- Robert J. Bruce
- and Ian Bartlett
(b London, bap. Sept 11, 1711; d London, Feb 7, 1779 ). English composer, organist and editor. Though formerly best known for some of his anthems and his editing of Cathedral Music (1760–73), the significant contribution he made to instrumental music, song, secular choral and theatre music in England is now widely recognized.
Boyce’s family came from Warwickshire, where his grandfather was a farmer. His father, John, the youngest of five sons, came to London in 1691 to be apprenticed to a joiner. He settled in the City of London, as a joiner and cabinetmaker, and married Elizabeth Cordwell in 1703. They were living in Maiden Lane (now Skinners Lane) when William, the last of their four children, was born. In 1723 John Boyce was appointed resident beadle for the Joiners’ Company, whose headquarters were situated close to his house. Joiners’ Hall became William’s home for the next 30 years or so....