than was the case at any previous period of our history. It is rapidly becoming an essential branch of education; the newest works of continental musicians are eagerly welcomed here very soon after their appearance abroad, and a strong desire is felt, by a large, important, and increasing section of the public, to know something of the structure and peculiarities of the music which they hear and play, of the nature and history of the instruments on which it is performed, of the biographies and characteristics of its composers—in a word, of all such particulars as may throw light on the rise, progress, and present condition of an art which is at once so prominent and so eminently progressive.'

That the Dictionary of Music and Musicians,' the first volume of which is before us, fulfils these demands in a comprehensive and at the same time attractive manner, it would be unjust to deny. A dictionary is not a book for specialists; and those, for instance, who wish to study the orchestra and its several components would have to refer to Berlioz, Gevaert, or Lobe. In the meantime we have no doubt that the article on the subject in this Dictionary, when it appears, will not only direct the reader to these sources, but will also give a clear and useful résumé of their contents. This we may safely predict from the technical articles on orchestral and other instruments which have already appeared, and which form some of the most valuable features of the volume. It is the same with the historical and biographical departments of the science. Mr. Grove's Dictionary does not profess to supersede Hawkins or Burney, or Brendel, or Thayer's Beethoven, or Spitta's Bach. But, besides being informed of these works, we find here their main results collected and put ready to hand for practical purposes. It is indeed by the criterion of practical usefulness, rather than of scientific method and exhaustiveness, that a work of this class ought to be judged. For the same reason we must express full approval of the chronological limits-from 1450 to the present day-adopted for this Dictionary. Music, of course, did not take its rise in the fifteenth century. It is as old as, if not older than, poetry itself; and the earliest representatives of civilization, the Chinese, the Hindoos, and the Egyptians, possessed elaborate tone-systems, which still survive in part, and which surpass our own as regards the precise measurement and classification of intervals. The important part played by music in the worship of Jehovah, and the development of the Jewish choral service, is sufficiently proved by the Old Testament; and there is an abundance of treatises, both ancient and modern, on Greek scales or modes. But all this is of comparatively little importance to the musician and the student of


modern music.


It is true that some of the Greek scales— · the Dorian, the Phrygian, the Lydian, and the Mixo-Lydian -are said to be identical with the four authentic modes attributed to St. Ambrose, and to be still surviving in the Gregorian chant; and on rare occasions modern musicians have made use of them. Beethoven, for instance, heads a movement in his great quartet in A minor, canzona di ringraziamento in modo lidico offerta alla divinità da un guarito,' and Liszt and Rubinstein have borrowed the augmented intervals of the old Eastern scales, which have survived in the music of the Gipsies and of some Slavonic nations. The Gipsy heroine of Bizet's 'Carmen,' also, is well characterized by a theme containing the superfluous But these few survivals, introduced with the distinct purpose of gaining local colour, do not constitute a real organic connection between the ancient and the modern systems.

The origin of music in its modern significance is hidden in darkness, but there is no doubt as to the principle from which it derived its distinctive feature. Greek music seems to have depended entirely on intervals and rhythm, in fact on melody or cantus. In modern music the simultaneous and harmonious progress, the concentus of two or more themes, becomes allimportant. In addition to melody we have henceforth to deal with counterpoint and harmony generally. Accordingly we find that the great masters of the Low Country school in the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries were in the first instance contrapuntists. Josquin des Prés, Ockenheim's pupil, Loyset Compère, Alexander Agricola, and Jean Mouton, carried the new-found art to the chief centres of Europe, and Goudimel became the master of the divine Palestrina, the real father and founder of modern music. The history of music from the days of Palestrina to those of Beethoven may be studied almost in its entirety in Mr. Grove's first volume. There is, indeed, a strange coincidence between the chronological and the alphabetical arrangement of musical knowledge. In this volume, which extends from 'A' to Impromptu,' almost all the great names of the earlier musicians are represented. Palestrina, it is true, is absent, but we have the names of his master Goudimel, and of the chief representatives of the Belgian school. Bach, the first and one of the greatest masters of modern German music, occupies an early place, followed by Beethoven, who in a manner marks the outgrowth and development of the movement begun by the earlier master. Handel and Haydn occur in close juxtaposition; Gluck represents dramatic music; only Mozart is absent. On the other hand the representative names of modern music proper-Schubert, Schumann, Mendelssohn,

Liszt, and Wagner- are found in the second half of the alphabet, and therefore do not concern us here.

Before entering upon a more detailed analysis of one or two biographies in this volume, we may offer a few remarks as to the lives of musicians in general. It cannot be said that these present as a rule many striking or interesting features, as striking and interesting, for example, as those of statesmen, or even of poets. Musicians, especially in the eighteenth century, were, it must be owned, not a very intellectual class of people. Their culture was generally limited to the technicalities of their art. From the great currents of thought and progress they stood aloof. Mozart had received an education rather below than above the average middle-class of his day, and Haydn can hardly be called an intellectual man in extra-musical matters. Even Beethoven, although a great thinker, laboured under the want of early training. Gluck alone had systematically thought on the principles of music in connection with the drama, and was able to discourse of them in suitable language. Rameau also was a theoretical writer, but his thoughts are not lucid, and his language is anything but polished. Modern musicians differ greatly from their brethren of the eighteenth century as regards literary ability; but their lives, too, with a few exceptions, are cast in certain grooves, allowing but of little variety. There are of course exceptions to this, as to all rules. Handel, for instance, was a man of the world, and his life was anything but quiet or monotonous. In his early Bohemian days he fought a duel with Mattheson, his colleague at the Hamburg opera-house, and it was only a brass button, turning aside the point of Mattheson's sword, that preserved to the world the future composer of the Messiah' and 'Israel in Egypt.' Handel's stay in England was full of incidents and vicissitudes, ranging from the friendship and admiration of the highest in the land, at the one extreme, to tedious squabbles with his Italian rivals, and the Bankruptcy Court, at the other. Handel was decidedly a man of character, and his independence in the intercourse he held with his noble and wealthy protectors became proverbial. Even the presence of royalty was unable to check his irascible temper. The talk of the ladies at court during the performance of his music especially inflamed his ire to a state of white heat. His rage,' we are told, was uncontrollable, and sometimes carried him to the length of swearing and calling names . . . whereupon the gentle Princess would say to the offenders "Hush, hush! Handel is angry." The scene described by Beethoven in the celebrated letter to Bettina, when he walked with head covered

