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This article focuses on one of the many grievances put forward by the critics and satirists of Italian opera in early 18th-century England : the introduction of the Italian language in the London theatres. Though many of these critics and men of letters did acknoledge that Italian was, to some extent, more musical than English, they highly resented the use of this foreign tongue on the London stage. In their opinion, operatic performances in Italian were absurd and anti-patriotic ; they were the consequences of the degenerate taste of the English nobility, who found it fashionable to listen to words they could not understand. However, it would seem that such a judgment about the audience's lack of knowledge of Italian needs to be qualified. Some Italian opera librettists working in London also had teaching activities and published Italian handbooks and grammars that were bought and studied by those members of the aristocratic public who were eager to relish the texts set to music.


N° 1 f

Xavier Cervantes

Université de Toulouse II

"Unintelligible sing-song" : L'intrusion de la langue italienne sur la scène lyrique anglaise dans les premières décennies du XVIIIème siècle

Marc Signorile
Marc Signorile - La musicologie et l'apport du raisonnement sociologique

Gérard Bougeret
Gérard Bougeret - Goût et musicologie

Chantal Leblond
Chantal Leblond - Le manifeste Aux abonnés de l'Opéra qui voudraient aimer l'opéra

Laurine Quetin
Laurine Quetin - Tarare de Beaumarchais et Salieri


Xavier Cervantes
Xavier Cervantes- "Untelligible Sing-song"

Albert Gier
Albert Gier - Chabrier entre Wagner et Anatole France

Julie Sandler
Julie Sandler - Bernanos -Poulenc : le dialogue des Carmélites