Thomas Crecquillon in context : a reappraisal of his life and of selected works
The thesis covers the life and selected works of Thomas Crecquillon. It reassesses the
evidence for his career, concluding that he was maistre of the Imperial chapel from
1540 to 1545. Previous work dating his replacement to 1542 is refuted.
Documentary references are clarified, allowing a more consistent picture to emerge.
His retirement date is reassessed and shown to be most probably 1550. His date of
birth is estimated at 1505-1510. Internal evidence is quoted consistent with his
having worked in Antwerp and around Tournai. Authenticity and related issues in the
motets are discussed. Conclusions are reached on several works that differ from those
in the edition of Crecquillon's works in CMM, and several further cross attributions
are considered. A motet by Crecquillon is identified as the model for a Guerrero mass.
Borrowed material in Crecquillon's motets is identified as either fulfilling a didactic
and exegetical purpose or representing heightened social importance of the work in
question. Four motets are shown to have been originally two hymn settings. Several
motets are read in the context of renaissance concepts of divine kingship and
iconography as forming part of entry liturgies, with the reading of a Senfl motet as
being written for the birth of Philip of Spain as a precursor. The use of texts from
the Song of Songs in some manuscripts is identified as a further manifestation of
concepts of royalty, with the ruer as Solomon, partly as an analogue of the ruler as
David, and the wider context explored in some depth. The mass Kain [Adler] in der
Welt is shown to contain a range of references to borrowed material and to the
musical depiction of ideas of divine royalty, and to be one of a series of works for the
marriage of Philip of Spain in 1543.