Jacques Gaultier

late 16th c - before 1660

French lutenist and composer, sometimes known as Gautier d´Angleterre; he was probably not related to Denis and Ennemond Gaultier nor to Pierre Gaultier (I) and certainly not to Pierre Gaultier (II). He left France in 1617 after beeing involved in a murder and fled to England, where he was attached to the court from 1625.
He is mentioned in court records until about 1640, and his post was given to another at the Restoration in 1660. In 1627 he was imprisoned in the Tower of London and tortured for making scandalous remarks about King Charles I, his patron the Duke of Buckingham and Queen Henrietta Maria, whom he taught the lute.
He seems to have been restored to favour by about 1630, when he sat for the portraitist Lievens, probably at court. He went to the Netherlands in 1630 and later to Madrid, where he performed before the court; he may at that time have been Van Dyck´s model for a portrait now in the Prado. He took part in the masque The Triumph of Peace in 1634 and in Britannia triumphans in 1637. Contemporaries praised his brilliant, accurate and smooth playing; for example Constantijn Huygens, who corresponded with him, complimented his playing in 1622. A few of Gaultier´s compositions are found in manuscripts ( at D-ROu and GB-En).
Monique Rollin
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