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    Yankee Doodles Net History


    Yankee Doodle General History

    Yankee Doodle was not really a song, but was a band tune which no one audience has ever sung together. The single stanza known to everyone was not a part of the Revolutionary War ballad, but belonged to an earlier period in its history.

    The music is unheroic, the title was a New England Noodle was derogatory to the people who adopted it, in spite of its ridicule, it has become a piece of stirring as The Campbell's Are Coming.

    The melody, has often been used as the case, was generally known for several years before it was turned to patriotic account.

    As early as 1764 the familiar one line stanza was current in England, and by 1767 the tune was familiar enough in America to be cited in Barton's or Colonel Forrest's comic opera, Disappointment, or The Force of Credulity.

    In derision of the foolish Yankee there soon began to multiply variants, most of which have come down by hearsay, and are very vague as to date, but, one was a broadside and attests in the title to its currency before April, 1775, Yankee Doodle or, as now christened by the Saints of New England the Lexington March.

    The text of The Yankee's Return from Camp the famous but forgotten version is attributed to Edward Bangs, a Harvard student, and was written in 1775 or 1776.

    Tory derision did not cease with its appearance, and between the accumulating stanzas in rejoinder and those in supplement gave ground for the speech of Jonathan in Tyler's The Contrast of 1787 which has 190 stanzas.

    General History 2


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