Thomas Tudway

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Thomas Tudway (died 1726) was an English musician, Professor of Music at Cambridge. He is known as a composer, and for his compilation of a collection of Anglican church music.


Thomas Tudway Thomas Tudway Hill.jpg
Thomas Tudway


Tudway was born probably before 1650, as he became a choirboy in the Chapel Royal very soon after the Restoration. He is sometimes confused with his father (of the same name) who on 22 April 1664 obtained a tenor's place in the choir of St. George's, Windsor. In 1670 he succeeded Henry Loosemore as organist of King's College, Cambridge, and acted as instructor of the choristers from Christmas 1679 to midsummer 1680. He also became organist at Pembroke College and Great St. Mary's. In 1681 he graduated Mus. Bac., composing as his exercises Psalm 20 in English and Psalm 2 in Latin, both with orchestral accompaniment. [1]

Kings College, Cambridge college of the University of Cambridge

King's College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, England. Formally The King's College of Our Lady and Saint Nicholas in Cambridge, the college lies beside the River Cam and faces out onto King's Parade in the centre of the city.

Pembroke College, Cambridge college of the University of Cambridge

Pembroke College is a constituent college of the University of Cambridge, England. The college is the third-oldest college of the university and has over seven hundred students and fellows. Physically, it is one of the university's larger colleges, with buildings from almost every century since its founding, as well as extensive gardens. Its members are termed "Valencians".

Psalm 20 psalm

Psalm 20 is the 20th psalm of the Book of Psalms. It is internally attributed to King David. In the International Critical Commentary series, Charles and Emilie Briggs suggest that it was written during the reign of Jehoshaphat.

After the death in 1700 of Nicholas Staggins, the first professor of music at Cambridge, Tudway was chosen as his successor on 30 January 1705. He then proceeded to the degree of Mus. Doc.; his exercise and anthem, "Thou, O God, hast heard our desire", was performed in King's College Chapel on 16 April, on the occasion of Queen Anne's visit to the university. He was nominated composer and organist extraordinary to the queen, [1] but the warrant was never executed.

Nicholas Staggins was an English composer.

Noted for punning, on 28 July 1706, for an offensive comment of this nature slighting the Queen, Tudway was sentenced to be "degraded from all degrees, taken and to be taken", and was deprived of his professorship and his three organists' posts. On 10 March 1707 he publicly made submission and a retraction in the Regent House. He was then formally absolved and reinstated in all his appointments. Had he not offended the monarch, it seems likely that he would have become a Composer to the Chapel Royal. [2] His music is at least the equal of his contemporaries. He was a Tory, one of the subscribers to John Walker's Sufferings of the Clergy, and a critic of Richard Bentley. [1] [3]

Tory A conservative political philosophy

A Tory is a person who holds a political philosophy known as Toryism, based on a British version of traditionalism and conservatism, which upholds the supremacy of social order as it has evolved in the English culture throughout history. The Tory ethos has been summed up with the phrase "God, Queen, and Country". Tories generally advocate monarchism, and were historically of a high church Anglican religious heritage, opposed to the liberalism of the Whig faction.

John Walker (1674–1747) was an English clergyman and ecclesiastical historian, known for his biographical work on the Church of England priests during the English Civil War and Interregnum.

Richard Bentley English classical scholar and Master of Trinity College, Cambridge

Richard Bentley was an English classical scholar, critic, and theologian. He was Master of Trinity College, Cambridge.

Tudway died on 23 November 1726, and was succeeded as professor by Maurice Greene in July 1730. [1]

Maurice Greene (composer) English composer and organist

Maurice Greene was an English composer and organist.

Harleian collection

Political opinions may have brought Tudway into contact with Robert Harley, 1st Earl of Oxford, for whom he undertook his major work. As an addition to the Harleian Library, Tudway from 1714 copied a representative set of compositions for the Anglican church, then generally unavailable in written form. He accumulated six volumes (Harleian MSS. 7337–42), of over 3000 pages, an effort documented in correspondence with Humphrey Wanley, as he collected 70 services and 244 anthems by 85 composers; of those 19 anthems and a service were by himself. Materials came from manuscripts around England, but the collection was mainly based on old choir-books at Ely Cathedral. A detailed list of the contents appeared in Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians . [1]

Ely Cathedral Church in Cambridgeshire, England

Ely Cathedral is an Anglican cathedral in the city of Ely, Cambridgeshire, England.

Sacred Music

Thomas Tudway's sacred music is at least the equal of his post-Restoration contemporaries. His writing for the organ as accompanimental instrument is extremely sophisticated, often using solo stops from the instrument in duet with a singer.

A chronological list of anthems. [4]


My God, my God look upon me


O come let us sing unto the Lordbefore 1678
Blessed is the Peoplebefore 1679
Behold God is my salvationbefore 1681
Quare fremerunt Omnes1681
The Lord hear thee in the day of trouble1681
The Lord hath declared his salvation1682
Evening Service in Abefore 1684
Not unto us O Lordbefore 1685
Let us now praise worthy men?1690s [before c.1703]
Sing we merrily?mid-1690s [before 1706]
Is it true that God will dwell with Men??1697
Man that is born of a woman1699
Evening service in B flat?1702
I am the resurrection1702
I heard a voice from heaven1702
I will sing unto the Lord1704
Thou O Lord hast heard our desire1705
I will lift up mine eyes1702 or 3
O how amiablebefore 1705
Sing O heavens1702 to 1705
O Sing unto the Lord a new songbefore 1706
Behold how good and joyful1707
O Praise the Lord for it is a good thing1708
Plead thou my cause O Lord1710
My heart rejoiceth1713
Give the Lord the Honour Due1713
Arise, Shinebefore 1714
Te Deum and Jubilate, Commandments1720
Hearken unto me1724

Tudway's anthem "Is it true that God will dwell with men?" was performed in St George's Chapel, Windsor, at Queen Anne's first attendance there; and composed a thanksgiving anthem, "I will sing of Thy great mercies", for the victory at the battle of Blenheim. [1]

The Evening Service in B flat "reflects the final stage of development” in the verse service. [5]

In 1720 Tudway composed anthems and a Te Deum with orchestral accompaniment for the consecration of Lord Oxford's private chapel at Wimpole Hall, adding a Jubilate in 1721. The chapel itself was never consecrated and it seems unlikely that the works were performed there in Tudway's lifetime. Some songs and catches of his were published in various collections, and a birthday ode for Queen Anne was left in manuscript. The anthem "Thou, O Lord, hast heard our desire" was printed by Arnold in Cathedral Music. [1]


  1. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Lee, Sidney, ed. (1899). "Tudway, Thomas"  . Dictionary of National Biography . 57. London: Smith, Elder & Co.
  2. "Thomas Tudway – Music 18". Retrieved 9 June 2016.
  3. "Tudway, Thomas (TDWY681T)". A Cambridge Alumni Database. University of Cambridge.
  4. Stephen Bullamore, MMus dissertation (2009), University of London
  5. Spink, Ian (1995). Restoration Cathedral Music. Oxford: OUP. p. 27. ISBN   0198161492.


Wikisource-logo.svg  This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain :  Lee, Sidney, ed. (1899). "Tudway, Thomas". Dictionary of National Biography . 57. London: Smith, Elder & Co.

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