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A chronicle of music in colonial Australia from 1801 to 1810

Dr GRAEME SKINNER (University of Sydney)


To cite this:

Graeme Skinner (University of Sydney), "A chronicle of music in colonial Australia from 1801 to 1810", Australharmony (an online resource toward the history of music and musicians in colonial and early Federation Australia):; accessed 21 April 2021


This is page 2 (of 4) of an open access work-in-progress to chronicle, in date order, all of the scarce documentary references to music in Australia, Indigenous and European, from earliest contacts until the end of 1825.

Entries are also included for some occasions in which music must certainly played a part, although there is no actual record of it, such as when it accompanied dancing, and civil, military, and religious ceremonies; and for some other important historical occasions when it is very likely to have done.

Please contact me if you have, or know of, relevant information missing here, and which you are willing to share.

For the other 3 pages: 

On this page:

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5 March 1801 (death)

Hawkesbury and Sydney, NSW

STOGDELL, John (STOCKDALE) (deceased)

A fiddle and several flutes


Inventory of John Stogdell's estate; Philip Gidley King correspondence with Judge Advocate reports of appeals, etc. 1800-1806 A 2019, Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales (TRANSCRIPT)

[120] . . . An Inventory of all and Singular the Goods, Chattles, Debts and Effects of John Stogdell Deceased who dies Intestate come to the hands of John Palmer Esquire Administrator of all and Singular the Estate, Debts, and Effects of the said John Stogdell that is to say . . .

[122] . . . 1 flute . . . Sold by Auction in Separate lots at the Hawkesbury on the 21st day of May, aforesaid for different Sums . . .

. . . 8 [indecipherable, ? music] Books 1 Fiddle and 2 flutes . . . Sold by Auction in Separate lots at Walloomooloo on the 25th day of May, aforesaid for different Sums

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2002, 100

Jordan 2012, 199

John Stogdell 

1 June 1801

17 August 1801

Sydney, NSW

HASSALL, Rowland (participant, informant)

MARSDEN, Samuel (participant, informant)

PARSONS, Harry (singing master)

Watts's Divine songs for the use of children at the opening of the Female Orphan Institution


Balance sheet of the orphan fund, 9 May 1803; ed. HRA 1/4, 103

REVD. SAMUEL MARSDEN (Treasurer) in Account with the Committee of the Orphan School . . . 1801 / June 1 / Paid Henry Parsons Singing Master £3 3s 0d

Letter, Samuel Marsden to a lady, 24 August 1801; Hassall family correspondence A1677/2, 54; Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 195

In the 1801 accounts of the Orphan School, Henry Parsons received three guineas for his work as singing master.

The Institution was opened with a Sunday service described in some detail by Rowland Hassell . . . . . . "the Hymns sung on this occasion was out of Devine songs for the use of children . . ."
. . . As Marsden wrote, "The School is now opened . . . I spent the last evening with them for the first time, and made a beginning to instruct them in the principles of christianity; sung a hymn and went to prayer with them."


Watt's Divine songs attemtpted in easy language for the Use of CHILDREN, first edition London, 1715; compare these editions:

Divine songs attemtpted in easy language for the use of children by I. Watts D.D. A new edition, with additions of hymns, &c. from other authors (Bath: S. Hazard, [1795]) 

Divine songs attemtpted in easy language for the use of children by I. Watts D.D. (Gainsborough: H. Mozley, [1800]) 

27 October 1801

Sydney, NSW

MULLINS, Mr. (fiddler, violinist, convict)

Playing the fiddle late . . . stole four fowls


Jordan 2012, 203

. . . one Mullins, who was playing the fiddle late into the evening at ex-convict John Sparrow's house on 27 October 1801 and on leaving, severely intoxicated, stole four fowls.

30 December 1801 to 5 January 1802

South Coast and Two Peoples Bay, WA


NEBINYAN (reporter)

FLINDERS, Matthew (reporter)

BATES, Daisy (reporter)

Koorannup ceremony . . . a corroboree from the country of their dead . . . songs in the same cadence as at Port Jackson

Also "Kurannup"


Flinders 1814, 1, 60-61 (DIGITISED)

On the 30th [December 1801], our wooding, and the watering of the ship were completed, the rigging was refitted, the sails repaired and bent, and the ship unmoored. Our friends, the natives, continued to visit us; and the old man, with several others being at the tents this morning, I ordered the party of marines on shore, to be exercised in their presence. The red coats and white crossed belts were greatly admired, having some resemblance to their own manner of ornamenting themselves; and the drum, but particularly the fife [61] excited their astonishment; but when they saw these beautiful red-and-while men, with their bright muskets, drawn up in a line, they absolutely screamed with delight; nor were their wild gestures and vociferation to be silenced, but by commencing the exercise, to which they paid the most eamest and silent attention. Several of them moved their hands, involuntarily, according to the motions; and the old man placed himself at the end of the rank, with a short staff in his hand, which he shouldered, presented, grounded, as did the marines their muskets, without, I believe, knowing what he did. Before firing, the Indians were made acquainted with what was going to take place; so that the vollies did not excite much terror . . .

Flinders 1814, 1, 66 (DIGITISED)

[January 1802] . . . It was with some surprise that I saw the natives of the east coast of New South Wales so nearly pourtrayed in those of the south-western extremity of New Holland. These do not, indeed, extract one of the upper front teeth at the age of puberty, as is generally practised at Port Jackson, nor do they make use of the womerah, or throwing stick; but their colour, the texture of the hair, and personal appearance are the same; their songs run in the same cadence; the manner of painting themselves is similar . . . The manners of these people are quick and vehement, and their conversation vociferous, like that of most uncivilised people. They seemed to have no idea of any superiority we possessed over them; on the contrary, they left us, after the first interview, with some appearance of contempt for our pusillanimity; which was probably inferred from the desire we showed to be friendly with them. This opinion, however, seemed to be corrected in their future visits. Nothwithstanding the similarity of person and manner to the inhabitants of Port Jackson, the language of these people is very different. We found their pronunciation difficult to be imitated; [67] more so, indeed, than our language was to them . . .

MS, undated, Bates collection, University of Adelaide, [Image #] 9/64 Daisy Bates and her 90 folders of records Verso: My 90 folios comprising forty years study of every branch of aboriginal culture - social systems, vocabularies etc. etc. The volumes cover practically all Western Australia from Broome to Eucla etc. etc. Maps illustrate areas of remote groups and their areas etc. . . . (DIGITISED)

[Image #] 9/73 Nebinyan, whose people saw Flinders Verso: (Pencil note by Bates: This is not correct as when I wrote down Nebinyan's information I did not know Flinders had been here . . . I thought it was Cook and his ship (Manitchmat white cockatoo stock, clearer type) Flinders careened his ship near Two People Bay and while bartering went on, he made kindly contact with the natives. They brought water and wood to the ship to Flinders and his men. Everyone was kind and gentle towards the natives, who believed they were the spirits of their own dead. Before the ship left, Flinders showed his sense of their good behaviour by parading his marines in full dress before the natives. The natives thought it was a corroboree from the country of their dead and the men, taking their clubs, stood at each end of the marines, imitating every movement. They believed they were being shown a heavenly dance and every native studied every movement and motion. As soon as the ship had gone, in friendship and good feeling, the men rehearsed the dance and ochred their bodies (red coats) and whitened the cross bands and imitated every movement. Nebinyan was about 86 when he died (1909-10) (Nebinyan was not born in Flinders' time) and he remembered the markings and the bayonet movements and showed these to me - a unique occasion. Endnote by DMB in pencil: My pencilled copy of Nebinyan's story which never varied in its details was unfortunately rubbed off this photo before being copied and the above printed by my young typist. I had however shown my original pencilling to Mr Archivist Pitt (Public Library) after I had regained Flinders' own notes from Mr Pitt.

Daisy M. Bates, "MY NATIVES AND I. No. 12. Beliefs and Customs", The West Australian (19 February 1936), 23 

There was but one instance of a Kurannup dance, treasured for over a century, that I could find in all my wanderings, and that from the groups of Two-People Bay, not far from Albany. There is a note to the diary of Matthew Flinders that he landed here on the coast in 1800 [sic], and that to response to the kindliness and courtesy of the natives, arranged for them, to leaving, a full-dress parade of his marines. The blaze of red uniforms with white cross-bands as the sailors marched along the beach appealed to their childish hearts, and a big mob accumulated. This manoeuvring on a lonely shore among naked savages is impressive to it self, but every soldierly step, every movement of the muskets and marine drill, were mirrored to mimicry by the delighted Bibbulmun, and the uniforms were reproduced to every detail, to red ochre and white pipe-clay, to provide a new and impressive corroboree. In 1908, at my camp at Katanning, I met Nebinyan then about 70, last of the Two People Bay men. He showed me this Kurannup dance of the jangga who came to a strange kobbers ship long ago, that had been a tradition of his people for 100 years. Flinders's kindly watchfulness had brought out all that was best to the natives, and it is gratifying to know that such a splendid son of Empire should leave his memory to be treasured by a people whose mind is as impressionable, and as unimpressionable, as the sea.

Bibliography and resources:

University of Adelaide, Daisy Bates Papers, MSS 572.994 B32t; Series 2: Native testaments of old natives; Series 2. 2.7 Nebinyan; transcribed by Jane Walkley 

Bates (White) 1985, 340-42

Swain 1990

Currency companion to music and ance in Australia 2002, 32

Gibbs 2003


31 January 1802 (event)

Bruny Island, VDL (TAS)


ARRA-MAÏDA (singer, dancer)

BELLEFIN, Jérôme (singer)

PÉRON, François (reporter)

An exchange of songs at Bruny Island



Péron 1807, 250-56 

Le 31 janvier, de bonne heure, je descendis à terre sur l'île Bruny. Une embarcation du Naturaliste et notre grand canot avoient apporté beaucoup de monde sur cette île, soit pour y faire la pêche, soit pour y préparer le bois nécessaire aux vaisseaux. La mer étoit basse : je partis aussitôt pour en prolonger les contours. Déjà je m'étois assez éloigné de nos embarcations pour ne pouvoir plus les distinguer, lorsqu'après avoir doublé une grosse pointe, j'aperçus une vingtaine de sauvages qui venoient à ma rencontre, en marchant sur la grève. Je n'hésitai pas à rebrousser chemin, trop instruit, par nos derniers accidens, du danger que [251] de semblables rencontres portoient avec elles. En me retirant ainsi, je rencontrai MM. HEIRISSON, officier du Naturaliste, et BELLEFIN, médecin de ce même bâtiment , qui s'amusoient à chasser sur le bord de la forêt. Je leur fis part du motif de ma retraite: ils m'offrirent de retourner avec moi au-devant des sauvages pour chercher à lier quelques communications avec eux; notre nombre et nos armes nous mettant à l'abri de leur mauvaise volonté, j'acceptai la proposition de mes amis. Déjà nous n'étions plus qu'à peu de distance de la troupe, lorsque tout-à-coup elle se rejeta dans la forêt et disparut. Nous gravîmes alors les dunes; et sans chercher à poursuivre les naturels, ce que l'agilité particulière à ces peuples auroit rendu trop inutile, nous nous contentâmes de les appeler, en leur présentant divers objets, et sur-tout en agitant nos mouchoirs. A ces démonstrations d'amitié, la troupe hésite un instant, s'arrête ensuite, et se détermine à nous attendre. Ce fut alors que nous reconnûmes que nous avions affaire à des femmes; il n'y avoit pas un individu mâle avec elles. Nous nous disposions à les joindre de plus près, lorsqu'une des plus âgées d'entre elles, se détachant de ses compagnes, nous fait signe de nous arrêter et de nous asseoir, en nous criant avec force, mêdi, médï [asseyez-vous, asseyez-vous]; elle sembloit nous prier aussi de déposer nos armes, dont la vue les épouvantoit.

Ces conditions préliminaires ayant été remplies, les femmes s'accroupirent sur leurs talons; et dès ce moment elles parurent s'abandonner sans réserve à la vivacité de leur caractère , parlant toutes ensemble, nous interrogeant toutes à-la-fois, ayant l'air souvent de nous critiquer et de rire à nos dépens, faisant, en un mot, mille gestes, mille contorsions aussi singulières que variées. M. BELLEFIN se mit à chanter, en s'accompagnant de gestes très-vifs et très-animés; les femmes firent aussitôt silence, observant avec autant d'attention les gestes de M. BELLEFIN, qu'elles paroissoient en prêter à ses chants. A mesure qu'un couplet étoit [252] fini, les unes applaudissoient par de grands cris, d'autres rioient aux éclats, tandis que les jeunes filles, plus timides sans doute, gardoient le silence, témoignant néanmoins, par leurs gestes et par l'expression de leur physionomie , leur surprise et leur satis- faction.

[253] . . . une seule, au milieu de toutes ses compagnes, avoit conservé une grande assurance, avec beaucoup d'enjouement et de jovialité; c'étoit celle qui nous avoit imposé les conditions dont j'ai parlé précédemment. Après que M. BELLEFIN eut terminé sa chanson, elle se mit à contrefaire ses gestes et son ton de voix d'une manière fort originale et très-plaisante , ce qui divertit beaucoup ses camarades: puis elle commença elle-même à chanter sur un mode tellement rapide, qu'il eût été difficile de rapporter une telle musique aux principes ordinaires de la nôtre. Leur chant, au surplus, est ici d'accord avec leur langage; car telle est la volubilité du parler de ces peuples, qu'il est impossible, ainsi que nous le dirons ailleurs, de distinguer aucun son précis dans leur prononciation : c'est une sorte de roulement qui ne sauroit trouver dans nos langues Européennes aucun terme de comparaison ou d'analogie.

Excitée, pour ainsi dire, par ses propres chants, auxquels nous n'avions pas manqué d'applaudir avec chaleur, et voulant sans doute mériter nos suffrages sous d'autres rapports, notre joviale Diéménoise se mit à exécuter divers mouvemens de danse, dont quelques-uns pourroient être regardés comme excessivement indécens, si dans cet état des sociétés l'homme n'étoit encore absolument étranger à toute cette délicatesse de sentimens et d'actions qui n'est pour nous qu'un produit heureux du perfectionnement de l'ordre social.

Tandis que tout ceci se passoit, je m'occupois à recueillir précieusement et à noter les détails que je viens d'exposer, et beaucoup d'autres encore qui se reproduiront ailleurs avec intérêt: je fus remarqué sans doute par la même femme qui venoit de danser; car à peine elle eut fini sa danse , qu'elle s'approcha de moi d'un air obligeant, prit dans un sac de jonc, semblable à celui que j'ai décrit ailleurs, quelques charbons qui s'y trouvoient, les écrasa dans sa main, et se disposa à m'appliquer une couche du fard ordinaire [254] de ces régions. Je me prêtai volontiers à ce caprice obligeant; M. HEIRISSON eut la même complaisance, et reçut un pareil masque. Nous parûmes être alors un grand sujet d'admiration pour ces femmes; elles sembloient nous regarder avec une douce satisfaction, et nous féliciter des nouveaux agrémens que nous venions d'acquérir. Ainsi donc cette blancheur Européenne dont notre espèce est si fière, n'est plus qu'un défaut réel, une sorte de difformité qui doit le céder, dans ces climats lointains, à la couleur noire du charbon, au rouge sombre de l'ocre ou de la terre glaise . . .

[256] . . . Peu de jours après, j'eus le plaisir de rencontrer la même femme dont il vient d'être tant de fois question; j'appris alors qu'elle se nommoit ARRA-MAÏDA. M. PETIT voulut bien, à ma prière, en faire le portrait, qui se trouve dans l'atlas [PL. XII], et qui, sous tous les rapports, est d'une ressemblance parfaite. On y retrouve bien, si je ne me trompe, ce caractère d'assurance et de fierté qui clistinguoit éminemment cette femme, de toutes ses compagnes. Lorsque je la rencontrai la dernière fois, elle portoit un petit enfant derrière le dos . . .

Péron 1809 (English translation), 195-98, 200 

On the 31st of January, early in the morning, I landed on the isle Bruny. A boat from the Naturalist and our longboat, had brought a considerable number of people on shore on this island, either to fish or to get wood for the ships. The tide was low, and I immediately left the people, with the intention of walking as far as I could round the circumference of the island, at the same time keeping along the shore. I had got out of sight of the boats, when after doubling a large point, I perceived about twenty savages coming along the shore, as if to meet me. I without hesitating a moment turned back, warned by experience of the danger of such rencontres.

As I thus retreated, I met M. Heirisson, officer of the Naturalist, and M. Bellefin, the doctor of that ship, who were [196] amusing themselves by shooting on the borders of the forest. I told them the reason of my retreat, and they offered to return with me and face the savages, that we might endeavour to have some communication with them. Our number and our arms being now a sufficient protection against their ill will, if they should be disposed to offend us, I accepted the proposal of my friends. We were at this time at only a small distance from the company, when in a moment they again disappeared among the trees of the forest. We now climbed the downs, and without pursuing the natives, which the swiftness of foot peculiar to these people would have made hopeless, we contented ourselves with calling to them, shewing them several different things as presents, and at the same time waving our handkerchiefs. At these demonstrations of friendship they hesitated an instant, and then stopped, as if to wait for us. We now discovered that they were women, and that there was not a single male among the party. We were advancing nearer, when one of the oldest of them leaving her companions a few steps in the rear, made signs to us to stay where we were, and to sit down, calling aloud to us médi, médi (sit down, sit down); she seemed also to desire us to lay down our arms, of which they seemed to be in some fear.

These preliminaries being settled, the women squatted on their heels, and from that moment seemed to shew all the natural vivacity of their character without the least reserve, and speaking altogether, asked us a number of questions, seeming often to criticise our appearance, and laugh heartily at our expence, making a thousand odd gestures and contortions. M. Bellefin began to sing, at the same time using a great deal of action; the women immediately kept silence, observing with as much attention the motions of M. Bellefin as they seemed to give to the sound of his voice. At the end of every verse some applauded him with loud acclamations, others laughed heartily, while the young women, being more timid, kept silence, and expressed their surprize and satisfaction only by their looks and gestures . . .

[197] . . . one only, among all her companions, had preserved any degree of confidence, with a lively and merry temper: this was she who had imposed the preliminary conditions which I mentioned above.

