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Gorham Collection of Early Music Imprints

Please note: this Web page is undergoing revision.

In November 1998, the Creative Arts Section of the Brandeis University Libraries created the Walter F. and Alice Gorham Collection of Early Music Imprints, 1501-1650. This collection is partly supported by the generous funding of the Walter F. and Alice Gorham Endowed Collection in Music, and is established as part of a National Endowment for the Humanities Challenge Grant in association with the Brandeis University National Committee (formerly the Brandeis University National Women's Committee). The Benefactors Fund of the Brandeis National Committee has also supported the acquisition of some of the Gorham materials. The Gorham Collection is housed in the Special Collections Department of the Brandeis University Libraries. The establishment of this collection was inspired by former Brandeis Music Department Professor Jessie Ann Owens and overseen and developed by Darwin F. Scott, Assistant Director for Research and Instruction, Creative Arts and Humanities, and from 1995-2007, the Creative Arts Librarian.

The Gorham Collection consists of the original imprints of music or books on or related to music published between 1501 and 1650, a golden age of music printing and publishing. Professor Owens specializes in the music from this period, including the works of Josquin des Prez (d. 1521), Cipriano de Rore (1515 or 1516-1565), Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (1525?-1594), and Orlando di Lasso (1532-1594); music theory (particularly the use of modes in polyphonic music); the rapid economic development of music publishing and marketing during the sixteenth century; and the process by which composers actually composed their music during this time. She was awarded an ASCAP-Deems Taylor Award for her book Composers at Work: The Craft of Musical Composition, 1450-1600 (New York: Oxford University Press, 1997; paperback edition 1998) and has gone on to research a study of music theory during the English Renaissance. Professor Owens delighted in centering her graduate seminars around actual publications from the period. After Professor Owens left Brandeis in 2005, other instructors have made use of the Gorham materials for research and instruction, most recently Sarah Mead, director of the Brandeis Collegium musicum. During the past ten years, the Gorham and Benefactors funds have provided the funds to purchase these rare materials in their original forms, which are now difficult to locate on the antiquarian book market and inevitably quite costly. Music students and scholars can learn much from examining these rare imprints from the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries as well as revel in the fascination of leafing through and studying old books--a learning experience that no facsimile, reprint, or scanned computer image, no matter how finely rendered, can reproduce. In particular, these rare books and scores enable the close study of the edition as a physical and historical object by allowing scholars to examine contemporary binding practices, paper, variations in press runs, printing corrections, marginalia and other jottings by previous owners, and a myriad of other intriguing details. Brandeis University has been fortunate indeed to have had the funds available to develop such a rich and specialized collection. We hope that future support for additional acquisitons will be forthcoming.

To date, the Walter F. and Alice Gorham Collection of Early Music Imprints, 1501-1650 comprises 51 editions published between 1501 and 1626.

Sources Cited in This Inventory

Agee Agee, Richard J. The Gardano Music Printing Firms, 1569-1611. (Eastman Studies in Music). Rochester, NY: University of Rochester Press, 1998.
Creative Arts Reference ML 145 .G25 A33 1998
Lewis Lewis, Mary S. Antonio Gardano, Venetian Music Printer, 1538-1569: A Descriptive Bibliography and Historical Study. 3 vols. (Garland Reference Library of the Humanities, 718-19). New York: Garland Publishing, 1988-97; New York: Routledge, 2005. Vol. 1: 1538-49; vol. 2: 1550-59; vol. 3: 1560-69.
Creative Arts Reference ML 145 .G26 L5 1988
RISM A/1

Einzeldrucke vor 1800, ed. Karlheinz Schlager, etc. 15 vols. (Répertoire international des sources musicales [RISM], ser. A, pt. 1). Kassel: Bärereiter, 1971-2003.
Creative Arts Reference ML 113 .I6 sec. A v. 1

RISM B/1
Recueils imprimés xvie-xviie siècles, ed. François Lesure. 2 vols. (Répertoire international des sources musicales [RISM], ser. B, pt. 1). Kassel: Bärereiter, 1960-.
Creative Arts Reference ML 113 .I6 sec. B v. 1
RISM B/6
Écrits imprimés concernant la musique, ed. François Lesure. 2 vols. (Répertoire international des sources musicales [RISM], ser. B, pt. 6). Kassel: Bärereiter, 1971.
Creative Arts Reference ML 113 .I6 sec. B v. 6
Vogel
Bibliografia della musica italiana vocale profana
Weaver
Weaver, Robin Lee. A Descriptive Bibliographical Catalog of the Music Printed by Hubert Waelrant and Jan de Laet. (Detroit Studies in Music Bibliography, 73). Warren, MI: Harmonie Park Press, 1994.
Creative Arts Reference ML 145 .W26 B4 1994.



Acquisitions in Fall-Spring 2001-02

[Interim description of purchases]

With the acquisition of nine important imprints dating from 1538 to 1612, good fortune continued to shine upon the Gorham Collection during the 2001-02 academic year.

Compendium musices confectum ad faciliorem instructionem cantum choralem discentium: necnon ad introductionem huius libelli: qui Cantorinus intitulatur: omnibus divino cultui deditis perutilis et necessarius: ut in tabula hic immediate sequenti latius apparet. Venetiis: Sub signo Agnus Dei [colophon: Apud Petrum Liechtenstein Coloniensem Germanum], 1538. RISM B/VI, p. 926. [A musical compendium assembled for the more straightforward teaching of plainchant to pupils, and also as an introduction to the little book that follows, which is entitled the Cantorinus--very useful and necessary for everyone devoted to divine worship, as is more fully apparent from the table of contents immediately following].

