English Plainchant Revival
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Publisher: Oxford University Press
Number of Pages: 432
Width: 16.2 cm
Height: 24.2 cm
This study provides a general introduction to the sources of the plainchant revival in eighteenth- and nineteenth-century England. Part I examines the eighteenth-century Catholic revival, in particular the work of John Frances Wade, a Roman Catholic plainchant scribe and publisher. His work centred on the Roman Catholic foreign embassy chapels in London during the waning years of the recusancy period, and his collaboration with contemporary publishers and musicians is evidenced in numerous contemporary letters, music manuscripts, and printed works. In Part II the starting point for the Roman Catholic revival is Novello's A Collection of Sacred Music and for the Anglican revival, Reinagle's A Collection of Psalm & Hymn Tunes. Pro-Gregorian enthusiasts monitored the progress of the revival well into the nineteenth century, but it was not until the late 1830s that plainchant became a cause celebre in Anglican and Catholic worship alike. A multiplicity of plainchant publications followed well into the 1870s, with Thomas Helmores ranking first among them. By this time plainchant had become an integral, albeit controversial, part of musical worship in both churches. Bennett Zon brings together a host of previously undiscovered or unknown eighteenth- and nineteenth-century sources, drawing mainly upon printed and manuscript works. Contemporary periodical and occasional literature provide further insight into their musical and social contexts. This is as much a source book for ecclesiastical history of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries as it is a chronicling of the plainchant revival, and it will be of interest to ecclesiastical historians, plainchant enthusiasts, church musicians, and bibliographers.
Comprehensive ... a vital reference manual for scholars wishing to pursue further research in this field. Victorian Studies This book fills a significant lacuna in current scholarship and fills it well ... This is plainchant history of a particular type, not often encountered in the scholarly literature, and well worth the attention of both music and church historians. Music and Letters With ... this publication, Bennett Zon has accomplished what might be called a biographical coup. Music historians of eighteenth-century England have known of the ambassadorial chapels in London and presumed that mass was read, but little did most suspect how vigorous a world of plainchant occurred there. Not only was the mass sung, but books were published ... to instruct people how to do so. And, Zon shows these practices led directly to the public, Anglican as well as Catholic, revival of plainchant in the nineteenth century. Michael A. Testa, Anglican & Episcopal Hist. Fascinating study ... Bennett Zon ... combines rigorous scholarship with stimulating musical, liturgical and theological insights. Church Times