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Purcell research resources
General resources | Researching the music of Henry Purcell | Recently-published Purcell research | The Henry Purcell Archive
Henry Purcell 1659-1695: the Glory of the Temple and the Stage
Online exhibition featuring some of Purcell's manuscripts, based on a past exhibition at the British Library, with sound-clips.
Six portraits of Purcell owned by the National Portrait Gallery.
Researching the music of Henry Purcell
The bibliography at the end of the 'Purcell' entry in the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (2nd ed., 2001) provides a useful starting point when looking for existing books and articles on Purcell. It includes writings on Purcell published by the year 2000, and is also available via an online subscription to Oxford Music Online. The British Library website includes links to many other online databases and research tools for music, some of which may be useful when searching for primary source material such as music manuscripts, or for books and journal articles.
Recently-published Purcell research
The following is a selective list of books and articles on Purcell published since 2000.
Burden, Michael: 'Casting issues in the original production of Purcell's opera The Fairy-Queen', Music & Letters, 84 (2003), 596-607.
Burden, Michael (ed): Henry Purcell's operas: The complete texts (Oxford, 2000).
Heller, Wendy: 'A present for the ladies: Ovid, Montaigne, and the redemption of Purcell's Dido', Music & Letters, 84 (2003), 189-208.
Herissone, Rebecca: '"Fowle Originalls" and "Fayre Writeing": reconsidering Purcell's compositional process', Journal of Musicology, 23 (2006), 569-619.
Herissone, Rebecca: 'Robert Pindar, Thomas Busby, and the mysterious scoring of Henry Purcell's "Come Ye Sons of Art"', Music & Letters, 88 (2007), 1-48.
Hogwood, Christopher: 'Creating the corpus: The complete keyboard music of Henry Purcell', in The keyboard in Baroque Europe (Cambridge, 2003).
Holman, Peter: 'Compositional choices in Henry Purcell's Three parts upon a ground', Early Music, 29 (2001), 251-261.
Howard, Alan: 'Composition as an act of performance: artifice and expression in Purcell's sacred partsong "Since God so tender a regard"', Journal of the Royal Musical Association, 132 (2007), 32-59.
Mangsen, Sandra: 'New sources for odes by Purcell and Handel from a collection in London, Ontario', Music & Letters, 81 (2000), 13-40.
Miller, Anthony: 'The Roman triumph in Purcell's odes', Music & Letters, 83 (2002), 371-382.
Pike, Lionel: 'The ferial version of Purcell's "I was glad"', R.M.A. Research Chronicle, 35 (2002), 41-59.
Pike, Lionel: 'Purcell's "Rejoice in the Lord, all ways"', Music & Letters, 82 (2001), 391-420.
Schmalfeldt, Janet: 'In search of Dido', The Journal of Musicology, 18 (2001), 584-615.
Shay, Robert: 'Dryden and Purcell's King Arthur: Legend and politics on the Restoration stage', in Richard W. Barber, ed., King Arthur in music, Arthurian studies, 52 (Cambridge, 2002).
Shay, Robert: 'Bass parts to an unknown Purcell suite at Yale', Notes: Quarterly Journal of the Music Library Association, 57 (2001), 819-833.
Shay, Robert & Thompson, Robert: Purcell manuscripts: The principal musical sources (New York, 2000).
Spink, Ian: 'Purcell's music for The libertine', Music & Letters, 81 (2000), 520-531.
White, Bryan: 'Music for a "brave livlylike boy": the Duke of Gloucester, Purcell and "The noise of foreign wars"', Musical Times, 1901 (2007), 75-83.
Wood, Bruce: Purcell: an Extraordinary Life (London, 2009).
The Henry Purcell Archive
The Purcell Society and the Royal Academy of Music are working to build an archive of Purcell source material on microfilm, which researchers will be able to consult at the Royal Academy of Music's library in London. Priority is being given to acquiring microfilms of manuscripts held in difficult-to-reach locations, and from archives with limited public access. A list of manuscripts available on microfilm will be posted here soon.
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