SM0313: A Collection of the most favourite minuets, marches airs and songs

A Collection
of the most favourite minuets, marches, airs and songs with accompaniments
Edited Mike Parker

Cover Image A collection of the most favourite minuets, marches, airs and songs with accompaniments taken from the "New and compleat instructions for the small harp" By Mr Peter Augé’ c. 1775, edited by Mike Parker.

Please click heading below to see contents.

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Critical apparatus

1. Ha je di rai je maman
2. Tempo di minueto
3. Fischer’s Minuet
4. March
5. Minuet
6. March
7. Minuet
8. Poloneise
9. Water parted (instrumental)
10. Water parted (vocal)
11. Scotch Song / Scotch song lyrics
12. I do as I will with my swain / I do as I will with my swain lyrics
13. Guardian Angels now protect me / Guardian Angels lyrics
14. Pastoralle


“It would be useless to make any apology about this instrument…” is the opening line of a

‘New and
compleat instructions
for the small harp
containing the easiest and best method
for learners to obtain a proficiency
To which is added
A collection of the most favourite minuets
Marches Airs and songs with accompaniments
Properly disposed for that instrument
By Mr Peter Augé’
Professor on the small harp.’

Published around 1775, this méthode details a small instrument with 30 strings giving a range from 5th octave F to 1st octave G, tuned in F major1 and equipped with ‘turning screws’ on some strings to make semitones. A charming engraving demonstrating the attitude of the player at the instrument shows a small scroll-topped instrument, in the same style as the French pedal harp, but, in comparison to the player, less than a metre high. Whilst this instrument falls, technically, into the category of hook harp, it is not of the German pattern, and represents a separate family in harp development. It is the direct ancestor of the modern lever harp, and in common enough usage to warrant the publication of the méthode about thirty years before John Egan began to build his portable harps.

This book contains the music from this méthode, possibly some of the first music published specifically for the lever harp, although the cam-action lever, it must be remembered, was only introduced in the 1970’s, so the harp in this méthode would have had blades or pinch screws. Augé does not mark in any lever shifts, but where needed, they are allowed for in the arrangements.

The collection contains a selection of material typical of domestic harp repertoire in the late eighteenth-century, with variations on a popular French air 2, a selection of dances and some songs. The piece marked ‘Tempo di minuetto’ appears, without the theme, in the Cousineau méthode of 1773, but aside from this, the compositions seem to be original. The exceptions are the ‘Scotch song’, which is a version of “The Bonny Grey” and the aria “Water Parted” from Artaxerxes, By Thomas Arne.

So, here we have original repertoire for the non-pedal harp, showing this instrument as an alternative to, rather that as substitute for the pedal harp. Light and charming, as befits material from this period, it is all eminently playable, and represents genuine period lever harp repertoire, rather than abridged or appropriated pieces ‘shoehorned’ onto the harp.

The songs, a little ‘mannered’ as one might expect, are lovely examples of eighteenth-century vocal styling and also work well on melody instrument with harp accompaniment.

Mike Parker August 2009

1 Two of the pieces, however, require E flats.
2 It may be ‘Twinkle, twinkle little star.’ to us, but it is impossible to underestimate the popularity of this tune in the eighteenth-century!

Library Information

Title: A Collection of the most favourite minuets, marches
airs and songs with accompaniments
Works: See contents above
Composer: From the collection by Peter Augé
Editor: Mike Parker
Instrumentation: Lever Harp / Lever Harp & Voice
Level: Intermediate Level
Format: Stapled
Size: A4
Weight: 145gm
ISMN: M-57046-056-4
Our Ref: SM313
Publisher: Creighton's Collection
Edition/Year: April 2012
Origin: UK (EU)

Sample page

Sample of the music