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Re: [gloshistory] Gloucestershire Society in London

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  • Paul Burgess
    The Gloucestershire Society was founded in Bristol in 1657 and had a number of branches - including the London one. The aim was to pay apprenticeship premiums
    Message 1 of 7 , Apr 2, 2006
      The Gloucestershire Society was founded in Bristol in 1657 and had a
      number of branches - including the London one.
      The aim was to pay apprenticeship premiums for poor boys and to
      contribute to the expenses "at the time of their lying in" of women
      "whose Husband or themselves, are Natives of the County".

      The Society song was called "George Ridler's Oven", versions of which
      were still being sung regularly enough for them to have been collected
      from oral tradition by Cecil Sharp inthe early years of the 20th
      Century. The song was for a long time thought to be full of coded
      references to the Royalist sympathies of the Society, with the
      obfuscation a necessary device prior to the restoration of the
      mocanrchy in 1660. As it is a jolly drinking song (and the society
      raised most of its money at convivial events) it retained its
      popularity.
      The London branch indeed had a model of George Ridler on casters,
      which was wheeled around the company to encourage donations.
      The song was also popular with the Cirencester Society - which also
      had a London branch and was still going strong in 1899.

      There were various broadsides printed by the ballad printers in
      Bristol in the 1770s which listed the benficiaries of the charity on
      one side and gave a copy of the song on the other.

      Charles Halepublished a particaulr fine copy of the song (with a
      lovely engraved frontispiece) from his music repository in Cheltenham
      - the building which is now Yates Wine Bar (and was previously part of
      the Gloucestershire Echo offices). I was always intrigued by the
      current use of the building as all the Vistorian deeds have very
      strict Restrivtive Covenants forbidding its use for the sale of
      alcohol!

      There's a pretty good write-up of all this in Roy Palmer's "Folklore
      Of Gloucestershire" - if anyone wants to hear the song, let me know!

      Paul Burgess



      On Wed, 29 Mar 2006 23:57:38 +0100, you wrote:

      >[Posted on behalf of Nigel Cox]
      >
      >Has anyone knowledge of this organisation? The City Council has a
      >chain of office that we would like to know more about. The shield is
      >inscribed 'Founded 1650 IV Duke of Gloucester 1st President'. A
      >second inscription states 'Founded 1912' ! Searching the GRO
      >catalogue delivers D763; correspondence 1835-1847 that I have yet to
      >read. The chain seems to have been deposited by Lady Bledisloe
      >beforeWWII when, I presume, the society was wound up.
      >
      ><<gslo1c.jpg>>
      >Hoping someone can point me in the right direction
      >regards to all
      >
      >
      >
      >Nigel Cox
      >
      >NigelC@...
      >
      >Curator of Social history
      >Gloucester Folk Museum
      >99-103 Westgate Street
      >Gloucester
      >GL1 2PG
      >tel 01452 396352
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >Yahoo! Groups Links
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
      >
    • David Hardwick
      Following the last mail I typed George Ridler s Oven into Google and found this site
      Message 2 of 7 , Apr 3, 2006
        Following the last mail I typed George Ridler's Oven into Google and found
        this site

        http://www.nimblewisdom.com/ANCIENT_POEMS_BALLADS_AND_SONGS_OF_THE_PEASANTRY
        _OF_ENGLAND/Ballad_GEORGE_RIDLER_S_OVEN

        It has history of the song and a little on the society as well as the lyrics
        (Text copied below)

        The references to Gloucester Society are very much in the present tense
        suggesting the society still exists
        Perhaps worth a letter to the Duke of Beaufort

        ANother transcript appears at
        http://www.musicanet.org/robokopp/english/georgrid.htm

        An alternative suggestion for who George Ridler was is given in
        http://pickpatspage.homestead.com/RilrA2p7.html
        A George Ridler was an "innokulator "against smallpox but I do not know if
        he is related. The following literary curiosity is the advertisement for his
        services in the Oxford Journal of 1758."I Geoge Ridler of Stroud, in
        Gloucestershire, Broadweaver at the desier of peepel hereabout, do give
        Nautis, That I have Inockulated these too Seazons paste between 2 and 300
        for the Smale Pox, and but too or three of them died-A Mainy peepel be a
        feard of the thing but evaith it is No More than Scrattin a bit of a haul in
        their Yarm, A pushing in a peece of Skraped rag dipt in Sum of the Pocky
        matter of a child under the distemper.

