Date: June 1957
Creator: Alexander, Monte Hill Davis
Description: John Field (1782-1837), an Irishman, was the first composer to use the French term "nocturne," and was the inventor of the nocturne for piano. It can be seen with a glance at the scores that the orchestral notturni by the eighteenth century composers were very different than what is generally thought of today as a nocturne. Field introduced the idea of the nocturne that has remained much the same since. Frederic Chopin enlarged and improved the genre invented by Field, but it was Field's originality that brought this type of piece to piano literature. Indeed, John Field is hardly remembered today except as the inventor of the nocturne for the piano and for his influence on Chopin's Nocturnes. For that alone musicians will remain indebted to him.
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