Music
in Gentry culture in late-medieval England
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As an index of taste and privilege, music may be seen as a vehicle to express ideas of territory, status and hegemony to society at large. This chapter discusses the issue of where and when gentry members may have gone beyond the role of providing resources for musical provision and crossed over to become performers of musical works themselves. Music in fifteenth-century England appears to have been essentially a contingent aspect of daily life for the majority of members of the gentry, and much of its 'meaning' is dependent upon being fleshed out by context. The music education of Thomas Marchall may reflect older patterns of household service or it may tie in with an educational trend identified separately by both Nicholas Orme and Moran Cruz. The routes to music education for the gentry at least in fifteenth-century England appear, however, rather more traditional.

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