Beck Center English Dept. University Libraries Emory University
Emory Women Writers Resource Project Collections:
Emory Women Writers Resource Project

The Gentlewoman's Companion: or, A Guide to the Female Sex, an electronic edition

by Hannah Woolley [Woolley, Hannah, fl. 1670]

date: 1675
source publisher: Printed by A. Maxwell for Edward Thomas
collection: Early Modern through the 18th Century

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Rules to be observed by a Gentlewoman in Vocal and Instrumental Musick.

| | 74 Do not discover upon every flight occasion you can sing or play upon any Instrument of Music; but if it be known ot any particular friend in company; whom you have a speciaal respect for, and he or she perswade you to sing, excuse your self as modestly as you may; but if your friends persist, satisfie their desires, and therein you will express no part of ill breeding: your prompt and ready compliance thereunto shall serve you against censure; whereas, a refractory resistance favours of one that makes a livelyhood of the prosession, and must expect to have but small doings, if there be no better recommendation than that distastful kind of morosity.

Use not your self to hemming or hauking, a foolish custom of some endeavoring to clear their throat thereby; nor be not too long in tuning your instrument.

Having commenced your Harmony, do not stop in the middle thereof to beg attention, and consequently applause to this trill, or that cadence, but continue without interruption what you have begun, and make an end so as not to be tedious, but leave the Company an appetite: As you would desire silence from others being thus applied, be you attentive, and not talkative when others are exercising their harmonious voices.

Let the Songs you make choice of be modest, | | 75 yet witty, and ingenious; and because there are so many, which though they may please the ear, yet may corrupt good manners;; let me give you this caution to have a care.

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