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have seen, was the composer of the Ode sung in 1685,' had now risen to such eminence, that the on Thursday night, in York Buildings, being the 7th instant."
Nicola Matteis, who in the last age was generally called only Signior Nicola, came into England about the year 1680, and was the most celebrated violinist of his time, In May, in the preceding year, (London Gazette, No. 3182,) he had published " A Collection of New Songs set by him for the harpsichord, theorbo, or bass-viol, with some new Airs for the violin;" and in April, 1699, he published a second book of Songs for the same instru. ments. In 1698, he appears to have been the manager of the concert in York Buildings. He died, I believe, carly in the reign of Queen Anne.
Of this celebrated composer the Hon. Mr. North thus speaks, in his manuscript Memoirs of Musick (as quoted by Dr. Burney, iii. 513): "The decay of French musick, and favour of the Italian, [about the end of Charles the Second's reign] came on by degrees. Its beginning was accidental, and occasioned by the arrival of Nicola Matteis. He was an excellent musician, performed wonderfully on the violin. His manner was singular ; but he excelled, in one respect, all that had been heard in England be. fore: his arcala, or manner of bowing. his shakes, divi. sions, and indeed his whole style of performance, was surprising, and every stroke of his bow was a mouthful, All that he played was of his own composition ; which manifested him to be a very exquisite harmonist, and of a boundless fancy and invention. And by all that I have been able to observe of his abilities, or to hear concern. ing those of other performers on the violin, none but : Corelli seems to have surpassed him.”
'This appears from the original copy of Tate's Ode, for 1685. Some verscs . of chat Ode, however, slightly al
degree of Doctor in Musick was conferred on him by the University of Cambridge in 1696. On the present occasion he supplied the sacred musick of the day; for in the third volume of Tud. way's Musical Collections in the Museum, we find "An Anthem, with symphonies for violins
tered, arc exhibited as a single song in Purcell's ORPHEUS BRITANNICUS :-" Strike the viol, touch the lute," &c. so that Purcell must either have lent his aid on that oc. casion, or sct the same words to musick at a subscquent period. In like manner we find in the ORPHEUS BRI. TANNICUS" Here the Deities approve," &c. as a single song, though it makes part of the first Ode for St. Cecilia's day, composed by Purcell, and performed in 1683.
It appears to have been a common practice to select certain songs out of the Entertainments which had been performed in honour of St. Cecilia. Thus, in the Spec. TATOR, No. 59. May 8, 1711, we find the following Ad. vertisement :
" At the desire of several persons of quality, for the benefit of Mess. Cuthbert, Lovelace, and White, at Sta. tioners' Hall near Ludgate, to-morrow, being the gth of May, will be performed a Consort of Vocal and Instru. mental Musick, by the best performers. Particularly several select entertainments of the following English Operas; viz. The Indian Queen, King Arthur, the Fairy Queen, and Dioclesian; the Masque in Timon of Athens, the Pastoral in the Libertine, with several Songs out of the St. Cecilia's Musick: a!l composed by that great master, the late Mr. Henry Purcell.”
William Turner was one of the second set of Chapel Children after the Restoration, and was a disciple of Dr. Blow. He died in 1740, at the great age of eighty-eight.
• MSS. Harl. 7337-7343.
and trumpets," composed by this gentleman, " for St. Cecilia's day, :1697."! As Purcell in 1683, and perhaps in 1694 also, furnished not only a preludial Hymn and his celebrated Te Deum and JUBILATE, but the secular musick required in those years, I thought it probable that Dr. Turner, in 1697, was employed in setting the Ode which made the principal entertainment of that year, as well as the sacred song which preceded it. But this was not the fact: for, after a tedious inquiry, I discovered that the musick of ALEXANDER'S Feast was composed by Jeremiah Clarke, one of the
3 “ The King shall rejoice. Psalm ye 21th. ver. 1, 2, 3, 4,5,6,7, 13th. An Anthem, with symphonies, &c. com. posed by Dr. William Turner, one of the Gent. of his Majesty's King Charles the ed's Chapell, and of the Choirs of St. Paul's and Westminster. For the solemnity of St. Cecilia's day, 1697." Tudway's Coll. vol. iii. p. 245– 272.
