Each gild numbered various classes of members, ranging from beginners, or Schiller (corresponding to trade-apprentices), and Schulfreunde (who were equivalent to Gesellen or journeymen), to Meister, a Meister being a poet who was not merely able to write new verses to existing melodies but had himself invented a new melody.
Toute la lyre, his latest legacy to the world, would be enough, though no other evidence were left, to show that the author was one of the very greatest among poets and among men; unsurpassed in sublimity of spirit, in spontaneity of utterance, in variety of power, and in perfection of workmanship; infinite and profound beyond all reach of praise at once in thought and in sympathy, in perception and in passion; master of all the simplest as of all the subtlest melodies or symphonies of song that ever found expression in a Border ballad or a Pythian ode.
Although he had not been scientifically trained in music, he composed melodies for many of his songs, and a considerable number of them are sung by all classes in every part of Germany.
The vale would doubtless rank only as one among the many beautiful glens of the district, but that it has obtained a lasting celebrity through one of the Irish Melodies of the poet Thomas Moore, in which its praises are sung.
But music has also other ends and uses, and on the whole four; namely amusement, virtue, occupation and purgation of the affections; for some men are liable more than others to pity and fear and enthusiasm, but from sacred melodies we see them, when they have heard those which act orgiastically on the soul, becoming settled by a kind of medicine and purgation (teapo - cs), and being relieved with pleasure.
Michael Grabowski (1805-1863) belongs also to this school by his fine Melodies of the Ukraine (1828).
Haydn finds the pianoforte so completely capable of expressing his meaning that he is at a loss to find independent material for any accompanying instruments; and the violoncello in his trios has, except perhaps in four passages in the whole collection of thirty-three works, not a note to play that is not already in the bass of the pianoforte; while the melodies of the violin are, more often than not, doubled in the treble.
I used to have time to think, to reflect, my mind and I. We would sit together of an evening and listen to the inner melodies of the spirit, which one hears only in leisure moments when the words of some loved poet touch a deep, sweet chord in the soul that until then had been silent.
Haydn's numerous examples of independent violoncello melodies are almost all either marked solo or written for such small orchestras that they would be played as solos.
Of considerable merit are also the sacred lyrical melodies of Paul Radai in his Lelki hodolds (Spiritual Homage), published at Debreczen in 1715.