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Sra'jgraphical geology, the oolite is a division of the Jurassic jysttm (-/.p.)- The term appears to have been first applied in this Utter sense by A. J. M. Brochant dc Villicrs in 1803, and through tk Ubours of W. Smith, W. D. Conybeare, W. Buckland and r.btr*, it was gradually introduced for the calcareous rocks of the British Jurassic until it came to comprehend the whole system above the Lias. Custom still sanctions its use in England, but it has been objected that the Oolitic (Jurassic) system contains many strata that are not oolitic; and since oolitic structure occurs in limestones of all ages, it is misleading to employ the word in this way.
The oolites are usually divided into: the Upper or Portland Odtit, comprising the Purbeck, Portland and Kimeridge stages; the 3/iddle or Oxford Oolite, including the Corallian, Oxfordian and Kellaways beds; and the Lower Oolites, with the Cornbrash, Great or Bath Oolite (Bathonian), Fullonian and the Inferior Oolite (Bajocian). The Great Oolite and Inferior Oolite arc treated here.
The Inferior Oolite, called by William Smith the "Under Oolite" from its occurrence beneath the Great or "Upper Oolite " in the neighbourhood of Bath, received its present name from J. Townsend in 1813. It is an extremely variable assemblage of strata. In the Cotteswold Hills it is a series of marine deposits, 264 ft. thick near Cheltenham, but within 25 m. the strata thin out to 30 ft. at Fawlcr in Oxfordshire. A typical section N.E. of Dursley contains the following subdivisions:—
The basal sandy series, which is closely related with the underlying Lias, is usually described as the Midford Sands (from Midford, near Bath), but it is also known locally as the Bradford, Yeovil or Cotteswold Sands. The Pea Grit series contains pisolitic limestone and coarse, iron-stained oolite iad sandy limestone. The freestones are compact oolite limestones. The ragstones are fossiliferous, earthy and iron-stained oc4itic limestones. The "grits" are really coarse-grained freestones or calciferous sandstones. Between Andovcrsford and Bourton-in-tbe-Water the Inferior Oolite is represented by ragstones (Ferruginous beds, Clypeus Grit, Trigonia bed, Kotgrove Freestone, Gryphite Grit) and freestones (Upper Freestones and Harford Sands, Oolite Marl, Lower Freestone). Near Chipping Norton in Oxfordshire the " Chipping Norton Limestone" lies at the top of a very variable series of rocks. Ic Rutlandshire, Northamptonshire and Lincolnshire the following beds, in descending order, belong to the Inferior Oolite: Lincolnshire limestone (shelly, coral-bearing and oolitic), Collyfeston slate, Lower Estuarine series and Northampton Sands (hard calcareous sandstones, blue and greenish ironstones and sindy limestones). The Collyweslon slates are arenaceous limestones which have been used for roofing slates since the time of Henry VII.; Easton, Dene and Kirkby are important localities. The fissility of the rock is developed by exposure to frost. Similar beds are the Whitlcring Pendlc and White Peadle or Duston slate.
TL- Inferior Oolite of Yorkshire difiers from that of the CotttswoiU district; in place of the marine limestones of the area there is a thick series of sands and sandstones with
shales and beds of coal; these deposits are mainly estuarine with occasional marine beds. The principal subdivisions, in descending order, are: the Scarborough or Grey Limestone series, the Middle Estuarine series with their coal seams; the Millepore scries and Whitwcll or Cave Oolite; the Lower Estuarine series with the Eller Beck bed and Hydraulic Limestone; the Dogger and Blea Wyke beds. The last-named beds, like the Midford Sands, exhibit a passage between the Inferior Oolite and the Lias. In Skye and Raasay the Inferior Oolite is represented by sandstones.
The fossils of the Inferior Oolite are abundant. Over 200 species of Ammonite are known; gasteropoda are numerous: Trigonia, Lima, Ostrta, Gerviilia, Ptcten, are common pelecypods; Tcrebratula, Waldkeimia and RhynchoneUo are the prevailing brachiopods. Corals arc very numerous in some limestones (Isastrea, MontirauUid), Urchins are represented by Cidaris, Acrosalenia, Nucleolites, Pygaster, Pseudodiadcma, Hcmicidaris; starfish by Solaster, Astropecten, and Crinoids by Pentacrinus, Apiocrinus. Plant remains, cycads, fems, Ginkgo and coniferous trees arc found most abundantly in the Yorkshire area.
