Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/800

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784

��SCHEIDT.

��This work is dedicated to the Magistrates and Town Council of Gorlitz, and the composer seems to imply that it had been undertaken at their special desire. In this, as in his previous work, there is noticeable, as Ritter points out, the same undecided struggle in the composer's mind between attachment to the old and in- clination to the new. Thus, while he strictly adheres to the original rhythms of the old melo- dies, he harmonizes according to the rules of modern musical accent, and thus the rhythm of the melody is not in agreement with the rhythm implied by the harmony. See for illustration his setting of ' Ein' feste Burg' in Ritter, ' Ge- schichte der Orgel-Musik,' p. 19, the first two bars of which may here be given :

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��One chorale appears in this book for the first time, viz. '0 Jesulein suss, O Jesulein mild,' which has been adapted in later chorale books to the words 'O heiliger Geist, heiliger Gott.' As harmonized bv Scheidt it is given in Win- terfeld Ev. K. G.", f ii. No. 218, and Schoberlein,

  • Schatz des Chorgesangs,' ii. No. 457.

If it is his organ works that now entitle Scheidt to honourable remembrance and give him a dis- tinct position of his own amongst composers, it was not his organ works, but his vocal composi- tions, that procured him the esteem of his con- temporaries, and caused him to be ranked as one of the celebrated three S.'s. Of his vocal works, besides the 'Sacrae Cantiones' of 1620, men- tioned above, there are mentioned 'Liebliche Kraft-Bliimlein conzertweise mit 2 Stimmen und General-Basse,' Halle 1625; ' Geistliche Con- certen mit 2 und 3 Stimmen, etc., 4 parts,' Leip- zig, 1631. Another instrumental work should also be recorded, more for the clavier than the organ, 'Ludorum musicorum prima et secunda pais, 1623.'

It is natural to draw comparisons, as Ritter does in his 'History of Organ Music,' between Scheidt and Frescobaldi, whose lives covered nearly the same period of time, and who may both be regarded as the true founders of modern organ music, or rather, the Italian of clavier music generally, the German of specifically organ music. Of the two, Frescobaldi -is the greater genius, showing greater force of imagin- ation in the invention of new forms and the solution of difficult problems ; Scheidt is more laborious and painstaking, showing greater study of the capabilities of his instrument, as, for in- stance, in the use of the pedal, and in registering generally, with neither of which did Frescobaldi concern himself. As Ritter points out, while Scheidt has thus greater .command of all the resources of expression, Frescobaldi has mors of real poetic expression in his music itself.

��SCHEIN.

For more detailed comparison of the two mas- ters it will be sufficient to refer to Ritter's work. [J.R.M.]

SCHEIN, JOHANN HERMANN, was born Jan. 29, 1586, at Griinhain in Meissen, where his father was the Lutheran pastor. Having lost his father at an early age, he was taken to Dres- den and became a chorister in the Court Chapel there. His further education was received at the Gymnasium of Schulpforta and the Univer- sity of Leipzig. Of his musical training further than what he received in the Court Chapel at Dresden we have no details. In 1613 he was invited to be Capellmeister at Weimar, but held this post for only two years. On the death of Seth Calvisius in 1615 he obtained the appoint- ment of Cantor to the Thomas-Schule in Leip- zig, which post he held till his death in 1630.

Schein is chiefly known to later times by his 'Cantional,' first published in 1627. Its ori- ginal title is ' Cantional oder Gesangbuch Augs- purgischer Confession, in welchem des Herrn D. Martini Lutheri und anderer frommen Chris- ten, auch des Autoris eigne Lieder und Psalmen ... So im Chur und Fiirstenthumern Sachsen, insonderheit aber in beiden Kirchen und Ge- meinen allhier zu Leipzig gebrauchlich, verferti- get und mit 4, 5, 6 Stimmen componirt . . .' A second enlarged edition appeared in 1645 after Schein's death. As the title shows, it consists of Choral-melodies, both old and new, harmonized for ordinary church use, mostly note against note. Schein himself appears in this book in three capacities, viz. as poet, melodist, and harmonist. Of the 200 and odd Choral-melodies in the book about 80 are Schein's own, a few of which have still held their ground in modern chorale books, though some appear to be attributed to him by mistake. Schein's book differs from Criiger's similar book of later date (1648) in retaining the old irregular rhythm of Choral-melodies, while Cruger has transformed their rhythms according to more modern ideas. But if Schein still retains the old rhythm in the melodies, in his harmonies he has almost entirely lost, as Winterfeld points out, the feeling for the pecu- liarities of the old church modes in which those melodies are written, though otherwise his har- monies are serious and dignified. With Michael Praetorius and Heinrich Schiitz, and probably through their influence, Schein was one of the pioneers in Germany of the new movement in music proceeding from Italy at the beginning of the 1 7th century. Naturally his other works show this more plainly than the ' Cantional,' as many of them are avowedly written in imitation of Italian models. These other works are as follows :

I. 'Venus-Kranzlein' ('Garland of Venus'), a set of ' weltliche Lieder ' or secular songs, for 5 voices. Leipzig, 1609.

a. 'Geistliche Concerto' (Sacred Concertos) for 4 voices. 1612.

3. 'Cymbalum Sionium,' containing 31 set- tings of German and Latin sacred texts for 5, 6, 8, 10, and 12 voices. 1613.

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