THE FIRST DICTIONARY OF MUSIC IN ENGLISH

A Musical Dictionary; being a Collection of Terms and Characters, as well ancient as modern; including the historical, theoretical, and practical Parts of Music: as also, an Explanation of some Parts of the Doctrine of the Antients; interspersed with Remarks on their Method and Practice, and curious Observations on the Phœnomena of Sound mathematically considered, as it’s [sic] Relations and Proportions constitute Intervals, and those again Concords and Discords. The whole carefully abstracted from the best Authors in the Greek, Latin, Italian, French, and English Languages

… London: Printed for J. Wilcox … 1740.

8vo., pp. xii, 347, [1], complete with half-title (bound here after the title) and four folding engraved plates of tables and music, some musical notation in the text; old ownership inscription at head of title scratched away (a small hole resulting), slightly toned throughout, withal a good copy in nineteenth-century calf, rubbed, rebacked preserving most of the old spine; armorial bookplate of Joseph Gwilt.

£650

Approximately:
US $899€748

Make an enquiry

Added to your basket:
A Musical Dictionary; being a Collection of Terms and Characters, as well ancient as modern; including the historical, theoretical, and practical Parts of Music: as also, an Explanation of some Parts of the Doctrine of the Antients; interspersed with Remarks on their Method and Practice, and curious Observations on the Phœnomena of Sound mathematically considered, as it’s [sic] Relations and Proportions constitute Intervals, and those again Concords and Discords. The whole carefully abstracted from the best Authors in the Greek, Latin, Italian, French, and English Languages

Checkout now

First edition, based largely on the Dictionnaire de Musique of Sébastien de Brossard and the musical articles in Chambers’s Cyclopaedia, with some original material. One of two variant issues, this has ‘A’ on the title-page above the ‘i’ in ‘Dictionary’.

Grassineau’s Dictionary ‘contains much of interest and ranks as the first work of its kind in English’ (Grove). It is particularly informative on the subject of ‘ancient music’. Grassineau probably had some assistance from the composer J. C. Pepusch, at whose instigation the project was apparently undertaken. Pepusch, who employed Grassineau as secretary and amanuensis, provides an admiring testimonial on the verso of the half-title (‘worthy the perusal of all Lovers of Musick’), a testimonial subscribed also by Maurice Greene (then Master of the King’s Music) and Johann Ernst Galliard; all three were founding members of the Academy of Ancient Music.

You may also be interested in...

BORLASE, William.

The natural History of Cornwall: The Air, Climate, Waters, Rivers, Lakes, Sea, and Tides; Of the Stones, Semimetals, Metals, Tin, and the Manner of Mining; The Constitution of the Stannaries; Iron, Copper, Silver, Lead, and Gold, found in Cornwall; Vegetables, rare Birds, Fishes, Shells, Reptiles, and Quadrupeds; Of the Inhabitants, their Manners, Customs, Plays or Interludes, Exercises, and Festivals, the Cornish Languages, Trade, Tenures, and Arts; illustrated with a new Sheet Map of the County, and twenty-eight Folio Copper-Plates from the original Drawings taken on the Spot.

First edition of Borlase’s monumental survey of Cornwall. Though aged over sixty at the time of publication, William Borlase (1696 – 1772), rector of Ludgvan, toured central and eastern Cornwall between 1752 and 1757, gathering material for his Natural History. The result, though less ambitious than intended, provides a detailed account of the county, its flora, fauna, geology, and culture, elegantly illustrated with large copper plates.

Read more

EXTRA-ILLUSTRATED DELLOYE, H.-L. (editor).

Chants et chansons populaires de la France [– notices par M. du Mersan], première [– deuxième; – troisiéme] série.

First edition of a finely illustrated, serially published collection of French music, broad-margined, extra-illustrated, and accompanied by the later fourth series. Formed of four series of twenty-eight issues, sold individually at sixty centimes from February 1842, the Chants et chansons populaires are considered by Carteret to be an ‘admirable publication, printed on papier vélin fort, deservedly highly esteemed as one of the most beautiful of the nineteenth century, which can be compared to the handsome illustrated books of the eighteenth century’ (trans.).

Read more