The economic products of the Inferior Oolite include many well-known building stones, notably those of Ham Hill, Doulting, Dundry, Pains wick, Cheltenham, Duston, Wcldon, Ketton, Barnack, Stamford,Castcrton, Clipsham, Great Ponton, Ancaster, Aislaby (Lower Estuarine series). Several of the stones are used for road metal. Iron ores have been worked in the Grey Limestone, the Eller Beck bed, the Dogger and the Northampton beds, the latter being the most important.
The Great or Bath Oolite is typically developed in the neighbourhood of Bath, and except in a modified form it docs not extend beyond the counties of Wiltshire, Somersetshire, Gloucestershire and Oxfordshire. It does not reach so far as Yorkshire, unless the Upper Estuarine series of that district is its representative. The principal subdivisions of the series are:—
An exact correlation of the Great Oolite strata in the N.E. area with those of the S.W. is not possible on account of the great variability and impersistence of the beds. Current bedding is very prevalent, and minor stratigraphical breaks are common. The absence of the typical Great Oolite from the N.E. district is probably due in part to contemporaneous erosion with overstep of the succeeding formation, and in part to local changes in the sediment in the shallow waters of this epoch. This may also explain the rapid thinning-out of the Great Oolite south of Bath, where its place may be taken, to some extent, by the Bradford Clay, Forest Marble and Fullonian.
The Great Oolite is not readily divisible into palaeontological zones, but the ammonite Perisphinctes arbustigerus may be taken as the characteristic form along with BeUmnites bessinus and Terebratitia maxillala. Corals (fsastraca, Tliamnastria) and Polyzoa (Stomatopora, Diastopora) are abundant. Hcmicidaris, Cidaris, Acrosalenia, Clypeus and other urchins are common: Pentacrinus and Apiocrinus represent the Crinoids. Terebratula, Rhynchonella, Waldheimia, Crania are the prevailing brachiopods; the common pelecypods, Pccten, Ostrea, Lima, Trigonia, Modiola; ffatica, Nerinea and other gasteropods are found. Perispkinctes grandts, Macroccpkalijrs subcontractus, Oppclia discus and Nautilus dispansus are among the more common cephalopoda. The remains of fish (Mesodon, Ilybodus), crocodiles (Teliosaurus), dinosaurs (Cctiosaurtu, Mfzalasaurus), pterosaurs (Rkamphocephalus), and in the Stonesfield slate the jaws of marsupial mammals (Ampkilhcrium, Amphileslts, Plmscolotherium) occur.
The building stones of the Great Oolite are mainly oolitic freestones, viz. the varieties of " Bath stone " quarried and mined in the neighbourhood of that city (Corsham Down, Monks Park, Coombe Down, Odd Down, Box Ground, &c.) and more shelly limestones like the Taynton and Milton stone. The Stonesficld slate has been largely worked near Woodstock in Oxfordshire and in Gloucestershire for roofing, &c. The " slates " are brown calcareous sandstone, grey and slightly oolitic calcareous sandstone, and blue and grey oolitic limestone. A curious modification of the Great Oolite—White Limestone division—is characterized by irregular ramifying tubular cavities, usually filled with ochreous material; this rock occurs in blocks and layers, and is used for rockeries under the name of " Dagham stone " from Dagham Down north of Cirencester. (Sec also Jurassic.)
OOSTERZEE, JAN JACOB VAN (1817-1882), Dutch divine, was born at Rotterdam on the ist of April 1817. After acting as pastor at Alkmaar and Rotterdam, in 1863 he was made professor of biblical and practical theology at the university of Utrecht. Oostcrzee earned a reputation as a preacher, was editor of the Theolog. Jahrbiicher from 1845, wrote a number of noteworthy books on religious history, and published poems in Dutch (1883). He died on the 29th of July 1882.
A collected edition of Oosterzec's works was published in French, (Euvres completes, in three volumes (1877-1880). His autobiography appeared in 1882.
OOTACAHUND, or Uiakaiund, a town of British India, headquarters of the Nilgiris district in Madras, approached by a rack railway from the Mcttapolliem station on the Madras railway. Pop. (1001) 18,506. It is the principal sanatorium of southern India, and summer headquarters of the Madras government. It is placed on a plateau about 7230 ft. above the sea, with a fine artificial lake, and mountains rising above 8000 ft. The mean annual temperature is 58° F., with a minimum of 38° in January and a maximum of 76° in May; average annual rainfall, 49 in. The houses arc scattered on the hillsides amid luxuriant gardens, and there arc extensive carriage drives. In the neighbourhood are plantations of coffee, tea and cinchona. There are a brewery and two dairy farms. The Lawrence asylum for the children of European soldiers was founded in 1858, and there are also the B reeks memorial and Basel Mission high schools.
