Marbeck or Marbecke, John

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Marbeck or Marbecke, John

Marbeck or Marbecke, John, English organist, composer, and writer on theology; b. probably in Windsor, c. 1505; d. 1585. He became a clerk and organist at St. George’s Chapel, Windsor (1531). His interest in religion prompted him to prepare a concordance of the English Bible, as well as various theological tracts. However, he was arrested for heresy in 1543 and sentenced to die at the stake. After being saved by the intercession of Henry VIII, he resumed his duties at St. George’s Chapel and returned to his theological pursuits. He brought out the first publ, concordance of the English Bible (1550). When the Act of Uniformity (1549) made the use of English services in the 1st Book of Common Prayer mandatory throughout the realm, he was commissioned to prepare a musical setting for liturgical use, which was publ, as The Booke of Common Praier Noted (London, 1550; facsimile ed., 1939).


R Leaver, The Work of J. Marbeck (Oxford, 1978).

—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire