Grisial Ground

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Grisial Ground
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

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Dyma ‘Grisial Ground’ sydd ar dudalen 4 o lawysgrif Bangor 851, sef llawysgrif o alawon gan Ffowc Roberts (gallwch weld mwy o wybodaeth am lawysgrif Ffowc Roberts yma).

Mae’r enw ‘Grisial Ground’ yn cyfateb i ‘Crystal Ground’, sef cân sy’n ymddangos yng nghasgliad F.J.Haydn o ganeuon gwerin Cymraeg (H. 31b/15, 1809/17). Mae alaw Haydn yn debyg iawn i alaw ‘Grisial Ground’ a welwn yng nghyfrol Bardic Museum Edward Jones (Bardd y Brenin) o 1802. Mae alaw Haydn hefyd efallai’n fwy adnabyddus na’r un hon. Mae’r ddwy alaw yn 3/4, ond heblaw am hynny maent yn alawon tra wahanol.

Wrth chwarae’r alaw hon rwyf wedi penderfynu creu drôn ar y nodau A ac E i efelychu’r grwndfas sy’n cael ei awgrymu yn y teitl, ond byddai modd chwarae’r alaw yn effeithiol gyda harmonïau mwy cymhleth hefyd.

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This is ‘Grisial Ground’, which roughly translates to ‘Crystal Ground’. It’s found on page 4 of the Bangor 851 manuscript, which is Ffowc Roberts’ manuscript (you can find more information about the Ffowc Roberts manuscript here).

The name ‘Grisial Ground’ corresponds to ‘Crystal Ground’, which is a song that appears in F.J. Haydns’s collection of Welsh Folksongs (H. 31b/15, 1809-17). The melody used by Haydn is very similar to the tune of ‘Grisial Ground’ that we see in Edward Jones’ collection, ‘Bardic Museum‘ from 1802. Haydn’s version of the tune is slightly better known than this one. Both versions are in 3/4, but they are very different tunes.

While playing this tune, I’ve decided to create a drone on A and E, to reflect the idea of a groundbase, which is suggested in the title. But the tune could be played effectively with more complicated chords as well.

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Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notationGrisial Ground

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationGrisial Ground

Dyma fi yn chwarae’r alaw ar y ffidil, os hoffech ddygsgu’r alaw wrth glust:
Here’s me playing the melody on the fiddle, if you’d like to learn the tune by listening:

 

 

 

Corporation Cymdeithas

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Corporation Cymdeithas
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

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Dyma ‘Corporation Cymdeithas’ sydd ar dudalen 87 o lawysgrif Bangor 2296, sef llawysgrif Robert Thomas o Gaernarfon (darllenwch fwy o wybodaeth am lawysgrif Robert Thomas yma).

Mae’n ymddangos fod yr alaw hon wedi cipio dychymyg nifer o gerddorion wrth i fersiynau eithaf gwahanol ohoni (ond gyda’r un syniad o ran siâp yr alaw) ymddangos mewn nifer o ffynonellau tebyg o’r cyfnod. Rhai enghreifftiau fyddai:
‘Corporation’ – Rhif 59 a 358 o gyfrol Alawon John Thomas (gol. Cass Meurig, Aberystwyth, 2004, Tudalennau 19 a 108)
‘Coporasion’ – Llawysgrif Morris Edwards (Archifau Prifysgol Bangor, Llsg. 2298, c.1778)

Mae’n ddiddorol y bod teitl ‘Corporation Cymdeithas’ ychydig yn wahanol i’r teitlau uchod – mae’n bosib y bod Robert Thomas wedi gwneud ymgais ar gyfieithu ‘Corporation’ i’r Gymraeg.

Yn ol Cass Meurig (gol. Cass Meurig, Aberystwyth, 2004, tud. 137), roedd yr alaw yn cael ei ddefnyddio ar gyfer carolau ym mesur yr awdl-gywydd. Efallai y bod hyn yn egluro pam fod 10 bar yn yr ail hanner yn lle’r 8 a fyddai’n ddisgwyliedig.