See Sir F. Price, Ootacamund: A History (Madras, 1908).
OOZE (O. Eng 7iv"-, cognate with an obsolete wise, mud; cf. 0. Nor. Ki'ja, muddy pool), the slime or mud at the bottom of a river, stream, especially of a tidal river or estuary, and so particularly used in dccp-sca soundings of the deposit of fine calcareous mud, in which remains of foraminifera arc largely present. The word "ooze" is also used as a technical term in tanning, of the liquor in a tan vat in which the hides arc steeped, made of a solution of oak bark or other substances which yield tannin. This word is in origin different from " ooze" in its first sense. It appears in O. Eng. as itto, and meant the juice of plants, fruits, &c.
OPAH (Lompris luna), a pelagic fish, the affinities of which arc still a puzzle to ichthyologists. The body is compressed and deep (more so than in the bream) and the scales are minute. A long dorsal fin, high and pointed anteriorly, runs along nearly the whole length of the back; the caudal is strong and deeply cleft. The ventral fin is also elongated, and all the fins are destitute of spines. The pelvic fins are abdominal in position, long and pointed in shape, and the pelvic bones are connected with the caracoids. These fins contain numerous (15-17) rays, a feature in which the fish differs from the Acanthoptcrygians.
In its gorgeous colours the opah surpasses even the dolphins, all the fins being of a bright scarlet. The sides are bluish green above, violet in the middle, red beneath, variegated with oval spots of brilliant silver. It is only occasionally found near the shore; its real home is the Atlantic, especially near Madeira and the Azores, but many captures are recorded from Great
Britain, Ireland and Scandinavia; it strays as far north a* Iceland and Newfoundland, and probably southwards to the latitudes of the coast of Guinea. It is rare in the Mediterranean. The name opah, which is now generally used, is derived from the statement of a native of the coast of Guinea who happened to bo in England when the first specimen was exhibited (1750), and who thought he recognized in it a fish well known by that name in his native country. From its habit of coming to the surface in calm weather, showing its high dorsal fin above the water, it has also received the name of "sun-fish," which it shares with Orthagoriicus and the basking shark. It grows to a length of 4 to 5 ft. and a weight exceeding ico Ib, and is highly esteemed on account of the excellent flavour of its flesh.
OPAL, an amorphous or non-crystalline mineral consisting of hydratcd silica, occasionally displaying a beautiful play of colour, whence its value as a gem-stone. It is named from Lat. opalus, Gr. oraXXtoc, with which may be compared Sansk. upala, a precious stone. Opal commonly occurs in nodular or stalactitic masses, in the cavities of volcanic rocks, having been deposited in a gelatinous or colloidal condition. It is inferior to quartz in hardness (H. 5-5 to 6-5) and in density (S. G. 1-9 to 2-3), whilst it differs also by its solubility in caustic alkalis. The proportion of water in opal varies usually from 3 to u%, and it is said that occasionally no water can be detected, the mineral having apparently suffered dehydration. Thoughnormally isotropic, opal is frequently doubly refracting, the anomaly being due to tension set up during consolidation. The mineral when pure is transparent and colourless, as well seen in the variety which, from its vitreous appearance, was called by A. G. Werner hyalite (Gr. vaXos, glass), or popularly "Mullcr's glass," a name said to have been taken from its discoverer. This pellucid opaline silica occurs as an incrustation in small globules, and is by no means a common mineral, being chiefly found at certain localities in Bohemia, Mexico and Colorado, U.S.A. (Cripple Creek).
The beautiful variety known as " noble " or " precious opal '* owes its value to the brilliant flashes of colour which it displays by reflected light. The colours are not due to the presence of any material pigment, but result from certain structural peculiarities in the stone, perhaps from microscopic fissures or pores or from delicate striae, but more probably from very thin lamellae of foreign matter, or of opaline silica, having a different index of refraction from that of the matrix. The origin of the colours in opal has been studied by Sir D. Brewster, Sir W. Crookcs, Lord Rayleigh and H. Behrcns. In the variety known to jewellers as "harlequin opal," the rainbow-like tints are flashed forth from small angular surfaces, forming a kind of polychromatic mosaic, whilst in other varieties the colours are disposed in broad bands or irregular patches of comparatively large area. By moving the stone, a brilliant succession of fiery flashes may sometimes be obtained. The opal is usually cut with a convex surface, and, being a soft stone, should be protected from friction likely to produce abrasion; nor should it be exposed to sudden alternations of temperature. The loss of water, sometimes effected by heat, greatly impairs the colour, though moderate warmth may improve it. According to Pliny the opal ranked next in value to the emerald, and he relates that the rich Roman senator Nonius was exiled by Mark Antony for sake of his magnificent opal, as large as a hazel nut. The opal, on account of its unique characters, has been the subject of remarkable superstition, and even in modern times has often been regarded as an unlucky stone, but in recent years it has regained popular favour and is now when fine, among the most highly valued gem-stones.
