Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/655

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FRANC.
639
FRANCK.

psalms to melodies by Gindron, a canon of the cathedral, which differed from those in use at Geneva. As early as 1552 Franc appears to have been engaged on a new Psalter, for in that year he obtained a licence to print one at Geneva, there being then no press at Lausanne. No copy of this book, if it was ever published, is known to exist, but the terms of the licence[1] show that it consisted of the psalms of Marot with their original melodies, and the 34 psalms translated by Beza the year before, to which Franc, probably in rivalry with Bourgeois, had adapted melodies of his own. At any rate, in 1565, three years after the completion of the Genevan Psalter, that of Lausanne appeared, under the following title:—'Les Pseaumes mis en rime françoise par Clement Marot et Theodore de Bèze, auec le chant de l'eglise de Lausane [sic] 1565. Auec privilege, tant du Roy, que de Messieurs de Geneue.'

In the preface Franc disclaims any idea of competition with those 'who had executed their work with great fidelity,' or even of correcting 'what had been so well done by them.' He gives no intimation that he had himself taken any part in that work, and states, with respect to his own book, that in addition to a selection of the best tunes then in use in the church of Lausanne as well as in other Reformed Churches, he had supplied new ones to such of the psalms, then recently translated, as had not yet been set to music, and were consequently sung to the melodies of psalms in the older editions of the Psalter. He adds that his object was that each psalm should have its proper tune and confusion be thereby avoided.

Stress has been laid by some writers who attributed the Genevan melodies to Franc, on a letter written to Bayle by David Constant, professor of theology at Lausanne at the end of the 17th century, in which he states that he had seen a certificate bearing date Nov. 2, 1552, and given by Beza to Franc, in which Beza testifies that it was Franc who had first set the psalms to music. Constant adds that he himself possessed a copy of the psalms in which the name of Franc appeared and which was printed at Geneva under the licence of the magistrates of that city. Baulacre, however, writing in 1745 in the Journal Helvétique, after investigating the accuracy of Constant's statement, shows that the account he sent to Bayle of Beza's letter was erroneous, as that letter contained no reference to the authorship of the melodies. Even had it done so, we have seen above that in that very year Franc had obtained a licence to print a collection of psalms for Lausanne, and the psalter to which Constant refers is that of 1565, also compiled for local use.

In this latter collection 27 melodies are composed or adapted by Franc to the psalms left without them in the Geneva Psalter of 1562, (51[2], 53, 62, 63, 64, 65, 66, 67, 68, 70, 71, 76, 77, 78, 82, 95, 98, 100, 108, 109, 111, 116, 127[2], 139, 140, 142, and 144), nineteen are selected from the tunes previously in use at Lausanne, and the rest are taken from the Genevan Psalter.

Before long, however, Lausanne followed the example of the other Reformed Churches, and the Psalter of Franc was superseded by that of Bourgeois.

Franc's tunes are of small merit, Some specimens of them are given by Douen in his 'Clement Marot et le Psautier Huguenot,' 2 vols. Paris 1878–79, from which the materials for this article are chiefly derived. See also Bovet, 'Histoire du Psautier des églises reformées,' Neuchatel et Paris, 1872; G. Becker, 'La Musique en Suisse,' Genève et Paris, 1874; Riggenbach, 'Der Kirchengesang in Basel'; and six articles by the present writer in the Musical Times, June–November, 1881.

[ G. A. C. ]

FEANCHOMME. For Christian names read Auguste-Joseph, and add that he died in Paris Jan. 22, 1884.

FRANCK, César Auguste Jean Guillaume Hubert, pianist, organist, and composer, became a naturalized Frenchman in 1873, having been born at Liège, Dec. 10, 1822. He began his musical studies at the Conservatoire at his native place, and at the age of fifteen was admitted to the Conservatoire at Paris, where in 1838 he gained a first prize for piano under Zimmermann, in 1839 and 1840 a second and first prize for counterpoint and fugue under Leborne, and in 1841 a second prize for organ, under Benoist. He did not compete for the Prix de Rome, owing to his father's wish that he should devote himself to the organ and piano. Having completed his musical education, Franck settled in Paris, devoting himself entirely to teaching and composition; in 1846 he produced at the Conservatoire his oratorio 'Ruth,' which passed unnoticed at the time, but which, twenty-five years later, served to bring his name before the public. The career of this modest and enthusiastic artist has been one of assiduous work and of attention to his profession of organist, first at St. Jean St. François and afterwards at Ste. Clotilde, where he was appointed maître de chapelle in 1858 and organist in 1860, and where he has since remained. In 1872 his nomination as professor of the organ at the Conservatoire in place of his master Benoist, who had retired after fifty years' service, gave him naturally more importance and enabled him to exercise considerable influence over music in France. He became the centre of a group of young composers who

  1. This important document, which has only lately been discovered In the registers of the Council of Geneva, deserves to be quoted in full:— Jeudi 28 iuillet l552. ... Sur ce qui le dit maistre Jacques, ministre de Lausanne, a proposé que à Lausanne ilz ne se sont peult estre d'accord de chanter les pseaulmes changés icy par maistre Loys Bourgois, ny ceulx qu'il a myst en chans du sleur de Beze, ilz sont en propos de faire imprimer les pseaulmes translatez par Marot en leur premier chant, et aussy ceulz qu'a translaté le sieur de Beze en vng chant que y a mis le chantre de Lausanne pour les chanter, ce qu'ilz n'hont ausé faire sans licence. Pourquoy il a requis permettre les imprimer icy. Arreté que, attendu que c'est chose raissonable, il leur soit permys.
  2. 2.0 2.1 Both these psalms had proper tunes in the Genevan Psalter, to which Beza's versions of 69 and 117 were respectively sung. Franc retained the Genevan melodies for the later psalms, and adapted distinct tunes to the older ones. Of these tunes, that which Franc set to 51 was its original melody, to which Bourgeois adapted it in 1542, but which he had replaced by another in 1551.