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HENRY SMART (1813–1879)

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Originally appearing in Volume V25, Page 250 of the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica.
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HENRY SMART (1813–1879), English organist and musical composer, born in London on the 26th of October 1813, was a nephew of Sir George Smart (q.v.). He studied first for the law, but soon gave this up for music. In 1831 he became organist of Blackburn parish church, where he wrote his first important work, a Reformation anthem; then of St Giles's, Cripplegate; St Luke's, Old Street; and finally of St Pancras, in 1864, which last post he held at the time of his death on the 6th of July 1879, less than a month after receiving a government pension of £loo per annum. Although Smart is now known chiefly by his compositions for the organ, which are numerous, effective and melodious, if not strikingly original, he wrote many vocal works, including some of the best specimens of modern part songs. His cantata, The Bride of Dunkerron, was written for the Birmingham festival of 1864; Jacob for Glasgow, in 1873; and his opera, Bertha, was produced with some success at the Haymarket in 1855. In the last fifteen years of his life Smart was practically blind.
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