Courteville, Raphael (or Ralph)
b London c1675–76, d 1735. A Chapel Royal chorister who in 1691, aged 15, became a notable organist, and the first, of St James’ Westminster (Piccadilly). It was thought at one time that he served in that capacity for over 80 years (possible but unlikely); while there are confused and confusing accounts, it seems probable that Raphael, already bearing the same name as his father, was succeeded by his son, a third Raphael, who died in 1772. The two organists probably gave a combined concert in 1720; the uncertainty remains, but a deputy was appointed from 1753. In 1697 RC senr published Select Psalms and Hymns for the Use of the Parish of St James’ Westminster; 2 dozen other songs are definitely his. (His son’s firmly pro-government politics were expressed in The Gazetteer, a journal he edited, defending the Walpole administration and earning him the nickname ‘Court-Evil’; he wrote Memoirs of Lord Burleigh and composed sonatas for violin and flute, songs and other church music.) See also the entry in Grove. No.933.