bombards. These bands were very popular in Renaissance Germany.


The Viol

It is possible that the viol and the guitar have a common ancestor in the vihuela of Medieval Spain which could be either plucked or bowed. Viols were made in several sizes and played whilst being supported by the legs. They normally have six strings and frets were used to determine the individual notes. Like so many Renaissance instruments, they were ideal for playing in consort together and with other instruments. They attained their golden age in the consort music of Elizabethan England. The bass Viola da Gamba was extensively used as a continuo instrument during the Baroque period as well as having quite a considerable solo repertoire.

The Guitar

Needs no introduction and as indicated has a common ancestor with the viol.

The Cittern

This is a fretted double strung instrument, probably developed from the citole of Mediaeval times. It has unusual re-entrant tuning whereby the third string is tuned lower than the fourth string. Having a flat back, it looks rather likes banjo. It has an extensive solo repertoire and became a very popular instrument, so much so that it could often be seen hanging in barber's shops to enable waiting customers to while away the time. It can be plucked either with the fingers or with a plectrum.

The Psaltery

Here a number of strings are stretched across a sound board and usually it has sufficient strings to enable the player to use both hands, thus providing an accompaniment to the melody. Like so many of our instruments, it was of Eastern origin and found its way into Europe during the Crusades. The example used in this record is a pig-snout psaltery, so-called because of its shape.


A portable instrument, with four ranks 8ft, 4ft, 2ft and regal. Built to be carried in the back of an estate car, nevertheless it was found adequate for service as continuo organ in Bach's B Minor Mass in the Royal Festival Hall.


Percussion has always played an important part in popular music, this is especially so in dance music where an insistent steady beat is required. As will be seen a wide variety of percussion is used on this recording including tuned percussion such as the xylophone, glockenspiel, bells and string drum.

Michael Uridge