'Faithful, All Too Faithful' by David Cormack (Part 8)


352 The British Library catalogue has ‘Richard Wagner and [sic] Theodor Apel [Letters edited by Theodor Apel the Younger]’, Leipzig 1910. This is almost certainly the original German edition published by Breitkopf und Härtel, Richard Wagner an Theodor Apel.

353 Letter dated 9 August 1912 sent from Spetchley Park, Worcester, to a Mr Downing, whose price of 10/6 for a ‘Wagner-Ellis thing’ Newman found ‘much too dear. The volumes are only published at 12/6! About 5/6 per volume is as much as I feel inclined to pay.’ Autograph in the writer’s possession.

354 Ellis’s own description in his 1911 census return.

355 In his will, Laurance left his modest effects of £70.15s to William Ashton Ellis.

356 Ernest Newman, ‘Wagner’s Prose Works’, The Musical Times, 1 May 1913, 297.

357 The Meister, VIII/32 (25 November 1895), 126-7n. Carl Friedrich Glasenapp (born 3 October 1847 in Riga) lectured in German language and literature at the Riga Polytechnic from 1898 to 1912. In 1912 he was appointed to the Russian City Council for Riga; he was also an honorary citizen of Bayreuth. Ellis could not have known that after Glasenapp’s death his library, and indeed the contents of his entire workroom in Riga, were to be ‘rescued, amid unspeakable difficulties and danger, from the bolshevik terror-regime’ by his foster-child and amanuensis Helene Wallem (1873-1953), and taken to Bayreuth. See Rosa Eidam, Bayreuther Erinnerungen (Ansbach 1930), 77 and 97.

358 William Ashton Ellis, ‘Wagner contra Militarism’, in The Musical Times, 1 July 1915, 396-8. Though awarded the Iron Cross in April 1915, Chamberlain did not renounce his British citizenship until 9 August the following year. By contrast with Ellis, Bernard Shaw remained equivocal about Chamberlain’s intellectual status until as late as 1936: see Stanley Weintraub, Bernard Shaw 1914-1918. Journey to Heartbreak (London 1973 [1971]), 103. Even Thomas Mann had confessed some admiration in 1918: ‘As far as I am concerned, I admit that to me his behavior seems comparatively excusable, yes, justified.’ Reflections of a Nonpolitical Man, trans. Walter D. Morris (New York 1983), 414-5); Betrachtungen eines Unpolitischen (Frankfurt am Main 1988) 554.

359 ‘In Germany To-Day. IX.- Output of War Literature. England the Only Foe. (From a Neutral Correspondent).’ The Times, 31 May 1915.

360 William Ashton Ellis, ‘Wagner and Latter-day France’, in The Musical Times, 1 August 1915, 463-6. The article appeared below the vocal stave of La Marseillaise.

361 Prose Works V, xiv-xviii, and VI, xiii-xxviii.

362 William Ashton Ellis, ‘Nietzsche Unveiled’, in The Musical Times, 1 September 1915, 525.

363 Minutes, 16 February 1915.

364 Minutes, 15 March 1915.

365 Minutes, 19 April 1915.

366 Minutes, 20 December 1915.

367 Minutes, 6 January 1916. The Times’ deaths column for 10 January 1957 would record the death aged 80 of Edith Clara Morgan, ‘only daughter of the late FRANCIS CHARLES and CLARA MORGAN, of Westminster’, suddenly on 8 January 1957.

368 The Red Cross, March 1918, 26.

369 William Ashton Ellis, ‘Wagner contra Militarism’, 396. The Esmarch triangular bandage was invented by Friedrich von Esmarch (1823-1908), army surgeon-general in the Franco-Prussian war, who in 1881 founded a course of battlefield first aid lectures modelled on the St John’s Ambulance classes in England. Esmarch’s lectures were in turn translated into English by Helena Augusta Victoria, Princess Christian of Schleswig-Holstein, as First Aid to the Injured (London 1882, running to a seventh edition in 1907).

