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A few years afterwards, as appears from the records of the company, they frequently let out their Hall for various purposes: sometimes for concerts; sometimes for the convivial meetings above-mentioned; and at others, for the solemn pomp of funerals, when any person wished to pay more than ordinary respect to a deceased friend or relation. On such occasions the corpse was conveyed from the house of the deceased to the Hall," which was sometimes hung with black baize; whence it was carried to the place of interment, accompanied by a numerous train of attendants. Not long afterwards the business of an Undertaker, which had before been unknown, became a common occupation.'

The MUSICAL SOCIETY, however, do not ap

had a solemn annual feast at Stationers' Hall, on the 22d day of November, being the anniversary of the martyrdom of St. Cecilia, from the time of rebuilding that edifice after the fire of London." But unquestionably this statement is erroneous; for if the Hall had been let for this purpose from the time it was rebuilt, the sums received between that period and 1684, would have been mentioned in the Wardens' Accounts.-The 22d of Nov. was the birth-day of St. Cecilia, (see Bede's EPHEMERIS, Opera, vol. i. p. 262. Basil. 1563.) but not, I believe, that of her martyrdom.

This practice continued to the beginning of the present century; for in the Wardens' Account for the year 1709, I found" Oct. 29. Received for the use of the Hall, for Dr. Daffy's funeral, £.2 o o."

Previous to the Restoration, the funerals of all distinguished persons were conducted by the College of Heralds.

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pear to have chosen Stationers' Hall for their first celebration of St. Cecilia's day; for no mention of it occurs in the Account of the Wardens of that company, for the year 1683; nor have I been able to discover where they then assembled. But in the following year I find an entry, which ascer


The first musical entertainment in honour of St. Cecilia, was probably performed at the concert-room is York-Buildings; which proving perhaps too small for the company then assembled, Stationers' Hall was fixed upon for the meeting of the ensuing year.

Sir John Hawkins loosely states, (HIST. OF MUSICK, iv. 504) that at the celebration of this festival "not only the most eminent masters in the science contributed their performance, but the gentlemen of the King's chapel and of the choirs of St. Paul's and Westminster lent their assistance, and the festival was announced in the London Gazette:" from which it might be presumed, that it wa regularly thus announced from its commencement; and if this had been the case, we should not have any difficulty in ascertaining either the time or place of the first per formance. But the truth is, that the first notice of this solemnity which is found in the London Gazette, occurs in No. 2924, for Monday, November 20, 1693, and is as follows:

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The Anniversary Feast of the Society of Gentlemen, lovers of musick, will be kept at Stationers' Hall, on Wednesday the 22th inst. Tickets are delivered at Mr. Richard Hoare's, goldsmith, at the Golden Bottle in Fleet-street, and at Mr. Jer. Marlow's, goldsmith, at the Spread Eagle in Lombard-street."

From 1693 to 1700, this festival was regularly an nounced in the London Gazette. In 1696 the feast was advertised for Monday the twenty-third of November," be ing the sequel of St. Cecilia's day ;" and the tickets were

tains the festival of 1684 to have been celebrated at the Stationers' Hall;' and for near twenty years

delivered at Mr. Richard Glover's, at the Castle Tavern in Fleet-street. In 1699 they were delivered at the same place, at Ozinda's Chocolate-House near St. James's Gate, and at Garraway's Coffee-House in Exchange-Alley.

3 In the Wardens' Account from the fifth day of July, 1684, to the 24th day of July, 1685, is the following entry, under the general head of CHARGE:

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Received, the 25th of November, 1684, for
the Musick Feast kept in the Hall


A similar entry occurs in each year from 1684 to 1700 inclusive, excepting the years 1686, 1688, 1689, and 1697. In 1698 Mr. Glover paid for that and the preceding year.

The price paid by the Stewards of this feast for the use of the Hall, till 1694, was only two pounds. Probably in 1693, some damage had been done by the scaffolding employed for the accommodation of the company; for in that year, as appears from one of the Company's books, F. 194, (a) an order was made, that “in consideration of the damage that may be done to the Hall at the next St. Cecilia's feast, by setting up scaffolding, and fixing tables and benches, the Hall shall not be let for that occasion under £.5 o o." The Court of Assistants, however, appears to have been afterwards contented with a less sum; for, both in 1694 and 1695, no more than four pounds were paid. At the performance of our author's celebrated Ode, the price was raised to five pounds; which sum was also paid in each of the two following years. In 1698, an order was made that" the Hall should be let to the Stewards of St. Cecilia's feast for five pounds, they agreeing to make good all damage that may happen to it or any room adjoining." G. 16. (a.). In 1700 the sum of six guineas was paid for the use of the Hall.

afterwards, (with a few intermissions,) a musical entertainment, in honour of this female saint, was annually there performed.

For the regulation of this meeting originally four Stewards were appointed, of whom one was a professor of musick; but afterwards the number of Stewards was increased to six, two of whom were always musicians.

Among the collectors of engraved portraits it has long been a practice, when they happen to be possessed of a very fine impression of some rare print, to place beside it one of a very inferior quality, taken from the plate in its most imperfect state. With a similar view, one or two of the earliest songs produced in honour of Cecilia, may be happily contrasted with those of our author, and perused with some advantage.

The first Ode to which this celebration gave rise had the good fortune to be set to musick by Purcell, to whom the unknown author is indebted for its preservation; for the following verses are, I believe, no where to be found, except in the Entertainment published by that composer. The most rigid critick, therefore, must allow them the merit of being rare." "Welcome," says the ano

nymous songster,

"Welcome to all the pleasures that delight
"Of every sense the grateful appetite !

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Hail, great Assembly of Apollo's race!

"Hail to this happy place;

"This Musical Assembly, that seems to be
"The Ark of universal harmony!

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"(The God of Musick and of Love)
"All the talents they have lent you,
"All the blessings they have sent you;
"Pleas'd to see what they bestow

“Live and thrive so well below;

"While joys celestial their bright souls invade,
"To find what great improvement you have made.

"Then lift up your voices, those organs of nature,

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Those charms to the troubled and amorous creature: "The Power shall divert us a pleasanter way; "For Sorrow and Grief

"Find from musick relief,

"And Love its soft charms must obey.

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"And Virtue, thou innocent fire,

"Made by the Powers above
"To temper the heat of desire;
"Musick, that fancy employs
"In raptures of innocent flame,
"We offer with lute and with voice
"To Cecilia's, Cecilia's bright name :

"In a consort of voices, while instruments play,

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With musick we celebrate this holiday;

"In a consort of voices we'll sing-lo Cecilia !"


In such miserable strains were the Stewards of the first Cecilian festival contented to pay their homage to their pious Patroness. On the 22d of November in the next year, was sung an Ode of very little merit, set to musick by Dr. Blow, Purcell's master, and written by Oldham, who died near a year before.

Nahum Tate was the Pindar of

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