Tag Archives: 17th Century

Vile Villiers

During the Seventeenth Century the Villiers were one of the most socially ambitious families in England. The following are some of the most notorious of the lot… George Villiers, 1st Duke of Buckingham Ah, the first of the ambitious Villiers. Pretty-boy George was so incredibly beautiful that he immediately came to the attention of King James I. Now,… Read on

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Francesco Geminiani

Francesco Saverio Geminiani, Italian Baroque composer, was born on this day the 5th of December, 1687. This makes him today’s second Baroque Birthday Boy! Geminiani was a talented youth who excelled at the violin and was tutored by two great Baroque composers, Alessandro Scarlatti (who, funnily enough, was related to yet another Baroque composer born on this day… Read on

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André Campra

André Campra, French Baroque composer of Franco-Italian parentage, was baptised on this day 4 December, 1660. In the midst of Seventeenth Century French Baroque goliaths such as Jean-Baptiste Lully, Marc-Antoine Charpentier, Marin Marais, and others, André Campra seems to have been lost in the mix, especially when Jean-Philippe Rameau appeared on the scene. Campra shocked people when he introduced violins into… Read on

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The Fabulous Peter Lely

Famous for the sensual portraits known as “The Windsor Beauties,” Lely was the leading portrait painter of the Restoration. He died on this day 30th November, 1680. Lely, whose birth name was Pieter van der Faes, was born to Dutch parents in Germany, and he trained in art in Haarlem, back in the Dutch Republic. He made portraits… Read on

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The Little Banqueting House at Hampton Court Palace

The Little Banqueting House was made for King William III for his private entertainment – a place to get away from it all. The beautiful Dutch terraced landscape garden known as the Pond Garden is in the foreground in the picture above, and in the background, the lovely Little Banqueting House. I was able to enter this lovely… Read on

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The Liberty Bounds – A Pub Full of History

This is one of my favourite pubs in London because it’s a good place to get some pub grub, well-kept real ale and the location…the location is amazing! It’s right on Tower Hill, with a view of the Tower of London, next to Tower Hill tube station and the gloriously beautiful Trinity Square (one of the best bits… Read on

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Henry Purcell

Henry Purcell, arguably the greatest English composer of Baroque music, died on this day the 21st of November, 1695. Henry Purcell had been born in late 1659, so that means he was around thirty-six years old at the time of his death. I always find this quite sad, for him – and for us – that he did… Read on

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Death of Nicolas Poussin

One of my favourite painters from the Seventeenth Century – Nicolas Poussin – died on this day 19th November, 1665, in Rome. I thought I’d share a few of my favourite paintings of his, courtesy of the amazing www.nicolaspoussin.org I was fortunate that, during my time in college, I had the opportunity to study with a painter who… Read on

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William & Mary

I recently contributed a guest post about William & Mary to the excellent blog of “Hoydens & Firebrands: Roaring Ladies who write about the 17th Century.” It was posted yesterday here: http://hoydensandfirebrands.blogspot.co.uk/2012/11/william-and-mary.html Alternately, you can read it here and now: The story of William & Mary is one of duty, love, war, heartbreak, betrayal, and revolution. It was a… Read on

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William Hogarth

Hogarth is synonymous with the Eighteenth Century, but he was, in fact, born in the Seventeenth. Therefore, in honour of his birth, which occurred on this day the 10th of November, 1697, we shall have a look at some of his most popular and influential works of art. Hogarth was a satirist and an artist, who dealt mainly… Read on

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Handsome 17th Century Men

Quite a number of people are finding this blog by searching for “portraits of handsome 17th century men,” and since I don’t wish to disappoint by not having an entry about this, here we are! 1. Arnold Joost von Keppel, Earl of Albemarle: I find Arnold the most aesthetically pleasing of all the portraits I’ve ever seen from… Read on

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Tous Les Matins du Monde

Tous Les Matins du Monde is a beautiful, captivating, heart-rending film about real-life 17th century French Baroque composer Marin Marais. This film, from 1991, which stars Gérard Depardieu as Marais, and Depardieu’s own son, Guillaume as the young Marais is stunning. Marin Marais was born in 1656 and died in 1728, and he was a viol player and a composer of Baroque… Read on

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“The Lost Prince – The Life & Death of Henry Stuart”

I visited the National Portrait Gallery yesterday to attend the “The Lost Prince – The Life & Death of Henry Stuart.” For those who plan on visiting, please do, but perhaps you shouldn’t read more below, as I’ve written this mainly for people who live abroad and will not be able to go to the exhibition. I was… Read on

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A 17th Century Ode to Cleopatra of Egypt

Ah, Cleopatra, a woman who has inspired countless plays, poems, books, and films… As found in John Dunton’s “The Ladies Dictionary” of 1694: Cleopatra, Queen of Egypt: The Wealth she wore about her seem’d to hide, Not to adorn her Native Beauty’s Pride, Tho there bright Pearls from the Or’ential shoars, From all th’Assyrian Lakes, and wealthy Stores… Read on

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Canaletto – A Venetian Master

Master Baroque landscape painter, Giovanni Antonio Canal, aka “Canaletto,” was born on this day the 28th of October, 1697, in Venice. His use of colour is remarkable and sometimes even photo realistic. Look at the incredible amount of detail in the boats, in lighting, the distance – everything done to a very high quality. I remember pathetically trying… Read on

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A Double Baroque Birthday!

Two very talented Baroque composers were born on this day October 26th in the 17th century! The first one was Domenico Scarlatti, Italian Baroque composer, & son of Alessandro Scarlatti, was born on this day 26 October, 1685. 1685 was a big year for the birth of major Baroque composers, such as J.S. Bach and Handel, and this Scarlatti is no… Read on

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Smallpox and the Seventeenth Century

I just finished reading this post from the excellent Anne Boleyn Files about Queen Elizabeth I’s bout with smallpox on this day in 1562 and it made me think of how many people throughout history that were affected by this terrible disease. Rich and poor alike, this disease was nasty, and there were varying strains of the disease. The worst, called Hemorrhagic smallpox, was almost always… Read on

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Heinrich Schütz’s Birthday

Heinrich Schütz was born on this day 8 October (O.S) 1585. Now, some of you may wonder why I’m celebrating the birth of someone in the 16th century, so the reason is this: Schütz was a very influential composer of the Baroque. I’m only sorry that I didn’t know about this composer until only in the past five years,… Read on

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Remembering Rembrandt

Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn, better known simply by his forename, Rembrandt, died on this day the 4th of October, 1669. During his life, the Dutch Republic, aka the United Provinces, was in its Golden Age (gouden Eeuw) and this region prospered not only economically, but culturally – with some of the most beautiful works of Baroque art being… Read on

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Queen Mary II is now on Facebook!

Why did I decide to make a page for her? Well, I think she’s always overshadowed by her husband, William III of Orange, and whilst that’s understandable, she was too good a person for us to forget about. For Mary II, Princess of Orange and Queen of England, please go to: http://www.facebook.com/MaryStuartII  

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The Death of Antonio Cifra

Antonio Cifra, Italian Baroque & Late Renaissance composer, died on this day the 2nd of October, 1629. Cifra is important in Early Music because he straddled the Late Renaissance and the Early Baroque movements and made beautiful music in both. So, in honour of Antonio Cifra, here is “Era la Notte:” Links about Antonio Cifra: http://www.hoasm.org/VG/Cifra.html http://www.last.fm/music/Antonio+Cifra http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antonio_Cifra (I normally don’t like to link… Read on

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