John Munday


John Mundy (or Munday) (ca. 1550/1554 – 29 June 1630) was an English composer, virginalist and organist of the Renaissance period. The son and pupil of the eminent composer William Mundy, he was organist at Eton, and succeeded John Marbeck after his death in 1585 as organist at St George's Chapel, Windsor. He received a bachelor of music degree from the University of Oxford in 1586, and his doctorate in 1624. In 1585 he was appointed joint organist of Westminster Abbey with Nathaniel Giles, a post he maintained until his death in 1630. Mundy was one of the earliest English madrigalists. He published a volume of Songs and Psalms in 1594, and contributed a madrigal, Lightly she whipped o'er the dales, to The Triumphs of Oriana (1601), a compilation of madrigals by Thomas Morley in honour of Queen Elizabeth I. He composed sacred music in English and Latin, including music for the Book of Common Prayer, and is represented in the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book by five pieces, including a magnificent set of variations on the popular song Goe from my window and a whimsical but fine miniature, Munday's Joy. He also wrote a setting of the recusant Chidiock Tichborne's poem My prime of youth before the latter's gruesome execution in 1586 for his part in the Babington plot. Mundy died on 29 June 1630 at Windsor, succeeded in his post there by his colleague Nathaniel Giles.

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