Dieses Harmonische Melodeyen Buchlein Gehoret Mir Johannes Schittinger Sing Schuler In der Hilltaun Schule Geschrieben den 12ten Januar 1830
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Scope and Content: The NotenbUchlein was very likely made for Johannes Schittinger by his school teacher on 12 January 1830 when he was a student and singing scholar in the Hilltown School, Hilltown Township, Bucks County, Pennsylvania. Hymn titles 1-28 with music incipits are notated in shape notes, many entries of which match those found in Johann Friederich Eyers and Isaac Gerharts Choral Harmonie. The stop symbols of three parallel vertical lines, the first two spanning all five lines, and the last just the inner three lines are also copied exactly. Numbers 29-166 hymn titles with music incipits are notated in the traditional style of Johann Adam Eyer (1755-1837), and his student David Kulp (1777-1834), i.e. 4 hymn titles with music incipits to a page, use of soprano clef, key and time signatures, note values given in half and whole notes, and calligraphic flourishes at the end of a stave to indicate the end of the incipit. Besides the hymn titles, first verses are included for some of the hymns as well: Nr. 137 Mein Hertze LaBt Dich Jesu, L.; Nr. 140 Seele wirst dein Sorgen hin, ; Nr. 145 EgYpten EgYpten guten [sic] Nacht; Nr. 149 Frisch Auf zum frohen jagen, A.; Pages 88-174 are blank. This tune booklet demonstrates the two worlds in which Pennsylvania German children and their teachers existed, and points towards their assimilation into American culture. Representative of their Germanic roots, we find on the one hand that the majority of hymn titles are from the Marburg Hymnal, Die kleine geistliche Harfe der Kinder Zions, and Ein Unpartheyisches Gesang=Buch...BrUderschaft der Menonisten Gemeinen...1804 and copied out in German script, along with the tune incipits in traditional notation. On the other hand, their exposure to the American way of life, and new ways of presenting music for young people, prompted them to use as a new form of musical notation, i.e. shape notes, a system introduced in 1801 to facilitate congregation and community singing, and soon to become a popular teaching device in American singing schools. Title Description: Hand-drawn; hand-colored; hand-lettered. The title page consists of three panels: The middle one contains the text in Fraktur and German script. The two outer panels are decorated in matching undulating leafy stems containing a bloom at the head, and three blossoms along the sides. Colorful borders of yellow with red dots frame all panels. Tunebooks in General: The idea of creating such a booklet to teach children the rudiments of musical notation so that they could learn to sing the melodies used in the hymns at church service seems to have been Johann Adam Eyers (1755-1837). The hymnals used by their parents contained no music, but only the hymn verses with the indication Mel. and the title of the hymn tune to which the congregation would sing the text. The metrics, and topic of the poetry usually determined which melodies were chosen. Eyers concept was a practical and useful one, and inspired many other teachers to create tune booklets for their students in which only the melody line of frequently used hymn tunes was written out. Each scholar had a booklet, usually 10.2 x 16.5 cm in size. The teacher created a title page describing the purpose of the booklet, and containing the name of the student, the school attended, and the date of the titles creation. The empty spaces on the title page were filled in with flowers, birds, and other elements common to Pennsylvania German decorated Fraktur. These titles are absolutely beautiful, and probably inspired the singing scholar to greater endeavors as he learned how to read music and sing the tunes that either the instructor or he would copy into the booklet. The singing schools or singing classes flourished in Bucks, Lehigh, Montgomery, Chester and Berks Counties, Pennsylvania from about 1787 to 1845. Singing became a part of the school curriculum, and singing schools became popular.
- Swirl School Artist, active c. 1829-1871, Attributed to
- PA Digital
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- Free Library of Philadelphia
- Choral Harmonie
Die kleine geistliche Harfe der Kinder Zions..
Eyer, Johann Adam, 1755-1837
Eyer, Johann F. (Johann Frederick), 1770-1827
Gerhart, Isaac, 1788-1865
Kulp, David, 1777-1834
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- Swirl School Artist, active c. 1829-1871, Attributed to. Dieses Harmonische Melodeyen Buchlein Gehoret Mir Johannes Schittinger Sing Schuler In der Hilltaun Schule Geschrieben den 12ten Januar 1830. 1/12/1830. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://libwww.freelibrary.org/diglib/searchItem.cfm?itemID=frkm051000. (Accessed December 16, 2018.)
- APA citation style
- Swirl School Artist, active c. 1829-1871, Attributed to, (1/12/1830) Dieses Harmonische Melodeyen Buchlein Gehoret Mir Johannes Schittinger Sing Schuler In der Hilltaun Schule Geschrieben den 12ten Januar 1830. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America, http://libwww.freelibrary.org/diglib/searchItem.cfm?itemID=frkm051000
- MLA citation style
- Swirl School Artist, active c. 1829-1871, Attributed to. Retrieved from the Digital Public Library of America <http://libwww.freelibrary.org/diglib/searchItem.cfm?itemID=frkm051000>.