Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 2.djvu/447

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.

engraved on a solid wood-block. It is however the only bit of music in the book. There is a mistake in the double-octave, which has one note more than the proper interval.

In the first edition of this work, printed by Caxton 1482, a space was left for the musical characters to be filled in by hand. Both editions are in the British Museum. In Merbecke's 'Boke of Common Praier noted' (Grafton, London, 1550) the four lines of the stave are continuous and not made up of small pieces, and are printed in red ink; the square notes are black and appear to be each a separate type. Only four sorts of notes are used, and are thus explained in a memorandum by the printer. 'The first note is a strene[1] note and is a breve; the second is a square note and is a semybreve; the third is a pycke and is a mynymme; the fourth is a close, and is only used at the end of a verse, etc.'

A book in the British Museum (Music Catalogue, C31b; 'Book'), proves that florid music was printed in England in 1530. It is the bass part of a collection of 20 songs, and is attributed to Wynkyn de Worde, the successor of Caxton. The typography is identical with that of Petrucci, already mentioned as being produced by means of two impressions. John Day of Aldersgate, in 1560, published the Church Service in four and three parts in an improved style of typography, and in 1562 the whole Book of Psalms. And Thomas Vautrollier in 1575 published the Cantiones of Tallis and Byrd under a patent from Queen Elizabeth, the first of the kind granting a monopoly or sole right of printing music. To them succeeded Thomas Este—who changed his name to Snodham—John Windet, William Barley, and others who were the assignees of Byrd and Morley, under the patents respectively granted to them for the sole printing of music. In 1641 Edward Griffin of Paul's Alley, London, printed a collection of church music in score and parts selected by John Barnard, a minor canon of St. Paul's. The notes were of lozenge shape, and the stave lines not very well joined together, the whole being inelegant though very legible, after this fashion. But the expense of two printings was saved.

These men followed the practice of the foreign printers, and no improvement was made until the time of John Playford in the reign of Charles II. Until his time, the quavers and semiquavers, however numerous in succession, were all distinct; but in 1660 he introduced the 'new tied note,' forming them into groups of four or six. The Dutch, French, and Germans followed his example; but Marcello's Psalms, published at Venice in a splendid edition in 1724, were printed after the old manner. From the time of Charles II. round notes began to supersede the lozenge form both in writing and printing, and John Playford's 'Whole Book of Psalms' (about 1675) was printed in the new character.

As regards France, Fournier ('Traité historique et critique sur 1'origine et les progrès des caracteres de fonte pour l'impression de la musique,' Berne, 1765) says that Pierre Hautin of Paris made the first punches for printing music about the year 1525. The notes and the stave were represented on the punch, consequently the whole was printed at once. These types he used himself, as well as selling them to Pierre Attaignant and other printers. Hautin printed as late as 1576. Guillaume le Bé in 1544–5 engraved music types for printing first the lines and then the notes; but this inconvenient system was abandoned. Nicholas Duchemin printed music at one printing in the years 1550 to 1556. Robert Granjon printed music at Lyons about 1572. The works of Claude Le Jeune were printed in France by Pierre Ballard in 1603 and 1606; the beauty and elegance of the characters employed showing that the French had greatly the advantage of their neighbours. About this time also madrigals were printed at Antwerp by Phalesio, and sold at his shop, the sign of King David.

The above-named eminent house of Ballard in Paris was established in the middle of the 16th century by Robert Ballard and his son-in-law Adrien Le Roy, and continued from father to son for two centuries, enjoying a royal privilege or patent until the time of the Revolution of 1789. [See [[Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 2.djvu/Ballard|vol. i. p. 129b; and vol. ii. p. 123a.]

Type music was greatly improved in the 18th century. The 'Musical Miscellany,' printed by John Watts, London 1729, has the stave lines fairly joined, although the notes are not elegant in form [App. p.727 "correct statement as to 'The Musical Miscellany,' as that was printed not from types, but from engraved blocks"]. Fournier (Paris 1766) published a 'Manuel typographique,' the musical specimens in which are very good and clear. But still finer are the types cut by J. M. Fleischman of Nuremberg in 1760. The stave and notes are equal to any plate-music for clearness and beauty. These types now belong to J. Enschede & Son of Haarlem. For Fougt's patent (1767) see Appendix. [App. p.727 "Henry Fougt's Patent, mentioned in vol. ii. p. 435b, of which the specification may be read in the Patent Office (No. 888, year 1767) states that the old 'choral' type consisted of the whole figure of the note with its tail and the five lines; but that in his system every note with its five lines is divided into five separate types. The modern system is therefore very similar to this."]

In 1755 Breitkopf of Leipzig effected improvements in the old system of types, which his son (in conjunction with his partner Härtel) carried still further. [See vol. i. 272, 273.] Gustav Schelter of Leipzig entirely reformed the system, while Carl Tauchnitz of Leipzig was the first to apply stereotype to music-notes.

Mr. Clowes, the eminent London printer, did much to improve music types. The 'Harmonicon' (1823–33), the 'Musical Library' (1834), and the 'Sacred Minstrelsy' (1835), are excellent specimens of the art, the stave lines being more perfectly united than before.

The late Professor Edward Cowper invented a beautiful but expensive process of printing music from the raised surface of copper or brass

  1. Strene, i.e. strained or stretched out, perhaps from its being the longest note used in chanting.