A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Compère, Loyset

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COMPÈRE, Loyset, eminent contrapuntist of the 15th century, chorister, canon, and chancellor of the Cathedral of St. Quentin, where he was buried 1518. In Crespel's lament on the death of Okeghem he is mentioned among the distinguished pupils of the latter—

'Agricola, Verbonnet, Prioris,
Josquin des Près, Gaspard, Brumel, Compère,
Ne parlez plus de joyeulx chants, ne ris,
Mais composez un ne ricorderis,
Pour lamenter ndtre maistre et bon père.'

His reputation stood high with the contrapuntists of his own and the succeeding age, and it is amply sustained by the few compositions which are known to be his. These are, two motets in Petruccio di Fossombrone's 'Motetti XXXIII'; 21 compositions in Petruccio's 'Harmonice Musices Odhecaton'; two songs in Petruccio's collection of 'Frottole'; an 'Asperges' and a 'Credo,' both à 4, in Petruccio's 'Fragmenta Missarum'; a motet 'O bone Jesu,' signed simply Loyset, in Petruccio's 'Motetti della Corona'; some motets in the collection 'Trium vocum Cantiones' (Nuremberg, 1541). and, finally, a curious five-part motet, now in the Pope's Chapel, in which the tenor and second alto sing 'Fera pessima devoravit filium meum Joseph,' while the treble, first alto, and bass are recounting the injuries received by Pope Julius II from Louis XII of France. Compère has been confounded with Piéton, who had the same Christian name—Loyset, a diminutive of Louis. The confusion arises from the practice of the early masters, of signing their compositions with the Christian name alone.

[ M. C. C. ]