Benedetto Marcello, an Italian composer, born in Venice, July 24, 1686, died in Brescia, July 17, 1730. His father was a Venetian senator, and personally superintended his education. He studied music thoroughly, learning counterpoint under Gaspari, became an advocate, and held several important offices, being a member of the council of forty and treasurer at Brescia. His most esteemed work is his music for Giustiniani's version of 50 of the Psalms. The pieces were written for two, three, and four voices, with accompaniment for organ or clavichord, several having also obbliyato for violoncello or two violas. John Garth of Durham published a fine edition of these psalms in eight folio volumes, with English words. Marcello's other works consist of oratorios, masses, cantatas, madrigals, and different parts of the Roman Catholic service. lie wrote also what he styled a "Drama for Music," and Calisto in Orsa, a pastoral with the use of scenery; a variety of instrumental compositions, and two satirical madrigals. Besides these musical works, he left a treatise in manuscript on music, a poem upon the redemption, and a collection of sonnets, verses, burlesque poems, and dramas.
He is justly considered as one of the greatest of the Italian masters; his style being noble and sustained, hi- invention poetic, and his thought and mu-sical forms full of originality.