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Glossary of ringing terms – H

Last updated on: 05-December-2016

Words or phrases underlined are defined within the glossary. Where it assists with clarity, a definition is annotated to indicate a part of speech. (n) = noun, (vb) = verb, (adj) = adjective, (adv) = adverb. Section references refer to sections within The Tower Handbook.  

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(1) Abbreviation for home, a calling position.
(2) = Half. A twin bob calling position in Stedman with calls when the observation bell (normally the highest working bell) is doing the first and lasthalf turns.
Temporary method of shortening a rope used by method ringers in Devon call change towers. It disturbs the lay of the rope less than a figure of eight knot. The rope is turned back to create a short parallel loop and then wound round these two 'uprights of the H' four times with the end fed through the (now smaller) loop at the end and pulled tight, keeping the wound elements in neat alignment. The number of turns can be varied to take up the required length of rope.
H frame
See bell frame
A row used in call changes, 12563478
Half course
Touch consisting of about half a course, made to come round by non-standard means (dependent on the method).
Half hunt (bell)
Alternative name for an observation bell that is unaffected by calls, or one that comes home regularly, eg the 3rd or 5th in many touches of Grandsire Doubles).
Half lead
The change half way between lead head and lead end, ie when the treble is lying at the back or making its highest place (eg 4ths in Little Bob).
Half muffled
Ringing with muffles on one side of the clappers. Normally the backstroke is muffled to give an echo effect, but in some places the handstroke is muffled. Normally done for funerals and Remembrance Day.
Half pull
A single stroke (hand or back), eg 'half pull lead'. See also snap.
Half turn 
A half pull (normally at lead and especially in Stedman. See fig 15.2-7
Clock hammer or chiming hammer
Short for handstroke. See also in hand
Small bells, typically several inches in diameter, rung while held in the hand. It is normal to ring two bells each when ringing changes 'in hand'. The bells are swung alternatively up and down, striking on opposite sides of the bell. These correspond to the two strokes in tower bell ringing. The upward movement is the handstroke.
Hand chime
Alternative name for bell plate
A teaching aid used to help correct bad handling involving excessive sideways movement of the arms. A loop of rope is twisted into figure of eight, and a hand passed through each loop. This makes it impossible to move the hands far apart.
Hand ring exercise
An exercise used to develop vertical movement of the hands. Form a ring around a vertical hanging rope and move the hands up and down, slowly at first, then getting faster, trying not to disturb the rope. Form the ring with thumbs and forefingers of both hands touching at the tips.
The swing of a bell initiated by pulling on the sally, or the resulting blow (that occurs as the bell rises to backstroke).
Handstroke gap
A pause in the rhythm before the lead bell's handstrokeblow. The characteristic of open lead ringing.
Handstroke (position)
(On higher numbers of bells) courses and coursing orders in which the back bells come into rounds order at handstroke.
The skills required to control a bell physically in full circle ringing. eg 'good handling'
(vb) To fit a bell or bells with headstock, bearings, wheel,clapper, slider, etc and align all components for accurate swinging.
(n) (Used by bell hangers) The position of the bell, particularly the distance from axis of rotation to lip.
Strictly a frequency which is a multiple of the fundamental frequency, but often wrongly used as a synonym for upper partial.
Hastings stay
Type of stay with a moving pin (dingle) at its end to engage on alternate sides of a fixed metal slider with stops at the end.
Hat contest
A light hearted striking competition where the competing teams do not come from separate towers but are made up from those present by drawing names out of a hat.
Hats (ringing for)
An ancient form of ringing competition normally sponsored by the landlord of an inn where the prize was a hat. These were very serious affairs often lasting all day with eating as well as ringing.
(1) The first row of a unit, ie lead head or course head. The term 'part head' is not currently used, see part end.
(2) The top beam of a wooden frame.
The main body of timber or metal to which a bell, its wheel, gudgeons and stay are attached.
Hereford octaves
A row on 10 bells with three octave jumps (18, 29, 30) separated by two reverse runs. 1875296430. This is a slight variation of Yeovil octaves.
Heywood, Sir AP
Arthur Percival Heywood was the founder and first president of the Central Council.
(1) (of a bell) Swinging through a larger angle, ie swinging higher.
(2) (of a bell's position in the row) Near(er) the back of the row, eg 'too high'.
Exhortation to ring nearer the back of the row, ie later in the sequence.
Alternative name for firing.
Historic England
The Government's statutory adviser on the historic environment in England, responsible for listing, planning, grants, heritage research and advice Formal title is the Historic Buildings and Monuments Commission for England. Formerly part of English Heritage.
Hold up
Ring more slowly or wait for another bell. Normally applied to an individual blow or blows.
Holt's original
A famous one part peal composition of GrandsireTriples
The calling position when the highest working bell is in its home position.
Natural position
The position of a bell at the start and end of a plain course, eg the natural position of the 5th in Plain Bob is dodging 5-6 up.
Horton's 4
London, Bristol, Glasgow, Belfast – methods used in a popular composition of spliced Surprise Major by Roderick R Horton.
The low sound that persists after the bell has been struck. In modern tuning practice, the hum note is an octave below the fundamental.
Hung dead
(Of a bell) fixed, and struck by a hammer, not hung for swinging.
Move one place at a time up or down. See also plain hunt.
Hunt (In the)
A bell that has become a hunt bell, for example doing the work of the second in Grandsire.
Hunt bell
A bell that is in the same position at every lead head. Said to be'in the hunt.
A type of method with one or more hunt bells where all the working bells do the same work.
Changing one place per blow in the same direction for (at least) several places.
A class of method in which the hunt bell's path is not symmetrical about the half lead
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