[r-t] New Grandsire [was Old methods]

edward martin edward.w.martin at gmail.com
Wed Jul 23 08:47:52 UTC 2008

As early as 1702 when the book 'Campanalogia Improved' was first published,
the idea that methods have plain courses had become obvious. I think that
this came about through the development of 6 bell ringing during the 30
years since the publication of Stedman's book. If it is demonstrable that
without making any calls you have a practical course then it is obvious that
this is the method and that calls can be used or not. It is also obvious
that this is true with Grandsire In fact on page 118, of  'Grandsire
Tripples' it says "So call'd by Reason that the ordinary Course thereof is
the same as in Grandsire upon five Bells, saving that the two additional
Bells make the Course the longer...". But, it was this very concept ie the
misunderstanding of how methods such as grandsire really work, which caused
composers a lot of frustration when they tried to get the extent of
Grandsire Triples. We know now that the real building blocks have to be
bobbed blocks and not plain course blocks because to get the extent, we have
to use another device other than the 3rds place bob. If we use in-course
singles (the first idea that worked) we have a nasty device that does not
alter the parity of rows but can be used as a direct shunt from one lead to
another. If we use singles that are less offensive for practical ringers,
then they reverse the parity & the outcome is that, to avoid repetition, any
odd bit of the composition to be included must NOT include any plain leads.
But unlike any other method of which I am aware, the preferred single can
only be used to join two otherwise bobbed leads.. If one thinks about the
source of the problem, as I have tried to do over the years, I believe that
it lies in the original concept thatGrandsire & all so-called 'Twin Hunt'
methods really do not have a plain course that can be used by composers in
the usual way.
Ben raised the question that implies that for a method to be acceptible, it
should be a requirement that the extent of a method can be set out in so
many mutually exclusive plain courses.This  would straightway exclude most
if not all methods where the Treble is treble bob hunting. Such potential
falseness may not be present in the Minor methods, but may crop up when the
method is extended to higher numbers, as with Ben's query about
 'Cambridge'. Clearly there has to be a compromise & the CC Decisions (apart
from their rulings on so-called 'Twin Hunt' methods) seem to have adequately
answered the question. But, when applied to these methods, their decisions
automatically rule out such methods as New Grandsire Triples which,
nevertheless,as I have demonstrated, can occur in a true composition
initially of Grandsire Triples and, I think OBVIOUSLY deserve to have their
own name to distinguish them from the parent method.

Eddie Martin

2008/7/23 Don Morrison <dfm at ringing.org>:

> On Tue, Jul 22, 2008 at 5:00 PM, edward martin
> <edward.w.martin at gmail.com> wrote:
> > 2008/7/22 Mark Davies <mark at snowtiger.net>:
> >>
> >> Eddie, me old cock, things have moved on: it's not the 17th Century any
> >> more.
> ...
> > Well that is a sad reflection on the current state of affairs & your
> > thinking. Here you have a method that's been with us from the beginning,
> > that has a plain course forced upon it so that smart arses can categorise
> > all change ringing methods as having plain courses, when clearly it is
> > incidental to the methid's principle
> When did the shift from the 17C view to the modern view take place? Or
> if you prefer, when did the shift from the historically informed view
> to the smart arse view take place? Certainly by the mid-19C the modern
> view seems to have been well established. In Benjamin Thackrah's _The
> Art of Change Ringing_ (1852, pp16ff) is described a course of
> Grandsire Doubles, consisting of three plain leads, which it is
> recommended that "young practioners" perfect before trying bobs. And
> he appears to use it as his introduction to other methods, structured
> in the same way, as a plain course, modified by occasional calls.
> How much before 1852 did this view of Grandsire develop, and the older
> one fall away?
> --
> Don Morrison <dfm at ringing.org>
> "I believe that my duties as a poet involve friendship not only with
> the rose and with symmetry, with exalted love and endless longing,
> but also with unrelenting human occupations."
>                                  -- Pablo Neruda, 1971 Nobel lecture
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