After M. Bellefin had concluded his song, she began to mimic his action and the tone of his voice, in a very pleasant and truly original manner, which much diverted her companions: she next began herself to sing, with such a rapidity of expression, that it would be very difficult to give any idea of music, such as it was, so different from the general principles of any European music.

Their tunes seem entirely to accord with their language; for these people speak with such quickness and volubility, that it is impossible, as we shall shew hereafter, to distinguish their pronunciation with any degree of precision: it is a sort of rolling sound, for which our European languages do not furnish any expression of comparison or analogy.

Excited by the sound of her own voice, which we did not fail to applaud with much warmth, and doubtless wishing to obtain our admiration in other respects, our jovial Diemenese began to dance, and to throw herself into divers attitudes, some of which might be thought very indecent, if [198] in this state of society, men were not still absolutely strangers to all the delicacy of sentiment and conduct, which among us is only the consequence of complete civilization.

While all this was passing, I employed myself in minuting all the particulars which I have here given, and many other observations, which will with more propriety be produced at a future time. I was doubtless observed by this same woman, who had exerted herself so much to entertain us; for she had no sooner finished her dance, than she came close to me, and taking from a bag made of rushes, such as I have before described, some charcoal which it contained, she crushed it between her hands, and with an obliging air she began to apply it on my face, as is customary in these regions. I willingly submitted to this obliging piece of caprice: M. Heirisson had the same complaisance, and was ornamented with a similar mask. We now seemed to be very much admired by these women; they appeared to regard us with a degree of sweet satisfaction and pleasure, and seemed to congratulate us on the acquisition of such an addition to our beauty. Thus it appears that the fairness of skin, of which Europeans are so vain, is an absolute defect, and a sort of deformity, which, in these distant climates, must yield the palm of beauty to the blackness of coal, or the colour of red ochre . . .

[200] . . . A few days after, I had the pleasure of meeting the same woman who had so much attracted our attention: I then learnt that her name was Arra-Maida. M. Petit, at my request, drew a likeness of her, and which is a very correct resemblance: in the features may be easily discovered that expression of courage and superiority, which so eminently distintguished her from her companions. The last time I met with er, she had a young child at her back . . .

Bibliography and resources:

Bonwick 1870b, 22-25 (? newly translated from Péron 1807) 

Bonwick 1884, 14-16 (from Bonwick 1870b)

Fenton 1884, 19-20 (from Bonwick 1870, abridged)

Roth 1890, 41-44 (newly translated from Péron 1807)

Clendinnen 2003, 292 (incorrectly places the encounter in Western Australia)

Konishi 2007

Fornaserio and West-Sooby 2015


On 31 January 1802, Péron and Beleffin encountered a group of Bruny Island women. An exchange of songs between Bellefin and the woman later identified as Arra-maïda took place. Contrary to claims of some commentators, Bellefin's song is not here named as La Marseillaise. This is apparently an elision of detail from a slightly earlier encounter on the Tasmanian mainland in mid January (perhaps the 14th or 15th), as given below from Péron 1809. Péron 1807 does not actually name it, but refers to it only obliquely as "cet hymne si malheureusement prostitué dans la révolution."


Péron 1807, 226-27

Cette famille revenoit alors de la pêche, qui sans doute avoit été très-heureuse; car presque tous les individus étoient chargés de coqujllages, appartenant à la grande espèce d'oreille- de-mer particulière à ces rivages. Le vieillard, prenant M. Freycinet parla main, nous fit signe de le suivre, et nous conduisit à la pauvre cabane que nous venions de quitter. Le feu, dans un instant, fut allumé; et après nous avoir répété plusieurs fois médi, médi [asseyez-vous, asseyez-vous], ce que nous fîmes, les sauvages s'accroupirent eux-mêmes sur leurs talons, et chacun se mit en devoir de manger le produit de sa pêche. La cuisine n'étoit ni longue, ni difficile à faire: ces grandes coquilles étoient mises sur le feu; et là, comme dans un plat, l'animal cuisoit; on l'avaloit ensuite, sans aucune autre espèce d'assaisonnement ou d'apprêt. En goûtant de ces coquillages ainsi préparés, nous les trouvâmes très-tendres et très-succulens.

Tandis que nos bons Diéménois prenoient ainsi leur simple repas, il nous vint à l'idée de leur faire de la musique, bien moins, sans doute, pour les divertir, que pour connoître l'effet de nos chants sur leur esprit et sur leurs organes. Dans ce dessein, nous choisîmes cet hymne si malheureusement prostitué dans la révolution, mais si plein de chaleur et d'enthousiasme, et si propre dès-lors à notre objet. Au premier instant, les sauvages parurent troublés encore plus que surpris; mais après quelques momens [227] d'incertitude, ils prêtèrent une oreille attentive: le repas fut suspendu, et les témoignages de leur satisfaction se manifestèrent par des contorsions et des gestes si bizarres, que nous avions peine à contenir l'envie de rire qui nous pressoit. Pour eux, ils néprouvoient pas moins d'embarras à étouffer pendant le chant l'expression de leur enthousiasme: mais à peine une strophe étoit finie, que de grands cris d'admiration partoient en même temps de toutes les bouches; le jeune homme, sur-tout, étoit comme hors de lui-même; il se prenoit par les cheveux; il se grattoit la tête avec ses deux mains, s'agitoit de mille manières , et proiongeoit ses clameurs à diverses reprises. Après cette musique forte et guerrière, nous chantâmes quelques-uns de nos petits airs tendres et légers: les sauvages parurent bien en saisir le véritable sens; mais il nous fut aisé de connoître que les sons de ce genre ébranloient trop foiblement leurs organes.

Péron 1809, 177-78

The family were returning from fishing, in which they had been fortunate, for each was loaded with shell-fish, of that kind belonging to the large species of marine ear, peculiar to these shores. The old man taking M. Freycinet by the hand, made signs to us to follow him, and conducted us to the poor hut we had just quitted. Fire was lighted in an instant, and after repeating several times, médi, médi (sit down, sit down), these savages themselves squatted down on their heels, and began each to eat the produce of their fishery. The cookery was neither tedious nor difficult; these large shells were placed on the fire, where, as in a dish, the fish was baked, and afterwards eaten without any other preparation or seasoning. On tasting this food we found it succulent and well flavoured. While our good Diemenese thus enjoyed their simple repast, the idea of treating them with a little music entered our heads, not so much to amuse them, as to see what effect our singing would have on our audience. We chose the hymn which was so unhappily prostituted during the revolution, but which is nevertheless so full of enthusiasm and spirit, and so likely on this occasion to produce effect. At first the savages appeared more affected than surprised, but in a few moments they lent an attentive ear: their meal was left unfinished, and they expressed their satisfaction by divers contortions and so many odd gestures, that we could scarcely restrain our risibility. On their part, they with difficulty checked expressing [their] [178] their enthusiasm while we sung, but no sooner was there a pause, than exclamations of admiration issued from every mouth: the young man particularly seemed as if beside himself, he pulled his hair, he scratched his head with both hands, he threw himself into a thousand different positions, and shouted with pleasure at the end of every verse. After this martial tune, we sung some of our tender airs: the savages seemed to comprehend the sense of these, but it was easy to perceive that sounds of this kind did not much affect them . . .

1 July 1802

Sydney, NSW

BEVAN, David (housholder, merchant)

. . . singing to a child to lull it to sleep

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 203

. . . case of 1 July 1802, where the watch heard the noise of singing at David Bevan's house and, on attempting to attract his attention, were roundly abused by Bevan who claimed that it was only a woman "singing to a Child to lull it to sleep" . . . (SRNSW, SZ 789, one of 19, 21, 111-12)

6 July 1802

Sydney, NSW

Musical instruments


HRA 1/3, 642

General Cargo of the Ship Atlas. Large Assortment Tin and plated Ware. Japan Do. Do. Brushes Combs Wts. and Scales etc. Looking Glasses. Tobacco. Musical Instruments, quantity Glass ware Woollen Cloths. Bird Cages. Hatts. Mush'd and pickles. Stationary, and Haberd'y. Cutlery. Paints. Soap. 5 Mills Grind, and etc. Corn Shoes and Boots. Shalls and Muslins. Wooden Clocks. Toyes. Quantity Ironmongery. Pins and Needles. Snuff. Dimities and Irishes Cross Cut Saws. Smiths Anvils and Bellows. Sodder and Glue. 4 Cases Stafford Ware. Quantity ribbons. 188 Bars. 155 Bolts Swedish Iron. 60 Hhds. Porter. 30 Boxes Cheese. 2 Cases Sugar. 36 Doz. M. Wine 1 Punch 1 Hhd. Rum. 1 Do. Wiskey. Sugar and Coffee.

Jordan 2012, 205

31 July 1802

Sydney, NSW

CROSSLEY, George (debtor)

3 German flutes, 4 violins and strings

Inventory of goods of George Crossley; Philip Gidley King correspondence with Judge Advocate reports of appeals, etc. 1800-1806 A 2019, Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales (TRANSCRIPT)

[253] Memorand. (copy) Whereas Geo. Crossley has broke my Award Crossley & Wentworth, This is to command you to seize & take into your Possession all the sd. Geo Crossley's Goods, Chattels, Farm at Hawkesbury Book Debts & Effects of every Sort & sell the same by Public Auction without Delay, pursuant to my Award Given under my Hand and Seal at Governt. House Parramatta this 31st July 1802 . . .

[255] . . . 3 German Flutes . . .

[258] . . . 4 Violins, a Parcel of Violin Strings Cost 4 [indecipherable]

Bibliography and resources:

Jonathan Solomon, "Crossley, George", Dictionary of Sydney 

Jordan 2012, 204, 210 note 57

Late June to November 1802

Sydney and hinterland, NSW

INDIGENOUS (unidentified informants)

LESUEUR, Charles Alexandre (transcriber, reporter)

BERNIER, Pierre François (transcriber, reporter)

Musique des naturels

Go to main entry:

Checklist of colonial musical transcriptions of Indigenous songs 3

Late June or early July 1802

The Parade Ground, Sydney, NSW

PÉRON, François (reporter)


Péron admires band of the New South Wales Corps
Lesueur Vue de Sydney 1803

Image: Péron 1807, plate (detail): engraving after Charles Alexandre Lesueur; Nouvelle-Hollande, Nouvelle Galles du Sud, vue de la partie meridionale de la ville de Sydney, capitale des colonies anglaises aux terres australes et de l'embouchure de la riviere de Parramatta 1803


Péron 1807, 1, 370 (DIGITISED)

. . . au-delà de l'hôpital, et sur la même ligne, est la prison, pourvue de plusieurs cachots, susceptible de contenir cent cinquante à deux cents prisonniers; une haute et forte muraille l' environne, une garde nombreuse veille jour et nuit à sa sûreté. Non loin, se trouve le magasin destiné à recevoir les vins, les liqueurs fortes, les salaisons et les autres approvisionnemens de ce genre: en face est la place d'armes (11), où la garrison vient chaque matin défiler la parade, au bruit d'une musique nombreuse et bien composée, qui appartient au régiment de la Nouvelle-Galles du Sud.

Péron 1809 (English translation), 272-73 (DIGITISED)

. . . Beyond the hospital, in the same line, is the prison, which has several dungeons, capable of holding from an hundred and fifty, to two hundred prisoners; it is surrounded by a high and strong wall, and has a numerous guard on duty, both by day and night. A short distance from the prison is the store house, for the reception of wines, spirituous liquors, salt provisions, &c. In the front of it is the armoury, where the garrison is drawn up every morning, accompanied by a numerous and well composed band, belonging to the New South Wales regiment.

"ACCOUNT OF PORT JACKSON AND SYDNEY TOWN, NEW SOUTH WALES [Translated from the Voyage of Discovery of M. Peron . . .]", The Literary Panorama 10 (February 1810), columns 913-14 (DIGITISED)

Bibliography and resources:


28 July 1802 (? date of event recorded)

Fraser Island, NSW (QLD)


ARMITAGE, Edward Fitzgerald (transcriber, translator)

Badtjala song 2

? After seeing Matthew Flinders's party land a boat at Wathumba Creek, Fraser Island, QLD, in 1799 or July 1802

Source and documentation:

"Corroborees of the Aborigines of Great Sandy Island, written and translated by Edward Armitage, of Maryborough, Queensland, 1923", in F. J. Watson, "Vocabularies of four representative tribes of South Eastern Queensland", supplement to the Journal of the Royal Geographical Society of Australasia (Queensland) 48/34 (1944), 96-97

Budela ni-yee beraar-ang kong, kong, Ngoorang oora mooriaree. Werangan wundeer berree-viree. Wundiroe wund. Woomingela-ma kun-deen py-yee lunga. Giveer na-ulee, wovee nunyeen.

Two times held up something and made loud noise and smoke. Their heads are like dingoes' tails. The paddles are like wood shaped with fire. Woomingela must be drowned, or killed by the strangers. He is not with us now.

Matthew Flinders, journal, 28 July 1802; State Library of New South Wales (PAGE IMAGE) (TRANSCRIPT)

1802 July [Wednesday] 28th. H.M.S. Investigator [along the east coast. Indian Head and Sandy Cape] Mod. breezes & fine weather, but hazy. Steered along the direction of the shore at the distance of 2 to 4 miles At sunset, the extremes of the land through the haze N 1/2E to SSW. Many fires all along the shore At 10, hauled to the wind towards the land; and at 12, tacked off, the fires upon the shore dist. abt. 4 miles Mod. breezes and fine weather At 3h., tacked in shore, and at 4h.1/2, off again, finding ourselves very near it. At day light, the land about Indian Head dist. 11/2 miles, made sail and to steered along the shore for Sandy Cape Saw many natives upon the shore, said to be waving to us. At ll, being near Sandy Cape, lowered down the cutter and sent her the master to sound in a small channel, through the breakers, Followed her, but finding there was not 4fms. in it, tacked in 3 fms. stretched out, called the boat on board, and brot. to for her. Noon Sandy Cape S56°W. 2 miles. Indian Hd. S. 20.E. Light breezes and fine wr.

Bibliography and resources:

Evans and Walker 1977

Swain 1993, 114f


Armitage's transcriptions, translations and discussions of 2 songs, the subjects of which he believed are [1] Cook's Endeavour passing Indian Head 1770 (Gavrin wundoola yaneen, Areeram!), and [2] Matthew Flinders at Watoomba [= Wathumba].


"GIFT OF ABORIGINAL VOCABULARIES", The Courier-Mail (25 February 1943), 4 

"NEW BOOK ON NATIVE DIALECTS", The Courier-Mail (12 August 1944),5 

c.1802 to 1805 (? first published)

Sydney area, NSW, c.1800


ANONYMOUS ("An Officer") (? transcriber)

Wahabindeh bang ha nel ha

A New-South-Wales Song

Music and words (no translation)

Transcribed by "An Officer", from unidentified informants, probably in the Sydney region, probably c.1800

First published in Britain, c.1802-05, in an unidentified printed volume now in the National Library of Scotland

Go to main page:

Chekclist of colonial musical transcriptions of Indigenous songs 4


23 March 1803

Sydney Cove, Port Jackson, NSW

Image: Barrington 1810, frontispiece, "Town and cove of Sydney (pub. by Mr. Jones, Paternoster Row [London], March 18, 1803" 



"Extract from the Royal Additional Instructions dated Aug. 20, 1789, respecting the First Detachment of Marines being allowed to settle, at the Relief of that Detachment", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (26 March 1803), 1

. . . The Tap-too to beat off at 8 o'clock, until further Orders.

By Command, &c. W. N. CHAPMAN, Sec. Government-House, March 23, 1803.

"Postscript", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (25 March 1804), 4

On Thursday last, the 18th Instant, the time of beating off the Tap-too was altered to 8 o'clock till further Orders.

Bibliography and resources:

Karskens 2009

April 1803

Sydney, NSW

Harmony at the docks and the Rocks


[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 April 1803), 3

On Tuesday last a Fete was given on board His Majesty's Ship Buffalo, by Captain Kent, at which were present His Excellency the Governor and Mrs. King; Lieut. Colonel and Mrs. Paterson; with several other Officers Civil, Military, and Naval, and the Wives of those who are married. The Buffalo was dressed with Colours, and the Yards Manned and on the GOVERNOR's going on board, he was saluted with 15 Guns. The Ladies were received by Mrs. Kent, who did the honours of the table. At 4 o'clock the company sat down to a hospitable and plentiful dinner; In the evening the band of the New South Wales Corps was introduced, Dancing took place, and at a late hour after supper the Company withdrew, highly gratified and amused with their entertainment.

A Correspondent says: Upon perusing a paragraph in one of your Papers, which suggested the propriety of converting the Rocks into an Academy for TUMBLERS, I rather conceived that you might, with an equal promise of success, recommend some parts of the BUSH for an improvement in the talent of DANCING, as there much instruction might be expected from the assistance of the accomplished KANGAROO. This extraordinary idea insinuated itself upon my stepping into a house of HARMONY a few nights ago, in which an illegitimate descendant of Apollo sat moving his elbow to a group of caperers' whose motion rendered it difficult to deter mine whether he scraped to their dancing, or they hopped to his fiddling. I BELIEVE they were all human beings; yet am persuaded, that if they actually were so, they were in debted for their skill in the art to the Teachers I have herein taken the liberty to recommend.

Bibliography and resources:

"Sydney", The Hull Packet [England] (25 October 1803)

Sydney, Sunday April 17 - On Tuesday last, a fete was given on board His Majesty's ship Buffalo by Captain Kent, at which were present his Excellency the governor and Mrs. King; Lieut. Col and Mrs. Paterson; with several other officers, civil, military and naval and the wives of those who are married. The Ladies were received by Mrs. Kent, who did the honors of the table. At four o'clock the company sat down to a hospitable and plentiful dinner. In the evening the band of the New South Wales Corps was introduced, dancing took place, and at a late hour after supper, the company withdrew, highly gratified and amused with their entertainment. . ...


[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 April 1803), 3

The Rocks would certainly be a choice spot for a TUMBLING academy, - as the pupil might indulge himself with a SOMER-SET without any violent exertion.