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through the midst of the imperial party at Töplitz, while his companion Goethe was standing on the side-walk bowing low, may be cited as a pendant to Handel's more reasonable and more dignified assertion of the artist's rights. But, apart from these and other exceptional cases, the career of the musician of the last century was neither very dignified nor very interesting; the favour of a noble protector or of the public being the cynosure of the artist's thoughts. Under such circumstances a biography is necessarily reduced to the chronological enumeration of successful operas and symphonies, or, it may be, of concert tours.


It is, perhaps, for a similar reason that the works of great musicians play a comparatively insignificant part in the political or intellectual history of mankind. The representative works of literature-the 'Divina Commedia,' Paradise Lost,' Goethe's 'Faust'—are inseparably connected with certain important phases of philosophy or of religious thought; but the same can hardly be said of Beethoven's Symphonies, or even of Handel's Oratorios; although in the former (especially in the Ninth, or Choral Symphony) the wider scope and greater depth of modern feeling is, no doubt, discernible. Neither are the great works of music connected with the events of history, in the sense for instance, in which Rousseau's 'Contrat Social' is an essential component of the French Revolution. It has always been amongst the official duties of Music to celebrate victories and other important events, and without her aid no state ceremony would be complete; but occasions of this kind are not generally conducive to high inspiration; and amongst the innumerable occasional pieces thus originated there are few, if any, destined to live. Even Beethoven's symphony entitled 'Wellington's Victory, or the battle of Vittoria,' is an ordinary, and not very refined, specimen of programme-music,' and just oblivion covers it. It is of greater significance that the symphony now known as the Eroica' originally bore the title Napoleon Bonaparte.' It was completed in the early part of 1804, and the composer, no doubt, intended to dedicate it to the First Consul of the French Republic. On the 18th of May of that year Napoleon assumed the title of Emperor, and no sooner had the news reached Vienna than Beethoven, in a fury of disappointment, tore off the title-page of his symphony and dashed it on the ground. A great work of musical art is thus distinctly traced to an historic, one may almost say a political, source. Of a converse relation between history and music there are also one or two instances. It is well known that the riots in Brussels began after a performance of Auber's 'La Muette de Portici,'


better known in this country by the name of 'Masaniello' (August 25th, 1830), which thus in a manner drove the Dutch out of the country. Considering the nature of Auber's piece, there is, indeed, little cause for surprise at its exciting effect in a revolutionary atmosphere.

'In it, a writer in the Dictionary remarks, the most violent passions of excited popular fury have their fullest sway; in it the heroic feelings of self-surrendering love and devotion are expressed in a manner both grand and original; in it even the traditional forms of the opera seem to expand with the impetuous feeling embodied in them. Auber's style in 'Masaniello' is indeed as different as can be imagined from his usual elegant but somewhat frigid mode of utterance, founded on Boieldieu with a strong admixture of Rossini. Wagner, who undoubtedly is a good judge in the matter, and certainly free from undue partiality in the French master's favour, acknowledges in this opera "the bold effect in the instrumentation, particularly in the treatment of the strings, the drastic grouping of the choral masses which here for the first time take an important part in the action, no less than original harmonies and happy strokes of dramatic characterization." Various conjectures have been propounded to account for this singular and never-again-attained flight of inspiration. It has been said, for instance, that the most stirring melodies of the opera are of popular Neapolitan origin, but this has been contradicted emphatically by the composer himself. The solution of the enigma seems to us to lie in the thoroughly revolutionized feeling of the time (1828), which two years afterwards overthrew the established governments of France and other countries.'

It was in a very different manner that another operatic workGrétry's Richard Coeur de Lion'-became an incentive of popular passion. In that opera there is a celebrated ballad, beginning 'O Richard, ô mon roi, si l'univers t'abandonne,' expressive of Blondel's feeling of loyalty for his captive king. This song was sung at the unfortunate banquet given by the body-guard to the officers of the Versailles garrison on October 3rd, 1789. 'Ça ira,' and a little later the 'Marseillaise,' were the answers to 'O Richard, ô mon roi.' This leads us to say a few words upon the historical and popular songs, to which a good deal of attention is paid in the Dictionary. It is a fact worthy of notice, that the songs which have moved the people most have also proceeded from the people, or at least have been in very few instances the work of celebrated composers. Thus the tune of the 'Marseillaise' was adapted to his words, if not actually invented, by Rouget de l'Isle, while the 'Ça ira' was composed by a certain Bécour, a side-drum player at the opera, the words having been suggested to a street-singer named Ladré by General Lafayette, who remembered Franklin's saying at each forward


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