Baptista Bassano

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Baptista Bassano

Birthplace: Bassano del Grappa, Vicenza, Veneto
Death: Died in London, United Kingdom
Place of Burial: City of London, Greater London, UK
Immediate Family:

Son of Jeronimo / Hieronymus Bassano and NN Bassano
Husband of Caterina Bassano
Partner of Margaret Bassano
Father of Emilia Lanier (Bassano); Lewes Bassano; Phillip Bassano and Angela Holland
Brother of Jacomo Bassano; 'Jasper' Bassano; Giavani / John Bassano; Alvise / Alvixe Bassano and Antonio Bassano

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About Baptista Bassano

The Bassanos, were court musicians who had come to England from Venice at the end of Henry VIII's reign. It has been argued that they were converted Jews (Lasocki and Prior; Rowse, "Revealed at Last," and ensuing correspondence; Greer et al., s.v. "Aemilia Lanyer"), but Ruffatti has argued persuasively that the family was Christian.

Baptista seems to have been the youngest of the six brothers. He did not come to England with the other four around 1531, is usually last in the listings of the five in Court records, did not own a share of the family house in Bassano, and unlike the three middle brothers, was not a witness to Alvise's will. Moreover he describes himself in his will as 'native in Venice', which if taken literally implies that he was born after the family moved there from Bassano.

Image - Musical Instruments family Timeline Over the 1530s five of the six sons of Hieronymous (also "Jeronimo"), emigrated to England to work as musicians in the Court of Henry VIII. They played many instruments including the cornett, sackbutt, and curtal.

In order of birth, Jacomo (who traveled to England but eventually returned to Venice), Alvise, Jasper, John, Anthony, and Baptista may have been responsible for introducing the curtal to England

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Baptista Bassano's Timeline

Bassano del Grappa, Vicenza, Veneto
October 1, 1539
Age 27

The musicians were so desirous of seeing the King that, in spite of the refusal to give them license, they started for England on the 1st. They are four brothers esteemed above all others in the city.
- Letter from Edmund Harvel to Cromwell dated 4 Oct 1539

Age 42
April 1559
Age 47

In April 1559 Queen Elizabeth 1 visited Baptista Bassano in St Mary's Spital. It was recorded that she attended with :-
a thousand men in harness, with shirts of mail and croslets, and morris pikes and ten great pieces carried through London unto the Court, with drums, flutes and trumpets sounding and two morris dancers, and two white bears in a cart

Many do not realize that Baptista Bassano was very close to Queen Elizabeth. He was her Italian and lute instructor for several years between 1545 and 1552.

Age 50
Age 57
April 12, 1570
Age 58

From an Edward Isacke. In the Priory of St John the Baptist Holywell.

Age 59
April 10, 1576
Age 64
London, United Kingdom

Evidence points to the fact that he was murdered on 10th April 1576 and subsequently buried at St Boltolphs Bishopsgate on 11 April 1576 - Shakespeare Exhumed : The Bassano Chronicles Author Peter D Matthews

April 11, 1576
Age 64
City of London, Greater London, UK