Yn ôl defnydd arferol, rwyf wedi golygu y nodau minim ar ddiwedd pob cymal i fod yn grosiet a dot.

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This is ‘Corporation Cymdeithas’, which roughly translates to ‘Society Corporation’. It’s found on page 87 of the Bangor 2296 manuscript, which is Robert Thomas from Caernarfon’s manuscript (you can find more information about the Robert Thomas manuscript here).

It appears that this tune took the imagination of musicians at the time because many versions of it appear in similar sources. These vary largely but all have the same shape to the tune and a similar structure. Examples include:
‘Corporation’ – Nos. 59 and 358 of Alawon John Thomas (ed. Cass Meurig, Aberystwyth, 2004, Pages 19 and 108)
‘Coporasion’ – Morris Edwards’ manuscript (Bangor University Archives, Llsg. 2298, c.1778)

According to Cass Meurig (ed. Cass Meurig, Aberystwyth, 2004, p. 137), the tune ‘was used for Welsh carolau in the awdl-gywydd metre.’

To fit the usual use, I’ve edited the minim at the end of each phrase to be a dotted crotchet.

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Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notationCorporation Cymdeithas

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationCorporation Cymdeithas

Dyma fi yn chwarae’r alaw ar y ffidil, os hoffech ddygsgu’r alaw wrth glust:
Here’s me playing the melody on the fiddle, if you’d like to learn the tune by listening:

 

 

Ffarwél Philip Ystwyth

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Farwel Phillip Ystwyth
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

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Dyma alaw ‘Ffarwél Philip Ystwyth’ sydd ar dudalen 91 o lawysgrif Bangor 2296, sef llawysgrif Robert Thomas o Gaernarfon (darllenwch mwy o wybodaeth am lawysgrif Robert Thomas yma).

Rwyf wedi newid y teitl o’r un gwreiddiol sef ‘Farwel Philip Ystwyth’ i’r sillafiad modern o’r gair ‘Ffarwél’.

Wrth drawsgrifio’r alaw rwyf wedi ychwanegu llinell bar ym mar cyntaf y llinell olaf.

Ychydig iawn o wahaniaeth sydd rhwng yr alaw hon ac alaw o’r un teitl a geir yng nghyfrol Alawon John Thomas (gol. Cass Meurig, Aberystwyth, 2004. Tud 46, rhif 152) gan ddangos y bod hon wedi bod yn alaw boblogaidd yn y 18fed ganrif ymysg cerddorion yng Nghymru.

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This melody is called ‘Farwel Philip Ystwyth’, which translates to ‘Farewell Philip Ystwyth’. It’s found on page 91 of the Bangor 2296 manuscript, which is Robert Thomas from Caernarfon’s manuscript (you can find more information about the Robert Thomas manuscript here).

While transcribing the tune, I’ve added a bar line in the first bar of the last line.

There are only a few slight differences between this tune and the melody of the same name that can be found in the Alawon John Thomas collection (ed. Cass Meurig, Aberystwyth, 2004. Page 46, no. 152). This shows that it was a popular tune amongst musicians in 18th century Wales.

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Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notation: Ffarwél Philip Ystwyth

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationFfarwél Philip Ystwyth

Dyma fi yn chwarae’r alaw ar y ffidil, os hoffech ddygsgu’r alaw wrth glust:
Here’s me playing the melody on the fiddle, if you’d like to learn the tune by listening:

 

Dime gôch

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Dime gôch
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

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Dyma ‘Dime gôch’, sydd yn alaw arall o lawysgrif Bangor Ms. 2294 sef Llawysgrif Maurice Edwards, ar dudalen 25 (gweler mwy o wybodaeth am Maurice Edwards a’i lawysgrif yma).

Mae hi’n alaw fer ond yn brydferth. Mae’r C naturiol yn y cymal cyntaf yn trawsnewid yr alaw.

