A Dictionary of Music and Musicians/Abbé, Philippe and Pierre

1501322A Dictionary of Music and Musicians — Abbé, Philippe and PierreThomas Percy Hudson

ABBÉ, Philippe Pierre de St. Sevin and Pierre de St. Sevin, two brothers, violoncellists, were music-masters of the parish church of Agen early in the last century. It seems doubtful whether they were actually ordained priests, or merely in consequence of their office had to wear the ecclesiastical dress. From this circumstance however they received the name of Abbé l'ainé—or simply l'Abbé—and l'Abbé cadet, respectively. They gave up their connection with the church and went to Paris, where they obtained engagements at the Grand Opera. They were both excellent players, but the younger brother seems to have been the more celebrated of the two, and to have been specially remarkable for his beautiful tone. It is said to have been owing in great measure to the impression produced by his playing that the viola di gamba more and more fell into disuse and the violoncello was more extensively introduced. (Batistin.)