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date: 06 April 2020

Baptie, Davidlocked

  • David Johnson


(b Edinburgh, Nov 30, 1822; d Glasgow, March 26, 1906). Scottish musical biographer. He was inspired by the first publication of Grove’s Dictionary (1879) to write a series of musical biographical dictionaries, in order to document glee composers and Scottish composers whom he feared Grove would neglect. Although he was prone to inaccuracy and erratic judgment, his biographies contain much valuable material. A reviewer in the Scottish Musical Monthly corrected many errors in Musical Scotland Past and Present (1894), nowadays his most used work and in effect the first comprehensive history of Scottish music. Baptie also compiled from 1846 a manuscript catalogue of partsongs, composed glees, and is said to have edited several hymnbooks. His son Charles Robertson Baptie (b Glasgow, 29 May 1870) was a successful minor composer whose works include music-hall songs and an operetta for children.

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Musical Opinion