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T. Smirnova

The Person of William Lawes in the Mirror of the English History of the Seventeenth Century)

The article is devoted to William Lawes (1600–1645), one of the most important figures from the early English Baroque music period. A preserved ceremonial portrait of the royal favorite, paraded now at the Music department of Oxford University, the enthusiastic reviews of contemporaries about Lawes as a talented performer and composer, as well as high appreciation of his activities in the works by foreign researchers of the twentieth–twenty-first centuries all these triggered the studies of the lifetime and creativity of the musician, little-known in Russia. The «strokes» to Lawes` creative portrait and a panorama of his musical genres, inheriting national late Renaissance traditions, have been reconstructed on the base of the seventeenth century books and tractates, the results of scientific researches of foreign authors, and on the contents of modern musical collections, containing the works of the English master. Studying the creative biography of Lawes in the context of the main historical and cultural processes of the seventeenth-century England, which were marked by disagreement between Anglicans and Puritans, royalists and parliamentarians, enables us to highlight the certain aspects of the cultural life of the English Royal court at the time of Charles I of England and to outline the vectors for the further deep understanding of the pre-Purcell English music.

Key words

William Lawes, Charles I of England, English music of the seventeenth century, consort, court culture.