Henry Purcell

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Purcell by John Closterman, probably 1695

Henry Purcell (c. 10 September 1659 – 21 November 1695) was an English composer.


  • Music and Poetry have ever been acknowledged Sisters, which walking hand in hand support each other; As poetry is the harmony of words, so music is that of notes; and as poetry is a rise above prose and oratory, so is music the exaltation of poetry. Both of them may excel apart, but sure they are most excellent when they are oined, because nothing is then wanting to either of their perfections.
    • Henry Purcell, ‎Edward Taylor (1843) in "Introduction" to, King Arthur: an opera in 5 acts, written by John Dryden. p. 3; Introduction; Cited in: James Anthony Froude, ‎John Tulloch (1852), Fraser's Magazine, Vol. 45, p. 198

Quotes about Henry Purcell[edit]

  • Who is England’s greatest composer? Britten and Elgar have their fans, but many say Vaughan Williams is greater than either, and still others would vote for one of our great Renaissance composers such as Thomas Tallis or William Byrd. For me it’s none of these. It’s a workaholic Londoner born 350 years ago who had a talent as wondrous as Mozart’s and, like him, died at the cruelly young age of 36.

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