Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 3.djvu/478

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466

��SEQUENTIA.

��and called, by mediaeval writers, 'The Golden Sequence.'

3. For the Festival of Corpus Christi, S. Thomas Aquinas wrote the celebrated Sequence, ' Lauda Sion,' which is generally believed to date from about the year 1261.

4. The 'Stabat Mater,' sung on the 'Feasts of the Seven Dolours of Our Lady ' (the Friday in Passion Week, and the Third Sunday in September), is generally referred to the end of the I2th, or beginning of the I3th century. The name of its author has not been certainly ascer- tained : but Daniel, 1 after much patient investi- gation, attributes it to Jacobus de Benedictis.

5. More justly celebrated than any of these, is the ' Dies irse,' written, during the latter half of the 1 2th, or beginning of the I3th century, by Thomas of Celano, and sung in the ' Requiem,' or Mass for the Dead. In the triple Stanzas of this wonderful Poem the rhymed Latin of the Middle Ages attained its highest perfection ; and, though the 'Stabat Mater' is frequently said to be second only to it in beauty, the distance between the two is very great. No Latin hymn has probably been so often translated.

The Plain Chaunt Melodies adapted to these five Sequences, in the Gradual, differ from Hymn Melodies chiefly in their continuity. Each Melody is founded, it is true, upon certain fixed and well-marked phrases ; but these phrases are not mechanically repeated, as in the Hymn, to each successive Stanza of the Poetry. The author- ship of these Melodies is indiscoverable. They were probably composed by the Poet, simultane- ously with the words.

In addition to these venerable Melodies, we possess innumerable settings of all the Sequences now in use, by the great Masters of the Polyphonic School ; and many, by the Classical Composers of the 1 8th and igth centuries. For these see LAUDA SIGN; VENI SANCTE SPIRITUS; VICTIMS PASCHALI; STABAT MATES; and DIES IR.E (App.). [W.S.R.]

SERAFIN, SANTO and GEORGIO (uncle and nephew), two celebrated violin-makers of Venice. The uncle, as his label informs us ('Sanctus Seraphin Utinensis fecit Venetiis'), was originally of Udine, a town in the Venetian territory to- wards the mountains of Carinthia, and probably of Jewish extraction. His violins date from about 1710 to 1740. The nephew, if we may judge from the style of his instruments, worked with the uncle many years, and appears to have succeeded him in the business. The instruments of Sanctus Serafin occupy a middle place be- tween the Italian and the Tyrolese school. As far as external appearance goes, the maker seems to vacillate between the model of Stainer and that of Nicholas Amati. But in the essential particulars of the art, in the selection of wood of the finest and most sonorous quality, in the proper calculation of the proportions, and the solidity and finish of the parts, he worked on the principles of the Cremona makers. Few equalled him as a workman. Those who wish to see how

1 Thesaurus Hymnologicus, Tom. II. (Lipsiw, 1855).

��SERAPHINE.

far mechanical perfection can be carried should examine Serafin's purfling with a magnifying glass. In Serafin's earlier years, the Stainer character predominates in his instruments : in his later years he leaned to the Amati model. His instruments are famous for their perfect finish (reminding forcibly of the style of Stradi- varius), theirremarkably lustrous deep red varnish, and fine mellow tone.

George Serafin followed his uncle's later model with such precision that it is difficult to find any point of difference. Like his uncle, he finished his instruments to a degree of perfection which amounts to a fault, depriving them, as it does, of character and individuality. Like his uncle, he used a large copperplate label (nearly all the Italian makers used letterpress labels) bearing the inscription ' Georgius Seraphin Sancti nepos fecit Venetiis, (1743).' Both makers branded their instruments at the tail-pin. Their works are not common in this country, and specimens in good preservation realise from 20 upwards. [E. J.P.] SERAGLIO, THE. The English title of an adaptation of Mozart's ENTFUHRUNG AUS DEM SERAIL, brought out at Co vent Garden, Nov. 24, 1827. Much of Mozart's music was cut out, and popular English melodies and airs from other operas inserted instead (Moscheles, Life, i. 193). The perpetrators of this outrage at that time a common proceeding were Mr. Dimond, who translated the book, and Kramer, the director of the King's Band at Brighton. The scenery was painted by David Roberts, and the effects were 'rich and amazingly beautiful' (Moscheles). As ' H Seraglio ' and ' Der Serail' tbe opera was an- nounced and played, by the German Company at Drury Lane, June 14, 1854 ; and as 'II Seraglio' it was performed at Her Majesty's Theatre June 30, 1866, and at Covent Garden June 9, 1881. [G.] SERAPHINE. In vol. i. p. 667 a reference is made to the seraphine as a precursor of De- bain's HARMONIUM. It was an English free-reed instrument resembling the German Physhar- monica, which latter was brought to this country by the Schulz family in 1826, and introduced to the London public at a concert at Kirkman's rooms in Frith Street, Soho, by EDOUARD SCHULZ, then a boy of 14. In 1828 a similar instrument, but named Aeol-harmonica, was played by young Schulz in a Philharmonic Concert (Concertante for Aeol-harmonic and 2 guitars, April 28). In 1833, John Green, who had been dementi's traveller, and had a shop in Soho Square, brought out the Seraphine. According to Mr. Peters (for many years with Messrs. Broadwood, and formerly Green's pupil), the reeds for the sera- phine were made by Gunther the piano-maker, and the cases by Bevington the organ-builder, Green putting them together. Green engaged old Samuel Wesley to give weekly performances upon the seraphine at his shop, and managed for some time to dispose of his instruments at 40 guineas each. But the seraphine was harsh and raspy in tone, and never found favour with sen- sitive musicians. The wind apparatus, similar to the organ, was a dead-weighted bellows giving

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