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 John Taverner

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John Taverner

  • Birth 1490
  • Death 18 Oct 1545
  • Burial Boston, Boston Borough, Lincolnshire, England
  • Memorial ID 20719914

Composer. The most important English composer of his generation, and a vital progressive link between the music of John Dunstable and Thomas Tallis. His surviving compositions - eight Masses, 28 motets, and a handful of songs - enriched the polyphonic tradition of his country with continental techniques. Taverner's best known work, the "Western Wind Mass" (c. 1525), quotes the same melody in each of its four movements, an early attempt at thematic unity in a large-scale piece. The "In Nomine" section of his "Missa Gloria tibi Trinitas" (c. 1523), transcribed for instruments, launched an entire English genre that was still being used by Henry Purcell 160 years later. Little is known of Taverner's early life. He was probably born near Boston in Lincolnshire, and may have spent time in London writing music for the Chapel Royal. In 1526 Cardinal Wolsey appointed him organist and chorus master of the newly-founded Cardinal College (now Christ Church), Oxford. During his residence there he was reprimanded for involvement with the Lutherans but was excused as being "[merely] a musician". Historians believe he ceased composing after leaving the college in 1530. By 1537 Taverner had returned to Boston, where he became a prosperous landowner and eventually an alderman.

Bio by: Bobb Edwards


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  • Maintained by: Find A Grave
  • Originally Created by: Bobb Edwards
  • Added: 31 Jul 2007
  • Find A Grave Memorial 20719914
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for John Taverner (1490–18 Oct 1545), Find A Grave Memorial no. 20719914, citing St Botolph Churchyard, Boston, Boston Borough, Lincolnshire, England ; Maintained by Find A Grave .