Waart, Edo de. 56 Wachmann, Eduard 56

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Withy [Withie, Wythey].

English family of musicians.

(1) Humphrey Withy

(2) John Withy

(3) Francis Withy


S.J. Henry Foley: Records of the English Province of the Society of Jesus, vi (London, 1880)

J.M. Richards: A Study of Music for Bass Viol Written in England in the Seventeenth Century (diss., U. of Oxford, 1961), i, 136–51; ii, 64–82

J.D. Shute: Anthony à Wood and his Manuscript Wood D.19 (4) at the Bodleian Library, Oxford (diss., International Institute for Advanced Studies, Clayton, MO, 1979)

J. Irving: ‘Consort Playing in Mid-17th-Century Worcester: Thomas Tomkins and the Bodleian Part Books Mus.Sch. E.415–8’, EMc, xii (1984), 337–44

J. Bennet: ‘John Oker/Okeorer’, Chelys, xvi (1987), 3–11

R. Thompson: ‘“Francis Withie of Oxon” and his Commonplace Book, Christ Church, Oxford, MS 337’, Chelys, xx (1991), 3–27



(1) Humphrey Withy

(bap. Claines, nr Worcester, 4 Sept 1596; d Worcester, before 10 Dec 1661). Cathedral singer and administrator. He served as a choirboy and lay clerk at Worcester Cathedral, where he also held office as verger, sub-treasurer and surveyor of the works. In 1660 he played an important part in beginning the cathedral's renovation. The Worcester consort partbooks (GB-Ob Mus.Sch.E.415–8) and the first section of the manuscript containing John Withy's airs and fantasias in three parts (US-R) are possibly in his hand.


(2) John Withy

(b c1600; d Worcester, 3 Jan 1685). Cathedral singer, composer and viol player, brother of (1) Humphrey Withy. He was described by Anthony Wood as ‘a Roman Catholic and sometime a teacher of music in the citie of Worcester’. He was a lay clerk at Worcester, 1621–4. His name appears in Worcester hearth-tax returns of the early 1660s, and thereafter in several churchwardens' and constables' presentments, in which he is described as a ‘popish recusant’. James Atkinson, a Jesuit, was probably his grandson.

According to Wood, Withy was ‘excellent for the lyra viol and improved the way of playing thereon much’, and John Playford listed him as a ‘famous master’ of the instrument in his Musick's Recreation on the Viol, Lyra-Way (RISM 16696). Some of his airs and dances for lyra viol were published by Playford or included in important manuscript anthologies; other works, such as the In Nomine and some of the bass viol duos, display considerable contrapuntal skill. When Wood stated that Withy ‘composed several things for 2 violins’ he was perhaps referring to the airs for two trebles and a bass (GB-Lbl).


for further details see DoddI

32 airs, lyra viol, 16527, 16614, 16696, GB-Cu, Lbl, Mp

Prelude, 3 divisions, b viol, Ob

22 fantasias and airs, 2 b viols, bc, Ob, Och

Aire and Maske, a 2, Ckc 321 (b), US-LAuc fC6968 M4 (tr); Maske ed. in A.J. Sabol, Four Hundred Songs and Dances from the Stuart Masque (Providence, MA, 1978/R) [Maske only in reprint of 1982]

Almain, a 2, GB-Och (inc.)

Country Dance, a 2, Ob Mus.Sch.D.220 (inc.)

2 divisions, tr, b, Och (1 set ? by Francis Withy)

6 airs and 6 fantasias, a 3, US-R Vault M350.F216 (fantasias inc.)

17 airs, 2 tr, b, GB-Lbl

8 airs, a 4, Lbl (inc.)