370 The eighth of Robert Ellis’s nine children, Evelyn Campbell Ellis was born in 1865 and qualified as a solicitor in 1891. As an advocate he was sent in 1896 from Hong Kong to the Straits Settlements (Singapore), and he was acting Attorney-General there in 1912-13. By royal appointment he was an unofficial member of the Straits Legislative Council from 1908 until his retirement in 1916. He was made a Knight Bachelor in the Birthday Honours announced on 22 June 1914. During the war he worked in government offices in London, and denounced disaffection among the Fifth Indian Light Infantry at Singapore in February 1915 as having been engineered by German agents. His legal methods seem to have been blunt: ‘Neither in Court nor in Council would he brook opposition, and from the very definite way he had of stating his propositions he came early to be known as Cocky; one can say this, because he always insisted on his friends calling him by that name, which was one of affection, and intended only to sum up his very forceful character. Sir Evelyn was a monster for work, and if genius really is an infinite capacity for taking pains, then he possessed it.’ See Walter Makepeace, Gilbert E. Brooke, Roland St.J. Braddell (eds.), One Hundred Years of Singapore, Vol. I (London 1921), 236, with Evelyn Ellis's portrait photograph facing. In many respects this description brings to mind his elder brother. Evelyn Campbell Ellis died suddenly at Bournemouth on 1 September 1920, aged 54, six months after his second marriage. His obituary appeared in The Times on 4 September 1920 and he was buried at Brompton Cemetery on 6 September. (He is not to be confused with the Hon. Evelyn H. Ellis (1843-1913), a pioneer of early motoring in England and a founder of the Royal Automobile Club.)

371 The slip relates to a letter from Leroy apologising for his unintentional failure to acknowledge copyright, published in the Spectator of 31 October 1925 following a review of his book. L. Archier Leroy seems to be little known, but Paul Nash’s ‘Wagner Suite’ of four cubist wood engravings produced for his book are widely noticed. Herbert Reginald Barbor was a short-lived (1893-1933) writer and journalist. Apart from a song, ‘The Curse’, set by Eugene Goossens (1919, op.22), and a short drama about Cecil Rhodes later adapted as an early television screenplay, So much to do (1938), his renown failed to outlive the 1930s.

372 Gerald Jackson (ed. David Simmons), First Flute (London 1968), 8.

373 Thomas Lear’s younger brothers Walter (1894-1981), Professor of Saxophone at Trinity College of Music, and Hiram (1888-1969), clarinettist in Dan Godfrey’s band in Bournemouth, are mentioned in Who’s Who in Music (London 1949-50), 126, and in Stephen Lloyd, Sir Dan Godfrey (London 1995), 177n. and 21, as well as Gerald Jackson’s memoirs.

374 It would be recorded in 1933 by the Edison Bell Winner company with the Black Dyke Mills Band’s principal cornet Owen Bottomley. The printed music is still available through Schott/Boosey & Hawkes (BH 83269).

375 The Swiss-born bibliophile and autograph collector Alfred Bovet (1841-1900) was a financial patron of La Revue Wagnérienne and the Bayreuth Stipendiary Fund. In 1866 he married into the Peugeot family of Valentigney when it was manufacturing bicycles – its first motor car was produced in 1889. Bovet began his autograph collection in 1869. Most of it was catalogued and sold in 1887, though the musical items were sold in 1911. See Philippe Godet, Scripta Manent. A propos de la collection d’autographes de Alfred Bovet (Neuchâtel 1887), 8, 17-18. Hans von Wolzogen left a fauning tribute ‘Alfred Bovet. 10 November 1900’, in the Bayreuther Blätter, XXIV/1-3 (January-March 1901), 87.

376 ‘We have lately seen some remarkably good and artistic likenesses of Richard Wagner, painted on stained glass by a Member of our Society, Mr J.S. Sparrow, of 13 Cantlowes Road, Camden Square, N.W. They are executed as panels for windows, or as circular plaques for hanging in same, and, we understand, run to about two guineas each.’ Notes, The Meister V/17 (13 February 1892).

