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Samuel Sebastian Wesley

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Table of Contents

List of Plates ; Abbreviations ; 1. London ; 2. Wesley the Composer ; 3. Hereford ; 4. Exeter ; 5. Leeds ; 6. Winchester ; 7. Gloucester ; 8. Postscript ; Appendix 1 ; Appendix 2 ; Work-list ; Bibliography ; Index

About the Author

Born in Kent in 1953, Peter Horton read music at the University of Oxford. He is currently Reference Librarian at the Royal College of Music, where he organized the 3rd Conference on Music in nineteenth-century Britain and has tried to encourage the performance of little-known nineteenth and early twentieth-century British music. He has edited Wesley's anthems for Musica Britannica and has written widely on his music.


Judiciously argued, perceptive in understanding, and lucid in expression, it is a fitting tribute to one of England's greatest musicians. * Music and Letters * Horton's advocacy establishes Wesley as a composer of striking originality and ability in a sea of mediocrity and insularity. He played a major role in rescuing English cathedral music from years of neglect and abuse. * The Times Higher Education Supplement * ... in Horton's lively narrative the ups and downs of Wesley's life unfold like a soap opera, revealing tensions beneath the calm surfaces of life in England's cathedral closes. * The Times Higher Education Supplement * It is a richly-embroidered canvas, hugely rewarding to read, scrupulously researched, with large and useful appendices, immaculately produced by OUP A definitive study if ever there were one. * Organists' Review, 91 no 357 * Rarely does one pick up a musicological/biographical study such as this and find oneself drawn in at every level so putting it down becomes as hard as shutting the latest novel by one's favourite author. * Organists' Review, 91 no 357 * ...this is crucial reading for all organists and choir directors. * BIOS Journal, 28 * Peter Horton's fine, measured prose. * BIOS Journal, 28 * Peter Horton is the leading S.S. Wesley scholar, and this fine book is the result of many years' work. * BIOS Journal, 28 * I would recommend this study to all major libraries and individuals particularly interested in 19th [century] English church and cathedral music'. [sic] * The Organ, 82 no 328 * ... the scholarship is of the highest quality throughout. * The Organ, 82 no 328 * For me, the great value of Horton's book lies in its embrace of wider horizons, above all the recognition of Wesley's overwhelming admiration for German music. * The Musical Times * Peter Horton's comprehensive, rounded and well written study, far from a fusty antiquarian exercise, engages admirably with Wesley's ambitious character. * The Musical Times * his analyses are never less than perceptive, and always make their point in a clear and straightforward manner. * Music & Letters, 86 * .... a compassionate and fair minded appraisal of this complex character and his many-faceted contributions to Victorian musical life. ... a facinating yet magisterial and well rounded portrait of the composer. 'Without doubt it is the definitive biography, written in a very readable style, with perceptive and scholarly analyses of the works incorporated into a chronological account of Wesley's life. * The Elgar Society Journal, 13 no 6 * Those who love nineteenth-century church music and want to become better acquainted with Wesley will willingly pay the high price for this exceptional book. * Church Music Quarterly * The author's natural fluid writing style is a delight and at one level this is almost like reading a novel. * Church Music Quarterly * we have a book that is not merely an assembly of previously known information, but a new insight, using previously unused sources. * Church Music Quarterly * shedding much new light on rather more familiar territory. * Brio, 40 no 2, 63-64. *

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