Born 1800 Died 1880
Sir John Goss was born at Fareham, Hampshire, on the 27th of December 1800. He was elected a chorister of the Chapel Royal in 1811, and in 1816, on the breaking of his voice, became a pupil of Attwood. A few early compositions, some for the theatre, exist, and some glees were published before 1825.
He was appointed organist of St Lukes, Chelsea, in 1824, and in 1838 became organist of St Pauls in succession to Attwood; he kept the post until 1872, when he resigned and was knighted. His position in the London musical world of the time was an influential one, and he did much by his teaching and criticism to encourage the study and appreciation of good music. In 1876 he was given the degree of Mus.D. at Cambridge.
Though his few orchestral works have very small importance, his church music includes some fine compositions, such as the anthems O taste and see, O Saviour of the world and others. He was the last of the great English school of church composers who devoted themselves almost exclusively to church music; and in the history of the glee his is an honored name, if only on account of his finest work in that form, the five-part glee, Ossian's Hymn to the sun.
He died at Brixton, London, on the 10th of May 1880.
Being the entry for GOSS, SIR JOHN in the 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica, the text of which lies within the public domain.