Henry Purcell was an English composer of the middle Baroque period. He is best known for his more than 100 works, Dido and Aeneas, a dramatic ballet, and the Fairy Queen's incidental music variation of Shakespeare's A Midsummer Night's Dream. Purcell, the most popular English composer of his day, wrote music for the chapel, theater, court, and private entertainment. In all of these areas of composition, he displayed an evident appreciation for the past and a desire to learn from the present, especially from his Italian contemporaries. Person inventiveness followed his mental alertness, identifying him as the most original English composer of his day and one of the most original in Europe.
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