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Query re: The Piper of Dundee

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PIPER OF DUNDEE


GUEST,ChS 06 Jun 05 - 07:10 AM
GUEST,John A 16 Aug 15 - 08:09 AM
Jack Campin 16 Aug 15 - 08:57 AM
akenaton 16 Aug 15 - 12:53 PM
akenaton 16 Aug 15 - 12:53 PM
Snuffy 16 Aug 15 - 01:26 PM
Jack Campin 16 Aug 15 - 05:07 PM
akenaton 16 Aug 15 - 06:18 PM
Tattie Bogle 16 Aug 15 - 08:10 PM
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Subject: Lyr Add: The Piper of Dundee
From: GUEST,ChS
Date: 06 Jun 05 - 07:10 AM

In the second verse:

He play'd "The Welcome Ower the Main"
And "Ye's Be Fou and I'se be Fain"
And "Auld Stuart's Back Again"
Wi' muckle mirth and glee
He'd play'd "The Kirk", he play'd "The Queer"
"The Mullen Dhu" and "Chevalier"
And "Lang Awa' But Welcome Here"
Sae sweet, sae bonnielie

I don't see to what song "The Queer" refers.

(cf my "theory" on the other songs mentioned http://chrsouchon.free.fr/piper.htm )


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: GUEST,John A
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 08:09 AM

Like a few lyrics here the word is mis-spelled. Compare the tune below and you'll see that the word 'roguey' is mis-spelled in the text above as 'rougey'.

The Piper is a rogue and the song is now generally considered to be a satire on how he betrayed the Jacobites.

As for the word 'Queer' this is another mis-spelling. It has nothing to do with gay Jacobites. Like you I have looked for a pipe tune or other Jacobite tune of that title or similar and can find nothing. But the previous reference does give a hint: 'Kirk' is the Scottish word for Church and I have seen on another discussion string a suggestion that this refers to a parody song referring again to a real Jacobite song titled 'Cam' ye ower frae France?'
Now the Scottish pronunciation of the ecclesiastical and architectural term, 'quire' - is 'queir'... - not 'queer'! The quire of a mediaeval church (and, therefore, by definition a Catholic church) is where the choir would be situated, beyond the crossing and hidden behind the rood screen just before the high altar. Remember that sort of church is processional. So, for me, it throws up ideas of someone being close to the altar, being accepted, concealed and very close to the centre of things. You wouldn't be allowed beyond the rood screen if you weren't baptised into the church.

There is also the mediaeval idea of claiming sanctuary - by a fugitive from civil authority seeking the protection of the church. At Durham Cathedral there is a great Sanctuary door knocker on the main door so, to reach the quire presumably meant you were well clear of your pursuers. But, where a tune, never mind a satirical angle, comes into all this - so far - eludes me.


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: Jack Campin
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 08:57 AM

I see the French translation on the linked site makes "rougey" into "bougre", so somebody's reading "queer" in the modern way...

The tune, "The Drummer", dates to before 1700; I think it qwas first published by Playford. It might be either Scottish or English.

I would suggest "The Kirk" is "The Kirk will never let me be", which fits the context.

I don't believe a word of the above explanation. No church with the Catholic layout survived the Reformation in Scotland and that architectural metaphor would have been completely incomprehensible by the late 17th century.

BTW given what predominant sympathies in Dundee were, for the town piper to express sympathy for the Jacobites in music would have got the same sort of local reception as running an al-Qaeda banner up an American town hall flagpole. The songwriter was exaggerating more than a little.

I can't think of a familiar song with "queer" in a title, first line or refrain. James Hogg also published a book of his own ballads titled "A Queer Book", but I see nothing in that to help answer the question.


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: akenaton
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 12:53 PM

Quair in scots means a trilogy.....is it possible that it referred to a three part tune of the time?


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: akenaton
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 12:53 PM

Quair in scots means a trilogy.....is it possible that it referred to a three part tune of the time?


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: Snuffy
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 01:26 PM

The Quair?


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: Jack Campin
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 05:07 PM

William Nicholson's "Peggie" uses the word "queer" a lot, and appears to go to the tune of "An the Kirk wad let me be", or something very similar in 9/8. But there's nothing very Jacobite about it, and it seems too late to be what Hogg meant. On the other hand, maybe Nicholson was pastiching something older which did have Jacobite significance.

Since the other titles all have pretty definite political connotations, a nondescript "quair" doesn't belong. In any case, I can think of no precedent from that time for any medley of three tunes.


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: akenaton
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 06:18 PM

Hmm....think your probably right Jack....that leaves the queir as the best explanation. If the rogey was playing Jacobite tunes, maybe he was alluding to the restoration of Catholicism?


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Subject: RE: Query re: The Piper of Dundee
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 16 Aug 15 - 08:10 PM

The Quier or Queer is the name for the choir area at the East end of the nave of a church: these do still exist post-Reformation even in non-Catholic churches and the term is used both in Scots and older English. I'm not aware of a tune by that name however, but a bit of Googling shows various references (other than The Piper of Dundee) to "playing the quier tune".


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