This is not to say that Carey thought ill of Italian music, per se. Contemporary accounts, including Carey’s own poems, reveal his high opinion of Handel and others who composed in the Italian style. Rather, Carey’s literary barbs were directed toward his English brothers and sisters who were all too swift to support Italian opera and Italian singers at the expense of English music and musicians. Carey spent much of his career addressing this cultural issue from a variety of creative vantage points: prose, song texts, original melodies, Italian-style cantatas, burlesques of Italian operatic style, and anonymous commentaries. This essay will consider Carey’s Three Burlesque Cantatas, which were specifically intended to satirize everyday occurrences in 18th-century London and, in particular, that city’s infatuation with Italian musical conventions. {3} During the 1720s and ‘30s, Henry Carey was a major

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Copyright © 2012 University of California, Los Angeles. This article first appeared in ECHO: A Music-Centered Journal 10:1 (2012), 1-12.

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