Daily entries from the 17th century London diary
Per the OED: catch, n [ME. cache; prob. f. catch v. or n.1 The later ketch is analogous to keg for cag, kennel for cannel, etc. It may be the n. catch (in ME. cach(e) in sense 4
alt: see context:[other meanings]catches:also see discussion at:Tuesday 29 January 1660/61 Dirks inputalso see Rex Gordon "..For a great collection of English song lyrics, many of them bawdy, visit this site:http://www.acronet.net/~robokopp/english.html
Catch ... In music, a short song, containing some merry tune.---The Royal English dictionary. D. Fenning, 1763.
Catch. A short, merry, humorous song.---A new complete English dictionary. J. Marchant, 1760
A catch is a part song, where the overlapping voices reveal a 'secret' phrase, often bawdy. Catches were popular in the late 17th and through the 18th century.
This page has an mp3 example of a modern catch you can listen to: "University of Michigan Men's Glee Club"
Another modern example: "Liverpool Street Station song"http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-4v88UZEgeI
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