Geminiani, Francesco (Saverio) [Xaviero]
- Enrico Careri
(b Lucca, bap. Dec 5, 1687; d Dublin, Sept 17, 1762). Italian composer, violinist and theorist. His contemporaries in England considered him the equal of Handel and Corelli, but except for the concerti grossi op.3, a few sonatas and the violin treatise, little of his musical and theoretical output is known today. He was, nevertheless, one of the greatest violinists of his time, an original if not a prolific composer and an important theorist.
Although the exact date is not known, Geminiani was probably born two days before his baptism, on 3 December 1687, the feast day of St Francis Xavier. His father, Giuliano, a violinist in the Cappella Palatina of Lucca, may have been his first violin teacher. Several contemporary sources name Corelli, Alessandro Scarlatti and Carlo Ambrogie Lonati as his teachers. It is still not certain where and when he received his musical training, but we may assume it to have been when he was not in Lucca. His name figures in the register of S Maria Corteorlandini, the parish to which the Geminiani family belonged, between ...