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This melody is called ‘Dime gôch’ which roughly translates to ‘The Red Ha’penny’. This is another melody on page 25 of Bangor Ms. 2294 (Maurice Edwards’ manuscript – see more information on Maurice Edwards and his manuscript here)

This tune is short but sweet. The C natural in the first phrase transforms the melody. 

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Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notation: Dime gôch

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationDime gôch

Dyma fi yn chwarae’r alaw ar y ffidil (unwaith yn weddol syml ac wedyn gyda mwy o addurniadau), os hoffech ddysgu’r alaw wrth glust:
Here’s me playing the melody on the fiddle (once in a straightforward way and then with more decorations), if you’d like to learn the tune by listening:

Ffarwel Dic Bibidd

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Ffarwel Dic Bibidd
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

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Dyma alaw ‘Ffarwel Dic Bibidd’, sydd ar dudalen 21 o lawysgrif Bangor Ms. 2294 sef Llawysgrif Maurice Edwards (gweler mwy o wybodaeth am Maurice Edwards a’i lawysgrif yma). Y sillafiad Cymraeg modern o’r teitl fyddai ‘Ffarwél Dic Bibydd’

Mae nodiant yr alaw hon yn cynnwys nodau ychwanegol ym marrau olaf y ddwy adran. Rwyf wedi dehongli hyn i olygu bod un set o nodau ar gyfer y tro cyntaf a’r set arall ar gyfer yr ail dro trwy’r adrannau.

Roeddwn yn methu penderfynu ar ba dempo (pa mor gyflym/araf) addas ar gyfer yr alaw, ond yn bersonol rwyf wedi dewis tempo gweddol araf (tua 69 curiad y funud) wrth feddwl am Dic Bibidd yn gadael y pentref gyda chalon drom!

Yn ol Robert Evans o Bragod, roedd Dic Bibydd yn bibydd adnabyddus ac roedd ganddo flageolet arian.

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This melody is called ‘Ffarwel Dic Bibidd’ which roughly translates to ‘Farewell Dic the Piper’. It is found on page 21 of manuscript Bangor Ms. 2294 which is Maurice Edwards’ manuscript (see more information on Maurice Edwards and his manuscript here)

This song’s notation includes extra notes to be played in the last bars of each section. I’ve taken this to mean that the notes are different the first and the second time through each of the sections.

I couldn’t decide on a tempo (how fast/slow) to play this tune, but I’ve personally now decided on a steady pace (about 69 beats per minute), thinking of Dic the Piper leaving the village with a heavy heart and dragging his feet!

According to Robert Evans of Bragod Dic Bibydd was a famous piper who had a silver flageolet.

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Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notation: Ffarwel Dic Bibidd

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationFfarwel Dic Bibidd abc

Dyma recordiad ‘wave’ o’r alaw, ar gyfer dysgu wrth y glust:
Here’s a ‘wave’ recording of the melody, for learning aurally:

Margared fwyn ych Evan

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Margared Fwyn Ych Evan
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

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Dyma alaw ‘Margared fwyn ych Evan’, sydd ar dudalen 5 o lawysgrif Bangor Ms. 2294 sef Llawysgrif Maurice Edwards (gweler mwy o wybodaeth am Maurice Edwards a’i lawysgrif yma). Rwyf wedi golygu’r teitl i ddechrau gyda llythyren fras er mwyn cysondeb gyda’r alawon eraill ar y blog.

Yn ddiddorol, er bod yr alaw hon yng nghywair A leiaf, mae hi’n gorffen ar y pumed nodyn, sef E. Mae hyn yn gwneud i’r alaw swnio’n anorffenedig, ond hefyd yn ei gwneud yn anarferol ymysg alawon Cymraeg eraill.

