Thursday, November 19, 2015

Calendar of Saints: Byrd, Merbecke, and Tallis (2)

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)
November 21

Thomas Tallis was an English composer. Tallis flourished as a church musician in 16th century England. He occupies a primary place in anthologies of English church music, and is considered among the best of England's early composers. He is honoured for his original voice in English musicianship.

Throughout his service to successive monarchs as organist and composer, Tallis avoided the religious controversies that raged around him, though, like William Byrd, he stayed an "unreformed Roman Catholic." The reformed Anglican liturgy was inaugurated during the short reign of Edward VI and Tallis was one of the first church musicians to write anthems set to English words, although Latin continued to be used. Tallis retained respect during a succession of opposing religious movements and deflected the violence that claimed Catholics and Protestants alike.


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