'In Doctor Brady's Dedication of his Sermon to the Stowards of St. Cecilia's Feast in 1697, he speaks of this anthem as an “ admirable performance, which by a ma. nagement peculiar to them, laboured under no inconveniences of disorder or. confusion.”
* The original composer of this celebrated Ode was discovered by the following advertisement in the London Gazette, No. 3346, Monday, December 6, 1697:
4. The Song composed by Mr. JEREMIAH CLARKE, and sung on St. Cecilia's day, will be performed on Thursday next, at Mr. Hickford's Dancing-school in Panton-street, or in James-street over against the Tennis. court, just by the Blue Posts, there being a door out of
Stewards of the festival of that year ; whose history and unhappy end is thus related by Dr. Burney :
“ Jeremiah Clarke had his education in the Chapel Royal, under Dr. Blow, who seems to have had a paternal affection for him. In 1693 he
each street to the room; and for the benefit of the said Mr. Clarke and Mr. Le Riche, late Stewards of the said Feast. The musick begins at 8."
ALEXANDER's Feast was again announced for pcr. formance, by the same humblc appellation in the following weck (London Gazette, No. 3348, Monday, Dec. 13):
“ The Song which was sung on St. Cecilia's day, will be performed in York-Buildings, on Thursday next, the 16th instant, with an addition of a new Pastoral on the Peace, composed by Mr. Jeremiah Clarke, and for the benefit of Mr. Le Riche only. Thc musick begins at 8." · It seems to have been a common practice to perform the Odc for St.Cecilia's day at the Musick-room in York-Build. ings, after the original performance at Stationers' Hall. Thus in the London Gazette, No. 2939, Thursday, Jan. 11, 1693-4. I find." In York-Buildings, on Mondayo next, will be performed the last St. Cecilia's song; be. ginning at the usual hour.” Again in No. 2945, Feb. 1, 1693-4: “ At the Consort in York-Buildings, on Monday next the 5th instant, will be performed Mr. Finger's St. Cecilia's Song, intermixt with variety of other new mu. sick ; at the ordinary ratcs.” In a former advertisement it is called the last St. Cecilia's Song. So also, in No. 3458, January 2, 1698-9: “ On Wednesday next will be per. formed in York-Buildings, Mr. Daniel Purcell's Musick, inade for last St. Cecilia's Fcast; for the benefit of Mr. Howell and Mr. Shorc; with an addition of new vocal
resigned in his favour the place of Master of the Children and Almoner of St. Paul's, of which cathedral Clarke was soon after likewise appointed Organist. In 1700, Dr. Blow and his pupil were appointed Gentlemen Extraordinary in the King's Chapel; of which in 1704, on the death of Mr. Francis Piggot, thcy were jointly admitted to the place of Organist.
hursday, Jandings on med Mr.
and instrumental musick; beginning at 7 at night."Again, No. 3556, Monday, December 11, 1699: “On Wednesday next, the 13th instant, will be performed at York-Buildings, a Consort of Musick, with the last St. Cecilia's Song; for the benefit of Ma. Pate (a singer] and Mr. (Daniel] Purcell; beginning exactly at 8 ai night."
In some instances a St. Cecilia's Ode made a part of the entertainment of the Concert in York-Buildings, though not of the most recent date. See the London Gazette, No. 2943, Thursday, January 25, 1693-4: " At the Consort-room in York-Buildings, on this present Thursday, at the usual hour, will be performed Mr. Pur. cell's Song for St. Cecilia's day in the year 1692, together with some other compositions of his, both vocal and instrumental; for the entertainment of his Highness, Prince Lcwes of Baden."
Again, in No. 3390, Monday, May 9, 1698:
"On Tuesday next, the 10th instant, will be performed in York-Buildings, an Entertainment of Vocal and Instru. inental Musick, being St. Cecilia's Song composed by Dr. Blow, and several other new songs; for the benefit of Mr. Bowman and Mr. Snow."-Dr. Blow's Song, here mentioned, must have been either that composed in 1684 or 1691, unless he also composed the song in 1695.