Child, William

, Mus. D, was a native of Bristol, and a disciple of Elway Bevin. In 1631, being then of | Christ-church college, Oxford, he took his degree of bachelor in music; and in 1636, was appointed one of the organists of St. George’s chapel at Windsor, in the room of Dr. John Munday, and soon after one of the organists of the royal chapel at White-hall. After the restoration he was appointed chanter of the king’s chapel, and one of the chamber musicians to Charles II. In 1663, the university of Oxford conferred on him the degree of doctor in music, at an act celebrated in St. Mary’s church. Dr. Child, after having been organist of Windsor chapel sixtyfive years, died in that town 1697, at ninety years of age. In the inscription on his grave -stone, in the same chapel, it is recorded that he paved the body of that choir at his own expense; he likewise gave 20l: towards building the town -hall at Windsor, and 50l. to the corporation to be disposed of in charitable uses, at their discretion. His works are “Psalms for Three Voices,” &c. with a continued base either for the organ or theorbo, composed after the Italian way, London, 1639. “Catches, Hounds, and Canons,” published in Hilton’s “Catch that Catch can,1652. “Divine Anthems and Compositions to several Pieces of Poetry,” some of which were written by Dr. Thomas Pierce, of Oxford. Some of his secular compositions likewise appeared in a book entitled “Court Ayres,” printed 1655. But his principal productions are his services and full anthems, printed in Dr. Boyce’s collection. His style was so remarkably easy and natural, compared with that to which choirmen had been accustomed, that it was frequently treated by them with derision. Indeed, his modulation, at present, is so nearly modern, as not to produce that solemn and seemingly new effect on our ears, which we now experience from the productions of the sixteenth century. There are several inedited and valuable compositions by Dr. Child preserved in Dr. Tudvvay’s manuscript “Collection of English Church Music,” in the British Museum. 1


Burney and Hawkins’s Hist, of Music.