Greetings's “The Plesant Companion”

Editor's Introduction

This is a transcription of the copy of The Pleasant Companion held in the Dayton C. Miller Flute Collection. To view each individual page, click on the link which proceeds the text of each page. At the moment, only the introductory text is available. I hope to be able to transcribe the pieces which consist of the second two–thirds of the work soon.

Pleasant Companion:
LONDON, Printed for J. Playford, and are to be Sold at his Shop near the Temple-Church, 1680

Instructions for Playing on the Flagelet.

The Flagelet is an Instrument that may very fitly be termed A Pleasant Companion, for it may be carried in the Pocket, and so without any trouble bear one company either by Land or by Water. It hath this advantage over other Instruments, that it is always in Tune, which they are not: And for theose whose Geneius leads them to Musick, I know not a more easie and pleasant Instrument : And though it at first may seem diificult to Beginners, yet witht the Practice of a few hours, observing these following Directions, and a little assistance of a Skilful Master, the knowledge hereof may be readily attained unto.

Of Holding the Flagelet.

There are two wayes of Holding the Flagelet usually taught by the Professors on this Instrument: The first way is to hold it with the left hand next the mouth, the thumb and three fingers thereof on the four first Holes, and the thumb and first finger of the right hand on the two last, holding the End of the Flagelet between the second and third fingers. The second way of holding it (which I conceive is the best) is to hold it with the left hand next the mouth as before, but with this difference, the thumb and two first fingers thereof stopping the three first Holes, and the thumb and first fingers of the right hand stopping the three last Holes; so that as the Flagelet hath four Holes above, and two below so they are stopt above with the four first fingers, and beneath with the two thumbs; and for the better staying it to ones Mouth, the end of it is to be held between the third and little finger, placing the third finger above, and the little finger underneath, as is expressed in the Figure before the Title.

The drawing which appears as the 'Figure before the Title'

Of the manner of Playing on the Flagelet.

All Tunes or Lessons for the Flagelet are prick'd upon six Lines, answering to the siz Holes on the Instrument, by certain Characters called Dots: These dots direct what Holes are to be stopt, there being so many, and the same holes to be stopt on the Flagelet each breath, as there are dots placed perpendicularly on the six Lines; as suppose a dot upon the first or uppermost Line, the first hole on the Flagelet (agreeing with that first Line) must be stopt; and if there be two dots on over another, as on the first and second, or first and third Lines, then the first and second, or first and third holes on the Flagelet are to be stopt: For instance, in pricking the Tune called Maiden Fair, for the two first Sounds or Breaths is made a dot upon the first and third Line twice over, and accordingly the first and third hole of the Flagelet must be stopt, and then blow gently twice. The like is to be understood of all the reft; observing, that as many rows of dots as there is from the top to bottom on the six Lines, so many several sounds must there be on the Flagelet. Above the six Lines over the Dots are placed Notes for expressing the Measure or Time, slow or swift; of which Notes and Time, I shall give you as certain Rule to know the Proportion it its due place.

Example of the plain Notes Assending and Desending

A simple major scale shown in the flageolet tablature.
Left HandThumb
1st Fing