A Volume of Sacred Musick, 1814

A Volume of Sacared Musick, containing Thirty Anthems, selected from the works of Handel, Purcel, Croft, and Other eminent European Authors. 1814 by the Late Honorable. John Hubbard ...Professor in the University of Dartmouth. (Dartmouth College)
John Hubbard, Author
Unrestored original condition
leather spine and marbled boards are well worn, leather spine with gold decoration, some damage to top of spine, the binding is intact, there is a tear in the first two blank pages. There is foxing and toning on certain pages that do not interfere with reading the music scores. There are no apparent hand written marks or notes. The book is complete.
9.5 × 11.75 inches
Sale Status: 
For Sale

            We read in the title page of A Volume of Sacred Musick that its author is "The Late  Hon. John Hubbard. Professor of Mathematics and Natural Philosophy in the University of Dartmouth."  his academic affiliation in an unusual format  that substitutes "Dartmouth University" for the actual name Dartmouth College, given in its 1769 original Charter.  Professor John Hubbared (1759-1810) died before publication of his work. The early 19th century copyright notice of this music book explains that the author's heir filed for copyright protection under the new U.S. Constitution's provisions to protect the original works of authors:

 “Be it REMEMBERED, that on this first day of January, in the thirty eighth year of the Independence of the United States of America, Rebecca H. Hubbard, of Hanover, in said District, has deposited in this Office, the title of a book whereof she claims the right as Proprietor…” 

       Professor Hubbard was a scholar and religious teacher current with publishing on both sides of the Atlantic. Therefore, Prof. Hubbard would have been aware of the recent English problem of piracy of musical compositions and the author's loss of income.   Early in 1809 he was a subscriber to the first American edition of The Collection of Psalm and Hymn Tunes Sung at the Chapel of the Lock Hospital, (1809) underwriting sixteen (16) copies to distribute to local protestant parishioners, libraries and individuals committed to supporting the charitable purpose of the publishing of that book (see elsewhere in The Back Room). Due to lack of copyright protection in London, the first London edition of that book had been pirated and few proceeds reached the intended charity to the ire of its sponsors. Professor Hubbard would not have wanted the same result for his Volume of Sacred Musick.

        A Volume of Sacred Musick expresses the musical canon of its time. It is typical of  early and later 19th century music volumes that compiled European and American Christian hymns and prayers. This is an early Newburyport, Massachusetts imprint. Dartmouth University Mathematics Professor Hubbard's compilation of sacred music demonstrates that he quite naturally also taught religion in preparing students at Dartmouth "University" with knowledge of arts  and sciences as was expected of an educated person of that era.

        A Volume of Sacred Musick is a window onto early 19th century American musical taste and pedagogy. The early copyright notice also illustrates how the U.S. Constitution's protection of author's rights were inheritable and that the U.S. Copyright Office was dating its documents with reference to the date of the founding of the new country.

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