Jonas Basanavičius Folklore Library, Vol. 9
Folksongs from Ožkabaliai, book 1. Collected by Jonas Basanavičius.
Vilnius: Institute of Lithuanian Literature and Folklore, 1998
Folksongs from Ožkabaliai were first published in the United States in 1902 as nos. 1 and 3 of the magazine Dirva, and shortly afterwards, as separate books. The publisher divided a consistent amount of songs sent over by Basanavičius into two separate parts, publishing the first 214 songs in no.1 of Dirva. The book starts with an article by Basanavičius “Regarding Songs from Ožkabaliai“, in which he primarily stresses the importance of folksongs in elucidating our past. Basanavičius amply uses the folksong materials in order to ground his “Thracian-Phrygian theory” and attempting to link individual folksongs published in the book with this theory (such connections seem rather unconvincing today). He pays special attention to the songs containing reflections of historical events. Also, he supplies facts related to the history of collecting the songs published here, and explaining the reasons of publishing the songs in an alphabetical order (according to the beginning of each song).
Following the texts of the songs, a number of their melodies recorded by Jurgis Narjauskas in 1904, i.e. when the collection had been published already, are presented. Only part of these folklore items could boast having their words and melodies recorded from the same person, so there seemed to be no reason of artificially joining them to form integral pieces. Still, the melodies were consulted in some cases to adjust the strophic of the songs.
In the commentaries, the folksong genre, thematic, the regional dissemination is discussed. The published text is attributed to the typological version or variant group, data on the folklorists that had published this version earlier is supplied. In some cases, certain information from the song’s historiography is included.
The ninth volume of Jonas Basanavičius Folklore Library was edited by Kostas Aleksynas and Leonardas Sauka. Melodies were edited by Eligija Garšvienė. Aspects of textual editing were discussed and vocabulary compiled by Kostas Aleksynas, the author of the commentaries is Leonardas Sauka.