Mass The Western Wynde (Christopher Tye)

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  • (Posted 2021-12-03)  CPDL #66991:   
Editor: Jason Smart (submitted 2021-12-03).   Score information: A4, 45 pages, 599 kB   Copyright: CC BY NC ND
Edition notes: Edited from the Tudor manuscript sources. Original pitch and note values retained. A critical commentary is appended to the score.
  • (Posted 2021-03-13)  CPDL #63457:  Entire Mass:  
Individual mass movements:
Agnus Dei    
Editor: Adrian Wall (submitted 2021-03-13).   Score information: A4, 28 pages, 2.61 MB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes: Note values halved. Text underlay amended.

General Information

Title: Mass: The Western Wynde
Composer: Christopher Tye

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SacredMass

Language: Latin
Instruments: A cappella

    Manuscript 1572 (c. 1575) in British Library, Add. MS 17802-5 (Gyffard Partbooks), no. 25
Description: The main source of Tye's mass The Western Wynde is a set of partbooks now held at the British Library, known as the Gyffard Partbooks, after an inscription in one of them. It is believed (David Mateer, The 'Gyffard' Partbooks, in Royal Musical Association Research Chronicle, no. 28 (1995)) that they were compiled in the 1570s for a Dr Roger Gifford (c. 1536-1597), a physician to Queen Elizabeth and President of the Royal College of Physicians, from music he had collected during his time at Oxford University.

Tye's mass appears between two other masses based on the same theme, by Taverner and Sheppard. This theme can be heard clearly throughout each of these settings; Tye always puts it in the alto part. No source is known of the melody set to a text, but there does exist a text Westron Wynde, set to a different tune. Whether the melody used in the masses was originally set to this text is unclear, but the words can easily be fitted to it.

In common with most contemporary English mass settings, Tye does not set the Kyrie and omits part of the Credo text (from Et iterum venturus to remissionem peccatorum).

External websites:

Original text and translations

For information, refer to the Mass page. For texts and translations, see the individual pages:

GloriaCredoSanctus & BenedictusAgnus Dei

(but see note above on Credo)