9 April 1803 (shipment arrived)

Sydney, NSW

Musical instruments; a three-barrelled upright hand organ; a compleat collection of select songs, and other music
Four good violins . . . hautboy, one flute . . . books of music, handsomely bound


"Sydney", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 April 1803), 3

ON Monday next, the 18th Instant, will be opened for Inspection and Sale, the following Capital Investment, per the CATO, Capt. Parkes; in the House formerly occupied by George Crossly. Any person wishing to make a wholesale purchase, on applying at the Warehouse of S. Lord, may see the particular Invoices, with prices annexed. MEN's white linen Shirts, frilled Worsted Pantaloons and Breeches; Leather Breeches Canvas Trowsers . . . Musical Instruments; A three-barrelled upright Hand Organ; A compleat collection of select Songs, and other Music; Watches; Jewellery; Ornamental Head Jewellery; Perfumery. N. B. Copper Coin will be taken from Retail purchasers.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 May 1803), 3

At the House lately occupied by G. Crossley, AT SYDNEY,
The Whole Remainder of the Private INVESTMENT imported per the CATO, Captain PARK of London: Viz
Capital square pillar'd and oval best French Plate looking-glasses, beautifully gilt and ornamented, of different sizes
Some pieces of rich China
Four good Violins, Haughtboy and one Flute
Books of Music, handsomely bound
few articles of Perfumery

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (22 May 1803), 1 

On Monday the 30th instant, at Ten in the Forenoon, THE REMAINDER of the INVESTMENT Imported per the CATO:
Consisting of Capital Looking-glasses, richly ornamented China plates, dishes tureens, &c.
Violins hautboy, and books of Music
Perfumery, hats and gloves . . .
Thread, bobbing, bindings, pins, and needles Pens ready-made &c. &c. &c.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (29 May 1803), 4 

Returns of cargo, 7 August 1803; ed. HRA 1/4, 366

General Cargo of the Ship Cato. - 1 Bale Sail Cloth. 2 Hhds. refin'd Sugar. 30 Kegs Wt. Paint. 2 Trunks Dimities and Cottons. 6 Cases Earthenware. 5 Casks Do. 3 Cases Haberdashery. 20 Jars paint Oil. 26 Kegs blk. and yellow paint. 1 Trunk perfumery. 3 Cases looking Glasses and Sconces. 2 Do. Hats. 6 Baskets Cheese. 20 Firkins Butter. 20 Boxes Candles. 1 Organ. 30 Kegs Mustard. 3 Cases Musical Instruments. 3 Boxes Brass and Iron. 1 Bag Feathers . . .

Bibliography and resources:

Cumes 1979, 105

Jordan 2012, 204, 205, 210 notes 58, 64

7-9 May 1803

The Rocks, Sydney, NSW

Nuptials and rough music on the Rocks


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 May 1803), 2

On the evening of Saturday the 7th instant a Celebration of Nuptials took place on the Rocks, at which a numerous group of congratulants assembled to greet the enamoured TOUCHSTONE and his beloved AUDREY. - Compliments at an end, the circling planet of the board was briskly courted, and a fidler with his merry crowd, received a universal welcome: the merry dance commenced, and the fair bride led down the Country Bumpkin, which was performed in character. The Cheshire rounds and Irish trot were also gone through with equal success, after which a contest for the BREECHES ensued, but was determined in favour of Madam Beatrice, and the ladies at parting, withdrew in triumph.

On Monday evening a grand serenade of CULINARY instruments waited on the new-married pair, which in harmony came little short of marrow-bones and cleavers. The musicians demanded a fee, imposed by custom, and which being complied with, the YOUNG couple were left to their domestic QUIET.

"MARRIED", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 May 1803), 4 

MARRIED. Yesterday se'nnight, by the Rev. Mr. Dixon, of the Church of Rome, Henry Simpson, shipwright, to Catharine Rourke, of the Rocks, Widow.

Bibliography and resources:

Heather Clarke, "Cheshire rounds" (posted 26 January 2012), Australian colonial dance

Skinner 2015, 299-300

Music concordances:

Cheshire rounds

The Cheshire Rounds

Dancing-master; or, Directions for dancing country dances (London: Printed by W. Pearson, 1709), 241 (DIGITISED)

The Irish Trot (The Beggar's Opera, 1765)

Irish Trot

[Tune 1], Dancing-master, or, Directions for dancing country dances (London: Printed by W. Pearson, 1709), 84

[Tune 2], AIR XXXVI, The Beggar's Opera, Written by Mr. Gay . . . And the Musick to each Song (London: J. and R. Tonson, 1765), 62

The Beggar's Opera, Written by Mr. Gay . . . And the Musick to each Song (London: W. Strahan et al., 1777), 63

Country Bumpkin (Cobbler's Opera, 1779)

Country Bumpkin

The Cobbler's Opera (London: T. Wood, 1779), 9

Companion to the Reticule Arranged for the Piano Forte (? Edinburgh, ?, c.1830), 30

See also page 1

William Chappell, The ballad literature and popular music of the olden time (London: Chappell and Co., 1871), volume 2, 659


SR-NSW SZ798, 19, 21

A fiddler, who played at John Sparrow's house in the Rocks, left intoxicated, stole four fowls, and failed to appear when his case came to court because he was drunk.

"MARRIAGE A LA MODE", The Maitland Mercury and Hunter River General Advertiser (7 May 1861), 4 

On Thursday evening the Albury Flat was illuminated by bon-fires and blazing tar barrels, and enlivened with the rough music of marrow-bones, cleavers, tin pots, and other instruments. On enquiring the occasion of these festivities, we gathered that a widow, some forty years of age, who had buried three husbands, and was possessed of a large family of children, had just been led to the hymeanial altar by a blushing youth in his teens. The bride, we understand, has a son older than the bridegroom, and this undutiful youth threatened to wollop his new father-in-law for presuming to enter into wedlock with the widow. The serenade was kept up till a late hour, the children of the lady being amongst the most demonstrative on the occasion. - Border Post, April 27.

8 May 1803

Sydney, NSW

Regimental band at a marine's funeral without their instruments


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (8 May 1803), 2

On Wednesday last was interred, William Thompson, a marine who had been left behind by His Majesty's Ship Buffalo, and who died the preceding day in the General Hospital, of a consumptive complaint. A party of Marines from the Glatton, consisting of a Serjeant and eight privates, attended the funeral: and were received by the New South Wales Corps, who also assisted in the procession, which moved with much solemnity and decorum in the following order:
Mr. Barnes, officiating as Minister Four Marines, with arms reversed Four Marines, with arms reversed;
The Corpse, carried by six bearers, with Union thrown over the Bier
A Serjeant of Marines, with halberd craped and reversed, as Chief Mourner;
The New South Wales Corps, without arms, formed three deep;
The Regimental Band without their instruments:
About half-past 12 they reached the burial-ground ; and after the funeral service was performed, the party of Marines discharged three vollies, in honour of a departed comrade.

Bibliography and resources:


3 July 1803

? Over the Blue Mountains, NSW

An establishment over the mountains . . . possessed of bells, churches . . .


[Comment], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (3 July 1803), 2

The dismal consequences that have invariably resulted from the rash project of crossing the Mountains, have proved upon the most fatal evidence, the impossibility of its accomplishment, and the certain wretchedness and destruction of those who ignorantly presume on the attempt. From the numbers that have at different times fallen victims to the dangerous desire or emigrating, and who have absconded from the several settlements under an illusory persuasion that an Establishment exists on the other side of these immeasurable heights, it becomes the duty of every well-wisher to his fellow-creature, by reasonable argument to point out the impracticability of performing such a journey, and the egregious absurdity of fostering the idea of an imaginary Settlement. It has been reported, by persons who were careless whether they asserted facts or false-hoods, that the natives of the interior have made mention of a set of people whose manners and customs strongly resembled our own; and others, willing to give a still more improbable colour to the imposture, asserted in addition that these distant inhabitants were possessed of bells, churches, malted vessels, a sterling specie, and every other requisite that might seem calculated to convey the idea of civilization. The natives, upon whose verbal testimony this suggestion is pretended to have been founded, have too frequently convinced us of their ingenuity in dissimulation, to obtain, the most distant shadow of belief where a doubt possibly could support; and we are also well aware of their readiness to acquiesce in every thing, however absurd, that may obtain to them encouragement or administer to their immediate wants. That such chimera may have so originated we cannot altogether question; but nevertheless venture to affirm, that were two or more of these reports compared, the delusive supposition must vanish into nothingness, and this establishment prove indebted for its existence to the fertility of a romantic brain. To suppose that a body of civilized people should assemble on a coast, by shipwreck or other possible cause, and although possessed of the means yet entertained no desire to communicate with or return to their native country, would be as unreasonable as to imagine them set down in secret, and never after, become a subject of enquiry, as no transition has ever hinted at a circumstance that could possibly have given birth to a so truly unreasonable, preposterous conjecture. Were it therefore possible that an individual could make good this journey, and safely pass the numerous and large lagoons by which these Mountain, are intersected, so other reward awaits his fatal curiosity than death under accumulated miseries. Missions, well directed and equipped, have indefatigably endeavoured to explore them, not in pursuit of a chimerical establishment, but upon useful discovery; and they, altho' provided with every necessary for the long and labourous travel, have been successively compelled to abandon the design, after all absence of many weeks: What then must be the portion of the rash and inexperienced few, who inconscious of the difficulties they are unprepared to encounter, yet dare to venture on the project? sorry we are to say the consequences have already been too manifest.--- three out of four have LATELY fallen victim to their rashness, and too late repentent of the credulity to which they were about to come the most wretched victims.

Bibliography and resources:


7 July 1803 (shipment arrived)

Sydney, NSW

One organ


HRA 1/4, 366

[Returns of cargo 7 August 1803] General Cargo of the Ship Albion. - 600 Barrels Spermacity Oil. 16 rolls Tobacco. 1 Box Hatts. 2 Trunks English Goods. One Organ. Small Quantity Salt.

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 205, 210 note 64

Jordan incorrectly identifies the ship as the Rolla; recte Albion

13 July 1803

Sydney, NSW

LORD, Simeon (merchant, auctioneer)

A piano forte for 60 guineas


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (17 July 1803), 1

To be Sold by Auction By SIMEON LORD, At His WAREHOUSE in SYDNEY, On Monday the 25th of July, Instant, if not previously disposed of by Private Contract, The Undermentioned near Articles, which are of British Manufacture, and in thorough Condition, viz. DOUBLE Chest of Drawers A Set of Mahogany dining Tables A large round Table Six Mahogany Chairs covered with Mohair And Two Elbow ditto to match A Lady's Toilet A Roan Horse And a Piano Forte, which will be fold for Sixty Guineas. The Articles may be viewed by Persons desirous of becoming Purchasers by Private Contract by applying to the Auctioneer, of whom further Particulars, may be had. To be Sold by Auction By SIMEON LORD, At his Warehouse in Sydney, on Monday next and Following Day at Ten o'Clock in the Forenoon, THE RESIDUE of several INVESTMENTS, viz. Captain Prentice's, Park's, Stewart's and the Brig Margaret's Consisting generally of the undermentioned   Articles. Tobacco and Snuff Pens and Quill Knives and Forks Needles Cast Iron Stew Pans Window Glass Copper Bolts and Sheets Checques and Calico Music and Musical Instruments And various other Articles. July 13. 1803

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 July 1803), 4

A Piano Forte to be disposed of by Private Contract - 60 Guineas.


Jordan 2012, 205

3 August 1803

Point Lookout, QLD

INDIGENOUS (dancers)

FLINDERS, Matthew (reporter)

Dances in imitation of the kangaroo


Flinders 1814, volume 2, (317) 318

[30 August 1803] [317] After the rain ceased the wind came at S. S. W.; and the weather remaining unsettled, we tacked at daylight to get close in with the land, and at noon anchored under Point Look-out. This was only the fourth day of our departure from Wreck Reef, and I considered the voyage to be half accomplished, since we had got firm hold of the main [318] coast; for the probability of being lost is greater in making three hundred miles in an open boat at sea, than in running even six hundred along shore. It would have added much to our satisfaction, could we have conveyed the intelligence of this fortunate progress to our shipmates on the bank. The necessity for a supply of fresh water was becoming urgent, for our remaining half hogshead was much reduced. There were about twenty Indians upon the side of a hill near the shore, who seemed to be peaceably disposed, amusing us with dances in imitation of the kangaroo; we made signs of wanting water, which they understood, and pointed to a small rill falling into the sea. Two of the sailors leaped over-board, with some trifles for the natives and one end of the lead line; with the other end we slung the empty cask, which they hauled on shore and filled without molestation. A shark had followed them to the beach; and fearing they might be attacked in returning, we got up the anchor and went to a place where the surf, though too much to allow of the boat landing, permitted us to lie closer. The cask of water, a bundle of wood, and the two men were received on board without accident; the natives keeping aloof during the whole time, and even retiring when our people approached, though they were without arms and naked. It is probable that the Indians were astonished at the comparison between the moderately white skins of the sailors and their own, and perhaps had heard of my expedition to Glass-house Bay in 1799, in which I had been provoked to make one of them feel the effect of our arms . . .

Bibliography and resources:


26 August 1803

Sydney, NSW

Drum beat . . . reveille-beat . . . murder


"Criminal Court. FRIDAY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (25 September 1803), 4 

This morning the Court assembled again, (as per adjournment) and proceeded to the Trial of Wm. Bladders alias Embridge, and Isaac Simmonds, for the wilful Murder of Joseph Luker, on the morning of the 26th of August last . . .

Christopher Ward deposed, that he slept on the night of the 25th of August, in the skilling of Sarah Laurence, in which Bladders also lay; and that Bladders did not go out until after drum beat the next morning. John Ward's testimony was to the same effect.

John Archer deposed, that at Reveille-beat he heard a voice exclaim in a lamentable tone Lord, Lord! but supposing it to be some person calling to the miller, he took no further notice of it . . .

The evidence for the Crown closed, and the prisoners entered on their defence . . . From the time of his rising to that of his apprehension he accounted for, and particularly remarked on the testimony of John Archer, which said that during the Re- veille-beat he heard an exclamation which might be reasonably supposed to proceed from the deceased. This he compared with the evidence of Christopher and John Ward, who both deposed that at the drum-beat he was in bed, and did not go out until after it had ceased . . .

Bibliography and resources:


2 October 1803

Sydney, NSW


TURNBULL, John (reporter)

Tahitians in raptures when the band began to play


"SHIP NEWS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (2 October 1803), 1

The Dart arrived at Otaheite on the 25th of last month, from whence she brought as passengers Mr. Turnbull and Captain Buyers, formerly of the Ship MARGARET . . .

Turnbull 1805, 3, 130-32 (DIGITISED)

On making the land about Port Jackson, the Otaheitans were again in raptures, probably thinking this was England: but seeing tfe barrenness of the country as they entered the harbour, and the scragginess of the trees, their spirits evidently sunk. Here again they looked at the trees for food, and seeing none, exclaimed in their country language, Very bad land, very bad country. On coming to an anchor in Sydney Cove, there was a coach and four horses standing almost opposite the ship. This astonished them beyond measure. [131] Every one enquired of the other their opinion of this wonderful phenomenon. They concluded that it must be a travelling house; but they could find no names for the horses, having in their country no larger animals than hogs. Some of these indeed were uncommonly large. The Otaheitans therefore called them by the name of mighty hogs. A short time after this, the coach setting off at a good round trot, they exclaimed in extasy to each other, Oh! how they fly. It was impossible to recall their attention to any part of the ship's duty at this time. On the following morning, seeing the New South Wales corps under arms, they were in the most extravagant raptures imaginable; but when the band began to play, they began to leap about, their very eyes dancing in their head with the vivacity of their sympathy. So enchanted [132] were they with this sight, that had the governor made his appearance, I am persuaded they would have regarded him only as a secondary character . . .

Turnbull 1810, 323-24 (DIGITISED)

Bibliography and resources:


9 October 1803

St. John's Church, Parramatta, NSW

Bell-ringing at Parramatta church
St John's Parramatta (Collins 1802)

Image: Collins 1802, plate after page 310 (DIGITISED)


[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (9 October 1803), 2

While the Bell-ringer of Parramatta was last Sunday busily engaged in conveying the inhabitants to Divine Service, the wheel accidentally gave way, and fell with the bell to the ground, without doing any injury to the ringer or any other person.

Bibliography and resources:

Collins 1802

16 October 1803

17 October 1803

10 November 1803

3 December 1803

12 December 1803

Sullivan's Bay, Port Phillip, NSW (VIC)

The taptoo will beat at 9 o'clock; the orderly-drum every day at one


HRA 3/1, 65, 73, 79, 80

GARRISON ORDERS . . . The Morning Parade will be at 9 o'clock; the evening, at sunset. Daily routine. The taptoo will beat at 9 o'clock; the orderly-drum every day at one. DAVID COLLINS, Lieutenant-Governor. Sullivan Bay, Port Phillip, 16 October, 1803.

GENERAL ORDERS . . . THE following Working Hours are established until further orders:- Hours of From Sunrise in the Morning (at which time the Drum will beat) labour until noon . . . DAVID COLLINS, Lieutenant-Governor. Sullivan Bay, Port Phillip, 17 October, 1803.

GARRISON ORDERS. 10th Nov., 1803. The Quarter Drum will beat for the Retreat until further orders in the Evening at half past 6 o'Clock.

GARRISON ORDERS. 3rd Dec., 1803. The Detachment Will Parade at Eleven o'Clock to-morrow in the forenoon for the purpose of attending divine service. The Guard will in future mount on Sundays at Eight o'Clock in the Mornings. The Troop will beat as usual at Ten, and the Church Drum at Eleven in the Forenoon.

GARRISON ORDERS. 12th Dec., 1803. The Quarter Drum for the Retreat will beat at a Quarter before seven until further orders.

Bibliography and resources:


6 December 1803

11 December 1803 (date report published)

The Rocks, Sydney

Revellers on the Rocks offend sumptuary propriety, and dance


[Letter], "To the Printer", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 December 1803), 3 

To the Printer of the Sydney Gazette.


