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date: 05 December 2019

Willmott, Ellen Annlocked

  • James Burke

Extract

(b 19 Aug 1858; d 27 Sept 1934). Horticulturalist, amateur musician, and collector of music. Her home, Warley Place in Great Warley, Essex, contained a large library: its contents, assembled with ‘taste and discrimination’, included printed partbooks of music by Bateson, Gibbons, Morley, Forbes, Watson, Wilbye, and Yonge, and editions of the music of Purcell, Handel, Corelli, and Zipoli. There were also some manuscripts, including autograph works of Bach, Mendelssohn, Schubert, and Liszt; the Willmott manuscript – owned by the Norwich grocer John Sadler, containing Latin texted motets by Byrd, Tallis, etc.; as well as the only known manuscript copy of Purcell’s Sonata in G minor z780 (today known as the Armstrong-Finch manuscript, named after its two copyists). Willmott also owned autograph letters of Wagner, Liszt, Mendelssohn, and Rossini.

Willmott, a member of the Folk Song Society and a capable musician, was an important customer of the London bookseller Bernard Quaritch. A large number of invoices to her from that firm show she often had a balance owing of several hundred pounds. An invoice dated ...

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