The MAN of FEELING or the Gentlemans Musical Repository

or the
Gentlemans Musical Repository

Gaetano Brandi, ed.

This directory contains ABC transcriptions of "The MAN of FEELING, or the Gentlemans Musical Repository for the FLute or Violin".

This collection was published in London, in the year 1803. It is frequently attributed to Lady Dorothea Ruggles-Brise, or to John Glen, but these are actually former owners of a copy. Lady Dorothea donated it to the National Library of Scotland in 1927. She apparently received it as a bequest from John Glen, a collector who lived from 1833 to 1904. The NLS submitted it to for scanning, and they mistakenly listed Lady Dorothea as the author.

The book implies but doesn't actually state that Gaetano Barndi was the composer. He most likely edited the collection, and may have included some unknown number of his own compositions. Most of the pieces of music are unattributed, though a few have a name (typically at the upper left) that is probably the actual composer.

This is essentially a (semi-)private collection of a Victorian-era gentleman musician. It contains assorted songs and short instrumental pieces, often taken from operas, and suitable for parlor recitals.

Transcription notes:

  1. Staff lines have often been adjusted to 4 or 8 bars, as is common with ABC transcription projects. A few have odd-length phrases, and sometimes this is adjusted to start phrases at the left edge. And some have been left with the original staff breaks, with %%continueall used to reformat for our page size.
  2. Multi-voice tunes are sometimes written with [V:_] at the left edge of ever staff line, so the ABC is in the same order as the printed music. For other multi-voice tunes, the voices are sorted apart, with each preceded by a "V: _" line, to make it easy to separate them into single-voice pages.
  3. Most of the songs don't have a proper title, just a tempo name. The opening words of such songs are included as a subtitle, to assist in lookups.
  4. It appears that some of the names at the upper right refer to the stage work for which the music was written, and the name of the composer and/or lyricist is at the upper left. In other cases, there's just a name at the upper right, which is presumably the composer. But there seems to be no explanation for this inconsistency. And it's likely that some of the names are of sources, rather than composers.
  5. There are 180 pages (photos) in the PDF file. Pages 1-152 are Volume 1; pages 153-180 are Volume 2. This was confusing before I figured it out, since there are no clues about it on the pages.
  6. Some pages don't display properly in some viewers. Which pages have problems are different with different viewers. Adobe Acrobat seems to display everything, but is frustrating to work with.
  7. There are a lot of problems with repeat notation. Note lengths are often wrong at repeats, but adding a rest sometimes fixes it. The :||: symbol is used at the end of some tunes.
  8. There are single and double thick bars; some ABC software (e.g. abcm2ps) handles these with ] and ][, but not all programs do.
  9. There are files with names like "" which contain only a "continuation" comment. These are temporary files to note that the page has been transcribed, as part of the previous page. These files will probably disappear when the collection is complete.