[r-t] Peculiar treble place method

Ted Steele teds.bells at tesco.net
Thu Nov 22 22:53:43 UTC 2012

On 22/11/2012 19:21, Richard Smith wrote:
> Looking through the Cambridge Youths records this lunchtime, I found a 
> loose sheet of paper with the plain course of a method written out.
>   &36-36.18.36-36.18.36-36.18.36-36.18,12
> Figures in the margin indicate a 14 for 12 bob was intended, and four 
> lead ends in the margin show the back bells in a tittums position:
>   8472635
>   4283756
>   2345867
>   3526478
> The Cambridgeshire Archive have catalogued the paper as circa 1900, 
> and based on the handwriting, I agree.
> The method itself isn't particularly musical (that might be an 
> understatement), and has 'U' falseness so three homes runs false; but 
> it has an elegant construction nevertheless. I hadn't come across 
> anything similar, but looking through the method libraries, I see 
> Nightingale T Pl Major, first pealed on 29 Apr 1868 at Liversedge, Yorks.
>   &34-34.18.34-34.18.34-34.18.34-34.18,12
> The Cambridge Youths method follows very much in that vein. Were such 
> methods popular?  Are there other examples?

This is interesting to me. I have had said method loaded into Abel for 
ages and first noted it back in 1964. It seemed to me then to have some 
promise as a principle which could (like TB hunting) be the basis for a 
family of methods, (of which I devised several and labelled them as 
"Imperial"methods; such was the aspiration of naive youthfulness), but I 
think I realised fairly quickly even then that the falseness and music 
would limit things drastically. As it turned out I never pursued my 
ambition to learn composition beyond the most basic level and so things 
stayed that way. I note that the other example given is a method based, 
very simply, upon Forward.

I had noted that as 34-34.16 repeated makes a minor principle, which as 
Forward is extended to 34-34.18, so we might take 36-36.18; 38-38.10 etc 
as an alternative route for extension. Thus this principle might be 
regarded as an alternative extension of Forward minor. No doubt that 
reasoning defies all the modern conventions, but that was how I viewed 
it in 1964. I had wondered whether, if rung as a principle (i.e the 
"lead " being 36-36.18) it might offer more musically than do methods 
based upon the path of the treble, but introducing calls looks rather 
awkward and so that too was never pursued. I saw it as a principle like 
Duffield, elegant and interesting but of little practical value. I would 
certainly be interested to hear some more expert opinion on it; I 
acknowledge that my views from all those years ago were very simplistic.


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