Coventry (was William Wooding Starmer)
richard.offen at o...
Thu Apr 1 14:13:05 BST 2004
--- In bellhistorians at yahoogroups.com, "Bill Hibbert" <bill at h...>
> To respond to the various messages:
> I do have a copy of CP's book on Coventry, it is very well thumbed,
> I have read it many times. A good book.
> As regards the relative merits of 1774 Whitechapel and 1926
> Gilletts, the account of the debate in Young's book make
> reading. There was a good deal of anti-Simpson feeling (Simpson
> and all that) but there was a clear view from several protagonists
> that the Coventry bells should be preserved because they were the
> very best example of their time, even if nowadays one could do
> better. For example, one proposal from EAY himself was to buy the
> bells and keep them safe in the hope they could be rehung somewhere
> else in future, while allowing Coventry to have their Gillett
> This proposal foundered because Coventry wanted to reuse the actual
> metal for reasons of sentiment - 'Our bells are not for sale'.
> Since reading Young's book, I have done a detailed comparison of
> Coventry nominals against the figures I measured at Mancroft the
> other day. It is quite clear from this comparison that Whitechapel
> in the 1770s knew exactly what they were trying to do and pretty
> much achieved it. When I get a bit of time I'll put up a webpage.
> One interesting aspect of the argument in court was the
> about the tuning of the bells. It is clear from A. A. Hughes'
> figures that he was judging the bells against Just tuning - by this
> standard they are almost all very close. The argument was made in
> court that many of the bells were up to a quarter of a tone flat.
> The most likely explanation is that they were being judged against
> equal temperament (though it is just possible that the listener was
> hearing the primes).
> I felt very much for A. A. Hughes during the court hearing. He
> states very robustly, in writing, that the bells were of high
> quality for their date, but at the same time must have been beset
> Taylors and Gilletts taking his market by producing true-harmonic
> bells. He eventually admitted in court that were he to cast such
> bells now he would cast them with octave hums.
> As I said, I now have the nominals of the bells. I don't suppose
> Gilletts measured the partials before consigning them to 'their
> fiery ordeal'? Is there any way of finding out?
> Bill H
Try Alan Buswell, he has most of the Gillett tuning figures on a
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