Method Names

Bob and Place

Greg asked which Plain methods have "Bob" in the name and which have "Place". The definition has changed over the years; back in 1906, a Bob method was indeed one that had seconds made over the treble at the lead end, like Plain Bob, for instance. There was no "Place" then, but there were Court, College and Imperial methods. These were discontinued in 1982, but Sawston Imperial Bob Major (among others) still keeps the Imperial descriptor. It refers to a pair of adjacent places within the change, as you can see in the grid below.

Later on, a new definition was brought in for Doubles methods. This time, the "Place" title was defined, and everything else was a "Bob" method. A Place method was anything that only contained hunting and places within its plain course. This way of defining methods was extended to all stages and is the definition in the new Framework for Method Ringing.

If you've got a bit of squared paper, see if you can make up a "Bob" method that doesn't have any dodging in it... And if you haven't got any squared paper, get some!

Treble Dodging and Treble Place

In a Treble Dodging method, the treble doesn't plain hunt, but, as the name suggests, dodges. The most common path it takes is dodge in 1-2, then 3-4, then 5-6 and so on, up to the back, then dodge down in the same places as it comes back to lead. So this is usually done on an even number of bells. This section which the treble repeats is called a Lead. In Plain Hunt, the treble rings in each place twice in a lead, but here the treble rings four times in each place.

Minimus Minor Major

For Doubles methods, though, you get Treble Place methods. These don't preclude dodging, but enable you to do something to cater for the extra place in which you can't dodge. There are various different paths that enable the treble to ring four times in each place in a lead, for instance:

However, you can have Little Treble Dodging Doubles methods, where the treble dodges, but doesn't reach the back.

Double Methods

Sometimes these have Double in the name, like Double Grandsire Doubles, Double Oxford Bob Minor and Double Norwich Court Bob Major. But sometimes they don't, such as Bristol Surprise Major and Superlative Surprise Major.

The definition is one of symmetry. Most methods have what is called Palindromic Symmetry. That is, if you write out the blue line of the method, half of the method is the same as the other half, but upside down. It has two lines of symmetry. Methods are usually written out from the point of symmetry. For instance:

Double methods have the same work below the treble and above the treble. Let's start with Grandsire Doubles, where all the bells plain hunt below the treble. The work below the treble is inside the purple line, showing the bells that are nearer to the front than the treble. The work above the treble is inside the green line, for the bells that are nearer the back than the treble.

To turn this method into Double Grandsire, we are going to have the same work above and below the treble. So we shall take our work above the treble, the green area, and copy it into the purple area. To make it fit, we have to flip it over, so that what was lying behind is now leading.

Now we can slot it in below the treble, replacing the plain hunting section and that gives us Double Grandsire:

Looking at the blue line we end up with, we can see all the work we had in the Grandsire (4-5 down, 4-5 up and 3rds from the front). But as well as that, we now have everything in reverse; rather than dodging at the back, we now have dodges at the front (1-2 up and 1-2 down). And 3rds is now made from the back as well as from the front.

I always used to think that all Double methods also had Rotational Symmetry, meaning that you only have to learn a quarter of the method, then flip that bit over in your mind, left-to-right and/or top-to-bottom, to get the rest of the blue line. That's true for methods with Palindromic Symmetry, including all of those mentioned above. This is Double St Helens Bob Minor, where you can see each quarter is the same shape, but switched around:

But have a look at Double Cambridge Cyclic Bob Minor, which is Double; you can see the same work at back and front, both in the grid and in the resulting blue line. But you have to learn half the method as it doesn't have Palindromic symmetry.

Another time...

Stedman and Grandsire can be rung at even stages.

Little Bob at odd stages becomes Baldrick Little Bob, a differential method.

And what about "pas-alla-tessera" and "pas-alla-tria"?

Slow Course methods.

Which method doesn't have a name?