Select Harmony, 1778-85 (Law, Andrew)

Sheet Music


PDF scanned by US-Bpr
Fynnjamin (2014/6/13)

Publisher. Info. [Farmington: the author, 1779]
Misc. Notes Includes 2 handwritten pieces at the end.
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General Information

Work Title Select Harmony (1778-85)
Alternative. Title Select Harmony. Containing in a plain and concise manner, the rules of singing: together with a collection of psalm tunes, hymns and anthems
Composer Law, Andrew
I-Catalogue NumberI-Cat. No. None [force assignment]
First Publication. 1778-79
Language English
Composer Time PeriodComp. Period Classical
Piece Style Classical
Instrumentation 4 voices / choir (SATB)

Navigation etc.

The earlier of two versions of this compilation, published in 1779 (preceded by an incomplete issue in 1778, followed by the second version in 1782). Law's compilation of the same title published in 1812, with modified shape-note music, has only its title in common with this one

Imprint supplied from Britton & Lowens. Erroneously ascribed to the press of Thomas and Samuel Green of New Haven by Evans

Contents: Engraved title, within an elaborate cartouche, signed at foot "Farmington 1779. / J. Allen sculpsit." (verso blank). -- Eight unsigned pages of letterpress text (p. [1], 2-8), containing preface; "Advertisement"; "Graces or ornaments of music / Tuning the voice", "General remarks"; "Composition"; "hymns" (i.e. original texts) for Littleton, Amsterdam, Middletown, Providence, Infant Saviour, and Jubilee; and index. -- Engraved instructions for reading music (p. 1-4). -- Engraved music (p. 5-100)

Engraver's signature "J. Allen Sculp." at foot of p. 45, 55, 57, 61, 62, 63, 70, 73, 80, 83, 85, 90, and 93

Some copies are found with the simpler, undated engraved title, identically worded, associated with the 1782 version; these have been recorded as ESTC W23302, conjecturally dated "1780 or 1781?"

Two printings of the letterpress preliminaries, with numerous minor typographical variants, have been noted: (earlier)--line 2 of preface begins "of", and last line of advertisement includes correctly spelled "Northampton"; (later) line 2 of preface begins "Set", last line of advertisement includes misspelling "Northapmton", and on p. 2, to the sentence "The first part of the bar is always accented", is added " ... and more forcible, than the last accented part."

Signatures (beginning with p. 5, the first page of music): B-N⁴ [$1 signed; also signed '$', '$2' on outer and inner sides of the 1.4 spine fold]. The plates initially had only the signatures on the folds; those at the foot were added after a number of copies had been printed without them. Each of the music plates consisted of a 4-page half-sheet form

Some copies are found with the 1782 version of p. 13-20 (gathering C), containing Denbigh and 5 other pieces by Martin Madan, bound in (such copies are separately entered as 358a by Britton & Lowens); according to an advertisement in the Connecticut courant of 8 Jan. 1782, this section was sold separately to supplement previously purchased copies of the 1779 version

Britton & Lowens (p. 430-431)--reproduce a table of "issues" (of which 1779 comprises B-F), which, rather than distinct issues or states of the book as a whole, should properly be regarded as bindings up of various combinations of the engraved plates and letterpress in their variant states and printings (though the table does not account for multiple printings of the 1779 letterpress pages)

In Britton & Lowens' table, issue D is a ghost: in the one copy cited (Brown University), p. 13 (Landaff)--is signed C, not unsigned, and it therefore corresponds to F

"Evans 16317, the so-called Collection of the best and most approved tunes and anthems [with printing attributed to Thomas and Samuel Green] is actually Select harmony (1779; no. 358), mistaken for a separate collection."--Britton & Lowens




Trumbull, J.H. Connecticut

Britton & Lowens. Amer. sacred music imprints, 1698-1810

Crawford, R.A. Andrew Law, American psalmodist