Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Linley, Francis

LINLEY, FRANCIS (1774–1800), organist and composer, was born at Doncaster (Grove) in 1774. Though blind from his birth he received a good education, and studied music under Dr. Miller of Doncaster. About 1790 Linley held the post of organist at St. James's Chapel, Pentonville, London. In 1796 he bought the business of Bland, music-seller in Holborn, but his affairs, commercial and domestic—he had married a blind lady—did not prosper. He went to America and remained there several years, returning to England in 1799, and died, aged 26, at his mother's house at Doncaster on 15 Sept. 1800.

Linley's compositions and compilations include: 1. ‘Three Sonatas for Pianoforte and Flute,’ Op. 1 (Fétis). 2. ‘Thirty Familiar Airs for two German Flutes,’ with prefatory remarks, about 1790. 3. ‘Three Solos for the German Flute, with Accompaniment for Violoncello.’ 4. ‘Through Groves and Flowery Fields,’ ‘When Angry Nations,’ and other songs. 5. ‘Practical Introduction to the Organ,’ in five parts, Opus 6, of which the 12th edition appeared about 1810; it contains a description of the organ, fifteen preludes, eight voluntaries, eight full pieces, eight fugues, and psalms.

[Dict. of Musicians, 1827, ii. 71; Grove's Dict. ii. 143, iv. 701; Fétis's Biographie, v. 312; Gent. Mag. 1800, ii. 1006; Caulfield's Portraits, i. 25; Georgian Era, iv. 548.]

L. M. M.