chapter  1
11 Pages

The Invisible Man

ByKatharine Ellis

Auguste Pecoul, born at the family seat of Villiers, at Draveil, came from Provençal high-bourgeois Catholic stock, the family having since the eighteenth century made its fortune in the Martinique sugar and rum trades. It is possible that in the 1960s Combe could not be sure of Pecoul's early, and positive, involvement with the campaign to promote Solesmes chant, but equally likely that he had no wish to look very hard for proof. Modern accounts from non-Benedictine sources fall into three main categories: medieval studies; musicological studies of changing chant practice in the nineteenth century; and pedagogical studies disseminating the Solesmes method. Dom Joseph Pothier sent the text to Pecoul to adapt as he pleased, and Pecoul published the result under his favourite nom de plume. The two were thus a doubly-invisible journalistic team.