Antonius Divitis

Born: c. 1470

Died: c. 1530

Birthplace: Leuven, Belgium

Antonius Divitis (also Anthonius Rycke, and Anthoine Le Riche – "the rich") was a Flemish composer of the Renaissance, of the generation slightly younger than Josquin des Prez. He was important in the development of the parody mass. Surviving works by Divitis include masses, motets, Magnificat settings (a genre that was to become quite popular in the middle 16th century), and a chanson. The three masses by Divitis use parody technique, and are among the first to do so; he is cited as influential in development of the genre, along with Jean Mouton and the other members of the French royal chapel. Each of his masses is for four voices, although an isolated six-voice setting of the Credo survives attributed to him. One of them, Missa Gaude Barbara, is based on a motet of that name by Mouton, and may have been a tribute to his colleague. Motets by Divitis are often for five and six voices, which was another relatively innovative feature in music around the beginning of the 16th century. They are contrapuntal in texture, and two of them (Ista est speciosa and Per lignum crucis) are entirely canonic. His setting of the Marian antiphon Salve regina uses an identical tenor line, rests and all, to that which appears in Josquin's setting of the popular song Adieu mes amours; it is uncertain whether Divitis consciously based his setting on Josquin, or on the popular song, which probably came first.

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