Twice a week I post a quote from saints from the Episcopal Calendar of Saints that week. They are to be meditative and mindful, playful and thought inducing. I hope they are helpful in your spiritual journeys.
William Byrd (1540 - 1623)
John Merbecke (1510 - 1585)
Thomas Tallis (1505 - 1585)
William Byrd was an English composer of the Renaissance. He cultivated many of the forms current in England at the time, including various types of sacred and secular polyphony, keyboard and consort music.
Byrd's output of about 470 compositions amply justifies his reputation as one of the great masters of European Renaissance music. Perhaps his most impressive achievement as a composer was his ability to transform so many of the main musical forms of his day and stamp them with his own identity.... He virtually created the Tudor consort and keyboard fantasia, having only the most primitive models to follow. He also raised the consort song, the church anthem and the Anglican service setting to new heights.
John Marbeck, Merbeck or Merbecke was an English theological writer and musician who produced a standard setting of the Anglican liturgy. He is also known today for his setting of the Mass, Missa per arma iustitie.
Probably a native of Beverley in Yorkshire, Merbecke appears to have been a boy chorister at St. George's Chapel, Windsor, and was employed as an organist there from about 1541. Two years later he was convicted with three others of heresy and sentenced to stake, but received a pardon owing to the intervention of Stephen Gardiner, Bishop of Winchester. An English Concordance of the Bible which Marbeck had been preparing was however confiscated and destroyed. A later version of this work, the first of its kind in English, was published in 1550 with a dedication to Edward VI.