Precious opal is a mineral of very limited distribution. Though ancient writers state that it was brought from India, and 6ne stones are still called in trade " Oriental opal," its occurrence is not known in the East. The finest opals seem to have been always obtained from Hungary, where the mineral occurs^ associated with much common opal, in nests ii- an altered andesitic rock. The fine opals occur only at the Dubnyik mine, near the village of V&rosvagas (Czerwenitza). The workings
havt been carried on for centuries in the mountains near Epcrjcs, aad some remarkable stones from this locality are preserved in the Imperial Natural History Museum in Vienna, including an uncut specimen weighing about 3000 carats. Precious opal is found also in Honduras, especially in trachyte near Gracias £ Dies; and in Mexico, where it occurs in a porphyritic rock at Esperanza in the state of Queretaro. A remarkable kind of opal, of yellow or hyacinth-red colour, occurs in trachytic porphyry at Zimapan in Hidalgo, Mexico, and is known as "fire-opal," This variety is not only cut en caboction but is abo faceted. Fire-opal is sometimes called "girasol." Much precious opal is worked in Australia. In Queensland it is found lining cracks in nodules of brown ironstone in the Desert Sandstone, a rock of Upper Cretaceous age, and is distributed over a iride area near the Barcop river. Bulla Creek is a well-known locality. The layer of opal, when too thin to be cut with a convex surface, is used for inlaid work or is carved into cameos which show to much advantage against the dark-brown matrix. The matrix penetrated by veins and spots of opal, and perhaps heightened in colour artificially, has been called " black opal"; but true black opal occurs in New South Wales. The " root of opal " consists of the mineral disseminated through the matrix. In New South Wales precious opal was accidentally discovered in 1889, and is now largely worked at White Cliffs, Yungnulgra county, where it is found in nodules and seams in a siliceous rock of the Upper Cretaceous series. It is notable that the opal sometimes replaces shells and even reptilian bones, whilst curious pseudomorphs, known as "pineapple opal," show the opal in the form of aggregated crystals, perhaps of gypsum, gaylussite or glauberite.
"Common opal " is the name generally applied to the varieties which exhibit na beauty of colour, and may be nearly opaque. It is frequently found in the vesicular lavas of the N.E. of Ireland, the west of Scotland, the Faroe Isles and Iceland. When of milky-white colour it is known as "milk opal"; when of resinous and waxy appearance as "resin opal"; if banded it is called "agate opal"; a green variety is termed "prase opal M; a dark red, ferruginous variety " jaspar opal"; whilst "rose opal " is a beautiful pink mineral, coloured with organic nutter, found at Quincy, near Mehun-sur-Yevre, in France. A brown or grey concretionary opal from Tertiary shales at Menflmontant, near Paris, is known as menilite or " liver opal." A dull opaque form of opal, with a fracture imperfectly conchmda!, is called "semi-opal"; whilst the opal which not infrequently forms the mineralizing substance of fossil wood passes as *' wood opal." The name hydrophane is applied to a porous opal, perhaps partially dehydrated, which is almost opaque when dry but becomes more or less transparent when immersed in water. It has been sometimes sold in America as "magic stone," Cacholong is another kind of porous opal with i lustre rather like that of mother-of-pearl, said to have been earned from the Cach river in Bokhara, but the word is probably of Tatar origin.
Opaline silica is frequently deposited from hot siliceous springs, often in cauliflower-like masses, and is known as gcyscrite. This occurs in Iceland, New Zealand and the Yellowstone National Park. The Sorite from the hot springs of Santa Fiora, in Tuscany, is opaline ttlica, with a rather pearly lustre. A variety containing an exceptionally small proportion of water, obtained from the Yellowstone Park, was named pealitc, after the chemist A. C. Peale. The siliceous deposits from springs, often due to organic agencies, are intmn generally as " siliceous sinter " or, if very loose in texture, as "siliceous tuff.' Opaline silica forms the material of many organic structures, like the frustules of diatoms and the tests of radiolarians, vfcieh may accumulate as deposits of tripoli, and be used for polishing purpo*es. (F. W. R.")