        Regards
        David

        ANCIENT_POEMS_BALLADS_AND_SONGS_OF_THE_PEASANTRY_OF_ENGLAND
        This ancient Gloucestershire song has been sung at the annual
        dinners of the Gloucestershire Society, from the earliest period of
        the existence of that institution; and in 1776 there was an
        Harmonic Society at Cirencester, which always opened its meetings
        with George Ridler's Oven in full chorus.

        The substance of the following key to this very curious song is
        furnished by Mr. H. Gingell, who extracts it from the Annual Report
        of the Gloucestershire Society for 1835. The annual meeting of
        this Society is held at Bristol in the month of August, when the
        members dine, and a branch meeting, which was formerly held at the
        Crown and Anchor in the Strand, is now annually held at the
        Thatched House Tavern, St. James's. George Ridler's Oven is sung
        at both meetings, and the late Duke of Beaufort used to lead off
        the glee in capital style. The words have a secret meaning, well
        known to the members of the Gloucestershire Society, which was
        founded in 1657, three years before the Restoration of Charles II.
        The Society consisted of Royalists, who combined together for the
        purpose of restoring the Stuarts. The Cavalier party was supported
        by all the old Roman Catholic families of the kingdom; and some of
        the Dissenters, who were disgusted with Cromwell, occasionally lent
        them a kind of passive aid.

        First Verse.--By 'George Ridler' is meant King Charles I. The
        'oven' was the Cavalier party. The 'stwons' that 'built the oven,'
        and that 'came out of the Bleakney quaar,' were the immediate
        followers of the Marquis of Worcester, who held out long and
        steadfastly for the Royal cause at Raglan Castle, which was not
        surrendered till 1646, and was in fact the last stronghold retained
        for the King. 'His head did grow above his hair,' is an allusion
        to the crown, the head of the State, which the King wore 'above his
        hair.'

        Second Verse.--This means that the King, 'before he died,' boasted
        that notwithstanding his present adversity, the ancient
        constitution of the kingdom was so good, and its vitality so great,
        that it would surpass and outlive every other form of government.

        Third Verse.--'Dick the treble, Jack the mean, and George the
        bass,' mean King, Lords, and Commons. The injunction to 'let every
        man sing in his own place,' is a warning to each of the three
        estates of the realm to preserve its proper position, and not to
        encroach on each other's prerogative.

        Fourth Verse.--'Mine hostess's maid' is an allusion to the Queen,
        who was a Roman Catholic, and her maid, the Church. The singer we
        must suppose was one of the leaders of the party, and his 'dog' a
        companion, or faithful official of the Society, and the song was
        sung on occasions when the members met together socially; and thus,
        as the Roman Catholics were Royalists, the allusion to the mutual
        attachment between the 'maid' and 'my dog and I,' is plain and
        consistent.

        Fifth Verse.--The 'dog' had a 'trick of visiting maids when they
        were sick.' The meaning is, that when any of the members were in
        distress or desponding, or likely to give up the Royal cause in
        despair, the officials, or active members visited, counselled, and
        assisted them.

        Sixth Verse.--The 'dog' was 'good to catch a hen,' a 'duck,' or a
        'goose.'--That is, to enlist as members of the Society any who were
        well affected to the Royal cause.

        Seventh Verse.--'The good ale tap' is an allusion, under cover of
        the similarity in sound between the words ale and aisle, to the
        Church, of which it was dangerous at the time to be an avowed
        follower; and so the members were cautioned that indiscretion might
        lead to their discovery and 'overthrow.'

        Eighth Verse.--The allusion here is to those unfaithful supporters
        of the Royal cause, who 'welcomed' the members of the Society when
        it appeared to be prospering, but 'parted' from them in adversity.

        Ninth Verse.--An expression of the singer's wish that if he should
        die he may be buried with his faithful companion, as representing
        the principles of the Society, under the good aisles of the church.

        The following text has been collated with a version published in
        Notes and Queries, from the 'fragments of a MS. found in the
        speech-house of Dean.' The tune is the same as that of the
        Wassailers' Song, and is printed in Popular Music. Other ditties
        appear to have been founded on this ancient piece. The fourth,
        seventh, and ninth verses are in the old ditty called My Dog and I:
        and the eighth verse appears in another old song. The air and
        words bear some resemblance to Todlen Hame.]


        The stwons that built George Ridler's oven,
        And thauy keam vrom the Bleakney quaar,
        And George he wur a jolly old mon,
        And his yead it grow'd above his yare.

        One thing of George Ridler I must commend,
        And that wur vor a notable thing;
        He mead his brags avoore he died,
        Wi' any dree brooders his zons zshould zing.

        There's Dick the treble, and John the meean,
        (Let every mon zing in his auwn pleace,)
        And George he wur the elder brother,
        And therevoor he would zing the beass.

