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CHAPTER I. BIRTH—ANCESTRY—EARLY YEARS Introductory—Rohrau—A Poor Home—Genealogy—Haydn's Parents—His Birth—His Precocity—Informal Music-making—His First Teacher—Hainburg—"A Regular Little Urchin"—Attacks the Drum—A Piece of Good Luck—A Musical Examination—Goes to Vienna—Choir School of St Stephen's—A House of Suffering—Lessons at the... more...

THE VIOLIN AND EARLY VIOLINISTS. The Ancestry of the Violin.—The Origin of the Cremona School of Violin-Making.—The Amatis and Stradiuarii.—Extraordinary Art Activity of Italy at this Period.—Antonius Stradiuarius and Joseph Guarnerius.—Something about the Lives of the Two Greatest Violin-Makers of the World.—Corelli, the First Great Violinist.—His Contemporaries and Associates.—Anecdotes of his... more...

THE loves of famous men and women, especially of those connected with literature and the fine arts, have always excited much curiosity. In the majority of cases the poet's and artist's choice of a partner falls on a person who is incapable of comprehending his aims and sometimes even of sympathising with his striving. The question "why poets are so apt to choose their mates, not for any similarity of poetical endowment, but for qualities which... more...

VOLUME I. PREFACE TO THE FIRST EDITION While the novelist has absolute freedom to follow his artistic instinct and intelligence, the biographer is fettered by the subject-matter with which he proposes to deal. The former may hopefully pursue an ideal, the latter must rest satisfied with a compromise between the desirable and the necessary. No doubt, it is possible to thoroughly digest all the requisite material, and then present it in a... more...

CHAPTER I RECORDS AND EVENTS Edward MacDowell, the first Celtic voice that has spoken commandingly out of musical art, achieved that priority through natural if not inevitable processes. Both his grandfather and grandmother on his father's side were born in Ireland, of Irish-Scotch parents. To his paternal great-grandfather, Alexander MacDowell, the composer traced the Scottish element in his blood; his paternal great-grandmother, whose maiden... more...


EDWARD MACDOWELL BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH EDWARD ALEXANDER MACDOWELL was born in New York City, U.S.A., on December 18th, 1861, of American parents descended from a Quaker family of Scotch-Irish extraction who emigrated to America about the middle of the 18th Century. He was their third son. As a boy he studied the pianoforte with Juan Buitrago, a South American, Pablo Desvernine, a Cuban, and for a short time with the famous Venezuelan pianist,... more...

I PALESTRINA To learn something of the life and labors of Palestrina, one of the earliest as well as one of the greatest musicians, we must go back in the world's history nearly four hundred years. And even then we may not be able to discover all the events of his life as some of the records have been lost. But we have the main facts, and know that Palestrina's name will be revered for all time as the man who strove to make sacred music... more...

PREFACE. When a musical student begins to think of music as a literature and to inquire about individualities of style and musical expression, it is necessary for him to come as soon as possible to the fountainheads of this literature in the works of a few great masters who have set the pace and established the limits for all the rest. In the line of purely instrumental music this has been done by Bach, Haydn, Mozart, Beethoven, Mendelssohn,... more...

My Dear Mr. Beaumont, Seneca has well said, "The three main points in the question of benefits, are, first, a judicious choice in the object; secondly, in the matter of our benevolence; and thirdly, in the manner of expressing it." Of the first, it would not be becoming in me to speak; of the second, you are the rightful judge; of the third, I beg leave thus publicly to state, that not only in requesting permission to publish this lecture at... more...

It is perhaps fitting that the series of volumes comprising The Musician's Bookshelf should be inaugurated by the present collection of essays. To the majority of English readers the name of that strange and forceful personality, Romain Rolland, is known only through his magnificent, intimate record of an artist's life and aspirations, embracing ten volumes, Jean-Christophe. This is not the place in which to discuss that masterpiece. A few... more...