"Among all the absurdities inherent to our nature, I consider as the most contemptible a solicitude of appearing what we are not, and which is generally termed Affectation. From the possession of this little quality no advantage is to be derived, as it never extends to an imitation of the intrinsic worth and perfection, but merely to the external appearance and characteristic peculiarities of gentility.

"You will perhaps be disappointed in an expectancy of a grave and serious disquisition which, from my introduction, you might with propriety look for; but my signature will bring to recollection that you have nothing learned and philosophical to hope from a Correspondent, who only aims at the exposure of Vice and Folly.

"Without further ceremony, therefore, I inform you, that on Tuesday last the Celerbation of a NUPTIAL was held at a house near the lower end of Chapel Row, at which a SELECT party were to "tea and sup;" and at five o'clock "Tag Rag and Bobtail" were ushered in, but so curiously metamorphosed, so wonderfully disfigured by paints, patches, and pomatums, as to be rendered perfectly incognizable to their own familiars. In fact, a Cobler impudently blazed forth in pumps and powder, a Peruquier assuming an air of consequence thought himself entitled to drag into his conversation a thousand observations "'pon his conscience;" and the LADIES, without exception, were perfectly "en caractere."

"Insupportable as the far-fetched Affectation may seem, yet before the DANCE began all that went before was thrice eclipsed by an ancient damsel, introduced with form and ceremony, whose first appearance presented Carrington Bowles's window to my recollection, where I had often seen represented, pardon the simile on account of this affinity, "An old Ewe dressed Lamb fashion." I recoiled at the idea of Age in any instance being rendered so truly ridiculous as in the case of this venerable coquet, whose powdered ringlets, by which her physiognomy seemed cloudcapt, together with her "petit PARASOL" were the NE PAS ULTRA of Absurdity.

"I still remain


Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 203


9 January 1804

The Rocks, Sydney, NSW

A highland gala on the Rocks


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 January 1804), 2

A Highland GALA was on Monday night last held on the Rocks, which was numerously attended by REELERS to the harmonic dronings of the melodious bag-pipe. - - The MULL and MUTCHKIN equally predominnated, and at breaking up the dancers REELED down the Rocks with incredible velocity.

Bibliography and resources:


17 January 1804

Sydney, NSW

The queen's birthday ball


"THE ANNIVERSARY OF HER MAJESTY'S BIRTH", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (22 January 1804), 3

On Wednesday last was Celebrated, by the Royal Standard being hoisted: the New South Wales Corps at noon fired Three Rounds, which were answered from the Battery on Dawes Point; and at One o'Clock a Royal Salute was fired on board His Majesty's Ship Calcutta. At half past One the Officers, Civil Military, and Naval, waited on his EXCELLENCY, to pay their Compliments on the occasion. At Three o'Clock the Guests invited to Dinner began to assemble; and the Company consisted of Captain WOODRIFFE and his Officers; and a number of Officers Civil and Military, with their Ladies; - in all 59 Persons. The afternoon was spent with harmony and conviviality; and at night a Ball took place, which lasted till a late hour; and the most lively vivacity prevailed throughout the Evening. The inhabitants, particularly the children, attended numerously as spectators of the dancing till 11, when they mostly dispersed, the Display of Fire-works attracting their attention about that time, being till then kept back by the weather, which though dry, was at the same time very windy. The usual Allowance of spirits was made to the Military, Constables, and Overseers. And in the course of the day His EXCELLENCY was pleased to order a Goal Delivery which accordingly took place.

Bibliography and resources:


28 or ? 29 February 1804

Sydney, NSW

Entertainments and ball on the Calcutta


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (4 March 1804), 3

On Wednesday the Officers of His Majesty's Ship Calcutta gave an elegant Entertainment to the Officers of the Colony, Civil and Military, at which many Ladies were present. In the evening a Ball commenced which continued till an early hour; and the day following the festivities were renewed with equal spirit and taste, and continued till the pale-faced moon gave earnest of approaching day.

Bibliography and resources:


8 April 1804 (first published)

Sydney, NSW

ANONYMOUS (songwriter)

The volunteers: a ballad

Words only; no tune indicated


"THE VOLUNTEERS, A BALLAD", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (8 April 1804), 3 



When menac'd with civil commotion and noise
Shall Britons inactively slumber?
Then away to the field, the bright musket to poise,
With courage, regardless of number.

With patriot firmness the laws we'll maintain;
With spirit and vigor we'll brave the campaign;
Our women and children relinquish their fears,
And trust to the prowess of bold Volunteers.

Should France, in her fondness for places abroad
E'er honor our Coast with a visit,
Before on the soil many moments they've trod
They'll find our politeness exquisite.

With a Marseillois dirge, or a Carmagnel dance
To the music of musquetry let them advance
But dreadful the musars will be to their ears
Struck up by the phalanx of firm Volunteers.

Should sordid Mynheer foreign conquest pursue,
And fly from his DAMS to assist us,
Our RED COATS, supporting the Volunteer BLUE,
With good hearts and flints cannot fail us.

No jarring contention those hearts shall divide,
But Britain's blest Genius o'er Britons preside
And the Foes of our MONARCH retreating in tears
Shall fly from the ardour of bold Volunteers.

Bibliography and resources:


Music concordances (? tunes):


8 May 1804

Risdon Cove, VDL (TAS)

Evening bell and retreat drum at Risdon Cove


HRA 3/1, 268

Sullivan Cove, River Derwent, 8 May, 1804 . . . The bell, for leaving off work in the evening, will ring in future when the drum beats for the retreat.

Bibliography and resources:


13 May 1804 (first notice)

Sydney, NSW

ANONYMOUS (songwriter)

A song entitled BANTI
Madame Banti, London, 1797


"TO A CORRESPONDENT", The Sydney Gazette (13 May 1804), 4

TO A CORESPONDENT. The song entitled "BANTI" is incomprehensible; the measure irregular, and for the most part UNLIMITED, but, as Non descript it might be noticed, had it even brevity to recommend it. Should the POET again design favouring us with a STAVE, we trust he will avoid unnecessary circumlocution, that drags out a disinteresting subject to the rotundity of a HOOP.

Bibliography and resources:



"BANTI, Brigitta Giorgi",_Brigitta 

"Brigida Banti", Wikipedia 

27 May 1804

Sydney, NSW

Drums and trumpets . . . Hearts of oak


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (27 May 1804), 4

Drums and trumpets, harps and fiddles
Mystic cards, for solving riddles;
Coaches, curricles, and horses,
Infant dolls for infant nurses
Guns assorted, swords and lances,
Music set to country dances;
Owls and geese, and Dutch dragoons,
Tygers, Frenchmen and babbons;
Turks and Moors, and Jews and foxes,
And Tunbridge sets made up in boxes,
Butchers, bulls with nappers broke
British heroes . . . Hearts of Oak.

Bibliography and resources:


Music concordances:

Hearts of oak, 1799

The Musical Repository, A collection of favourite Scotch, English, and Irish songs, set to music (Glasgow: Printed by Alex. Adam, for A. Carrick, 1799), 22

After May 1804

Parramatta, NSW

Also mid to late 1805

Parramatta-Sydney-Norfolk Island

GRANT, John (convict, violinist, poet, balladist)

An (? empty) harpsichord box . . . and his father's fiddle
Plaintive ballad . . . written one night at Williamson's farm, I recollect, my violin in my hand


Papers of John Grant, MS 737, National Library of Australia; item 29. Letter, John Grant to his sister Matilda, Norfolk Island, 8 June 1806 (in French), listing his poetical productions in exile; also "Plaintive Ballad," written Parramatta, 1804. 

[note on "Plaintive Ballad"] . . . Long ago this pathetic little thing was written one night at Williamson's farm, I recollect, my violin in my hand . . .

Bibliography and resources:

W. S. Hill-Reid, John Grant's journey (London, 1957)

Yvonne Cramer, This beauteous, wicked place: letters and journals of John Grant, gentleman convict (Canberra : National Library of Australia, 2000)

Jordan 2012, 200

Lancaster 2015, 2: "The first harpsichord brought to Australia: an apocryphal tale" 


Convict John Grant (b. 1776) arrived in Sydney on the Coromandel in May 1804, and was assigned to work on the farm of James Williamson (1758-1826) at Parramatta. Before the voyage he wrote that he was taking a harpsichord box with him, though almost certainly not a harpsichord, a matter addressed forensically by Lancaster. According to Jordan, he wrote on other occasions of his two violins, at least one of which (his father's) he brought with him. On the Coromandel, he played occasionally for the officers in the captain's cabin. In May 1805, he wrote attacking governor Philip Gidley King for his lack of justice, and was deported to Norfolk Island the following month. Writing later of his boat trip from Parramatta to Sydney to join the Norfolk Island transport, he recorded:

Innocence and these noble principles which I have always cherished of liberty make me play my violin amidst these charming scenes of woods etc, which present themselves as we descend the river.

According to Jordan, he celebrated his recovery from a bout of illness and despair on the voyage by playing his violin on the bridge, and, on Norfolk Island, set two poems for performance on the violin, but admitted he was not sufficiently skilled to notate a copy:

I still have not sufficient perseverance to learn "my Notes" and, consequently, I have not made much progress as a Musician, although very often practising.

Cramer notes a later occasion at when the artist John Lewin (1770-1819) offered to repair his violin; see also 1805 below. Grant's papers were discovered by W. S. Hill-Reid, a banking historian, in the vaults of a London bank in 1955.

See also his Panegyric on an eminent artist, Parramatta, NSW, 1804 (London: W. Dawson, ? 1822), in praise of Lewin, which governor King refused to allow to be printed in the Sydney Gazette.

Other references:

The convict harpsichordist, Move Records, Melbourne, 2003/2014; Elizabeth Anderson, harpsichord; including dramatised readings from Grant's papers (from Cramer) 

John Grant, AustLit (PAYWALL)

4 June 1804

Government House, Sydney, NSW

Died suddenly when going down a dance . . .


"DEATH", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (10 June 1804), 1

On Monday night died suddenly when going down a dance at Government House, VERNICOURT DE CLAMB, Esq, of Castle Hill. The day following an Inquest was held, at which the Medical Gentlemen who attended the deceased at the approach of death, gave it as their opinion, that the event was occasioned by an apoplexy; the verdict of the Jury was, Death by the visitation of God . . .


Edward Duyker, "De Vernicourt, Pierre Lalouette", The dictionary of Sydney, posted 2008 

6 August 1804

Sydney, NSW

A splendid ball


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (12 August 1804), 4

On Monday his honour the Lieutenant Governor gave an elegant Fete to a numerous company of officers (civil, military and naval) and their ladies at which His Excellency was present; and which concluded with a splendid ball.

Bibliography and resources:


28 September 1804

Government House, Sydney, NSW

Another splendid ball . . .


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (30 September 1804), 2

An Entertainment was on Friday given by HIS EXCELLENCY, at which were present His Honor the LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR and Captain KENT, with their LADIES, and many other Officers, Civil, Military, and Naval, many of whom were accompanied by their Ladies also. At half past four the company, fifty-four in number, sat down to dinner; and in the evening a splendid Ball commenced, which was supported with spirit and vivacity until an early hour.

Bibliography and resources:


14 October 1804

Sydney, NSW

Eleven-gun salute . . . Rule Britannia


"POSTSCRIPT", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (14 October 1804), 4

POSTSCRIPT. At seven this morning His Honor Lieut. Governor Paterson embarked from the Government Wharf, to proceed to his Command of the intended Establishment at Port Dalrymple; and was accompanied by His Excellency, Captain Kent, and Ladies. As soon as the Company had taken water a Salute of eleven guns was fired from the battery; the Band of the New South Wales Corps received their Commander with "God Save the King", and took their leave of him with "Rule Britannia." The Military and Association were assembled on the Wharfs, and with reiterated chears, in which the populace seemed heartily to join, paid every becoming attention and respect due to the rank and amiable character of a worthy Officer. On Lieut. Governor Paterson's Embarking on board the Buffalo, he was saluted with eleven guns. The Governor and Ladies, soon after passing the Buffalo below Bradley's Head, received the Farewell of this Expedition in three hearty cheers which they returned, with their hopes for success and good health. His Excellency and the Ladies proceeded to South Head, and returned by land at 3 o'clock.

Bibliography and resources:


19 October 1804

Sydney, NSW

Death of band master Carr


"DIED", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (21 October 1804), 4

DIED. On Friday last, Mr. William Carr, long Master of the Band belonging to the New South Wales Corps.

Bibliography and resources:


17 November 1804

Sydney, NSW

Drums beat to arms as captured Dutch ship brought in


"SHIP NEWS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (18 November 1804), 4 

At daylight yesterday morning two ships appeared in sight; and from their frequent evolutions were conjectured to be part of an enemy's squadron that had condescended to favour us with a complimentary visit. At half past ten a signal was made at the look out for an Officer from Head Quarters; in answer to which His Excellency was pleased to dispatch Lieutenant Houstoun of the Investigator to the Naval Officer, then, at South Head. Various circumstances strengthening the former conjecture, the drums beat to arms, and the New South Wales Corps and Loyal Association immediately formed to welcome the Strangers home. At eleven a Trooper arrived at Government House, with intelligence that one of the vessels appeared under British Colours: and the other with a Union triumphant over a Dutch Jack ; and shortly after certain intelligence was received, that one was an English Whaler, ushering in her Batavian Prize . . .

Bibliography and resources:


19 December 1804

Sydney, NSW

State funeral of Thomas Smyth, provost marshall


"DEATH OF MR. THOMAS SMYTH", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (23 December 1804), 2

The hour appointed for the interment was five on Wednesday evening; which turned out rainy and unfavourable; but nevertheless, the most respectful attention was shewn to the passing bier by all classes of inhabitants; and notwithstanding the extreme badness of the weather, the procession was conducted with a solemnity suited to the occasion, and to the general regret - moving in the following order:

Regimental Fugalman

Officer and Firing Party of fifty Soldiers

Full Band, playing the Dead March in Saul.

he Rev. Mr. Marsden

THE BIER Supported by four of the Sydney Loyal Association

Eight of the Association to relieve alternately Female mourners

Male ditto

Officers of Police

Seamen belonging to His Majesty's ships Buffalo and Investigator

Royal Marines

Sydney Loyal Association

New South Wales Corps Officers, Civil, Military and Naval

Two troopers

His excellency's carriage

Governor's orderly


One Trooper

About six o'clock the procession reached the burial ground; and after the funeral obsequies were concluded, three rounds were fired over the grave by 50 of the New South Wales Corps, in token of the high respect due to the remains of a true Patriot, a loyal Subject, and a worthy Member of Society.

Bibliography and resources:


Dead March in Saul

Music concordances:

Dead march in Saul, as perform'd at General Hamilton's funeral, composed by Mr. Handel (New York: J. Hewitt, [1804])

Man of feeling; or, The gentleman's musical repository . . . volume 1 (London: Goulding, Phipps, & D'Almaine, [?1803]), 39


16 June 1805 (first published)

Sydney, NSW

ANONYMOUS (songwriter)

Colonial hunt

Words only; no tune indicated


"Colonial Hunt", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (16 June 1805), 4

Colonial Hunt.

When Sol has commenc'd his diurnal career,
And the bright spangled dew drops from buds disappear,
With my dog and my gun to the forest I fly,
Where in stately confusion rich gums sweep the sky.
Then anxious, my eyes each direction pursue,
Till the fleet footed WALLABA rises to view!

I point to the Game, and uplifting my hand,
Brisk Lurcher, obedient, flies off to command:---
Perceiving her danger, Puss doubles her pace,
And well prim'd and loaded, I bring up the chace,
Exclaiming, transported the course to review,
"Hoick ! hoick ! my bold Lurcher! Well led Kanguroo!

Fatigu'd, broken hearted, tears gush from her eyes:
In vain to the thicket for shelter she flies:
Secure for a moment---yet shouts rend her ears,
And the brush fired round her, again she appears.
Delighted the Victim once more to behold,
Away scampers Lurcher---and gets a firm hold.

In vain has she doubled, since now she must yield:
A stream from her haunches empurples the field:
My transports subside---gentle Pity takes place,
And Death puts an end to the joys of the Chace.
Then varied my toil, to my cottage I come,
And a sweet smiling Welcome proclaims me at home!

Bibliography and resources:


11 August 1805

Sydney, NSW

A well toned violin


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 August 1805), 1

To be disposed of, a sound and well toned Violin with a quantity of catgut string. Any one desirous of purchasing may inspect the instrument at No. 6, Lower Chapel Row.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 October 1805), 2

A well toned Violin to be disposed of; and may be seen at No. 6, Lower Chapel Row; as also a quantity of string, which will be presented gratuitously to the purchaser.

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, (204), 210 note 58

25 December 1805

Desolate Island, Frederick Henry Bay, VDL (TAS)

THORNE, Samuel (flute player)

"Black Charles" (? fiddler)

HOLT, Joseph (reporter)

Christmas music on the vial and flute . . . a great dance


Holt (Crofton Croker ed.) 1838, volume 2, 264-65

Leaving the town of Derwent, with all my little goods in a boat, a storm arose as we were passing Betsey's Island, which obliged us to go ashore until the weather moderated, and we did not make Frederick Henry Bay until six o'clock in the evening. It lies twenty-four miles from the town. I got my little property safely on board and on the 25th, being Christmas day, I had many serious thoughts about my wife and family.

A party going ashore from the ship, to cook their dinner, and dine on the island, near which we were at anchor, Serjeant M'Gawley and Serjeant Thorn asked me to join them, and I [265] accepted their invitation. The island was called Desolate Island, and indeed I thought so, although we had a good dinner and plenty to drink. After dinner a black American, who was one of the party, played upon the vial [? viol, violoncello, violin], and Thorn had his flute, so that we did not want music to make us enjoy ourselves in this forlorn place. After we returned on board, we had a great dance with all the sailors.

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 201


11 May 1806

Sydney and all settlements, NSW

General orders . . . in case of alarm by Fire . . . after the Drums have beat to Arms and the Alarum Bells are rung


"General Orders", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 May 1806), 1 

Notwithstanding any former Orders, Regulations, or Customs, His EXCELLENCY strictly forbids any inhabitant or Person whatever in the Towns or Settlements of Sydney, Parramatta, Green Hills, and Castle Hill, quitting their respective dwellings on any pretext, in case of alarm by Fire, Commotions, or otherwise, either by Night or Day, after the Drums have beat to Arms and the Alarum Bells are rung, excepting Police, Military, and others stationed at the respective Alarm Posts, unless the service or appearance of any collective number, or of Individuals may be called for by the Magistrates, or Commissioned Officers Civil and Military . . .

