Encyclopædia Britannica, Ninth Edition/Claude Goudimel

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From volume XI of the work.
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GOUDIMEL, Claude, composer of the 16th century, must be named amongst the founders of modern music. The French and the Belgians claim him as their country man, and the place of his birth is not sufficiently established. In all probability, however, he was born at Vaison near Avignon, about the year 1510. As to his early education we know little or nothing, but the excellent Latin in which some of his letters were written prove that, in addition to his musical knowledge, he also acquired a good classicnl training. In 1540 we find him established in Rome at the head of a music-school, and here, amongst many other cele brated musicians, Palestrina, the greatest master of the early Italian school, and one of the greatest masters of all schools, was amongst his pupils. About the middle of the century he seems to have left Rome for Paris, where, in con junction with Jean Duchemin, he published, in 1555, a setting of Horace s Odes, entitled, Horatii Flacci odce omnes quolquoi carminum generibus differunt ad rhythmos mvsicos redacice. Infinitely more important is another collection of vocal pieces, a setting of the celebrated French version of the Psalms by Marot and Beza (Les Psanmes de David, mis en rime Fraryaise par Clement Marot et Theodore de Beze, mis en musique par Claude Goudimet), published in 1565. It is written in four parts, the melody being assigned to the tenor. Some of the tunes were probably of popular origin, and they are still used by the French Protestant Church. Others were adopted by the German Lutherans, a German imitation of the French versions of the Psalms im the same metres having been published at an early date. There is little doubt that, at the time of the last-named composition, Goudimel had em braced the new faith, although the French version of the Psalms was at first used by Catholics as well as Protestants. Seven years later he fell a victim to religious fanaticism during the St Bartholomew massacres at Lyons (24th August 1572), his death, it is stated, being due to " les ennemis de la gloire de Dieu et quelques me chants envieux de 1 honneur qu il avait acquis." In addition to the collec tions already named, many of his works are preserved. Masses and motets belonging to his Roman period are found in the Vatican library, and in the archives of various churches in Rome; others were published. Thus the work entitled Jfissce tres a Claudio Goudimel prcestan-, tissimo mwsico auctore, mine primum in lucem edit<x, contains one mass by the learned editor himself, the other two being by Claudius Sermisy and Jean Maillard respectively. Another collection, La jleur des chansons des deux plus excellens musiciens de nostre temps, consists of part songs by Goudimel and Orlando di Lasso. Burney gives a motet of GoudimePs, Domine quid multiplicati sunt, in his history.