377 The text is also reproduced by John Deathridge in his edition of the Family Letters, xli(n). He describes the description of Ellis as the ‘author’ of the Prose Works as ‘a slip of nearly Freudian dimensions’.

378 Minutes, 21 January 1919.

379 Ellis’s brother Claude Bertram Ellis would be buried there a few months later, in June 1919. Douglas Uther Ellis had been buried there in 1898, aged 38, and Florence Mabel Ellis in 1916, aged 53. According to the parish records their mother, however, does not seem to have been buried there after her death in 1900. Burials at Saint Nicholas were discontinued after 1927 ‘for the protection of the public health’ (see The London Gazette, 30 August 1927). The memorials in the graveyard, though it is still neatly mown, have been afflicted by weathering, wartime bombing and more recent vandalism.

380 Minutes, 21 January 1919.

381 Louis N. Parker, Several of My Lives, 129-130.

382 Reported in [unattributed] ‘The Wagner Association’, The Musical Times, 51/813 (1 November 1910), 729-30.

383 W.H. Hadow, Richard Wagner (London 1934), 150n.

384 These are offered as a footnote, as it were, to the footnotes of Stewart Spencer’s exhaustive researches in the British Library of sources concerning Wagner’s visits to London. See in particular Wagner, 3/4 (October 1982), 98-123.

385 It was Watts who, after a long delay, tried unsuccessfully to return to Wagner in April 1840 the score of his Rule Britannia overture, which the Philharmonic Society had rejected on account of its being based on a ‘commonplace’ theme. See Stewart Spencer, ‘Wagner autographs in London’, Wagner 4/4 (October 1983), 101. Watts died in Jersey on 28 December 1859, aged 81.

386 Letter to Ferdinand Praeger, 1 February 1855, in Sämtliche Briefe vi, 341.

387 Letter to Ferdinand Praeger, 2 March 1855, in Sämtliche Briefe vii, 36.

388 The Manfred overture was given at the Crystal Palace under August Manns on Saturday 17 April 1880. The Times merely noted that ‘The ordinary series of Crystal Palace concerts came to a close last Saturday week, when the programme included a fine performance of Beethoven’s Choral Symphony, a march from Gounod’s Polyeucte, and a symphonic prelude to Byron’s Manfred, by Mr. F. Praeger.’ (The Times, 27 April 1880.) When it was given again on 8 December 1888 the London Correspondent of the Manchester Guardian (10 December 1888) was less than enthusiastic: ‘At yesterday’s Crystal Palace Concerts two orchestral works well deserving of notice were performed, one the composition of the young Englishman (or perhaps he would rather be called a Scotchman) Mr. Hamish M’Cunn; the other of a German professor long resident in England, Mr. Ferdinand Praeger. Mr. Praeger’s work is very ambitious. It is a preamble to “Manfred,” and depicts more or less successfully the struggle of Manfred with the Spirits, his desire for self-forgetfulness, the vision of Astarte, Manfred’s renewed yearning for total oblivion, and finally his death. The work suggests in many respects (in particular by the systematic use of leading motives) the method of Wagner, whose earnest admirer Mr. Praeger is known to be. It was coldly received. Not so the spontaneous, fiery ballad of Mr. M’Cunn on the subject of “Lord Ullin’s Daughter,” which was applauded to the echo.’ The largest and best curated collection of Praeger’s manuscripts and holographs is the Ferdinand Praeger Collection of Scores, circa 1829-1891, Music Library, The State University of New York at Buffalo (http://purl.org/net/findingaids/view?docId=ead/music/ubmu0046.xml, accessed on 13 October 2013).

389 The German-born Theodore Thomas (1835-1905) came to the US at the age of ten. In 1862 he formed the Theodore Thomas Orchestra which he conducted until it was dissolved in 1888. He founded the New York Wagner-Verein in 1872. If he wrote to Praeger it may have been as conductor (1877-1891) of the New York Philharmonic Orchestra. It was Thomas who had commissioned Wagner’s 1876 ‘American Centennial March’ (and was greatly disappointed at the return on his $5000 investment). In 1891 he became the founding director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He was a major promoter in the US of contemporary European music.


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