"General Orders", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (18 May 1806), 1 

Bibliography and resources:


May 1806

Sydney, NSW



Entertainments and band


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (1 June 1806), 2

On Thursday an elegant entertainment was given by John Palmer, Esq. at Woollamoolla, at which his Excellency and Mrs. King were present, with many officers, civil and military, and their wives.

On Friday a cold collation was given by the officers of His Majesty's ship Buffale, to a select party, among whom were his Excellency, and several officers, civil, military, and naval with their wives. The company took water at twelve at noon, attended by the band of the New South Wales Corps in an accompanying boat, playing off "God Save the King;" and after making an excursion as far as Garden Island, returned, and were received on board the Buffalo. His Excellency embarked at three o'clock, accompanied by Captain Ferguson and other officers, and re-landed at eight.

Bibliography and resources:

O'Hara 1818, 271-72

20 July 1806

Sydney, NSW

BEVAN, David (auctioneer)

A tambourine and pair of Irish bagpipes


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 July 1806), 1

To be SOLD by AUCTION BY MR. BEVAN, At his Rooms in High Street, on Wednesday next, the 23rd instant, at ten in the forenoon precisely, THE following Neat Articles of Table Furniture, &c, being the Property of a GENTLEMAN designing to leave the Colony, viz . . . A Backgammon Table complete, A Tambourine and Pair of Irish Bagpipes, One sideboard, Two card Tables, Dining and other Tables, and sundry other articles of Household Furniture. Payment to be made on delivery in Government a[n]d Paymasters' Bills, or Dollars at 5s. each.

26 October 1806

Sydney, NSW

BEVAN, David (auctioneer)

A violin


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (26 October 1806), 2 

At Mr. Bevans Rooms, on Tuesday next, the 28th instant. Muslins, Barcelona handkerchiefs, Ladies' straw hats, a capital Quadrant, a violin, carpenter's tools, silver thimbles, Navigation books, telescopes, and a capital rifle barrel gun, Prompt payment to be made in copper coin.

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, (204), 210 note 58

2 November 1806

Back-row east, Sydney, NSW

An unwanted violin


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (2 November 1806), 2 

NOTICE - if the person who some time since left a Violin at the house of Joseph Taylor, Back-row east, Sydney, does not call for the same within ten days of the date hereof, it will be disposed of to defray expences. Nov. 2, 1806.

Bibliography and resources:



1 January 1807

Sydney area, NSW

DWYER, Michael (singer)

HEWITT, John (singer)

Seditious and loyal songs at a New Year party


Transcript of trial for sedition, 11 May 1807, State Records NSW 5/1149 (transc. Sheedy 1997)

COURT: Had you not a good deal of company at your house on New Year's Day and was not O'Dwyer there?

CHAWKER: O'Dwyer was there.

COURT: Did not O'Dwyer among others sing a song?

CHAWKER: Not to my recollection.

COURT: Was not a man by the name of John Hewit in the house at the time?

CHAWKER: He was.

COURT: Did he sing?

CHAWKER: He did - several.

COURT: Was not a good deal of disapprobation expressed at one of the songs?

CHAWKER: Not to my recollection.

COURT: Did you see John Hewit knocked down by any person with a pailey?

CHAWKER: I cannot say that I did.

. . .

COURT: Did O'Dwyer sing?

HEWITT: He sang one song.

COURT: What was the tendency of the song? Was it disaffected?

HEWIT: I think it was.

COURT: You sang a song. Was it a loyal song?

HEWITT: I sang an Orange song.

Did you hear some person say: "Knock him down, the bloody Orange scoundrel!"?

HEWITT: I did but I cannot say who it was. He was drunk.

COURT: Did you not, in consequence of such an expression, receive a blow from a pailey?

. . .

Bibliography and resources:

Anne-Maree Whitaker, Unfinished revolution: United Irishmen in New South Wales, 1800-1810 (Sydney: Crossing Press, 1994), 149

Kieran Sheedy, The Tellicherry five: the transportation of Michael Dwyer & the Wicklow rebels (Dublin: Woodfield Press, 1997), 95-96

Stanley L. Devlin, Multiple stains: the story of the Devlin and associated families in Australia (Canberra: Author, 1999), 120 

Ruan O'Donnell, "Dwyer, Michael (1772-1825)", Australian Dictionary of Biography Supplement (2001) 


In evidence given at the trial of Michael Dwyer for sedition, John Hewitt (a non-political prisoner from Armagh) stated that he was present at a New Year's Day party at the house of William Chawker, and Englishman, when Dwyer had sung a "disaffective" song and that he (Hewitt) had sung an Orange song.

18 January 1807

Sydney, NSW


Appropriate airs were played by the band


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (25 January 1807), 1

On Monday, being the day appointed to be kept to commemorate Her Most Gracious Majesty's Birth Day, it was accordingly celebrated, with every token of respect and affection. The New South Wales Corps were under arms at noon, and fired a Royal Salute, as did the Battery. His Majesty's ships Porpoise and Buffalo were dressed with all their [?] [?], and at one fired 21 guns, as did the [?] Vessels in the Cove. Soon after His Excellency received Congratulations on the occasion, and at night a Ball and Supper were given at Government House to the Ladies and Gentlemen of the Colony. Government House was handsomely illuminated, and fire-works displayed. Several appropriate Airs were played by the Band of the New South Wales Corps on the Public Toasts which were given in honor of the Day; and the Dancing having continued until three in the morning, the whole Celebration terminated with the utmost satisfaction to all the Company, and gratification of those who were admitted as spectators, to whom THEIR MAJESTIES' elegant Portraits by Lawrence were now first shown.

Bibliography and resources:


? April 1807

Sydney, NSW

One piano forte


Proceedings of a general court martial held at Chelsea Hospital, which commenced on Tuesday, May 7, 1811 . . . for the trial of Lieut.-Col. Geo. Johnston, major of the 102nd Regiment, late the New South Wales Corps, on a charge of mutiny . . . for deporing, on the 26th January, 1808, William Bligh, esq. . . . (London: Printed for Sherwood, Neely, and Jones, 1811), 306-07 

[Evidence of John Blaxland] . . . [Manifest of the Ship Brothers] . . . J. B. [John Blaxland] One Piano Forte . . .

(307) . . . "A copy of different articles brought to this colony in the ship Brothers, on which I insured . . . Music . . . 30l. 16s. 0d. . . .

Bibliography and resources:


29 May and 4 June 1807

Sydney, NSW

Peal of bells and a ball for the king's birthday

St. Philip's, Sydney, after 1807


"CHURCH BELLS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (7 June 1807), 4:

On Friday the 29th of May the church tower was compleated, and is the best piece of masonry in the country. It is round, its height 49 1/2 feet, and its diameter 12 feet. The top is finished with turrets; which has a good effect, and agrees with the chancel end of the church, which is in the like style. Eight bells are hung in the upper floor which were rung that day; and a clock is also fixed, which presents two faces to the town. The church, the dimensions of which are - length 97 feet, breadth 32 feet, and height of the walls 17 feet, is in a forward state of finishing: so that in a few months we shall have a respectable place for Divine Worihip in this principal town of the colony, which has been only spoken or since the beginning of its establishment, and never advanced but to the building of a brick tower, which by the rains fell down, and taking one end of the church with it remained in that wrecked state till the rebuilding, which began last October. It is neccessary here to observe, that the two side walls and one end of the church being then standing, from the want of artificers and other means the work has been continued united with the old, in which there is this defect: the direction of the building is not East and West, and the tower is at the South east end of the church. The cause of this we are at a loss to account for; and we regret to observe also that the bells which were brought out by Governor Hunter, are so small that they cannot be heard distinctly beyond the distance of 300 yards from the tower.

"HIS MAJESTY'S BIRTH DAY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (7 June 1807), 1 

HIS MAJESTY'S BIRTH DAY. Thursday last being the Anniversary of HIS MAJESTY'S Birth, the customary salutes were fired. At half past one, HIS EXCELLENCY received the congratulations of all the Officers and many other Gentlemen on the occasion; and in the evening a splendid Ball was given at Government House to all the Commissioned Officers and other Gentlemen with their ladies. The general satisfaction which diffused itself throughout the company was no less indicative of the sensibility inspired by the auspicious event, than the liberality of the entertainment. At twelve the company withdrew from the ballroom to the apartment in which an elegant supper was prepared and where every delicacy that could be procured presented a bien venu. After supper many loyal toasts were given, and the company then returned to the ball room; And did not separate till a late hour. The ring of bells, which were put up in the church tower a few days before, continued successive peals throughout the day . . .

Bibliography and resources:


25 June 1807

Government House, Sydney, NSW

Ball and postponed fireworks


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (28 June 1807), 1

On Thursday morning his Excellency visited the Russian sloop of war Neva, Captain HAGAMAESTER; on which occasion the ship was manned and a salute fired. In the evening a ball and supper were given at Government House to Captain HAGEMAESTER and his Officers at which the Officers Civil and Military and other Gentlemen attended with their Ladies. At 11 were displayed a handsome firework that had been prepared for the occasion of HIS MAJESTY's birth, of which gratification the public were then disappointed by the wetness of the weather. The evening was favourable to the display which was highly satisfactory. At twelve the company retired to the supper room after which dancing con- tinued till an early hour.

Bibliography and resources:


July 1807

Sydney, NSW

SKINNER, Samuel (landlord)

. . . engaged music on the occasion . . .


State Records NSW, SZ 300, l9l-92 and 5/1155, 2ll-18

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 203

Opening a new tavern in July 1807, Samuel Skinner wooed the pubiic, and particularly the soldiery, by offering them free entedainment: he "engaged music on the occasion". The crowd that assembled created a disturbance and Skinner's licence was withdrawn.


The rum rebellion

24 and 25 January 1808

Sydney, NSW

Corps officers' dined in mess . . . the military band playing


Letter, William Bligh, Sydney, to Lord Castlereagh, London, 30 April 1808; HRA I/6, 425 

They dined together on the 24th for the first time in one of the Barracks, before the door of which they planted their Regimental Colours; and the music played till about nine or ten o'clock. Of this Party - besides the Military Officers - were (as I was informed by Mr. Atkins, the Judge-Advocate), Mr. Bayly, Surgeon Jamison, Dr. Townson, Mr. Grimes, Surveyor-General; Mr. Mileham, Assistant Surgeon; Mr. John and Gregory Blaxland, Settlers; Mr. Garnham Blaxcell, Merchant; Mr. Hannibal McArthur, Mr. Edward McArthur, and his father, Mr. John McArthur - who was to be tried by a Criminal Court the next day. This extraordinary meeting, where six of the Members of that Court, were collected with the Prisoner whom they were to try, seemed to indicate sedition; but no person then conceived of it otherwise than a trick of theirs to intimidate and insult the Government . . .

Memorial of Richard Atkins, 11 April 1808; HRA I/6, 239 

. . . That altho' the said Anthony Fen Kemp, John Brabyn, William Moore, Tho. Laycock, William Minchin, and Wm. Lawson well knew the Charges against the said John McArthur, and that he was under Bail to answer at a Criminal Court for such Offences against His Majesty, his Crown, and Dignity, and that they were to be Members to Sit on that Court, they all dined at a Public dinner with the said John McArthur the day before, and had the Colours of the Regiment of the New South Wales Corps flying all the day, with the Musical Band playing till a late hour.

Evidence at the trial of John Macarthur, ; quoted in Arthur Hawkey, Bligh's other mutiny (Sydney: Angus and Robertson, 1975), 92

[Macarthur] . . . The regimental band played during the dinner; and after dinner, I believe, I amused myself by listening to them, and walking backward and forward on the parade . . .

Lang 1834, 1, 116

In regard to what followed, there can be but one opinion - it was downright rebellion . . . and when the prosecution of Mr. Macarthur - an old officer of the corps - had afforded a centre of attraction for all the discontentment of that body, it evinced itself in a manner equally offensive and unequivocal. For it is a notorious fact, that all the six officers who were to sit in judgment on Mr. M. under the Governor's precept, actually dined along with that gentleman at a public dinner in Sydney on the very day before the trial, and had the colours of the regiment displayed on the occasion, and the military band playing till a late hour in the evening. One can scarcely conjure up an exhibition which at the same moment could have combined so much gross indecency with so flagrant a mockery of justice, and so open and avowed a defiance of the civil power.

Lang 1837, 1, 137

. . . for on the day preceding the trial, Mr. Macarthur's son and nephew and two bailsmen were all dining along with the six officers who were to sit in judgment on Mr. Macarthur, under the Governor's precept, on the following day, at a public mess-dinner in Sydney; the colours of the regiment being displayed on the occasion, and the military band playing till a late hour in the evening. Mr. Macarthur, it is true, was not at the dinner himself; but he spent the evening in walking to and fro on the parade in front of the mess-room, doubtless enjoying the exhibition, and listening to the music! . . .

Marcus Clarke, Old tales of a young country (Melbourne: Mason, Firth, & McCutcheon, 1871), 44 

. . . Macarthur, however, was liberated on bail, and in the interim between the 17th of December and the 25th of January the greatest excitement prevailed. The ill-feeling between the prisoner and the Judge-advocate was well known and freely commented upon. Macarthur himself was not idle. He enlisted the sympathies of the New South Wales corps, and seems to have informed its officers (who were to try him) that he relied upon their favourable verdict. This reliance was not unfounded. The officers rallied round their old comrade, and it is on record that the night before the trial Macarthur's son and nephew and two of the bailsmen dined at a public mess-dinner of the corps. The colours of the regiment were displayed and the regimental band playing, Mr. Macarthur himself walking up and down the parade and listening to the music. History again suggests a distant parallel in the "white cockade" Opera-house dinner of bodyguards at the Oeil de Boeuf . . .

Bibliography and resources:

Decisions of the Superior Courts of New South Wales, 1788-1899; Case index 1808; Maquarie Law School, Macquarie University 

Jordan 2015, 19


26 January 1808

Sydney, NSW

Arrest of Bligh . . . drum and fife . . . the band playing British grenadiers

The arrest of Governor Bligh, 1808, State Library of New South Wales, Safe 4/5

The arrest of Governor Bligh, 1808, State Library of New South Wales, Safe 4 / 5 


Letter, William Bligh, Sydney, to Lord Castlereagh, London, 30 April 1808; edited in Historical Records of Australia series 1, volume 6, (420) 421, 430 

[421] . . . This rebellious act was done so suddenly in about five minutes from the time we first knew of it, Government House was surrounded with troops, Major Johnson having brought up in battle array about three hundred men under Martial Law, loaded with ball, to attack and seize my person and a few friends, some of whom were Magistrates, that had been at dinner with me. Their colours were spread, and they marched to the tune of the "British Grenadiers", and to render the spectacle more terrific to the townspeople, the Field Artillery on the Parade was presented against the House where I became arrested, and had five sentinels placed over me, and the Civil Magistrates were put under an arrest in their own houses. 

[430] . . . Immediately followed an operation of the Main Guard at our Gates priming and loading with Ball cartridges, and the whole body of Troops began to march from the Barracks, led on by Major Johnston, the Band playing the " British Grenadiers" and colours flying [. . .] In five minutes the whole House was surrounded by an Armed Force, consisting of between three or four hundred men, all loaded with Ball cartridges, the Officers attending in their proper places. Without ceremony they broke into all parts of the house (even into the Ladies' room) and arrested all the Magistrates, Mr. Gore, Provost-Marshal, Mr. Fulton, the Clergyman, and Mr. Griffin, my Secretary. Thus the Civil Power was annihilated, and the Colony in the hands of the Military, guided by McArthur and Bayly. Nothing but calamity upon calamity was to be expected, even Massacre and secret Murder. I had only just time to retire upstairs to prevent giving myself up, and to see if anything could be done for the restoration of my Arrest of Authority; but they soon found me in a back room, and a daring set of Ruffians under arms [headed by Serjeant-Major Whittle], intoxicated by spirituous liquors, which was given them for the purpose, and threatening to plunge their bayonets into me if I resisted, seized me . . .

Proceedings of a general court martial held at Chelsea Hospital, which commenced on Tuesday, May 7, 1811 . . . for the trial of Lieut.-Col. Geo. Johnston, major of the 102nd Regiment, late the New South Wales Corps, on a charge of mutiny . . . for deposing, on the 26th January, 1808, William Bligh, esq. . . . (London: Printed for Sherwood, Neely, and Jones, 1811), 9, 77, 93, 96, 204 

[Bligh's opening speech] . . . Immediately after the order for the release of McArthur, there followed an operation of the main guard close to the gate of the Government-House, and the regiment marched down from the barracks led on by Maj. Johnston and the other officers, with colours flying and music playing as they advanced to the house. Within a few minutes after, the house was surrounded; the soldiers quickly broke into all parts of it, and arrested all the magistrates . . . 

[John Palmer questioned] . . . Did you see Col. Johnston with the troops?

[Palmer] Yes, I did, standing in front of them, opposite the front door of Government House; his arm was in a sling.

You just now said you saw him in the diningroom?

That was after I came back: and he had his sword drawn.

In what manner did the troops advance?

They marched up in a line two or three deep, beating the grenadiers' march. 

[Francis Oakes] . . . In what state did the town appear on that occasion?

[Prosecution] On the alarm of the drums and fifes beating to arms, I observed the people run from several quarters of the town to see what was the matter . . . 

[Oakes examined by the defendent Johnston] . . . Were not all the measures that were adopted after the 26th of January calculated merely for the preservation of the public peace; and when that was secured, was not all restraint removed.

[Oakes] I believe firmly not.

By the Court. You believe they were not calculated for the preservation of the public peace?

I am sure they were not.

Do you believe that when the public peace was restored, all restraint was removed?

Public peace restored. I don't know that it was ever broke, unless they were the military who broke it; I never saw any body else break it, and I was a witmess to every transaction that took place.

And every transaction in your conception was perfectly peaceable?