Mae yna fersiwn o hon sydd ychydig bach yn wahanol wedi ei chyhoeddi ar dudalen 25 o gyfrol Cambrian Harmony Richard Roberts (Dublin&Carnarvon, [1829]), felly mae’n rhaid bod yr alaw wedi bod yn wybodus i bobl am nifer o flynyddoedd. Gallwch weld copi o hwn ar wefan Prifysgol Brigham Young yma.

Yn ôl y sôn mae yna benillion a cherddi yn bodoli sy’n sôn am gymeriad Margared fwyn ych Evan. Cysylltwch os ydych chi’n gwybod am unrhyw gerddi amdani, byddai’n ddiddorol dysgu mwy am y cymeriad a wnaeth ysbrydoli alaw mor anarferol.

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This melody is called ‘Margared fwyn ych Evan’ which roughly translates to ‘Fair Margaret, Evan’s Daughter’. It is found on page 5 of manuscript Bangor Ms. 2294 which is Maurice Edwards’ manuscript (see more information on Maurice Edwards and his manuscript here) I’ve edited the title to begin with a capital letter for consistency with the rest of the tunes on the blog.

Interestingly, although this melody is in the key of A minor, it finishes on the fifth note, E. This makes the tune feel unresolved, but also makes it unusual among other Welsh tunes.

An intriguing and slightly different version of this tune appears on page 25 in Richard Roberts’ collection, Cambrian Harmony (Dublin&Carnarvon, [1829]), so it must have been well known for many years. You can see a copy of this on Brigham Young University’s website here.

Apparently verses exist that mention the character of fair Margaret. Please get in touch if you know of any, it would be interesting to learn more about the person who inspired such an unusual tune.

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Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notation: Margared fwyn ych Evan

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationMargared fwyn ych Evan

Dyma recordiad WAV o’r alaw, ar gyfer dysgu wrth y glust:
Here’s a WAV recording of the melody, for learning aurally:

Y Driw bâch

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Driw bâch
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

Dyma alaw ‘Y Driw bâch’, sydd ar dudalen 10 o lawysgrif Bangor Ms. 2294 sef Llawysgrif Maurice Edwards (gweler mwy o wybodaeth am Maurice Edwards a’i lawysgrif yma). Heddiw byddai’r teitle yn cael ei sillafu fel hyn: ‘Y Dryw bach’
Nodwedd ddiddorol o nodiant yr alaw hon yw’r gair ‘Bys’ dros un cymal (gweler y llun isod). Gallwn gymryd ‘Bys’ i olygu ‘bys’, sef y gair Lladin am ‘dwywaith’, felly gellid ailadrodd y cymal os dymunir. Credaf bod yr alaw yn gweithio gyda neu heb ailadrodd y darn yna.

This melody is called ‘Y Driw bâch’ which translates to ‘The Little Wren’. It is found on page 10 of manuscript Bangor Ms. 2294 which is Maurice Edwards’ manuscript (see more information on Maurice Edwards and his manuscript here). In modern Welsh spelling, the title would be ‘Y Dryw bach’.
An interesting feature of the notation of this tune is the word ‘Bys’ over a piece of the melody (See the picture below). We can take the meaning of ‘Bys’ to mean ‘bis’, which is latin for ‘twice’, so this section may be repeated if you wish. I find that the melody flows if you play it with or without the repeat.

Y Driw bâch zoom
Llun trwy Garedigrwydd Archifau a Chasgliadau Arbennig, Prifysgol Bangor
Photograph courtesy of Archives and Special Collections, Bangor University

Ewch yma i weld yr alaw mewn nodiant safonol/Click here to see the tune in standard notation: Y Driw bâch

Dyma nodiant abc o’r alaw/Here’s the melody in abc notationY Driw bâch

Dyma recordiad WAV o’r alaw, ar gyfer dysgu wrth y glust. Noder bod yr adran ‘Bys’ heb ei ailadrodd yma:
Here’s a WAV recording of the melody, for learning aurally. Note that the ‘Bys’ section doesn’t get repeated here: