IN the oft-quoted Addendum to Morley Plaine and Easie Introduction to Practicall Musicke, in 1597, among the names of the Early Tudor 'Practitioners' pride of place is given to 'Mr. Pashe'. It is to be observed that in Morley's list the name of 'Mr.' or 'Master' is given to Pasche, Byrd, Tallis, White, Parsons, Wilkinson, Sturton, and Risby, showing that these were 'Masters of Arts', or else outstanding 'Masters of Musicke'. Thus, the reputation of Master Pasche must have been very great, even among a race of giants.
The name Pashe or Pasche-also written Passhe-occurs under Henry VI, Edward IV, and Henry VII, and we find a Master Thomas Pasche as Prebendary of Windsor from 1449 to 1474, he being also sub-almoner to King Henry VI. Possibly this Canon of Windsor was an uncle or relative of William Pasche.
Biographical data, up to the present, as to William Pasche may be described as nil, and the only information to be found in the new edition of Mr. Henry Davey History of English Music ( 1921) is one solitary sentence as follows:
William Pashe (Pasche) may have been the Pashe whose will was proved in 1525; but I should have supposed his period rather earlier, perhaps 1430-1500.
Let me here say at once that William Pasche was the Pashe whose will was proved in 1525; and his period was not so early as ' 1430-1500', but probably from 1460-1515. Yet though scanty details are forthcoming of Pasche's biography, we are fortunate in having ample evidence of his musical powers. Admirable specimens of his gifts are to be found at Cambridge--namely, at Caius and St. John's, at Peterhouse, and at the University Library. The musical manuscripts at St. John's and Cambridge