Fantasia, a 4, In Nomine, a 5, Och

Love, where is now thy deity, 1v, bc, sung in The English Moore (R. Brome), 1637/8 (1658/9), US-NYp (facs. in English Song 1600–1675, x, New York and London, 1987)


(3) Francis Withy

(b c1645; bur. Oxford, 14 Dec 1727). Cathedral singer, string player, music copyist and composer, son of (2) John Withy. From 1670 until his death he was a singing-man at Christ Church, Oxford. He played the violin in Edward Lowe's act song Nunc est canendum, and is named as a bass viol player in a later Oxford score (GB-Lcm 1059). Manuscripts in his hand at the Bodleian Library and Christ Church, Oxford, suggest that he was a useful assistant to Lowe and his successors at both the cathedral and the music school. Five attributed sets of division for solo bass viol exist, together with one, unfinished, for treble and bass (all Ob). Two sets of divisions by ‘E. Withy’ (Cfm, Ob, US-U q763 P699c] were also probably composed by Francis on themes supplied by an otherwise unidentified relative.

Witkowska-Zaremba, Elżbieta

(b Warsaw, 23 Feb 1946). Polish musicologist. She studied musicology under Zofia Lissa at Warsaw University (MA 1969) and later studied classical philology there (MA 1972). She took the doctorate at the Polish Academy of Sciences in 1979 with a dissertation on Kraków plainsong treatises in the first half of the 16th century, and completed the Habilitation there in 1992 with a dissertation on the Musica speculativa of Jehan des Murs. She joined the staff of the Institute of Arts at the Polish Academy of Sciences in 1970, becoming assistant professor in 1980 and reader in 1993. Her field of research is European music theory and notation from ancient times up to the 16th century, and she has published critical editions and translations of medieval Latin music treatises. She is also interested in issues on 19th-century music. Her most important book is her study on extant copies of Jehan des Murs’ Musica speculativa, which places special emphasis on sources preserved in Central Europe.


‘Anonimowy traktat chorałowy ze zbiorów Biblioteki Ossolineum’ [An anonymous choral treatise from the Ossolineum Library collection], Muzyka, xx/2 (1975), 62–72

‘La musica come scientia speculativa medioevale’, Studi gregoriani, iv (1988), 5–19

‘I commentari universitari del Quattrocento al trattato “Musica speculativa” di Johannes de Muris’, Studi in onore di Giuseppe Vecchi, ed. I. Cavallini (Modena, 1989), 179–86

‘System pitagorejski w ujęciu Jana de Muris’ [The Pythagorean system as conceived by Jehan des Murs], Musicae sacrae ars et scientia: księga ku czci Ks. Prof. Karola Mrowca (Lublin, 1989), 285–92 [with Eng. summary]

‘W sprawie biografii Szydłowity’ [On the biography of Szydłowita], Muzyka, xxxiii/3 (1989), 57–62

Musica Muris i nurt spekulatywny w muzykografii średniowiecznej [The Musica speculativa of Jehan des Murs and the speculative current in medieval musicography] (diss., Polish Academy of Sciences, 1992; Warsaw, 1992)

‘A New Source for Fifteenth Century Musica mensuralis’, IMSCR XV: Madrid 1992 [RdMc, xvi (1993)], 943–56

‘Wersyfikacja, składnia i forma w mazurkach Chopina’ [Versification, syntax and form in Chopin’s mazurkas], Przemiany stylu Chopina, ed. M. Gołąb (Kraków, 1993), 109–36

‘Marcina Galliniusa Epistola ad Benedictum Cosminum: autobiografia czy fikcja?’ [Marcin Gallinius’s Epistola ad Benedictum Cosminum: autobiography or fiction?], Odrodzenie i reformacja w Polsce, xxxviii (1994), 91–4

‘The Medieval Concept of Music Perception: Hearing, Calculating and Contemplating’, Dance, Music, Art, and Religion: Turku 1994, 369–75

‘“Mi contra fa” and “Divisio toni”’, Laborare fratres in unum: Festschrift László Dobsay, ed. J. Szendrei and D. Hiley (Hildesheim, 1995), 331–40

‘Muzykografia łacińska w badaniach nad historią kultury muzycznej: perspektywa polska’ [Latin musicography in research into the history of musical culture: the Polish perspective], Dziedzictwo europejskie a polska kultura muzyczna w dobie przemian, ed. A. Czekanowska (Kraków, 1995), 51–74

Note musicae artis: Musical Notation in Poland from the 11th to the 16th Century (Kraków, 1998) [in Eng., Pol.]


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