‘Fancy’

‘Fancy’

What do you all take the word fancy to mean in regards to a tune title?

Re: ‘Fancy’

I’ve never been told, but in the case of "<name>’s Fancy" I have always taken it to mean <name>’s show piece, or something that they liked to play that most people didn’t know… But I have no idea if that’s right…

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Most of the cases where I know the derivation, which are all GHB tunes, it’s usually the name of someone who liked the tune, presumably before it had a name[1]. I’m just looking at the database now, and I can’t see an example of a [so-and-so’s] Fancy where so-and-so is also the composer.

[1] There is a tune, Roddy MacDonald’s Fancy, which was also published under the title Cronin, by Donald MacLeod. I’ve never been able to find out which name came first, why it changed, or if it just has two names and that’s it.

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Always thought it was synonymous with "Favo(u)rite".

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I always assumed it was as simple as a tune someone liked. “Fancy” is a very simple word with mostly positive connotations, and I don’t know of any negative ones myself. I’ve always interpreted it as a direct synonym of “like”, judging from the ways it’s used.

A quick google search shows that it’s a contraction of “fantasy”. Notably, “fantasy” is Middle-English.

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Jerone! I don’t see you around here nearly enough these days!

AB I really fancied that that delightful set of polkas.

I really like the idea of naming the tune after someone who liked it before it had a name.

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Hey Cheeky Elf! Thank you for the sentiment! It’s been an interesting time for me, but this last year I’ve decided to follow-up on my interest in languages, so your post stood out to me. I’m studying Japanese and I language exchange as an English tutor, So I’m always looking for opportunities to learn more about words 🙂

With that being said, thank you for your post!

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I love they way you’re always deep into something. I’m still just trying to get this fiddle/flute caper down.

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"… I can’t see an example of a [so-and-so’s] Fancy where so-and-so is also the composer."

Perhaps it is the exception o the rule but Paddy Mills’ Fancy was composed by Paddy Mills https://thesession.org/tunes/1684 - I met the man and he told me so

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Way to go, Jerone! You are on the other side of the ´fence´ (on the Uralic Language side) from me (The Sino-Tibetan Language side). I´m studying Chinese. As they say: 好久不见! Long time no see!

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An old fashioned use of "fancy" in English was interest or enthusiasm.

"Those of the fancy" - people who are interested in this.

"Fancy rats" aren’t amazing colours, they’re owned by enthusiasts!

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Now you’ve got my sweet tooth going. Fancy a fancy fancy while listening to Fancy’s Fancy?

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I’ve seen plenty of aka’s where fancy and favorite are interchanged. For this reason I take fancy, when used after a person’s name, as interchangeable with favorite.

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@Johnny Jay. I think it’s just a contraction of fancy bun, fancy cake or whatever. So not a name but the ‘normal’ adjectival use of fancy. Not to say the tunes couldn’t be simply someone’s ‘fancy tune’ in the same way.

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Another such term is "maggot", which is found in names of tunes from southern Scotland and northern England in the eighteenth century.

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(I’ll ne’er blame my partial fancy,
Nothing could resist my Nancy:
For to see her was to love her;
Love but her, and love for ever.

- Ae fond kiss, Robert Burns)

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@postie: I thought the Ural-Altaic hypothesis was discredited long ago. But Japanese is certainly on the other side of some fence or other from Chinese. I once met a Japanese man who had learned Mongolian and found it quite easy owing to their similarities in structure, which lends credence, at least, to the case for an Altaic superfamily.

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@postie さしぶりです!

@Creadur, from what I’ve learned so far, there isn’t a solid consensus on the official language family Japanese is on. Some consider it Altaic, while others consider it a language isolate.

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Maggot? Would that be like ‘least favorite?’

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More like an ear worm, Cheeky.

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Wouldn’t fancy any maggots in my fancy cakes!

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You might once if Trish Santer’s Fancy is the same tune as Trish Santer’s Favourite is the same tune as Trish Santer’s Delight and maybe if it was played on an episode of Outlander and they called it "Trish Santer’s Maggot".
This question has come up before, and when one digs back through all the synonymous terms it is impossible to ignore all the maggots in Playford’s dances. Today’s Fancy or Favourite or Delight was once someone’s Maggot.
Here are all the maggoted (maggotworthy(?)) titles I found in Playford’s collections;

Barker’s Maggot, Betty’s Maggot, Blundel’s Maggot, Captain Corbet’s Maggot, Carpenter’s Maggot,
Cary’s Maggot, Coppindger’s Maggot, Dick’s Maggot, Draper’s Maggot, Eccles’s Maggot, Fairbank’s Maggot,
Fidler’s Maggot, George’s Maggot, George’s Maggot [#2], Godwin’s Maggot, Grigg’s Maggot,
(The) Hair’s(sic) Maggot, Hare’s Maggot, Highlander’s Maggot, Hill’s Maggot, Huntington’s Maggot,
Jack’s Maggot, Johnson’s Maggot, Jusper’s Maggot, Kelway’s Maggot, King’s Maggot, Ladies Maggot,
Mr. Beveridge’s Maggot, Mr. Isaac’s Maggot, Mr. Lane’s Maggot, My Lady Winwood’s Maggot,
My Lord Byron’s Maggot, Nobe’s Maggot, North’s Maggot, Orlabear’s Maggot, Paston’s Maggot, Pat’s Maggot,
Poor Robin’s Maggot, Reeve’s Maggot, Tire’s Maggot, Veal’s Maggot, Wing’s Maggot.

https://www.cdss.org/elibrary/dancing-master/Index.htm

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Re: ‘Fancy’

mag·got
/ˈmaɡət/
1. a soft-bodied legless larva, especially that of a fly found in decaying matter.
2. a whimsical fancy

How bazaar!

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Or even "bizarre" - unless your maggot is a market 🙂

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A bizarre bazaar for maggot’s maggots and fancy fancies?

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Musical maggots are fine, especially if you name one after me, but not any legless larvae in my Mr Kipling’s French fancies, non merci!

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You never know; maybe Bear McCreary will hear about this & get inspired to include a musical maggot in a future Outlander from the past.

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" I’m just looking at the database now, and I can’t see an example of a [so-and-so’s] Fancy where so-and-so is also the composer."


It’s a Cape Breton tune, and I don’t think it is in the database here, but ‘Mary’s Fancy’ was composed by Mary MacDonald, and sometimes called ‘A Mary MacDonald Reel’. Terrific tune.

https://www.cbfiddle.com/rx/tune/t1168.html

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@Johnny Jay ‘… put kettle on..’ It was ‘Stick kettle on, Mavis’ when I got around to watching Corrie. Great clip. Wouldn’t fancy locking horns with that Ena Sharples one!
I’ve always taken ‘fancy’ to mean favourite or delight, as in something one loves to play.