Perfectly peaceable; and when martial law was proclaimed by drum and fife in Paramatta, the people were very much alarmed at the circumstance indeed. I was at Sydney when the Governor was arrested: I saw Sydney in no way of confusion till such time as the drum and fife beat to arms; then I saw the regular inhabitants run towards Government House. 

[John Macarthur questioned] . . . Were you not with the troops on the 26th of January, and did you not, as they marched to the Government House, give directions, both to several of the men, and particularly to the music?

{Macarthur] No; I have no recollection of anything of the kind. I walked with them, but I recollect giving no directions either to the men or to the music.

Was not the paper that was signed by most of the officers and by several other persons, that you have spoken to, requesting Col. Johnston to arrest the Governor, in your hand writing?

It was.

George Suttor, "Sketch of Events in New South Wales 1800-1820", 10-12; MC C783; Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales (transcr. Jordan 2015, 19)

[10-11]. . . about seven the Drums were heard to beat loud, and hard, and heard all over the Town the soldiers were seen running and forming under their colours [. . .] and began to move at a quick pace to Government House [. . .] with their band, and colours, armed with fixed bayonets . . .

[11-12] . . . the Regiment [. . .] marched back to the barracks their band performing the air of "Britons weep &c," rather a prophetic sound of their end, and of the Deep wounds inflicted on the Colony by those who should have supported its government.

Bibliography and resources (colonial):

Lang 1834, vol. 1, 110:

A guard was then placed over his person; and the regiment, after having remained at Government House about an hour, marched back to their barracks, the band playing "Britons, weep," &c. - an air which, as my intelligent informant who was present at the time observed, was singularly prophetic of their own end, as well as of the deep wounds which were soon to be inflicted on the colony by those who should have supported its government and preserved its peace.

Sidney 1852, 65

BLIGH'S ARREST. On the morning of 26 January 1808 Bligh again ordered the arrest of Macarthur and the return of Atkins's court papers held by the officers of the Corps. The Corps responded with a request for a new Judge-Advocate and the release of Macarthur on bail. Bligh summoned the officers to Government House to answer charges made by Atkins and informed Major Johnston that he considered the action of the officers of the Corps to be treasonable. At 5pm Johnston went to the Corps's Barracks and issued an order releasing Macarthur who then drafted a petition calling for Johnston to arrest Bligh and take charge of the colony. At [6 or 6.30pm] on 26 January the New South Wales Corps, with full band and colours, accompanied by 200 civilians, marched from the High Street Barracks (now George Street), up Bridge Street to Government House to arrest Governor Bligh. They were hindered by his daughter Mary Putland, who endeavoured to obstruct their path, but after a lengthy search Bligh was found in full dress uniform in an attic bedroom. Johnston arrested Bligh and assumed control of the colony. Bligh remained under house arrest in Sydney for 12 months during 1808, refusing to leave for England until lawfully relieved of his appointment.

Flanagan 1862, 1, 171

Bligh's Letter to Viscount Castlereagh Outlining Causes of the Insurrection and Details of his Arrest. Government House , Sydney, New South Wales 30 April 1808 - Suppression of Monopolies by Bligh - When ships arrived, the usual impositions were oppressed, the necessaries which they introduced were open to every one's purchase, and by this means the numerous people in the country had opportunities to relieve their wants without being so much subject to the wicked monopolising persons who heretofore had been making themselves rich on the vitals of the poor. Address from Settlers and Discontent of Certain Persons On the first day of the year, under an impression of what I had done for them, I received a dutiful Address, signed by nearly nine hundred persons, which never was known in this country before, but to this Address it is to be observed that John McArthur, Edward McArthur, Hannibal McArthur, Garnham Blaxcelll, John Blaxland, Gregory Blaxland, Captain Townson, Doctor Townson, Charles Grimes, Surgeon Jamison, Nicholas Bayly and Darcy Wentworth's names, and some others, are not affixed, or any of the Military Officers. These persons, checked in the enormous practice of bartering spirits, which had principally been the almost ruin of the colony, became privately discounted; and the arch fiend, John McArthur, so inflamed their minds as to make them dissatisfied with Government, and tricked them into misfortunes, even to his own advantage, which they now, at too late a period, acknowledge, in addition to the iniquity he has led them of treason and rebellion to the State. Bligh's Charges against John McArthur. This McArthur began his career with endeavours to delude the settlers and landlords, but who execrated him for the attempt, as they had always done. He then opposed the Civil Magistracy, and bid defiance to all law and colonial Regulations, and, after all, under the pretext of great benefits which would arise to the military, he, with a Mr. Nicholas Bayly, seduced Major Johnston and all the officers and privates of the New South Wales Corps from their duty and allegiance into open rebellion against me, His Majesty's Representative and Governor-in-Chief of the Colony, and the whole civil power and Magistracy. Arrest of Bligh and Magistrates. This rebellious act was done so suddenly in about five minutes from the time we first knew of it, Government House was surrounded with troops, Major Johnson having brought up in battle array about three hundred men under Martial Law, loaded with ball, to attack and seize my person and a few friends, some of whom were Magistrates, that had been at dinner with me. Their colours were spread, and they marched to the tune of the "British Grenadiers", and to render the spectacle more terrific to the townspeople, the Field Artillery on the Parade was presented against the House where I became arrested, and had five sentinels placed over me, and the Civil Magistrates were put under an arrest in their own houses.

Music concordances (British Grenadiers):

British Grenadiers (Calliope, 1788)

Calliope; or, The musical miscellany . . . set to music (London: C. Elliot and T. Kay, 1788), 184

[Later Australian edition, after London edition, 1840], The British & staff quadrilles dedicated to Field Marshal H.R.H. Prince Albert (Sydney: F. Ellard, [early 1840s])

Possible music concordances (Britons weep):

If George Suttor (who Bligh took with him to England to be a witness against Johnston) remembered correctly that the band played an air known as Britons weep on their return to the barracks, no such contemporary title, or even a song with that word string, can be reliably identified. One very slim possibility is the contrafactum of Rule Britannia (on the death of Nelson) given below; however, in that case, why would Suttor not have simply referred to the tune as Rule Britannia?

? "Britons, weep" [to the tune of Rule Britannia]

Fairburn's naval songster; or, Jack Tar's chest of conviviality for 1806 (London: John Fairburn, 1806), 31


26 January 1808 (or soon after)

Sydney, NSW

ANONYMOUS (songwriter) = ? DAVOREN, Lawrence

A new song made in New South Wales on the rebellion

To the tune of "Health to the Duchess"

Source and documentation:

MS, SL-NSW: William Bligh - Papers relating to his term as Governor of New South Wales, 1805-1811

Mackaness 1951 (ed.)

The voice of rebellion resounds o'er the Plain
The Anarchist Junto have pulled down the banner
Which Monarchical Government sought but in vain
To hold as the rallying Standard of honor.
The Diadem's here fled
From off the King's head,
His Royal appointment by force they depose,
But the time it draws nigh
When magnanimous Bligh
Will triumph with honour and prostrate his foes.

This dastardly Junto disgrace to the sword
Which dangles beside them, ne'er before drawn in anger,
Till the King's Captain-General to them did accord
A discipline more brisk than their grog-selling langour,
They then caught the flame
Of revenge out of shame,
In a body assembled their cowardly swords drawn
'Gainst the person of Bligh
Whose station is high
Involved in his seizure the rights of the Crown.

These skellams all loyalty here have put down
And the New Gallic School in its stead have erected,
John Bull's would-be pupil, how dare he to frown
His French education was too long neglected.
That Turnip head tool
Jack Boddice's fool
Stepped into that station he dare not oppose
And the cub of a cook
His allegiance forsook
To become "His Honor" new crimes to disclose.

A pragmatical monkey, tho' biped in shape
Next comes on the list of the cabal profound,
He skipped and he danced like a new shaven Ape
When thus elevated the laws to expound,
But Russell's hard case
Soon changed his grimace
Jack Boddice proclaimed him, and out he did go.
So being this defeated
He soon was translated
And in New Gate is seated this poor Plenipo.

A grinning Tobacco boy next did succeed
His prolific canism they praised to the skies.
He had Blackstone and Burn as pat as his creed,
Than Hardwicke more subtle, than Mansfield more wise.
He retailed out the Law
Like magpie of Daw,
Without sense or stature he made each Decree
But he soon was withdrew
By the apostate crew,
And Janus Silenus now fingers the fee.

The valorous Adjutant next claims a place
In the Temple of treason his Fiz must be shewn,
This Pease cask Paltroon hath at length run his race,
And in Newgate with G-r-ms he is safely set down.
That Pedagogue Bell
Should now teach to spell
Sartine, alias L-w-n that pitiful Gnat
And B-y-n the Imp
That Charing Cross crimp
At bleack Port Dalrymple may tayloring squat.

Next comes in due order that Ape Billy Cog
A Porter's know, fitter his shoulders to grace
than the Epaulet work by this Miller's Hog,
A clown in his gait, and a fool in his Face,
The Carmagnol Mayor
Has here got an heir
His Name and his crimes still to perpetuate.
A Pat Ultimo's Pill
Will all qualms them kill
That mountebauck Empiric, vile vile knave, and cheat.

The last tho' not least of this rebellious squad
Is Phlegmatic P-n-n, arrived from the southward,
His head as well filled as an Empty Pease cod
The Amor Patria in him being quite smothered.
With this Botanist rare
Banks cannot compare
Nor great Marlboro's Arms his prowess impede.
Each Hottentot Tribe
His feasts can describe
In goobling Pulse Porridge and eating sheep's head.

To conlude to this Rabble I now recommend
A due preparation for Eternity.
And for infamous Newsham or wretched C-r-k send
Those Colonial Chaplains of new orthodoxy.
And if Baboon faced F-z
Can still mind his hits
He will soon be released from this World of Woes.
For the time it draws nigh
When Magnanimous Bligh
Will triumph with horror and prostrate his foes.


Bibliography and resources:

Mackaness 1951

Mackaness 1979 (reprint) 

Music concordances (tune):

Health to the duchess (Philidor)

Air, Act 1, scene 1, "I can't for the life guess the cause of this fuss . . . Joy and health to the Duchess, wherever she goes" [by Philidor], in The songs &c in The deserter, a musical drama as perform'd with universal applause, at the Theatre Royal in Drury Lane, composed by Messrs. Monsigny, Philidor, & Dibdin (London: Printed for John Johnston & Longman, Lukey, & Co. [? 1773]), 7 (DIGITISED)


Dated 26 January 1809, this song was written in support of the deposed governor, Bligh; Mackaness identified the author as the Irish convict attorney Lawrence Davoren.


[Wordbook], "The Deserter, a farce in two acts, as performed at the Theatre-Royal, Covent-Garden by Mr. Charles Dibdin", in Inchbold (ed.), A collection of farces and other afterpieces, which are acted at the Theatres Royal, Drury-Lane, Convent-Garden and Hay-Market, printed under the authority of the managers from the Prompt Book (London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme, 1809), [multiple paginations] (DIGITISED)


28 January 1808

Sydney, NSW

CHAMPION, Isaac (reporter)

The silly old man


Proceedings of a general court martial held at Chelsea Hospital, which commenced on Tuesday, May 7, 1811 . . . for the trial of Lieut.-Col. Geo. Johnston, major of the 102nd Regiment, late the New South Wales Corps, on a charge of mutiny . . . for deposing, on the 26th January, 1808, William Bligh, esq. . . . (London: Printed for Sherwood, Neely, and Jones, 1811), 9, 114, 119, 198, 204, 443 

[Bligh's opening speech] . . . Immediately after the order for the release of McArthur, there followed an operation of the main guard close to the gate of the Government-House, and the regiment marched down from the barracks led on by Major Johnston and the other officers, with colours flying and music playing as they advanced to the house. Within a few minutes after, the house was surrounded; the soldiers quickly broke into all parts of it . . . 

[Evidence of Isaac Champion ] . . . [I was an acting sergeant-major] . . . This, you say, was on the 28th? On the evening of the 28th [January 1808]? . . . Who cheered; you say the people? I believe the soldiers and the convicts mixed together. You say, a number of officers were there? They were walking past along the road; I particularly observed Lieutenant Colonel Johnson, Mr. Minchin, Major Abbott, a gentleman of the name of McArthur, and some ladies. Who was the effigy intended to represent? Why, all supposed Governor Bligh. That was the general impression? That was the general impression. The military band that was there attended, and the moment after, they played a tune which they called in common "The Silly Old Man:" they struck it up immediately after the three shouts were over . . . 

[John McArthur, cross-examined] . . . Did you not walk away from the Criminal Court on the 25th of January 1808, with the members of that Court? - No; to the best of my recollection, I walked away with a Dr. Townson; the members of the Court might be following close after for aught I know, but I did not observe them. I remember now, there was also a Mr. Blaxcell and a Mr. Bayly, who were my bail.

Were you not with the troops on the 26th of January, and did you not, as they marched to the Government House, give directions, both to several of the men, and particularly to the music.? - No; I have no recollection of anything of the kind. I walked with them, but I recollect giving no directions either to the men or to the music.

Paterson 1811, 575

This, you say, was on the 28th? On the evening of the 28th? By the Court. Who cheered; you say the people? I believe the soldiers and the convicts mixed together. You say, a number of officers were there? They were walking past along the road; I particularly observed Lieutenant Colonel Johnson, Mr. Minchin, Major Abbott, a gentleman of the name of M'Arthur, and some ladies. Who was the effigy intended to represent? Why, all supposed Governor Bligh. That was the general impression? That was the general impression. The military band that was there attended, and the moment after, they played a tune which they called in common "The Silly Old Man:" they struck it up immediately after the three shouts were over.


As with many early colonial tune and song references, it is difficult, if not impossible, to identify text or music concordances reliably. It seems most likely the tune referred to was one of those associated with the ballad text that circulated under the title The silly old man ("Come listen awhile . . ."). This was evidently widely sung in the late 18th-century (it was, for instance, parodied in 1778, during the American revolution, the original 4-line verse inserted into a new 8-line format, to "the old tune of Black Joke"). The earliest printed text sources with the title attached, however, tend to date to the first half of the 19th century, rarely with any indication of the sung tune. An early exception was a parody fragment in a London newspaper in 1818, which identified the tune as Derry down, and another parody, in 1826, which also imports the Derry Down chorus.

The tune called Silly old man, in Walsh's Caledonian country dances, dating from the mid 18th-century, does not appear to be directly associated with the text tradition.

There is also an internal text reference to a "silly old man" in a song collected by Kidson, but with different tune and words entirely.

Music concordances:

Silly old man

Caledonian country dances, being a collection of all the celebrated Scotch country dances now in vogue . . . 3.d edition (London; J. Walsh, [n.d.]), 76 

"BERKSHIRE ELECTION", The statesman [London] (8 October 1818), 2

Song - Tune Derry Down

Come listen awhile and I'll tell you a tale,
Of a Weathercock Parson there is in the Vale . . .

Tune, Derry Down . . .

A collection of addresses, squibs, songs, &c. . . . published during the contested election for the borough of Preston . . . 1826 (Preston: T. Rogerson, printer, [1826]), 26-27 


Come listen awhile, but I don't need to show,
What the voter's of Preston did long undergo;
Persecution, Corruption, Distress, does abound,
But in 18-26 a pure Wood we have found. - Derry down, &c. . . .

The silly old man (London: J. Pitts, [1819-44]) [Roud Number: V14982] 

Come listen awhile and I'll sing you a song:
I am a young damsel just turned twenty-one.
I married a miser for gold it is true,
And the age of his years were seventy-two.

CHORUS. Will you live for ever, you silly old man?
I wish that your days they were all at an end,
To please a young woman is more than you can,
It's not in your power you silly old man . . .

Frank Moore, Songs and ballads of the American Revolution (New York: D. Appleton, 1856), 196 

1778 . . . first appeared in the Pennsylvania Ledger, as "a new song, to the old tune of Black Joke," and subsequently in a ballad sheet, under its present title THE REBELS.

YE brave, honest subjects, who dare to be loyal,
And have stood the brunt of every trial,
Of hunting-shirts, and rifle-guns:
Come listen awhile, and I ll sing you a song;
I ll show you, those Yankees are all in the wrong,
Who, with blustering look and most awkward gait,
Gainst their lawful sovereign dare for to prate,

With their hunting-shirts, and rifle-guns.

Ancient music of Ireland, from the Petrie collection, arranged for the pianoforte by F. Hoffman (Dublin: Pigott & Co., 1877), 15

Frank Kidson (comp., ed.), Traditional tunes, a collection of ballad airs chiefly obtained in Yorkshire and the south of Scotland together with their appropriate words from broadsides and from oral tradition (Oxford: Chas. Taphouse, 1891), 141-42

24 July 1808 (first advertised)

Sydney, NSW

A very fine tuned barrel organ


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (24 July 1808), 2

To be Sold by Auction by Mr. Blaxcell, at his house, High street, Sydney, on Wednesday next the 27th instant, at 11 o'clock in the forenoon; A valuable collection of Stores the property of Messrs, Lord, Kable, and Co. dissolving Partnership, consisting of whale lines, lances, harpoons, and sealing gear, copper bolts and nails of sizes, upwards of 2000 gallons of tar in casks, 24 new brass mariners; compasses, several casks of pickled tongues. and a variety of other articles. Likewise will be sold, a very fine tuned barrel organ, 803lbs. of Rio Janeira coffee, several ladies' muslin dresses of the latest fashion, an assortment of jewellery, two silver watches, and a quantity of artificial flowers.

Bibliography and resources:

Graeme D. Rushworth, Historic organs of New South Wales: the instruments, their makers and players 1791-1940 (Sydney: Hale and Iremonger, 1988), 19


15 January 1809

Sydney, NSW

A fine toned clarionet


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (15 January 1809), 1

ON Sale at the House of J. Colles, No. 34, Back Row East, the following Articles at reduced prices, for ready money only . . . a capital telescope, spectacles, and a fine toned clarionet; some English preferred gooseberries, damsons and green gages.

