Born: c. 1490?
Died: 25 October 1545
Biography While there was a John Taverner in London in 1514, there is no reason to assume this was the composer who surfaced at Tattershall in 1524 and founded the choir of Cardinal College Oxford (the predecessor of Christ Church) in 1526. In 1528 he was suspected but cleared of Lutheranism; in 1529 his patron Woolsey was disgraced and in 1530 he left Oxford, ultimately settling in Boston, Lincolnshire where he became an alderman. The martyrologist/propagandist John Foxe wrote that Taverner did "repent him very much that he had made songs to popish ditties in the time of his blindness" but Roger Bowers in New Grove discerns stylistic features in the masses that suggest a composing career that continued well past the 1520's. The artist who gives up music for politics makes an intriguing premise for Max Davies' opera Taverner (1972), however.
List of choral works
Taverner's work includes besides the following many incomplete pieces and 9 Mass fragments.
Works available at CPDL
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