First name

Text source

Tobias Hume, (b.1569, d. London 16 April 1645). Sometimes erroneously described as an 'English' composer, Hume was a Scotsman who is best known for his musical compositions, but who also apparently served as an officer in the Swedish and Russian armies. Wikland notes him as a 'mercenary' in Karl IX of Sweden's service from 1598-1600, as noted in Duke Karl's (later Karl IX of Sweden) accounts and also in the National Archives at Kew in the document "The Humble Petition of Captayne Humes". On 15 December 1600 Karl IX awarded Hume 40 daler, but no mention was made of military service. This seems to have been the extent of Hume's foreign service as his reputation is that of a player of the viola da gamba and publisher of musical pieces.

He appears to have been in Denmark already in 1600 as reference is made to him there by another British Isles expatriate then in Stockholm (see John Coote [SSNE 7782]), which involved a quarrel amongst some English entertainers/musicians in Karl IX's service.

On 3 April 1606 it is noted in Queen Anna of Denmark's (James VI and I's wife) Declared Accounts under gifts and awards that: "Tobias Hume a Scottish Musicon in reward from her Ma.tie according to her Highnes pleasure signifiied by Daniell Bachelor". However, the sum is missing. And two years later, on 6 June 1607 it is noted: "Tobias Hume a Musicon that dedicated a booke unto her Maiestie in reward from her highnes for the same according to her highnes comandment and pleasure [by warrant, 6 June 1607] 100s. [Captain Humes Poeticall Musicke... 1607 was dedicated to Queen Anne]. He played the viol and entered Charterhouse almshouse in London in 1629. His two published lyra viol tablatures (1605, 1607) contain all his known works - dances, descriptive and programatic pieces and songs."

Between 1629-45 Hume was a poor brother of the Charter House in London. He presented the House of Lords with a 'True Petition of Colonel Hume' in 1642, implying that he would provide military service against 'Irish rebels' - but this was only three years before Hume's death and it is uncertain how fit or able he was at this time.



Stockholmsstads Tankebocker, del III, pp.93-4; Records of English Court Music, vol. IV, ed. Andrew Ashbee, (Kent, 1991), pp.197, 198; Stanley Sadie, ed., The Grove Concise Dictionary of Music (MacMillan, 1994), p.378. See SC6/Jas.I/1646 Declared Accounts of Sir George Carew, Receiver General to Queen Anne for one year ending at Michaelmas 1605; SC6/Jas.I/1648 Declared Account of Sir George Carew receiver General to Queen Anne, for one year ending at Michaelmas 1607; Erik Wikland, Elizabethan Players in Sweden 1591-2 &c. 2nd ed., (Stockholm: Almqvist&Wiksell, 1971), pp.101, 103-7.

Service record

Departed 1600-12-15, as CAPTAIN
Capacity OFFICER, purpose MILITARY
Departed 1629-12-31