BORJON, Charles Emmanuel (incorrectly Bourgeon), advocate in the Parlement of Paris, author of many law-books, and an eminent amateur, born 1633, died in Paris 1691. He was a remarkable performer on the musette, and author of a 'Traité de la Musette' (Lyons, 1672), which contains a method of instruction, plates, and airs collected by him in various parts of France. Borjon was evidently a man of culture. He excelled in cutting out figures in parchment, some of which were noticed and valued by Louis XIV.
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BOSCHI, Giuseppe, said to have been a native of Viterbo, was the most celebrated basso of the 18th century. Of his early life, his teacher, or of his first appearance, absolutely nothing is known. To Fétis his very name is unknown. Chrysander (Handel, i. 244) believes him to be the singer of the extraordinary part of Polifeme in Handel's early cantata at Naples in 1709, a portion of which was transferred to 'Rinaldo.' It is at any rate certain that on Feb. 24, 1711, he sang for the first time in London the part of Argante in that opera (Handel's first in London) at the Haymarket Theatre. It is strange enough that Argante was afterwards sung in 1717 by Berenstadt, a German alto, and in 1731 by Francesca Bertolli, a contralto. After this there is a blank in Boschi's history until Handel's return to London. In 1720 we find him again supporting with his magnificent voice the 'Radamisto' of Handel, and Buononcini's 'Astartus.' It is very probable, but not certain, that he was the original Polyphemus of 'Acis and Galatea,' performed privately at Cannons, the seat of the Duke of Chandos; there was then no other basso here capable of singing that part, and Boschi was already singing for Handel. In the same year he was in the cast of 'Muzio Scaevola,' the third act of which was Handel's, as also in those of 'Arsace' by Orlandini and Amadei, 'L'Odio e l'Amore' (anonymous), and Buononcini's 'Crispo.' On Dec. 9, 1721, he took part in the first representation of Handel's 'Floridante,' and on Jan. 12, 1723, in that of 'Ottone,' and of 'Flavio' on May 14; besides which he sang in the 'Coriolano' of Ariosti, and 'Farnace' of Buononcini, and in 1724 in Handel's 'Giulio Cesare' and 'Tamerlane,' Ariosti's 'Artaserse' and 'Vespasiano,' and Buononcini's 'Calfurnia.' From this date he sang for Handel in all the operas during 1725, 6, 7, and 8. In 1728 he sang in 'Siroe,' 'Tolomeo,' and a revival of 'Radamisto.' Then came the break-up of the company, and Boschi's name appears no more. Whether he died, or retired to his native country, he was succeeded in 1729 by J. G. Riemschneider. It was unfortunate for Boschi, with his fine voice and execution, that he appeared in Handel's early time, when the operas were written chiefly for women and evirati; when tenors were rarely employed, and the basso only recognised as a disagreeable necessity. Towards the end of this period Handel began to write more freely for basses, and some fine airs fell to the share of Boschi, such, for example, as 'Finche lo strale' in 'Floridante,' 'No, non temere' and 'Del minacciar' in 'Ottone,' 'Ta di pietà' in 'Siroe,'