William Knapp was an English composer of parochial psalmody (West Gallery music). He was also the parish clerk of St. James', Poole, and worked as a glover.
His first collection, A Sett of New Psalm-Tunes and Anthems, was first published in 1738: it subsequently ran to eight editions, of which the second and subsequent editions were revised and enlarged.
Knapp's two other musical works were Anthems for Christmas Day (1744) and New Church Melody (first edition 1753).
A letter by Knapp is printed in the preface to Joseph Stephenson's first publication, Church Harmony Sacred to Devotion, in 1757: in the letter, Knapp commends Church Harmony, and notes approvingly that church music was formerly not 'so much in vogue nor understood (especially in Parish Churches) as at present. But now it is arrived to that perfection, that there are but few Congregations where there is not a Choir Warbling forth Praises to the Almighty Being, in Psalms, Hymns, Spiritual Songs, and Melodious Anthems.'
for a Word file of Harry Peace Smith's paper
from Proceedings of the Dorset Natural History and Archaeological Society volume 47 (?1927)
View the Wikipedia article on William Knapp.
List of choral works
- Behold that splendour: hear the shout
- Hark, hark, what news the angels bring
- While shepherds watched their flocks by night
Metrical psalm tunes
No works currently available
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