William Parsons I

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Life

Born: ca. 1515 (fl 1545–63)

Died: ca. 1563

Biography

English composer from Wells. Little of his music remains and most is incomplete. He probably wrote the Flatt Service by ‘Mr. Parsons of Wells’, the location distinguishing him from Robert Parsons (ii) of Exeter, whose music features in the same source. The setting is in a note-for-note style, similar to that found in Tallis's Short Service of c.1550.

Two Latin motets survive: the Easter antiphon Christus resurgens, in two sections and based on the Sarum plainchant, is a typical example of the ritual Marian motet; Anima Christi, for three voices, is only one section of a much longer motet for six voices. William Parsons is generally credited with being the composer of 81 out of 141 settings in John Day's The Whole Psalmes in Foure Parts (RISM 1563-8).

View the Wikipedia article on William Parsons.

List of choral works

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