Old Tom Of Oxford reel

Also known as Old Oxford, Owld Ocsffordd.

There are 8 recordings of a tune by this name.

Old Tom Of Oxford has been added to 2 tune sets.

Old Tom Of Oxford has been added to 32 tunebooks.

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Four settings

X: 1
T: Old Tom Of Oxford
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
Bc | d2ef g2d2 | c2B2 A2BA | G2Bc d2g2 | f2g2 a2gf |
d2ef g2d2 | c2B2 A2ef | g2d2 c2B2 | A4 G2 :|
|: dc |Bcd2 B2d2 | B2d2 gfed | c2e2 c2e2 | c2e2 agfe |
B2d2 B2c2 | d2ef g2f2 | g2d2 c2B2 | A4 G2 :|
X: 2
T: Old Tom Of Oxford
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|GABc d2 ef|g2 d2 c2 B2|
A4 G4|g2 d2 c2 B2|A4 G4:||
g2 d2 c2 B2|A4 G4:||
X: 3
T: Old Tom Of Oxford
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Cmaj
D/E/F/G/A2| BGA2|D/E/ F/G/ A2|d^cde|
fe/f/gf/e/|fe/d/^c2|dABG|AAD2:|
F/G/A/G/F/G/A/G/|F/G/A/B/c2|E/F/G/F/E/F/G/F/|E/F/G/A/B2|
fe/f/gf/e/|fe/d/^c2|dABG|AA,D2:|
X: 4
T: Old Tom Of Oxford
R: reel
M: 4/4
L: 1/8
K: Gmaj
|:"G" G/2A/2B/2c/2 dc | BA Gd | G/2A/2B/2c/2 dg | "D"fg ad |
"G" g/2f/2g/2a/2 bg | "D" af "G"gd | "G"gd "C" ed/2c/2 | "G"BA G2 :|
|: "G"Bd Bd | Bd dc/2B/2 | "C" ce ce | ce ee/2f/2 |
"G"g/2f/2g/2a/2 bg | "D"af "G"gd | "G"gd "C" ed/2c/2 | "G"BA G2 :|

Nine comments

Old Tom of Oxford

The "Old Tom" of the title refers, I believe, to a college bell in Oxford.

Here’s a more complete version. It’s not really a real reel so it should be played in a slightly dotted rythym,in the order ABCB.

|GABc d2 ef|g2 d2 c2 B2|
A4 GABc|d2 g2 f2 g2|
a2 fe d2 ef|g2 d2 c2 B2|
A4 G4|g2 d2 c2 B2|A4 G4:||
B2 d2 B2 d2|B2 d2 gfed|
c2 e2 c2 e2|c2 e2 gfed|
B2 d2 B2 d2|ddef g4|
g2 d2 c2 B2|A4 G4|
g2 d2 c2 B2|A4 G4:||
G3 A B2 c2|d4 g4|
c4 Bc B2|A4 G4|
G3A B2c2|d4 g4|
f4g4|a2 fe d2 ef|
g2 d2 c2 B2|
A4 G4|g2 d2 c2 B2|
A4 G4|

Old Tom of Oxford

That’s a nice version, Dafydd. Would you like to post it as a separate submission? I think the differences are significant enough to warrant it.
The shorter AABB version I’ve given is the one we play in a session as a reel, and last night we did it at a pace I’m sure set dancers would enjoy.

here’s one version from a fiddle ms from 1752. it’s the john thomas ms edited by cass meurig and published by the national library of wales under the title ‘alawon john thomas’ isbn 1-86225-042-1.
she tells me she had thought of publishing under the title ‘fiddling with john thomas’ but thought better of it. in her edition she suggests that the key should be D minor reasonably enough but i fancy there’s something mysterious and of the eighteenth century about it when the b’s are natural and so i’ve left it as john thomas wrote it. i like it better this way
it is then (indcientaly) in what is called the ‘gogywair’ - an ancient (pre-fifteenth century) harp tuning, apart of course from the modulation to the c natural in the second turn.
some welsh folk songs are still to be heared sung in the gogywair but are as rare as hen’s teeth.
it was published also by Young and Pearson, The Dancing Master Vol 2 (London 3rd edition in 1719) as Peace and Plenty, or Old Oxford. titles here spelled as john thomas
X:70
T: Owld Ocsfford. Owld Oxfford
M: C
L: 1/4
Q:150
S:Alawon John Thomas NLW isbn 1-86225-042-1 ed. Cass Meurig
R:Reel
K: C
D/E/F/G/A2| BGA2|D/E/ F/G/ A2|d^cde|
fe/f/gf/e/|fe/d/^c2|dABG|AAD2:|
F/G/A/G/F/G/A/G/|F/G/A/B/c2|E/F/G/F/E/F/G/F/|E/F/G/A/B2|
fe/f/gf/e/|fe/d/^c2|dABG|AA,D2:|
it sounds lovely on a flute this way

Old Tom Of Oxford, X:4

I know this setting as Old Mother Oxford and it is used for clog dancing in Caldbeck. Both the title and the tune itself have so many points in common that I think they must have an origin in common