London: J. Heptinstall, for Henry Playford, 1698. Three volumes bound in one. Folio. Attractively bound in full dark brown contemporary calf with blindstamped paneling to upper and lower boards, raised bands on spine with title label gilt.
Volume I: 1f. (title), vi, [ii] (table of songs, publisher's catalog), 248 pp. Title with handstamp and annotation in black ink "The Gift of Hon.e G ... to ... Octr. 1801" with the names of the donor and recipient crossed out and erased. Some pages with early manuscript figuring (in black ink) to bass and annotations with alternate versions of song texts. Contains a total of 81 songs by Purcell. Slightly browned, heavier to some leaves, with occasional staining and foxing; occasional tears to lower margin, some with archival tape repair; pp. 166-167 mispaginated; some page numbers shaved; lacking frontispiece portrait of Purcell.
Volume II: William Pearson, for Henry Playford, 1702. 2ff. (title, dedication, Playford's address to the reader), ii ("On the Death of the late Famous Mr. Henry Purcell... "), [ii] (publisher's catalog, table of songs), 176 pp. Contains a total of 72 songs by Purcell. Slightly browned and foxed, heavier to some leaves; occasional staining; pp. 171-174 mispaginated (as pp. 144-146); lacking frontispiece of Purcell.
Both volumes with title printed in red and black, music and text typset. Many pages with decorative woodcut initials. Note to rear pastedown endpaper stating that this copy is from the well-known Tenbury music collection, sold at Sotheby's on November 21, 1993, lot 374.
BLOW, John 1648/9-1708
An Ode on the Death of Mr. Henry Purcell; Late Servant to his Majesty, and Organist of the Chapel Royal, and of St. Peter's Westminster. The Words by Mr. Dryden, and Sett to Musick by Dr. Blow. London: J. Heptinstall, for Henry Playford, 1696. Small folio. [i] (title), [i] (ode text) + 30 pp. music, title bound in between p. vi and the table of songs in Volume I of Orpheus Britannicus. Incipit "Mark how the Lark and Linnet Sing... " Explicit "Nor know to mend their Choice." Slightly worn and stained; Trimmed; small tear to lower margin of title.
Binding slightly worn and pitted; rebacked and restored.
Volume I: First Edition. Zimmerman 1698d. Day & Murrie 166. BUC p. 859. RISM P5979.
Volume II: First Edition. Zimmerman 1702d. Day & Murrie 200. BUC p. 859. RISM P5983.
"Purcell was a prolific contributor to all the main genres of secular vocal music current in 17th-century England. He has always been particularly admired as a song composer. Generations of English musicians got to know his music from the two posthumous song volumes Orpheus Britannicus ... and Henry Playford wrote in the preface to the first volume that he had 'a peculiar Genius to express the energy of English Words, whereby he mov'd the Passions of all his Auditors', while Henry Hall added in a poem that he 'Each Syllable first weigh'd, or short, or long, / That it might too be Sense, as well as Song'." Peter Holman et al in Grove Music Online.
Blow. An Ode. First Edition. BUC p. 115. RISM B3002.
"By his mid-20s [Blow] had become the foremost musician in England...The heartfelt Mark how the lark and linnet sing (An Ode on the Death of Mr Henry Purcell), for two countertenors and two recorders, eschews ostinato basses in favour of sustained and finely crafted counterpoint... His position as the most important composer among Purcell's contemporaries is unquestionable; his true stature approaches that of Purcell himself more closely than has generally been acknowledged.
A moving tribute to his friend, the Ode is generally considered Blow's finest work. Item #25512
Price: $4,200.00 other currencies