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date: 21 January 2020

White [Whyte], Robertlocked

  • Irwin Spector
  •  and David Mateer


(bc1538; d London, Nov 1574). English composer. In 1553 the parish of St Andrew’s, Holborn, gave ‘yong Whyte’ a payment ‘for ye gret orgayns w[hich] his father gave to ye church’. This almost certainly refers to Robert White, for in 1572, when the Whites were living in Westminster, the instrument was sold by one of the Holborn parishioners to John Thomas and Robert White (probably the composer’s father) and installed in the Abbey. According to Thomas Whythorne ‘mr Whyt waz of Trinite Collez in Cambridz when hee Commensed’. His name occurs frequently in the college accounts for the period 1555–62, first as a chorister under Thomas Preston and later as one of the cantores. The University Grace Book 1542–88 records that White, after ten years of study, was granted the degree of MusB on 13 December 1560, with the condition that he compose a Communion service to be sung at ‘Act Time’ the following year in St Mary the Great’s. At Michaelmas ...

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