Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 1.djvu/357

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CHIABRAN.
345
CHIMENTI.

lished in 1756 and the following years are flimsy in construction and devoid of ideas, and appear to be intended merely to give the player an opportunity of displaying his proficiency in the execution of double stops, staccato passages, harmonics, and other technical difficulties. He occasionally indulges in realistic traits of descriptive music.

If we consider that Chiabran, through Somis, was indirectly a pupil of Corelli, his deterioration from the noble style of that great master is really astonishing, though not without parallel in the present day, when the traditions of the great Paris school of Rode, Kreutzer, and Viotti appear almost equally forgotten in France.

[ P. D. ]

CHICKERING. Messrs. Chickering and Sons, pianoforte-makers of Boston and New York, U.S. They claim to be the earliest existing American house, and the first to have obtained any prominence. According to information supplied by Messrs. Chickering, the first pianoforte made in America was upon an English model, probably one of Broadwood's. It was made by Benjamin Crehorne, of Milton, U.S., before the year 1803. From that year the construction of American pianofortes was persistently carried on, but without any material development until a Scotchman named James Stewart, afterwards known in London through his connection with Messrs. Collard and Collard, gave an impetus to the American home-manufacture. Stewart induced Jonas Chickering to join him, but two years after, Stewart returned to Europe, when Chickering was left upon his own account. The year given as that of the actual establishment of the Chickering firm is 1823. Two years subsequent to this, Alpheus Babcock, who had served his time with Crehorne, contrived an iron frame for a square pianoforte, with the intention to compensate for changes of temperature affecting the strings, for which he took out a patent. Whether this was suggested by an improvement with the same object patented in London in 1820 by James Thorn and William Allen, or was an independent idea is not known, but Babcock's plan met with no immediate success. However, this attempt at compensation laid the foundation of the modern equipoise to the tension in America as Allen's did in England. Jonas Chickering produced a square pianoforte with an iron frame complete, except the wrest-pin block, in 1837. From 1840 this principle was fostered by Messrs. Chickering, and applied to grand pianofortes as well as square, and has since been adopted, by other makers in America and Europe. For further particulars of the American construction, see Pianoforte and Steinway.

[ A. J. H. ]

CHILCOT, Thomas, was organist of the Abbey Church, Bath, from 1733 until late in the last century, and the first master of Thomas Linley, the composer. He produced 'Twelve English Songs, the words by Shakspeare and other celebrated poets;' two sets of harpsichord concertos, and other works. [App. p.586 adds that "he died in Bath, Nov. 1766."]

[ W. H. H. ]

CHILD, WILLIAM, Mus. Doc., was born at Bristol in 1606, and received his musical education as a chorister of the cathedral there under Elway Bevin, the organist. In 1631 he took the degree of Bachelor of Music at Oxford, and in 1632 [App. p.586 "1630"] was appointed one of the organists [App. p.586 adds that "he was appointed conjointly with Nathaniel Giles"] of St. George's Chapel, Windsor, in the room of Dr. John Mimdy, and shortly afterwards one of the organists of the Chapel Royal. [App. p.586 adds that "in 1643, when the whole establishment was expelled, Child is said to have retired to a small farm and to have devoted himself to composition, the anthem 'O Lord, grant the King a long life' dating from this time. At the Restoration he was present at Charles II's coronation, Apr. 23, 1661. On July 4 in the same year he was appointed Composer to the King, in place of the Ferraboscos deceased."] About 1660 he was appointed chanter of the Chapel Royal and one of the king's private musicians. On July 8, 1663, he proceeded Doctor of Music at Oxford, his exercise being an anthem which was performed in St. Mary's church on the 13th of the same month. He died at Windsor, March 23, 1697, in the 91st year of his age, and was interred in St. George's Chapel, where a tablet to his memory is placed. Dr. Child published in 1639, in separate parts, engraven on small oblong copper plates, a work entitled 'The first set of Psalms of iii voyces, fitt for private chapels, or other private meetings with a continual basse, either for the Organ or Theorbo, newly composed after the Italian way,' and consisting of twenty short anthems for two trebles and a bass, the words selected from the Psalms. This work was reprinted, with the same title, in 1650, and was again reproduced, from the same plates, in 1656, but with the title changed to 'Choise Musick to the Psalmes of David for Three Voices, with a Continuall Base either for the Organ or Theorbo.' His other published works consist of 'Divine Anthems and vocal compositions to several pieces of Poetry'; Catches in Hilton's 'Catch that Catch can,' 1652, and Playford's 'Musical Companion,' 1672; and some compositions in 'Court Ayres.' Several of his Church Services and Anthems are printed in the collections of Boyce and Arnold, in Smith's 'Musica Antiqua,' and elsewhere, and many more are extant in manuscript in the choir books of various cathedrals I and the collection made by Dr. Tudway for Lord Oxford. His Service in D is a fine specimen of writing in the imitative style, with much pleasing melody, a feature which distinguishes Child's music generally. Dr. Child did a munificent act which ought not to be left unnoticed. His salary at Windsor having fallen greatly into arrear, he told the Dean and Chapter that if they would pay him the amount due to him he would repave the body of the choir of the chapel. The bait took, the arrears were discharged, and the Doctor fulfilled his promise. [App. p.586 amends this story "as follows (from a document in the chapter records):—'Dr. Child having been organist for some years to the king's chapel in K. Ch. 2nds time had great arrears of his salary due to him, to the value of about £500, which he and some of our canons discoursing of, Dr. C. slited (sic), and said he would be glad if anybody would give him £5 and some bottles of wine for; which the canons accepted of, and accordingly had articles made with hand and seal. After this King James 2 coming to the crown, paid off his Brs. arrears; wch. much affecting Dr. Child, and he repining at, the canons generously released his bargain, on condition of his paving the body of the choir wth. marble, wch. was accordingly done, as is comemorated on his gravestone.' (Dict, of Nat. Biog.)"] His generosity likewise manifested itself on other occasions. He gave £20 towards building the Town Hall at Windsor, and bequeathed £50 to the corporation to be applied in charitable purposes. A portrait of Dr. Child, painted in 1663, shortly after taking his doctor's degree, was presented by him to the Music School at Oxford.

[ W. H. H. ]

CHIMENTI, Margarita, detta la Deoghierina, a distinguished singer, the origin of whose sobriquet is unknown. She was engaged in London in 1737, singing the part of secondo uomo in Handel's 'Faramondo.' She had arrived at