(b Novara, c1535; d May 8, 1596). Italian composer and organist. Of a well-to-do family, he travelled widely in his youth. He spent some years in Rome, where he probably completed his studies in theology. He served as parish priest at S Stefano, Novara, and S Giovanni Battista, Milan. After serving from 1570 to 1577 as organist at Como Cathedral, he returned to Novara on his nomination as prior at the cathedral there. Sometime between 7 October 1587 and May 1589, Alcarotto journeyed to the Holy Land; though he stayed only 16 days, he published an account of his journey, Del viaggio in Terra Santa (Novara, 1596), that is of interest for its description of music and musical instruments of the region.
revised by Serena dal Belin Peruffo
(b Noyon, July 10, 1509; d Geneva, May 27, 1564). French theologian, one of the leaders of the Reformation in Switzerland.
In 1523 he studied theology in Paris, then studied law in Orléans in 1528 and in Bourges in 1529. In 1531 he returned to Paris to complete his classical studies, publishing a commentary on Seneca’s De clementia in the following year. Between 1528 and 1533 he became converted to reformed doctrines and in 1533 he had to leave Paris when the Lutheran sect at the university was proscribed by the court. He went to Basle at the end of 1534 and began work on his Christianae religionis institutio; in the dedication of the first edition (1536) to François I he called for toleration of Protestants. In 1536 he stayed for a short time at the court of Renée of France in Ferrara, and there met Clément Marot. On his way back to Strasbourg he went to Geneva, where the reformer Guillaume Favel persuaded him to help with the organization of the Church. However, in ...
Robin A. Leaver
(b Eisleben, Nov 10, 1483; d Eisleben, Feb 18, 1546). German theologian and founder of the Lutheran Church. He influenced all 16th-century church reformers to a greater or lesser extent by his writings and activities but, unlike some of them, Luther gave an important place to music.
Luther was the son of a fairly prosperous Thuringian miner, who wanted his son to become a lawyer. He was sent to appropriate Latin schools in Mansfeld and Magdeburg, and to the Georgschule in Eisenach. In 1501 he entered the University of Erfurt, where he took the bachelor’s and master’s degrees. Then, following his father’s wishes, he began to study law, but unexpectedly entered the local Augustinian monastery and in 1505 became a monk. In April 1507 he was ordained priest and celebrated his first Mass a month later. Three years later he was commissioned to visit Rome to plead the cause of the reorganization of the Augustinian order. While there he was shocked by the commercialism and worldliness of the Italian clergy....
(b 1542; d Mantua, 1612). Italian Jewish physician and writer on Hebrew antiquities. He discussed music, at great length, in his final work Shil ṭei ha-gibborim (‘Shields of Heroes’; Mantua, 1612), in which he glorified the ancient Temple, its architecture, its liturgy and its music. Ten of the 90 chapters are devoted to music. Portaleone conceived the music of the Levites after Italian Renaissance practices and humanist music theory: thus the discussion turns on polyphony, lute tablatures, contemporary instruments (in analogy to ancient ones, which are described in considerable detail), modes, the doctrine of ethos, simple and compound intervals and the differentiation between consonance and dissonance. He maintained that music in the Temple was a learned art, acquired after a rigorous course of training; it was notated, thus meant to be preserved; its performance was based on written sources. Portaleone acknowledged Judah Moscato as his teacher, although he noted that they conceived music differently: whereas Moscato spoke, generally, of number, harmony and ‘science’, treating music for its cosmological and spiritual connotations, his pupil was concerned with ...
(fl 1560–92). Scottish clergyman . He compiled an important set of partbooks, sometimes known as the St Andrews Psalter or ‘Thomas Wode’s Partbooks’, containing Scottish (and other) music of the 16th century. A canon of Lindores Abbey before the Reformation (1560), Wood joined the reformers, settled in St Andrews in 1562, became vicar there in 1575, and is frequently mentioned in Kirk Session Registers until 1592. His duplicate sets of partbooks (EIRE-Dtc, GB-Eu , Lbl , US-Wgu ) contain the 106 four-voice psalm settings by David Peebles (1562–6), canticles by Angus, Kemp and Blackhall (1566–9), and motets, anthems, psalms, songs and instrumental pieces – Scottish, English and continental (copied from 1569 to 1592) – together with illuminating and entertaining comments by Wood on many of the items. Between 1606 and about 1625 further additions to the partbooks were made by other hands.H. Scott, ed: ...