0FAUNA (so named by J. E. Purkinje" and G. Valentin), t genus of Protozoa, without mouth or contractile vacuolc, covered with nearly equal flagclliform cilia, and possessing numerous nuclei, ail similar. It has been referred to Aspirotricha by Botschli, but by M. Hartog (Cambridge Natural History, vol. ii.. 1906) has been transferred to the Flagellates (?.?.). Alt the
are parasitic in cold-blooded Vertebrates.
OPATA (" enemies," so called by their neighbours the Pimas), a tribe of Mexican Indians ol Piman stock. Their country is the mountainous district of north-eastern Sonora and northwestern Chihuahua, Mexico. Though usually loyal to the Mexican government, they rebelled in 1820, but after a gallant effort were defeated. They number now about 5000, and still largely retain their ancient autonomy.
OPERA (Italian for "work"), a drama set to music, as distinguished from plays in which music is merely incidental. Music has been a resource of the drama from the earliest times, • and doubtless the results of researches in the early history of this connexion have been made very interesting, but they are hardly relevant to a history of opera as an art-form. If language has meaning, an art-form can hardly be said to exist under conditions where the only real connexions between its alleged origin and its modern maturity arc such universal means of expression as can equally well connect it with almost everything else. We will therefore pass over the orthodox history of opera as traceable from the music of Greek tragedy to that of miracle-plays, and will begin with its real beginning, the first dramas that were set to music in order to be produced as musical works of art, at the beginning of the i;th century.
There seems no reason to doubt the story, given by Doni, of the meetings held byagroup of amateurs at the house of thcBardi in Florence in the last years of the i6lh century, with the object of trying experiments in emotional musical expression by the use of instruments and solo voices. Before this time there was no real opportunity for music-drama. The only high musical art of the i6th century was unaccompanied choral music: its expression was perfect within its limits, and its limits so absolutely excluded all but what may be called static or contemplative emotion that "dramatic music" was as inconceivable as "dramatic architecture." But the literary and musical dilettanti who met at the house of the Bardi were not mature musical artists; they therefore had no scruples, and their imaginations were fired by the dream of restoring the glories of Greek tragedy, especially on the side of its musical declamation. The first pioneer in the new " monodic " movement seems to have been Vincenzo Galilei, the father of Galileo. This enthusiastic amateur warbled the story of Ugolino to the accompaniment of the lute, much to the amusement of expert musicians; but he gained the respect and sympathy of those whose culture was literary rather than musical. His efforts must have been not unlike a wild caricature of Mr. W. B. Yeats's method of reciting poetry to the psaltery. The first public production in the new style was Jacopo Peri's Euridice (1600), which was followed by a less successful effort of Caccini's on the same subject. To us it is astonishing that an art so great as the polyphony of the i6th century could ever have become forgotten in a new venture so feeble in its first steps. Sir Hubert Parry has happily characterized the general effect of the new movement on contemporary imagination as something like that of laying a foundationstone—the suggestion of a vista of possibilities so inspiriting as to exclude all sense of the triviality of the present achievement. Meanwhile those composers who retained the mastery of polyphonic music tried to find a purely vocal and polyphonic solution of the problem of music-drama; and the Amfiparnasso of Orazio Vccchi (written in 1594, the year of Palestrina's death, and produced three years later) is not alone, though it is by far the most remarkable, among attempts to make a music-drama out of a scries of madrigals. From the woodcuts which adorn the first edition of the Amfiparnasso it has been conjectured that the actors sang one voice each, while the rest of the harmony was supplied by singers behind the stage1; and this may have been the case with other works of this kind. But the words of Vccchi's introductory chorus contradict this idea, for they tell the audience that "the theatre of this drama is the world" and that the spectators must " hear instead of seeing."
1 The first .story in Berlioz's Soirees d'orctiestre is about a young 16th-century genius who revolts from this practice and become* a pioneer of monody. The- picture is brilliant, though the young genius evidently learnt all his music in Paris somewhere about 18.30.
With the decadence of the madrigal, Monteverde brought a real musical power to bear on the new style. His results are now intelligible only to historians, and they seem to us artistically nugatory; but in their day they were so impressive as to render the further continuance of 16th-century choral art impossible. At the beginning of the i yth century no young musician of lively artistic receptivity could fail to be profoundly stirred by Monteverdc's Orfeo (1602), Arianna (1608) and// Combattimenlodi Tancredi e Clorinda (1624), works in which the resources of instruments 'were developed with the same archaic boldness, the same grasp of immediate emotional effect and the same lack of artistic organization as the harmonic resources. The spark of Montevcrde's genius produced in musical history a result more like an explosion than an enlightenment; and the emotional rhetoric of his art was so uncontrollable, and at the same time so much more impressive in suggestion than in realization, that we cannot be surprised that the next definite step in the history of opera took the direction of mere musical form, and was not only undramatic but anti-dramatic.
