[r-t] Anything Goes vs Peals Mean Something

Iain Anderson iain.anderson at talentinnovations.co.uk
Fri Aug 8 10:16:01 UTC 2008

Mark Davies wrote:

> 1. Enough changes. We could debate what that is, but to me 
> allowing less than 5040 for Triples devalues quite a lot of 
> change-ringing history.
> Suddenly you can ring a peal of bobs-only Grandsire. No!

I would be interested in ringing a proper extent of Grandsire Triples in a
similar style to the way the Birmingham band did it a couple of decades ago,
but with an extra change at the start.  Begin in rounds and go straight into
the method; first backstroke is 1325476.  Stop when you run out of rows.
Every row is rung once and only once, including rounds.  Bobs only so every
change is triples.  It would be called a 5039 of Grandsire Triples and there
would be no scope for a method mistake.  As far as I am concerned that would
be the ultimate triples peal and it would be nice to have it recognized as

> 2. Good standard of ringing. You can't legislate for this. 
> But you can allow people to register objections about the 
> quality of the ringing.

You can legislate for it by letting the band make that judgement, which is
what happens now.  Two completely different bands will make two completely
different judgements.  The same group of seven ringers would probably make a
different judgement if they rang a peal of surprise with MBD versus Plain
Bob with Joe Bloggs who has only been ringing for 12 months and this is his
first peal.

Ultimately we trust the band to make that judgement for themselves.  The
proposal by some members of the list is to extend that idea to allow the
band to determine what is a good standard of method and what is a good
standard of truth.  The role of any rules or decisions we make is merely to
help classify what methods and truth are.

> 4. True composition. We have a pretty high standard of truth 
> at the moment, and one which has the virtue of giving an 
> unambiguous yes/no answer.

Half the problem is that it isn't unambiguous.  I think peals are minor are
fundamentally false but we have found a way of defining truth to pretend
that they are not false.  They are false!  We are so used to doing it that
way that we think of it as normal.  The various contributions to the list
over the last few days suggest that we already have several levels of truth
(apologies if I summarize them incorrectly)

Level 4: All rows different.
	Pro: Simple and unambiguous.
	Con: Excludes everything below triples.

Level 3: (MBD) Each row rung between N and N+1 times.
	Pro: Simple and clear.
	Con: Excludes mixed minor and doubles.

Level 2: (IJA/DFM/RAS) Recursive/Set/Groupings definition.
	Pro: Allows everything that is currently true and not much else.
	Con: It helps to have a degree in Mathematics to understand it.

Level 1: (GACJ) Each stage separate.  Each stage true.
	Pro: Simple and clear.
	Con: Allows things that are unambiguously false.

Level 0: Anything.
	Pro: Simple and unambiguous.
	Con: Allows everything that's false.

Level 4 is the only one that is unambiguously true; everything else is a
compromise.  The debate is about how far we are prepared to compromise.  Be
clear and rigorous about how we define and categorize the various types of
stage, types of methods, types of truth and let the band pick and choose
what they consider to be a good standard.

Quality of ringing, methods, and truth are all value judgements for the
individual.  I would consider an elegant and musical 9 part cyclic
composition of surprise royal that just happens to have one false row in
each part to be more worthy than any peal of doubles.  This is because peals
of doubles are pointless and I never want to ring one.  But I will defend
your right to ring as many of them as you want and call them peals.  Would
you be willing to defend my opinion that the false royal is a peal provided
I can find 9 other like-minded individuals?

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