Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 3.djvu/272
260 SCHOOLS OF COMPOSITION.
practised it are entitled to our thanks for the cultivation of a mode of treatment the technical value of which is still universally acknowledged. The reputed Founder of the School, and un- questionably its greatest Master, was Gulielmus Dufay, a native of Chimay, in Hennegau, who, after successfully practising his Art in his own country, and probably also at Avignon, carried it eventually to Rome, where, in 1380, he ob- tained an appointment in the Papal Choir, and where he appears to have died, at an advanced age, in 1432, leaving behind him a goodly num- ber of disciples, well worthy of so talented a leader. The most eminent of these were, Egy- diua Bianchoys, Vincenz Faugues, Egyd Flannel (called I/Enfant), Jean Redois, Jean de Curte (called L'Ami), Jakob Ragot, Eloy, Brasart, and others, many of whom sang in the Papal Chapel, and did their best to encourage the practice of their Art in Italy. A valuable collection of the works of these early Masters is preserved among the Archives of the Sistine Chapel, but very few are to be found elsewhere, 1 with the exception of some interesting fragments printed by Kiese- wetter, Ambros, Coussemaker, and some other writers on the History of Music. The following passage from Dufay's 'Missa 1'omme arme" one of the greatest treasures in the Sistine Collection will serve to exemplify the remarks we have made upon the general style of the period.
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ci � �= -1 1 ��II. The system thus originated was still more fully developed in THE SECOND FLEMISH SCHOOL, under the bold leadership of Joannes Okenheim (or Ockeghem), of whom we first hear, as a member of the Cathedral Choir at Antwerp, in the year 1443. Okenheim's style, like that of his fellow-labourers, Antoine Busnoys, 2 Jakob Hobrecht, Philipp Basiron, Jean Cousin, Jacob Barbireau, Erasmus Lapicida, Antoine and Robert de Fevin, Firmin Caron, Joannes Regis, and others, of nearly equal celebrity, was more elaborate, by far, than that of either Dufay himself, or the most ambitious of his colleagues ; i Six of Dufay's Masses are, however, preserved In theKoyal Library at Brussels ; and the ' Gloria' of another, at Cambray. Kochlitz has printed the ' Kyrie ' from his Mass ' Si la face ay pale ' in vol. i. of the ' Sammlung vorziiglichsten Gesangstucke.' a Baini places Busnoys among the Masters of the early School. Kiesewetter regards him, with Hobrecht, and Caron, as belonging to a transitional epoch. Ambros describes him as the leader of a distinct School, interposed between those of Dufay and Okenheim. We do not think that the amount of influence he exercised upon Art justifies this last-named arrangement. ��SCHOOLS OF COMPOSITION. and there is little doubt that the industry of these pioneers of Art assisted, materially, in preparing the way for the splendid creations of a later epoch. The ingenuity displayed by the leader of the School in the construction of Canons and imitations of every conceivable kind, led to the extensive adoption of his method of working by all who were sufficiently advanced to enter into rivalry with him ; and, for many years, no other style was tolerated. He, however, maintained his supremacy to the last ; and if, in his desire to astonish, he sometimes forgot the higher aims of Art, he at least bequeathed to his successors an amount of technical skill which enabled them to overcome with ease many difficulties, which, without such a leader, would have been insurmountable. The greater num- ber of his Compositions still remain in MS., among the Archives of the Pontifical Chapel, in the Brussels Library, and in other collections ; but some curious examples are preserved in Petrucci's ' Odhecaton,' and ' Canti C. No. cento- cinquanta/ and in the ' Dodecachordon ' of Glareanus; while others, in modern notation, will be found in Burney, vol. ii. pp. 474-479, in vol. i. of Rochlitz's ' Sammlung vorziiglichen Ge- sangstiicke,' and in the Appendix now in course of publication, by Otto Kade, in continuation of Ambros's Geschichte der Musik.' III. To Okenheim was granted the rare privilege, not only of bringing his own School to perfection, but also of educating the orginator of another, which was destined to exercise a still stronger influence upon the future of Polyphony. In his famous disciple, Josquin des Pro's, he left behind him a successor, no less learned and ingenious than himself, and infinitely richer in all those great and incommunicable gifts which form the distinguishing characteristics of true genius. All that one man could teach another, he taught the quondam Chorister of S. Quentin ; but a comparison of the works of the two Com- posers will clearly show, that the technical per- fection beyond which the teacher never dreamed of penetrating was altogether insufficient to- satisfy the aspirations of the pupil, in whose Music we first find traces of a desire to please the ear, as well as the understanding. It is the presence of this desire, joined with improved symmetry of form, and increased freedom of development, which distinguishes THE THIRD FLEMISH SCHOOL, of which Josquin was the life and soul, from its ruder predecessors. This was the first School in which any serious attempt was made to use learning as a means of producing harmonious effect ; and it was rich in Masters, who, however great their inferiority to their un- approachable leader, caught not a little of his fire. Pierre de la Rue (Petrus Platensis), Antonius Brumel, Alexander Agricola, Loyset Compere, Johann Ghiselin, Du Jardin (Ital. De Orto), Matthaus Pipelare, Nicolaus Craen, and Johann J apart, though the greatest, were by no means the only great writers of the age ; and the list of less celebrated names is interminable. The- works of these Masters, though not easily- �� �