        Mine hostess's moid, (and her neaum 'twour Nell,)
        A pretty wench, and I lov'd her well;
        I lov'd her well, good reauzon why,
        Because zshe loved my dog and I.

        My dog is good to catch a hen;
        A dug or goose is vood for men;
        And where good company I spy,
        O thether gwoes my dog and I.

        My mwother told I, when I wur young,
        If I did vollow the strong-beer pwoot,
        That drenk would prov my awverdrow,
        And meauk me wear a threadbare cwoat.

        My dog has gotten zitch a trick,
        To visit moids when thauy be zick;
        When thauy be zick and like to die,
        O thether gwoes my dog and I.

        When I have dree zixpences under my thumb,
        O then I be welcome wherever I come;
        But when I have none, O, then I pass by, -
        'Tis poverty pearts good companie.

        If I should die, as it may hap,
        My greauve shall be under the good yeal tap;
        In voulded yarms there wool us lie,
        Cheek by jowl, my dog and I.

        -----Original Message-----
        From: gloshistory@yahoogroups.com [mailto:gloshistory@yahoogroups.com]On
        Behalf Of Paul Burgess
        Sent: 02 April 2006 12:42
        To: gloshistory@yahoogroups.com
        Subject: Re: [gloshistory] Gloucestershire Society in London


        The Gloucestershire Society was founded in Bristol in 1657 and had a
        number of branches - including the London one.
        The aim was to pay apprenticeship premiums for poor boys and to
        contribute to the expenses "at the time of their lying in" of women
        "whose Husband or themselves, are Natives of the County".

        The Society song was called "George Ridler's Oven", versions of which
        were still being sung regularly enough for them to have been collected
        from oral tradition by Cecil Sharp inthe early years of the 20th
        Century. The song was for a long time thought to be full of coded
        references to the Royalist sympathies of the Society, with the
        obfuscation a necessary device prior to the restoration of the
        mocanrchy in 1660. As it is a jolly drinking song (and the society
        raised most of its money at convivial events) it retained its
        popularity.
        The London branch indeed had a model of George Ridler on casters,
        which was wheeled around the company to encourage donations.
        The song was also popular with the Cirencester Society - which also
        had a London branch and was still going strong in 1899.

        There were various broadsides printed by the ballad printers in
        Bristol in the 1770s which listed the benficiaries of the charity on
        one side and gave a copy of the song on the other.

        Charles Halepublished a particaulr fine copy of the song (with a
        lovely engraved frontispiece) from his music repository in Cheltenham
        - the building which is now Yates Wine Bar (and was previously part of
        the Gloucestershire Echo offices). I was always intrigued by the
        current use of the building as all the Vistorian deeds have very
        strict Restrivtive Covenants forbidding its use for the sale of
        alcohol!

        There's a pretty good write-up of all this in Roy Palmer's "Folklore
        Of Gloucestershire" - if anyone wants to hear the song, let me know!

        Paul Burgess



        On Wed, 29 Mar 2006 23:57:38 +0100, you wrote:

        >[Posted on behalf of Nigel Cox]
        >
        >Has anyone knowledge of this organisation? The City Council has a
        >chain of office that we would like to know more about. The shield is
        >inscribed 'Founded 1650 IV Duke of Gloucester 1st President'. A
        >second inscription states 'Founded 1912' ! Searching the GRO
        >catalogue delivers D763; correspondence 1835-1847 that I have yet to
        >read. The chain seems to have been deposited by Lady Bledisloe
        >beforeWWII when, I presume, the society was wound up.
        >
        ><<gslo1c.jpg>>
        >Hoping someone can point me in the right direction
        >regards to all
        >
        >
        >
        >Nigel Cox
        >
        >NigelC@...
        >
        >Curator of Social history
        >Gloucester Folk Museum
        >99-103 Westgate Street
        >Gloucester
        >GL1 2PG
        >tel 01452 396352
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >Yahoo! Groups Links
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >
        >



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      • David Hardwick
        If you are in the YATE/RANGEWORTHY area (north of Bristol) on Sunday 14th May 2006 you may be interested in popping in to the South Glos Mines Research Group s
        Message 3 of 7 , May 11, 2006
          If you are in the YATE/RANGEWORTHY area (north of Bristol) on Sunday 14th
          May 2006 you may be interested in popping in to the South Glos Mines
          Research Group's Open day at Oldwood Colliery

          There ar no underground trips, as the colliery flooded when mining stopped
          in 1888 but lots to see in terms of surface remains, with tours refreshments
          and displays all laid on. Stout footware is advisable

          Regards

          David Hardwick


          [Non-text portions of this message have been removed]
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