The system of free musical declamation known as recitative is said to have been used by Emilio del Cavalieri as early as 1588, and it was in the nature of things almost the only means of vocal expression conceivable by the pioneers of opera. Formal melody, such as that of popular songs, was as much beneath their dignity as it had been beneath that of tin; high art from which they revolted; but, in the absence of any harmonic system but that of the church modes, which was manifestly incapable of assimilating the new "unprepared discords," and in the utter chaos of early experiments in instrumentation, formal melody proved a godsend as the novelty of recitative faded. Tunes were soon legalized at moments of dramatic repose when it was possible for the actors to indulge in either a dance or a display of vocalization; it was in the tunes that the strong harmonic system of modern tonality took shape; and by the early days of Alessandro Scarlatti, before the end of the i?th century, the art of tune-making had perennially blossomed into the musically safe and effective form of the aria (<j.v.). From this time until the death of Handel the history of opera is simply the history of the aria; except in so far as in France, under Lully, it is also the history of ballet-music, the other main theatrical occasion for the art of tune-making. With opera before Cluck there is little interest in tracing schools and developments, for the musical art had as mechanical a connexion with drama as it had with the art of scene-painting, and neither it nor the drama which was attached to it showed any real development at all, though the librettist Metastasio presented as imposing a figure in iSth-ccntury Italian literature as Handel presented in Italian opera. Before this period of stagnation we find an almost solitary and provincial outburst of life in the wonderful patchv;ork of Purccll's art (1658-1695). Whether he is producing genuine opera (as in the unique case of Dido and Aeneas) or merely incidental music to plays (as in the so-called opera King Arthur), his deeply inspired essays in dramatic music arc no less i:itercsting in their historic isolation from everything except the influence of Luily than they are admirable as evidences of a genius which, with the opportunities of 50 years later or 150 years earlier, might assuredly have proved one of the greatest in all music. Another sign of life has been appreciated by recent research in the interesting farcical operas (mostly Neapolitan) of certain early iSth-century Italian composers (see Leo, Percolese, Logroscino), which have some bearing on the antecedents of Mozart.
The real reason for the stagnation of high opera before Gluck is (as explained in the articles Music and Sonata Forms) that the forms of music known before 1750 could not express dramatic change without losing artistic organization. The "spirit of the age " can have had little to do with the difficulty, or why should Shakespeare not have had a contemporary operatic brother-artist during the "Golden Age" of music? The opportunity for reform came with the rise of the sonata style. It was fortunate for Gluck that the music of his time was too vigorously organized to be upset by new discoveries. Gluck was
.a much greater artist than Monteverde, but he too was not overloaded with academic mastery; indeed, though historians have denied it, Monteverde was by far the better contrapuntist, and seems rather to have renounced his musical powers than to have struggled for need of them. But instead of memories of a Golden Age, Gluck had behind him 150 years of harmonic and orchestral knowledge of good and evil. He also had almost as clear a sense of symphonic form as could find scope in opera at all; and his melodic power was generally of the highest order. It is often said that his work was too far in advance of his time to establish his intended reform; and, if this means that undramatic Italian operas continued to outnumber those dramatic masterpieces which no smaller man could achieve, the statement is as true as it is of every great artist. If, however, it is taken to mean that because Mozart's triumphs do not He in serious opera he owes nothing to Gluck, then the statement is misleading (see Gluck). The influence of Gluck on Mozart was profound, not only where it is relevant to the particular type of libretto, as in Idomftieo, but also on the broad dramatic basis which includes Greek tragedy and the iSth-century comedy of manners. Mozart, whose first impulse was always to make his music coherent in itself, for some time continued to cultivate side by side with his growing polyphony and freedom of movement certain Italian formalities which, thongh musically effective and flattering to singers, were dramatically vicious. But these features, though they spoil Jdomento, correspond to much that in Gluck's operas shows mere helplessness; and in comic opera they may even become dramatically appropriate. Thus in Cosi fan tutu the florid arias in which the two heroines protest their fidelity are the arias of ladies who do protest too much; and in Die Zattberfldlt the extravagant vocal fireworks of the Queen of Night arc the displays of one who, in the words of the high priest Sarastro, "hopes to cajole the people with illusions and superstition." In the article Mozart we have discussed other evidences of his stagecraft and insight into character, talents for which his comic subjects gave him far more scope than those of classical tragedy had given to Gluck. Mozart always extracts the utmost musical effect from every situation in his absurd and often tiresome libretti (especially in vocal ensemble), while his musical effects arc always such as give dramatic life to what in other hands arc conventional musical forms. These merits would never have been gainsaid but for the violence of Wagner's earlier partisans in their revolt from the uncritical classicism of his denser and noisier opponents. Wagner himself stands as far aloof from Wagnerian Philistinism as from uncritical classicism. He was a fierce critic of social conditions and by no means incapable of hasty iconoclastic judgments; but he would have treated with scant respect the criticism that censures Mozart for superficiality in rejecting the radically unmusical element of mordant social satire which distinguishes the Figaro of Bcaumarchais from the most perfect opera in all classical music.