Bibliography and resources:

Clarinet made by John Cramer, 1790-96, Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences, Sydney

23 February 1809

Sydney, NSW


Ball at the barracks


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (26 February 1809), 1

On Thursday evening a Ball and Supper was given by His Honor the LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR, to Captain PORTEUS and Officers of His Majesty's ship Porpoise, as well as to the Officers Civil and Military, and their Ladies, forming together the largest Company of Fashionables that had ever assembled in the Colony on any similar ccasion. For this purpose the very commodious upper apartments in the new Military Barracks were fitted up with a considerable display of taste and neatness. The rooms were brilliantly illuminated, and the music was performed by the full Band of the New South Wales Corps. Between 7 and 8 the ballroom began to fill, and before 9 country dances commenced. At 12 the Company retired to the supper apartment, where a handsome collation suspended for a time "the merry dance;" which resumed, however, and continued to an early hour.

Bibliography and resources:


4 June 1809 (Sunday, king's birthday)

Sydney, NSW

BAND OF THE NSW CORPS (performers)

GRANT, John (informant)

Band plays God save the king in St. Philip's


John Grant, Journal, MS 737/42, page 90; National Library of Australia 

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 194

5 June 1809

Sydney, NSW


The king's birthday


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (11 June 1809), 2

On Monday last the Anniversary of HIS MAJESTY's Birth was celebrated in a manner suited to the occasion. At sun-rise the Royal Standard was displayed at Fort Phillip; at 12 at noon the New South Wales Corps on the Grand Parade fired three vollies, the Band playing "God save the King" between the fires; which were answered by the Loyal Sydney Volunteer Association, from the Esplanade. A Royal Salute was also fired from the Battery at Dawes's Point, and at one o'clock such vessels in the port as had guns on board fired also.

In the evening His Honor the LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR gave an Entertainment to the principal Officers and Ladies; when a small display of fire-works was made from the Parade.

Bibliography and resources:


Music concordances:

"God save the King. The King's anthem for the Jubilee, October 25th 1809", Hanover Royal Music Archive, Beinecke Library, Yale University 

3 December 1809

Sydney, NSW

The musical entertainment of Incle and Yarico


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (3 December 1809), 2

Books. - Any person who may have borrowed of a Gentleman a Volume of Sharpe's British Theatre, containing among other Pieces the Musical Entertainment of Incle and Yaricho, is requested to leave it at the Gazette Office.

Bibliography and resources:

Cumes 1979, 23

Jordan 2002, 139


Inkle and Yarico; an opera, in three acts, as performed at the Theatre-Royal in the Haymarket, on Saturday, August 1th, 1787, written by George Colman, Junior (London: Printed for C. J. C. and J. Robinson, [1787])

Elizabeth Inchbald (ed.), The British Theatre: Or, a Collection of Plays, which are Acted at the Theatres Royal . . . With Biographical and Critical Remarks . . . volume 20 (London: Longman, Hurst, Rees, and Orme, 1808), third pagination


John Sharpe published his multi-volume edition of popular plays, as "British theatre", in London in 1804-05. A few years later it had been replaced in currency by Elizabeth Inchbald's edition for Longmans. The edition in question would have included song texts, and tune identifications, but no actual music.


"DRAMA", The Australian (24 May 1833), 2 

On Wednesday evening Colman's Comedy of Inkle and Yarico with the farce of the Spectre Bridegroom, were performed for Mr. Meredith's benefit; the house was crowded to excess and the pieces were well received. A variety of songs and other amusements were introduced between the plays . . .

"THEATRE", The Sydney Herald (27 May 1833), 3

On Wednesday night Mr. Meredith took his Benefit to a more numerous audience than has ever been witnessed within the walls of that Theatre. The play was Inkle and Yarico, for the first time, and considering the very liberal use which had been made of the pruning knife, and the introducing of the Queen of Otaheite into the piece, it went off tol tol . . .

"PARRAMATTA THEATRICALS" The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (23 July 1833), 2

On Saturday evening last, the temporary Theatre opened under the management of Mr. MEREDITH. About 8 o'clock the evening's amusements commenced with Colman's celebrated play of "Incle and Yarico." Mr. PALMER'S Sir Christopher Curry was tolerable; Mr. MEREDITH'S Trudge was truly excellent, as also was Mrs. LOVE'S Wousky; Miss BLAND'S Yarico passed off tolerably, as also Miss M. BLAND'S Narcissa. Then followed the "Spectre Bridegroom" . . .

"THEATRE", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (1 April 1834), 2

The melo drama of Ella Rosenberg was followed, on Saturday evening, by the musical entertainment of Incle and Yarico. The first piece we have already noticed, and the second has beon already too frequently before the public to call for further comment. We have only to say that, with a few exceptions, it was very creditably sustained by the performers. Meredith in Trudge, Mrs. Taylor as Yarico (though we do not like to see her face bedaubed with filthy brown paint), Mrs. Jones as Wowski, and Palmer as Sir Christopher, gave very general satisfaction to the audience, if we may judge from the applause with which they were greeted. But, in the name of common sonse, where did the representative of Incle acquire his notion of that part. The plodding, scheming, heartless, money-getting Incle, was personated by Mr. Grove in the dress of one of the Regatta dandies, and with a volatility of manner so foreign from any reasonable conception of the character, as to convince us that he knows nothing whatever of it. Why does not Knowles play this part?

[Advertisement], The Hobart Town Courier (9 January 1835), 3

THEATRE, HOBART TOWN. This present evening, Friday 9th Jan., will be presented the Melodrama of THE GAMBLER'S OF FATE. To conclude with the Opera of INCLE AND YARICO.

"Domestic Intelligence", Colonial Times (20 January 1835), 7

The Theatre was, last evening, uncommonly well attended - there were there most of the fashionables of the Town. The pieces were, the Castle Spectre, and Incle and Yarico, both of which were better performed than we have ever before seen in this Colony. Among other visitors, we were happy to notice the Chief Justice and a party of ladies.


Another journal, "The Tasmanian Review," writes on the same subject: - "We have made no reference to the theatre for some weeks. We could not praise, and were unwilling to censure. We are compelled, however, to notice, the numerous complaints of the deception practised in advertising operatic pieces, the skeletons only of which are performed. For example, in "Inkle and Yarico," advertised for Wednesday, all those beautiful songs which are so attractive were left out. If operas are advertised, there should be something like an attempt at the songs."

31 December 1809

Sydney, NSW

LAYCOCK, Thomas (former owner)

BEVAN, David (auctioneer)

Piano forte belonging to Thomas Laycock, deceased


For documentation of the original purchase of this piano in 1799, see:

"DIED", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (31 December 1809), 2

On Wednesday, at his house in Pitt's Row, after a long and painful illness, THOMAS LAYCOCK, Esq. in his 54th year.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (31 December 1809), 1

SALE by AUCTION, BY MR. BEVAN, On Thursday next the 4th of January, 1810, on the Premises of Mr. Laycock, deceased, in Pitt's Row, at Ten o'Clock in the Forenoon, ALL the Neat Houshold Furniture, consisting of Bedsteads, Beds, Bolsters, Blankets, and Mattrasses, Tables and Chairs, Table Linen, Sheeting, a small Quantity of Plate, Knives, Forks, and all kinds of Kitchen Furniture, a quantity of Wearing Apparel, some fine Hyson Tea, Sugar, Wine and Spirits, an elegant Piano-Forte with Music Books. Afterwards will be Sold, Two very fine Horses either to ride or drive, an elegant Curricle and fasionable Chaise, with Plated Harness to both. Also, a new Cart and Harness, and sundry other Articles. Prompt payment will be required on delivery of the Goods in such Bills as the Trustees approves of, or Copper Coin.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (31 March 1810), 2

SALES by AUCTION, BY MR. BEVAN, At his Rooms in High Street, Sydney, on Monday next the 2d of April, at Ten o'Clock in the Forenoon . . . an elegant piano forte . . .

Macarthur papers, A2909, 9; Mitchell Library, State Library of New South Wales

[The Macarthurs purchased the piano at the auction for £85]

Bibliography and resources:

Broadbent, Elizabeth Farm Parramatta, 3

Jordan 2012, 206

Lancaster 2015, I 

Skinner 2016 

30 December 1809

Sydney, NSW



Changing of the bands . . .


[News], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (7 January 1810), 2

His Majesty's ship Hindostan, commanded by Captain JOHN PASCO; and the Dromedary naval store-ship, commanded by Mr. SAMUEL PERKINS PRITCHARD, came to anchor in Sydney Cove on the evening of Saturday last, the 30th ultimo. On board the latter ship came Passengers His Excellency LACHLAN McQUARIE Esquire, Captain General and Governor in Chief of this His Majesty's Territory of New South Wales and its Dependencies, and his LADY, Also, ELLIS BENT, Esquire, and his LADY, and infant SON; and Mr. JOHN THOMAS CAMPBELL, Secretary to His Excellency the Governor; and on board the Hindostan came Passenger Lieutenant Colonel O'CONNELL, of the 73d Regiment, Lieutenant Governor of this Territory.

His Excellency the GOVERNOR having been pleased to signify his intention of landing at ten the following morning, preparations were made to receive HIS EXCELLENCY in a manner suited to his Rank. The 102d Regiment formed an open line extending from the Government landing Stairs to Government House; and at the appointed hour HIS EXCELLENCY and LADY leaving the ship, a salute was fired from the ships which was answered by the Battery at Dawes's Point. HIS EXCELLENCY and LADY were received on their landing by His Honor Lieutenant Governor PATERSON, Colonel FOVEAUX, and all the Principal Officers, by whom they were attended up to Government House; and on Monday last, the ceremony of reading His Majesty's Commission was performed, appointing HIS EXCELLENCY His Majesty's Captain General and Governor in Chief of the Territory of New South Wales Wales and its Dependencies.

The debarkation of the 73d Regiment took place in the forenoon; and at 12 the troops formed into a square on the Grand Parade, one side of which consisted of the 102d Regiment. On the arrival of the Governor and Suite in the centre of the square, His EXCELLENCY was received by a general salute from the troops. His Majesty's Commission was then opened by the GOVERNOR himself, and given by His EXCELLENCY into the hands of the Judge Advocate, by whom it was unfolded. The Great Seal of the Territory was then displayed; on which part of the ceremony the Troops again saluted, by presenting arms, Officers saluting, and the Music playing "God save the King!" the Governor and Suite uncovering, in token of Duty and Respect to the King's Commission. The JUDGE ADVOCATE then proceeded to the reading of the Governor's Commission; and afterwards read the Commissions of His Honor the LIEUTENANT GOVERNOR and the Deputy JUDGE ADVOCATE. As soon as the Judge Advocate had finished read- ing his own Commission, the Troops fired three vollies; after which HIS EXCELLENCY was pleased to address the Inhabitants and the Military in a short and very animated Speech, which was answered with three cheers; when the Troops again gave a general Salute, the Bands playing "God save the King!" A Royal Salute of 21 guns was then fired from the Battery, which was answered by Royal Salutes from His Majesty's ships Hindostan and Dromedary. His EXCELLENCY and Suite then quitted the Parade, and the 73d Regiment the same day marched out to Grose Farm, where they remain encamped. At night an illumination was made throughout the Town, and on board His Majesty's ships, which presented a very brilliant spectacle; and such was the general sentiment on the occasion as to promise that general conciliation which it was His Excellency's pleasure to declare it was his ardent wish and duty to promote . . .

On Friday, the day appointed for the commodore's embarkation, the 73rd regiment were under arms at eleven, for the purpose of paying the usual honours to the late governor-in-chief on his departure, the lines extending from the Government Wharf round by Government Gate, and down the avenue to Government House which faces the bridge. Ar halfpast eleven the commodore conducting Mrs. Putland, entered the ranks at the end of the bridge and proceeded to Government House, where the officers civil and military were assembled to take their leave. About twelve the commodore, accompanied by his Excellency the governor-in-chief, attended by a numerous company of officers, moved towards the wharf, the military presenting arms, and the band of the 73rd preceding the procession, playing " God save the King." As soon as the commodore, Mrs. Putland, and suite entered the commodore's barge, on the bow of which the broad pendant was displayed, the battery commenced saluting; the barge passed round the shipping, from each of which he was saluted with yards manned; and on reaching the Porpoise the Hindostan first began saluting, which immediately became general.

Bibliography and resources:



16 January 1810

Sydney, NSW

A band on the viranda . . . and the merry dance


"ADDRESS TO HIS EXCELLENCY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (21 January 1810), 2

On the night of the 16th, upon which the Address was received by the Governor, a brilliant illumination took place, in which several handsome transparencies lay claim to notice, among which, those of Mr. Blaxcell and Mr. Underwood were the principal. In the front doorway of the former gentleman's residence was exhibitied a well executed portrait of His Majesty. In the end window, on the left, was a well drawn ship half encircled with ears of wheat, a jointly emblemmatical of Commerce and Agriculture, and in the being formed into arches and festoons, very beautiful in appearance. Mr. Underwood's house, to the advantage of height added every thing that could tend to attract admiration. The windows throughout were handsomely diversified with glass of various colours, through which innumerable lights appeated to wonderful advantage. In the front windows on the first story two beautiful transparencies were displayed; the first the Crown with the initials G. R. below, and the motto Vivant Rex et Regina; the other a representation of the ship King George with her name on the stern, and the word "COMMERCE" underneath. The vessel made choice of was worthy of election on such an occasion, as she was built by Mr. Underwood himself, and was the first ship built in the Colony, to whose rising commerce she still contributes her exertions. The windows at the back of the house were uniformly decorated with lights fancifully disposed, & on the parapet at the top of the house were a number of coloured lamps placed at regular distances. As soon as twylight ceased the illumination began to expand itself, and in a few minutes the interior of the house appeared a perfect blaze. At half past 8 a handsome fire-work was displayed, which lasted till after 10; a large bon-fire burning at the same time in front of the building; and a band in a corner of the viranda playing "God save the King!" "Rule, Britannia!" and other loyal airs. After the display of fire-works ceased the house was thrown open for the entertainment of the spectators; tables were every where covered with refreshments - even almost to profusion; while youth and beauty joined the lively throng, and kept the merry dance alive, until Aurora joined the festive scene. - Of the liberality that diffussed itself throughout the entertainment description must convey a very faint idea; but confident we are, that on the remembrance of every one present on the occasion, the hospitalities of the evening must have made a lasting impression.

Bibliography and resources:


17 February 1810

The Rocks, Sydney, NSW

Illegal dancing with a fiddle and tambourine


State Records NSW, SZ 770; trial of Charles Pickering, l0 February 1810

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 204, 210 note 56

On 7 February 1810 constables entered the premises of Charles Pickering at The Rocks and broke up a dance party, involvlng some 24 people, a fiddle and a tambourine.

21 January 1810

Sydney, NSW

Bligh to be received with same respect as when in the chief command . . . drums to beat a march


"GOVERNMENT AND GENERAL ORDERS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (21 January 1810), 1 

Head Quarters, Sydney, Wednesday, 17th January, 1810.

COMMODORE BLIGH, as late Governor of this Territory, is to be received by all Guards and Sentinels with the same Respect and Compliments as were formerly paid to him when in the Chief Command; namely, presented Arms from all Guards and Sentinels, and Drums to beat a March.

By Command of His Excellency, T. S. CLEAVELAND, Acting Major of Brigade.

Bibliography and resources:


7 April 1810

Sydney, NSW

BEVAN, David (auctioneer)

NEW SOUTH WALES CORPS (one of 3 identified officers the vendor)

An excellent fine toned violin


[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (7 April 1810), 2 

SALES by AUCTION, BY MR. BEVAN, On Monday next the 9th Instant, at the Barracks of Lieutenants Mason, Cranle, and Senior, at Ten o'Clock precisely, A Few Articles comprising two Bedsteads with Curtains, a capital Fowling Piece, and an excellent fine toned Violin, &c. &c. Payment on Delivery will be expected in Paymasters' Bills, Store Receipts, or 'Dollars.

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, (204), 210 note 57

Incorrectly gives newspaper issue date as 2 April

9 April 1810

Sydney, NSW

A farewell ball


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (14 April 1810), 2

On Monday evening last a Farewell Ball and Supper were given by the Captain and Officers of His Majesty's ship Porpoise to the Officers Civil, Military, and Naval, and their Ladies. Among the company were His Honor Lieutenant Governor O'Connell, and many of the Officers of the 73d Regiment, Major Abbot, of the 102d, and most of the Officers of that Regiment also; Captains Pasco and Pritchard, of the Navy, and most of the Officers of His Majesty's ships now in the Cove; Mr. Secretary Campbell, and other Officers of the Civil Department; and among the fair part of the assembly were, Mrs. Paterson, Mrs. Pasco, Mrs. McArthur, Mrs. Lewis, Mrs Minchin, Mrs Mell, Mrs. Birch, Mrs. Bell, and many other Ladies of the principal Officers. At six the company began to asssmble: the ship was elegantly decorated; and the atmosphere resounded with loyal airs from a large Band. The quarter-deck was covered with an awning, and fitted up in a style of neatness and elegance scarcely to be imagined; the spaces between the ports were occupied by sideboards covered with wines, fruits, and every delicacy that was to be procured. At 8 the ball commenced; and was supported with great vivacity till eleven, when an elegant supper, to which not less than one hundred persons sat down, lay claim to its portion of attention. After supper the "merry dance" resumed, and continued till nearly three; when the company left the ship, very much delighted with the hospitality of the Entertainment.

Bibliography and resources:


23 April 1810

Sydney, NSW

Dancing at the Easter fair


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (28 April 1810), 2

Monday last being Easter Monday, a fair commenced on the Cricket Ground, to which a sort of popular acquiescence has given the appellation of St. George's Fields; the recreative pastimes of which were carried on with much decorum and with no less festivity for three days, during which the "merry dance" was kept alive in every booth and other fair costumes [customs] of the mother country closely imitated.

Bibliography and resources:

Jordan 2012, 204

23 April 1810

Sydney, NSW

BLIGH, William (retiring governor)


A farewell ball


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (28 April 1810), 2

On Monday last a farewell Fête was given by his Excellency in honour of Commodore Bligh and his daughter, Mrs. Putland, on which occasion a numerous party of ladies and gentlemen were invited, among whom were most of the Officers Civil, Militarym and Naval. Government House was neatly decorated, and brilliantly lighted; the ball-room hung round with festoons of flowers, encircling the initials of Mrs. Putland and Commodore Bligh in a very neat device. In the evening a Ball was given, which was supported with uncommon vivacity until the "twinkling stars gave notice of approaching day;" a handsome firework was also displayed on the occasion, between the hours of ten and eleven, and no single circumstance was omitted that could convey an idea of the respect entertained by his Excellency, for the distinguished persons in compliment to whom the entertainment had been given.

