Sunday, January 15, 2017

John Bull - music for the Elizabethan Court

John Bull was an English musical genius, sometimes compared to Bach for his contrapuntal virtuosity.  While he never composed music for Good Queen Bess' coronation (crowned this day 457 years ago), he was one of the most famous musicians of his day and in fact Court Organist.  It seems that he was sent by the Queen on spying missions to the Continent.

He was also a lot of trouble.  He lost his job because he had a child out of wedlock and finally had to flee England, charged with adultery by no less than the Archbishop of Canterbury and pursued by King James' men.  He spent his final decade uncharacteristically quiet in Antwerp where he died in 1628.

1 comment:

libertyman said...

"He lost his job because he had a child out of wedlock" there's a quaint notion!

An informative class today as always.

I wonder if his name is the source of the eponym "John Bull" in England?