It cannot be said that in any high artistic sense Italian comic opera has developed continuously since Mozart. The vocal athleticism of singers; the acceptance and great development by Mozart, of what we may call symphonic (as distinguished from Handclian) forms of aria and ensemble; and the enlargement of the orchestra; these processes gave the Italian composers of Mozart's and later times prosaically golden opportunities for lifting spectators and singers to the seventh heaven of flattered vanity, while the music, in itself no less than in its relation to the drama, was steadily degraded. The decline begins with Mozart's contemporary and survivor, D. Cimarosa, whose ideas are genuine and, in the main, refined, but who lacks power and resource. Mis style was by no means debased, but it was just so slight that contemporaries found it fairly easy. His most famous work, // Malrimonio Scgrclo, is an opera bujfa which is still occasionally revived, and it is very like the sort of thing that people who despise Mozart imagine Figaro to be. Unless it is approached with sympathy, its effect after Figaro is hardly more exhilarating than that of the once pilloried spurious " Second Part " to the Pickwick Papers. But this is harsh judgment; for it proves to be a goad semi-classic as soon as we take it on its own merits.
It is far more musical, if less vivacious, than Rossini's Barbiat; isi lit decline of Italian opera is more significantly foreshadowed fa Cimarosa's other cktf-d'eanrc, the remarkable opera seria, Gi Oresi id i Cariasi. Here the arias and ensembles are serious zft, shosr'ng a pair reflection of Mozart, and not wholly without Mean's spirit i the choruses, notably the first of all, have fine moments; and the treatment of conflicting emotions at one crisis, where military music is heard behind the scenes, is masterly. Lastly, the abrupt conclusion at the moment of the catastrophe is good and was novel at the time, though it foreshadows that sacrifice of true dramatic and musical breadth to the desire for an "effective curtain," and that mortal fear of anti-climax which in classical French opera rendered a great musical finale almost impossible. But the interesting and dramatic features in Cli Oraai are unfortunately less significant historically than the vulgarity of its overture, and the impossibility, after the beautiful opening chorus, of tracing any unmistakably tragic style in the whole work except by the negative sign of dullness.
Before Cimarosa's overwhelming successor Rossini had retired from his indolent career, these tendencies had already reduced both composers and spectators to a supreme indifference to the raood of the libretto, an indifference far more fatal than mere inattention to the plot. Nobody cares to follow the plot of Mozart's Figaro; but then no spectator of Beaumarchais's M:riag! de Figaro is prevented by the intricacy of its plot from enjoying it as a play. In both cases we arc interested in the character-drawing and in each situation as it arises; and we do no justice to Mozart's music when we forget th;s interest, even ia cases where the libretto has none of the literary merit that survives in the transformation of Beaumarchais's comedy into an Italian libretto. But with the Rossinian decline all charitable scruples of criticism are misplaced, for Italian opera once more t -came as purely a pantomimic concert as in the Handelian period; and we must not ignore the difference that it was now a concert of very vulgar music, the vilencss of which was only aggravated by the growing range and interest of dramatic subjects. The best that can be said in defence of it was that the vulgarity wasnot pretentious and unhealthy, like Meyerbeer's; indeed, if the famous "Mad Scene" in Donizetti's Lucia di Lsstmermwr had only been meant to be funny it would not ksve been vulgar at all. Occasionally the drama pierced through lie empty breeziness of the music; and so the spirit of Shakespeare, even when smothered in an Italian libretto unsuccessfully set to music by Rossini, proved so powerful that one spectator of Rossini's Oictto is recorded to have started out of his seat at the catastrophe, exclaiming "Good Heavens! the tenor is amrdcring the soprano!" And in times of political unrest more than one opera became as dangerous as an over-censored theatre could make it. An historical case in point is brilliantly described in George Meredith's Viltoria. But what has this to do with the progress of music? The history of Italian opera from after its culmination in Mozart to its subsidence on the big drum amd cymbals of the Rossinians is the history of a protected industry. Verdi's art, both in its burly youth and in i's shrewd old age, is far more the crown of his native genius than of bis native traditions; and, though opinions differ as la the spontaneity and depth of the change, the paradox is true that the YVagnerization of Verdi was the musical emancipation of Italy.