Bibliography and resources:



Though Bligh duly sailed for England on 12 May, Mary Putland married the new lieutenant-governor, Maurice O'Connell, on 8 May 1810, and so remained in Sydney afterall.

27 April 1810

Sydney, NSW

BENT, Ellis

A small piano forte from Broadwood's . . . a charming grand piano


Papers of Ellis Bent and Jeffery Hart Bent, 1802-1841, NLA, MS 195

Letter, Ellis Bent to his mother, [30 December 1809] 27 April 1810; Ellis Bent correspondence, MS 195, 147-48; National Library of Australia

We have not any Instrument, which is a loss we both feel extremely it would be a source of much amusement to Eliza when I am engaged in business. Mrs. Paterson has a small Pianoforte but she asked for it £40, and the sounding board was broken, and the Instrument was in other respects not a good one. I offered her £26 for it, but it was not accepted, tho' it did not cost her more than £25 and she had used it for ten Years. Pray, my Dear Mother, tell Jeffrey that I should wish my first spare money should be appropriated to the purchase of a small Pianoforte by Broadwood, with Pedals and additional Keys, as good of its kind as can be - To come safe it ought first to be packed in Tin, soldiered down, & then put in a strong Iron bound, wooden Case. Do not be deterred by the Expense of Packing & shipping for the tin will sell here for treble that expence. Broadwood will take up on himself the whole trouble of packing and shipping, for he did so with Mrs. Macquarie who brought out a charming grand Piano, packed in this manner, without sustaining the slightest Injury while one of Mrs. Carter's packed in a different manner was quite spoiled.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (30 November 1816), 2

To be SOLD by AUCTION, by Mr. Bevan, at the residence.of the late JUDGE ADVOCATE, at Thursday the 10th of December, at Eleven precisely, the very valuable HOUSEHOLD FURNITURE, elegant Chariot and Harness comlete Horses, Sadlery, &c &c. Also, a very superior toned fashionable Piano Forte, made by Broadwood, particularly suited for a hot climate. Likewise, a Quantity of Books. Prompt payment in sterling money.

[Advertisement], The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (14 December 1816), 2  

Bibliography and resources:

Fahy 1992, 122, 181 note 12

In 1810 Ellis Bent requested that a small pianoforte be despatched to him from Broadwood's of London "packed in tin, soldered down, and then put in a strong Iron bound wooden Case' as done with "a charming grand Piano" for Mrs. Macquarie.

P. J. Byrne (ed.), Judge Advocate Ellis Bent: letters and diaries 1809-1811 (Annandale: Desert Pea Press/Federation Press, 2012)

Jordan 2012, 206, 210 note 70

Lancaster 2015, I, 178 

Skinner 2016

5 May 1810

Sydney, NSW


The ever favourite air . . .


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (5 May 1810), 2

On Tuesday at 11 in the forenoon embarked on board His Majesty's ship Dromedary, Colonel WILLIAM PATERSON, of the 102d Regiment, formerly Lieutenant-Governer of this Colony, and his LADY. On this occasion the Avenue leading from His HONOR'S late Residence to the Government Stairs was lined by the Grenadier Company of the 73d Regiment, presenting arms, the Regimental Band playing the ever favourite air "GOD SAVE THE KING". His HONOR and LADY were accompanied by Lieutenant-Governor O'Connell, and a numerous company of officers civil and military, who took their leave at the end of the wharf, where a handsome puinace awaited their approach. On taking water, a salute of thirteen guns was fired from the battery, and reiterated cheers were given by the spectators on and about the wharf, which were re-echoed from each vessel as the pinnace passed. When a-breast of the public landing wharf, the like salutes were given by a numerous body of inhabitants who were there assembled; and ten crowded boats followed the colonel's pinnace in succession, cheering all the way, as a public demonstration of respect towards an officer who had for many years been the second in command in the colony, and whose urbanity of manners, joined to a true benevolence of disposition, had endeared him to all classes of the inhabitants.

Bibliography and resources:


3 June 1810 (The king's birthday)

Sydney, NSW


Numerous bits and pieces of music


"HIS MAJESTY'S BIRTH-DAY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (9 June 1810), 2

In the evening the lawn in front of Government House was thrown open and instantly crowded by an immense number of the inhabitants, led thither to behold the decoration of the viranda, which was hung in festoons of the richest foliage, interspersed with a number of lamps, and producing a most pleasing and enchanting effect when beheld at a distance, especially as the branches of oranges in full growth that appeared suspended through the whole, gave it altogether the air of an illuminated orange grove; and the fascination was rendered complete at the time by the numerous bits and pieces of music performed by the Band of the 73rd Regiment, which was stationed in the Hall of Government House.

The Toasts given were:
1. The King - and many happy returns of the day.
2. The Queen.
3. The Prince of Wales.
4. The Duke of York-and the rest of the Royal Family.
5. Lord Mulgrave - and the Navy.
6. Sir David Dundas - and the Army.
7. Success to our Arms by Sea and Land.
8. Governor Phillip - the Founder of the Colony.
9. Prosperity to the Colony of New South Wales and may Harmony and Unaminity ever reign amongst us.
10. Commander Bligh and the squadron that lately left us.
11. The immortal Memory of the Right Honourable William Pitt.
12. The immortal Memory of Lord Nelson.
13. The immortal memory of Sir Ralph Abercromby.
14. Lord Castlereagh.
15. Lord Wellington.
16. The Archbishop of Canterbury.
17. Mr. Wilberforce.
18. May British Commerce even flourish all over the world.
19. May the single be Married - and may the married be happy.

Bibliography and resources:


21 September 1810

Sydney, NSW

A bachelor's ball


Lachlan Macquarie, Memoranda and related papers (22 December 1808-14 July 1823); State Library of New South Wales, ML A772 26-27 ff. [Microfilm Reel CY301] (modern online edition)

Thursdy. 20th. Septr. 1810! The Bachelors (who are Subscribers to the Races at Sydney) gave a Ball & Supper at Mr. Lord's House to the Ladies & Gentlemen of the Settlement, at which I was present with Mrs. M. & Family.

"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (22 September 1810), 2

A Bachelor's Ball was on Thursday Evening given by those Gentlemen, Subscribers to the Sydney Race Course, who have not yet made their devotion at the Hymeneal Altar. This convivial Fete was honoured with the presence of His Excellency the GOVERNOR and LADY, His Hon. the LIEUT. GOVERNOR and LADY, and all the principal Officers and Ladies of the Colony. The apartments were elegantly fitted up, and beautifully decorated with wreaths of flowers, bouquets, and ornamental devices happily adapted to the Occasion. The Company was numerous; and such was the attention of the Gentlemen who took upon themselves the duties of conducting the ceremonies, that the company retired at a late hour under the ample persuasion, that the Bachelor's Ball was one of the most agreeable private entertainments ever given in this Colony.

Bibliography and resources:


15-19 October 1810 (? first performances)

First Sydney Race Week

Wills's Rooms, George Street, Sydney, NSW

20 October 1810 (first published)


Song prepared for the festive occasion

To the tune "To Anachreon in Heaven"

Words; tune indicated

Source and documentation:

"THE SUBSCRIBERS' BALL", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 October 1810), 2

THE SUBSCRIBERS' BALL On Tuesday and Thursday night was honoured with the presence of His Excellency the Governor and Lady; His Honor the Lieut. Governor and Lady; the Judge Advocate and Lady; the Magistrates, and other Officers Civil and Military, and all the Beauty and Fashion of the Colony. Over the door of the Ball-room a Transparency was placed, of the Royal Arms of the United Kingdoms; the full band of the 73d played off "God save the King" in exquisite style, and between the country dances filled the room with other melodious and appropriate airs. The business of the meeting could not fail of diffusing a universal glow of satisfaction - the celebration of the first liberal amusement instituted in the Colony, and in the presence of its Patron and Founder. The Ballroom was occupied till about two o'clock when part of the company retired, and those that chose to remain formed into a supper party. After the cloth was removed the rosy deity asserted his pre-eminence, and with the zealous aid of Momus and Apollo chased pale Cynthia down into the western world. The blazing orb of day announced his near approach; and the God of the Chariot reluctantly forsook his company: Bacchus drooped his head, and Momus could no longer animate. The bon vivants no longer relishing the tired Heathens, broke up, and left them to themselves.

The Dinners at Mr. Wills's, George-street, were attended by many of the Subscribers and their Friends; who did not separate till late each night of Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. After dinner many loyal Toasts were drank, and in the evening mirth and good humour floated round the board; and upon the last evening, Mr. Williams, one of the Stewards, sung the following Song, prepared for the festive occasion: -

Tune - "To Anachreon in Heav'n."

Oft the Bards of old Times, and the minstrel's gay strains
Have the sports of the Chase, all transcendant reveal'd;
Sung of Nimrod's exploits on the wide spreading plains,
And from Dian's bright charms trac'd the charms of the field.
Whilst the turf's native green,
Ever hallow'd has been,
And a contest more glorious enliven'd the scene;
When the high mettled Racer, proud, pampered, and gay,
Bore the meed of his prowess triumphant away.

These sports are confin'd to no climate or shores,
But regions remote shall new Patrons secure them,
Like the orb in the east which all nature adores,
They have dawn'd on our land, and 'tis ours to mature them!
No longer a waste,
As in rude ages past,
Shall our turf be forsaken by Beauty and Taste,
But impart to the high mettled racer so gay,
Fresh ardour to bear the proud trophy away.

The smiles of the Fair, like Spring's fostering breath,
Shall rear the young scion, and teach it to shoot;
Round the temples of Beauty we'll twine the fresh wreath,
And Love's hallow'd altars shall teem with the fruit.
Then leave cynics to rail,
Our voice shall prevail
And the sons of the Turf their fair favorites hail;
Whilst long for their sakes shall the sports of to-day,
The high mettled racer's fleet prowess display!

When these plaudits are lost in the arch of high Heav'n,
A strain more exalted shrill echo shall send:
'Tis the suffrage of Gratitude, cordially giv'n,
To our Patron - our Chief - our Protector, and Friend!
To Him whose calm voice
Makes his people rejoice -
That the Friend to Mankind is their Sovereign's choice!
And long may his mild and beneficent sway,
Enhance - whilst it sanctions the sports of today!

Bibliography and resources:

First Sydney races, Hyde Park, 1810; State Library of New South Wales 

Anachreon in heaven

Music concordance (tune):

The Anacreontic Song, as sung at the Crown & Anchor Tavern in the Strand, the words by Ralph Tomlinson [music by John Stafford Smith] (London: A. Bland, c.1790) (DIGITISED)

The Settlement on the Green Hills, Hawksburgh [i.e. Hawkesbury] River N.S.Wales, 1809 [detail]; State Library of New South Wales (CATALOGUE RECORD) (IMAGE)

20 October 1810 (first published)

Sydney, NSW

ANONYMOUS (songwriter)

Murtoch Delany's description of the races

To the tune "Ballynamony-ora" [Ballinamona ora]

Source and documentation:

"MURTOCH DELANY'S DESCRIPTION OF THE RACES", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (20 October 1810), 3


Tune - "Ballanamony-ora."

Don't you know I from Hawkesbury came to behold
Your Races, that seem'd to delight young and old,
Where each rode a-foot, if not blest with a horse
And cantered away to the place called the Course
Sing Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora,
A tight little horse-race for me.

Och! then what a noise open'd up to my view,
About young Paddywhack, and old Bryanboroo,
But sacrilege surely it was at the least,
That Paddy's dear name should belong to a beast.
Sing Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora,
Ah! no such vile nick names for me.

There were Gentlemen mounted so fine and so gay,
And ladies that look'd like a star at noon-day;
When I see the dear creatures I grieve that I'm poor,
Since Beauty's the planet we all must adore.
Sing Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora,
A smart little damsel for me.

Six jokers on horseback were standing stock still,
Like as many dragoons that were learning to drill,
Till losing their wits, sure, they all at one time
Gallopped off at full speed, without reason or rhyme.
Sing Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora,
Ah! no such diversion for me.

In no time at all sure they twirl'd round about,
And met cheek by jowl at the place they set out
Then faster and faster they went - I protest,
To see which could manage to break his neck best.
Sing Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora,
Their necks they may crack all for me.

But think what the devil myself could possess; -
One said would I lay, and I thought I'd say yes!
Then because I just lost and had nothing to pay,
Why I raced by myself, and so gallopped away;
Sing Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora, Ballynamony-ora,
No kicking nor whipping for me!

Bibliography and resources:

Ballynamona oro
Ballynamona oro

Music concordance (tune):

For a setting of the tune (Ballynamona Oro), see this early London edition (images above):

The Irish volunteers (London: Printed and sold by John Welker, n.d.)

See also this later Sydney edition of the tune, also set to new words:

The muscle of Merton, here he is, a new song inscribed to the electors of Durham by Rigdum Funnidas, esqr. ([? Sydney], [?], n.d. [1843])

Copy at State Library of New South Wales, not digitised) 

Photocopy (of the above) at National Library of Australia (DIGITISED)


Lachlan Macquarie, Memoranda and related papers (22 December 1808-14 July 1823); State Library of New South Wales, ML A772 27-28 ff. [Microfilm CY301] 

Mondy. 15th. Octr. The first Sydney Races commenced and concluded without any inconvenience on Frdy. 19th. Octr.

18 November 1810

Cowpastures, NSW

Dance by the Cow-Pasture tribe

Augustus Earle, View of the farm of J. Hassel [Hassell] Esqr. Cow Pastures, New South Wales [c.1835-28]; State Library of New South Wales (CATALOGUE RECORD) (IMAGE)


Lachlan Macquarie, Journal of a Tour of Governor Macquarie's first Inspection of the Interior of the Colony 6 November 1810-15 January 1811; SL-NSW, ML Ref: A778 pp.1-45; [Microfilm Reel CY302] (modern online edition)

Sunday 18th. . . . This Day's Excursion was highly gratifying, and I saw a great deal of fine rich Country every where I travelled. - Mrs. Mc.Arthur left us after Dinner and returned to her own Farm at Benkennie. In the Evening Koggie, the Native Chief of the Cow-Pasture Tribe, and his wife and half a dozen more Natives, favored us with an Extraordinary sort of Dance after their own manner, and with which we were all very much pleased. - They were treated a Glass of Spirits each, before they began the Dance, with which they were much pleased and which had a wonderful good effect on their spirits in performing their Dance. - The following are the names of the Natives (not including some children) who honored us with their company and attendance during our stay at Bundie: - Vizt. - Koggie and his two wives Nantz and Mary, Bootbarrie & his wife Mary, Young Bundle, Mandagerry, Jindle and Bill: Total 9 grown up Persons, besides 4 or 5 Children of different ages. - During this day's Excursion we were attended by some of the Natives, one of whom amused us very much by climbing up a high Tree to catch a Guanna, [sic] which he did in a very dextrous manner . . .

Bibliography and resources:


30 November 1810

Sydney, NSW


St. Andrew's Day dance


"SYDNEY", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (1 December 1810), 2

Yesterday the Officers of the 73d gave an Anniversary dinner in honour, of St. Andrew. - A Caledonian Meeting was held at a respectable house in George-Street, which was numerously attended; the evening and the morning were blended by the "merry dance;" and the recreations of the evening were accompanied with that social harmony which ever distinguishes the day devoted to this favorite Saint.

Bibliography and resources:


22 December 1810

Sydney, NSW

Surplice fees for ringing church bell


"GOVERNMENT AND GENERAL ORDERS", The Sydney Gazette and New South Wales Advertiser (29 December 1810), 1 

Government House, Sydney, 22nd December, 1810. HIS EXCELLENCY the GOVERNOR having received an Application from the Principal and Assistant Chaplains of the Territory of New South Wales, representing that in consequence of the increased Population of this Country, and the great Accession to it of free and independent Settlers, the various Parochial Duties which they have now to perform are accumulated in a like Proportion; and thence intreating His Excellency's Authority to demand and receive for particular Duties certain Surplice Fees, agreeably to the Usage of the Church of England. HIS EXCELLENCY having paid all due Attention to the said Application, and taking into His Consideration the Rank and Prosperity of the numerous Settlers now in this Country, deems it reasonable, and an Act of Justice towards the Chaplains, to authorise them to receive certain Surplice Fees, from Free Persons only. HIS EXCELLENCY, therefore, authorises and impowers the said Principal and Assistant Chaplains, from and after the 31st Day of the present Month of December, to demand and receive for all Marriages, Christenings, Churching of Women, and Funerals, the several Fees specified in the following Table; namely, £ s d
Marriages by License Clergyman . . . 3 3 0
Clerk . . . 0 10 6
Sexton . . . 0 5 0
Ditto by Banns, Free Persons} Clergyman . . . 0 10 6
Clerk. Banns . . . 0 2 6
[Clerk] Marriage . . . ? ? ?
Sexton . . . 0 1 6
Christenings. For registering. Clerk . . . 0 1 0
Churching, Free Persons only. Clergyman . . . 0 1 0
Clerk . . . 0 0 6
Sexton . . . 0 0 6
Funerals - Ditto ditto. Clergyman . . . 0 3 0
Clerk . . . 0 1 0
Bell . . . 0 0 6
Grave Digger . . . 0 2 6
His Excellency at the same time enjoins the said Principal and Assistant Chaplains, as an Act of reciprocal Benefit to all Classes of the Society, to keep or cause to be kept exact Registers of all Marriages, Christenings, Churching of Women, and Funerals which they may in future perform and make a correct Return thereof once in every Quarter, to the Secretary's Office at Sydney; and said Registers are required to contain the Marriages, Christenings, Churchings and Funerals as well of all Convicts and Prisoners as of Free Persons. HIS EXCELLENCY further authorises the said Chaplains to dismiss or otherwise punish the Grave-diggers within their respective Parishes who shall demand or receive any larger Sum for the Digging of a Grave . . .

Bibliography and resources:


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