Most of our modern Western institutions and precepts – democracy, individualism, subjectivity, secularism, science, the nation state and the modern apparatus of war – began to germinate in the ‘long’ eighteenth century. In musical life too these were formative years. The emergence of the canon, with the associated idea of the musical ‘work’, was one such development. The rise of the virtuoso and the transformation of audiences from unwieldy and fitfully attentive to enthralled, disciplined and devout, two more. And with these developments, music’s role as a medium of social differentiation was both enhanced and qualitatively revised.