After Mozart the next step in the development of true operatic art was neither Italian nor German, but French. The French mx of dramatic fitness had a wonderfully stimulating effect spon every foreign composer who came to France. Rossini himself, in Gaillaume Tell, was electrified into a dramatic and CTchestral life of an incomparably higher order than the rollicking rattle of serious and comic Italian opera in its decline. He was in (he prime of life when he wrote it, but it exhausted him and *as practically his last important work, though he lived to a cheerful old age. The defects of its libretto were grave, but he cade unprecedented efforts to remedy them, and finally succeeded, at the cost of an entire act. The experience was very l; for, from the time of Gluck onwards, while it
cannot be denied that native and naturalized French operatic art has suffered from many forms of musical and dramatic debasement, we may safely say that no opera has met with success in France that is without theatrical merit. And the French contribution to musical history between Gluck and Rossini is of great nobility. If Cherubmi and Mi'hul had had Cluck's melodic power, the classics of French opera would have been the greatest achievements in semi-tragic music-drama before Wagner. As it is, their austerity is not that of the highest classics. It is negative, and tends to cxcludeoutwardattractivcness rather because it cannot achieve it than because it contains all things in due proportion. Be this as it may, Cherubini had a real influence on Beethoven; not to mention that the libretti of Fidelia and Les Deux journies were originally by the same author, though Fidelia underwent great changes in translation and revision. It is impossible to say what French opera might have done for music through Beethoven if Fidelia had not remained his solitary (because very nearly unsuccessful) operatic monument; but there is no doubt as to its effect on Weber, whose two greatest works, Der Freischittz and Euryanthe, are two giant strides from Cherubini to Wagner. Euryanthe is in respect of Leit-malif (see below) almost more Wagnerian than Lohengrin, Wagner's fourth published opera. It failed to make an epoch in history because of its dreary libretto, to which, however, the highly dramatic libretto of Loltengrin owes a surprising number of points.
The libretti of classical opera set too low a literary standard to induce critics to give sufficient attention to their aesthetic bearings; and perhaps the great scholar Otto Jahn is the only writer who has applied a first-rate literary analysis to the subject (see his Life of Mozart}; a subject which, though of great importance to music, has, like the music itself, been generally thrust into the background by the countless externals that give theatrical works and institutions a national or political importance independent of artistic merit and historical development. Much that finds prominent place in the orthodox history of opera is really outside the scope of musical and dramatic discussion; and it may therefore be safely left to be discovered under non-musical headings elsewhere in this Encyclopaedia. Even when what passes for operatic history has a more real connexion with the art than the history of locomotion has with physical science, the importance of the connexion is often overrated. For example, much has been said as to the progress in German opera from the choice of remote subjects like Mozart's Dit Enlfillirurtg aus Jem Serail to the choice of a subject so thoroughly German as Der Freischilt:: but this is only part of the general progress made, chiefly in France, towards the choice of romantic instead of classical subjects. Whatever the intrinsic interest of musical ethnology, and whatever light it may throw upon the reasons why an art will develop and decline sooner in one country than in another, racial character will not suffice to produce an art for which no technique as yet exists. Nor will it suffice in any country to check the development or destroy the value of an art of which the principles were developed elsewhere. No music of Mozart's time could have handled Weber's romantic subjects, and all the Teutonism in history could not have prevented Mozart from adopting and developing those Italian methods that gave him scope. Again, in the time of Lully, who was the contemporary of Molierc, the French genius of stagecraft was devoted to reducing opera to an effective series of ballets; yet so little did this hamper composers of real dramatic power that Quinault's libretto to Lully's very successful Armide served Gluck unaltered for one of his greatest works 90 years later. If Lully owes so little to Cambcrt as to be rightly entitled the founder of French opera, if Gluck is a greater reformer than his predecessor Ramcau, if Cherubini is a more powerful artist than Mehul, and if, lastly, Meyerbeer developed the vices of the French histrionic machinery with a plausibility which has never been surpassed, then we must reconcile our racial theories with the historic process by which the French Grand Opera, one of the most pronounced national types in all music, was founded by an Italian Jew, reformed by an Austrian,