[r-t] Definitions so far

Richard Smith richard at ex-parrot.com
Wed Jan 21 01:26:35 UTC 2015

Stephen Penney wrote:

>> 7.  A performance of length 5000 or more may be described as a
>> /peal length performance/.  A performance of length 10,000 or
>> more may be described as a /long length performance/.  A performance of
>> length 1250 or more may be described as a /quarter peal length
>> performance/.  Other fractional peal lengths are defined in a similar
>> manner but are less commonly used.
> I'd want to describe anything from 1250 - 5000 changes as a quarter peal.
> Ridiculous I know once you get past 2000 or so changes, but "quarter peal"
> is just the label I'd use for that bracket, and your definition seems to
> allow for this.

Is it ridiculous?  I've rung a couple of 2160s and it hadn't 
occured to me to think of them as anything other than 

> But I wouldn't want to call anything over 5000 changes a quarter peal (ok,
> I might want to describe a 5039 of Stedman Triples as a quarter).
> Certainly anything that is unambiguously a peal I wouldn't want to
> describe as a quarter.

The definitions as I've drafted don't say you have to 
describe them as a quarter, merely that you *may* do.  I 
had initially intended to say that only 1250-4999 was a 
quarter length, but it was cases like the 5039 of Triples 
that persuaded me not to.

Let's assume for the moment this hypothetical 5039 is a true 
round block.  I'm planning to define a peal as something 
like "a true peal length performance rung to a high 
standard," and a quarter peal similarly.  In itself that 
uncontroversial as it simply moves any controversy to the 
definitions of 'true', 'peal length' and 'performance'. 
It's the definition of 'true' that I think is relevant here. 
I've argued before that there is a multiplicity of types of 
truth, and we select different types in different 
circumstances.  The current Decisions, for example, require 
a peal of Triples to be a true and complete round-block: or 
[UCR] in the notation I introduced in Sept 2009.

I think it's entirely reason for an individual to take the 
view that all peals of Triples, long lengths excepted, 
should conform to this definition of truth.  (I don't, 
however, think it's reasonable that the Central Council 
should force such a view on everyone.)  To someone holding 
that view, a 5039 is not peal despite being peal length. 
But they might be willing to consider it a quarter peal: 
after all, no-one expects a quarter of Triples to contain 
every possible row.  I therefore think it's necessary to 
allow a 5039 to be a quarter.

Perhaps we should introduce a grey area between 5000 and 
5039 then?  I would argue not based on the following example 
with Little Bob Minor.  I've argued before that within the 
context of a fixed-treble composition of Little Bob, a 480 
is effectively the extent, and many people would be happy to 
count a quarter peal with, say four 480s and a 360 as 
sufficiently true for a quarter of Little Bob.  What about a 
peal?  It seems to me it's not inherently unreasonable to 
believe that a peal of Little Bob Minor should contain each 
of the 480 rows an equal number of times, in which case 5280 
is the minimum length.  Someone thinking that may logically 
consider a 5100 of Little Bob to be a (very long) quarter 
peal.  A pretty obscure example, but I would suggest not 
inherently unreasonable.

I would, however, be happy to say something like:  "Any peal 
length performance may therefore also be described as a 
quarter peal length performance, but it would be unusual 
actually to describe it as such."


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