Music. A. Bezzenberger and Ch. Bartsch

Music. A. Bezzenberger and Ch. Bartsch

Once they came in view of educated people, the songs of Prussian Lithuanians became a refreshing source for the purification and standardisation of the Lithuanian language. As a result, the number of recorded lyrics is much greater than that of melodies, although the collection and publication of the latter intensified in the 19th century as well.

In the 19th century, quite a number of the melodies of songs of Prussian Lithuanians was collected by Adalbert Bezzenberger (1851-1922), a German linguist, archaeologist, and professor of the University of Königsberg. The vocal folk material (67 texts and 34 melodies) collected by him from 1879 to 1880 was published in the Litauische Forschungen language and mythology work.

The Dainų balsai (Voices of Songs) (1886, 1889) work of Christian Bartsch (1832-1890) is a collection of melodies (454 melodies) of the Lithuanian folk songs recorded up to the second half of the 19th century. Bartsch started collecting folk art in 1856-1858, when working as a teacher at Lindikiai Manor by Širvinta, and subsequently continued this work in Tilsit. Bartsch, who communicated with people of the region for a long time and himself recorded a variety of melodies, was a witness and connoisseur of the live performance of the Lithuania Minor singing tradition, noted for his scientific precision. In the introductory article of the Dainų balsai, he stated his goal: to collect Lithuanian folk songs from printed publications and manuscripts into one selection available to the general public.