An exquisite little book in two parts (with a full-page, red-and-black printer's mark on the final page): an introductory brief treatise on how to perform plainchant (the Compendium musices, 32 unnumbered pp.) and a collection of the most commonly sung plainchants for the church year (the Cantorinus, 88 ff.) printed in black neumatic notation on red staff lines, with text in red and black inks. The chants reflect the usage at the German College in Rome before the reformations of the Council of Trent. The first edition was published in 1513 (Venice: Lucantonio Giunta) and is held by numerous libraries. The 1538 edition by Pietro Liechtenstein is much rarer, however, with only two other copies recorded in North America (Houghton Library, Harvard University and the Library of Congress).

Orlando di Lasso. Selectissimae cantiones, quas vulgo motetas vocant, partim omnino novae, partim nusquam in Germania excusae, quinque et quatour vocibus compositae. Quintus partbook. Nuremberg: Theodor Gerlach, 1568. RISM L 816.

This is the first edition of Lasso's four- and five-voice motets published under the title Selectissimae cantiones (The choicest sacred songs, which are commonly called motets, partly altogether new, partly never before printed in Germany ) published by Dietrich (Theodor) Gerlach (d. 1575), who married Catharina Berg, the widow of the printer Johann Berg, in 1565. Brandeis University now holds the only recorded North-American copy of a partbook from this 1568 edition. In 1579, Catharina Gerlach published an expanded version of the 1568 collection (Altera pars selectissimarum cantionum. . . ; RISM L 916), reissuing it in 1587 (RISM L 977). Brandeis also owns a copy of the alto partbook from this edition (see description below).

A tract volume bound in 1574 of six deluxe, quarto-sized, altus partbooks published in Venice by Antonio Gardano between 1559 and 1568 (the binding is stamped ALTVS 1574). The publications include:

Pietro Giovanelli, comp. Novi [atque catholici] thesauri musici liber primus [-liber quintus] quo selectissime planeque nove, nec unquam in lucem edite cantiones sacre (quas vulgo moteta vocant) continentur octo, septem, sex, quinque ac quatuor vocum. . . . : Venice: Antonio Gardano, 1568. RISM B/1, 15681-15686. 5 vols. Altus partbooks.

Adrian Willaert. Musica nova. Venice: Antonio Gardano, 1559. RISM W 1126; Lewis no. 254 (2:397-406).

Adrian Willaert's monumental collection of motets and madrigals, the Musica nova, is one of the most important music publications of the Renaissance and attained an almost legendary status by the end of the sixteenth century. Subsidized by Duke Alfonso d'Este, Gardano's impressive publication, issued in an unusual upright quarto partbook format in 1559, includes a portrait of the composer and presents Willaert's music in a beautiful newly designed typeface with a fresh set of historiated initials. Gardano reused this typeface and format in 1568 to print the five books of Pietro Giovanelli's lavish compilation of motets, the Novi thesauri musici (The first [second-fifth] book of a new [and Catholic] musical thesaurus in which are contained the choicest and entirely new never before brought-to-light [i.e. published] sacred songs (whcih are commonly called motets) for eight, seven, six, five, and four voices), dedicated to (and subsidized by) the new Hapsburg emperor Maximilian II (r. 1564-76). Giovanelli, an Italian merchant and amateur musician in residence at the Hapsburg court in Vienna, assembled 257 motets by thirty-two composers working within the orbit of Maximilian and his brothers, archdukes Ferdinand and Karl. The first volume includes woodcuts of Maximilian's father Ferdinand I, plus the coats of arms of Maximilian and the two archdukes, and elegiaic couplets by court poet Wolfgang Piringer. Among the composers are Josquin Desprez, Orlando di Lasso, Giaches de Wert, Andrea Gabrieli, Orlando di Lasso, Jacob Regnart , Jacobus Vaet, and Giaches de Wert.
Brandeis University now holds the second recorded North-American copy of a partbook from the Musica nova (the other is at the University of California, Berkeley). Three other recorded copies of the Giovanelli are in North America (Baldwin Wallace College, UC Berkeley, and the Library of Congress). It is particularly appropriate for the Brandeis University Libraries to acquire a Gardano edition in light of Brandeis alumna Mary S. Lewis's (Ph.D. 1979) three-volume definitive catalog of the publications issued by Antonio Gardano (see sources cited).

Acquisition in June 2001

[Interim description of a purchase]


Three Acquisitions in Spring 2001

[Interim description of purchases]

Three purchases made in the spring of 2001 have added two treatises and a liturgical book to the Brandeis University Libraries' Walter F. and Alice Gorham Collection of Early Music Imprints, 1501-1650, housed in the library's Department of Special Collections.

Lodovico Zacconi. Practica di musica seconda parte. Divisa, e distinta in quattro libri. . . . In Venetia: appresso Alessandro Vincenti, 1622. RISM B/VI, p. 904.

Copies of the second part of Zacconi's comprehensive treatise on singing, musical composition, and counterpoint (with an abundance of musical examples) are rare, and the only other recorded copy in North America is held by Rutgers University.

Gioseffo Zarlino. Le istitutioni harmoniche, . . . nelle quali, oltra le materie appartenenti alla musica, si trovano dichiarati molti luoghi di poeti, d'historici, et di filosofi. . . . In Venetia: appresso Francesco Senese, 1562 (reissue of the 1561 edition). RISM B/VI, p. 908.

While copies of the second printing of Zarlino's fundamental treatise on music theory and the practice of musical composition are widely held by North American and European libraries, the copy obtained by Brandeis University is made unique and particularly intriguing by the 96 (out of 347) pages that bear marginal annotations in at least two hands from the late sixteenth or early seventeenth centuries (some struck out in the same brown ink) - thus recording nearly contemporaneous responses to Zarlino's observations. The Brandeis copy comes from the library of the Italian composer Gualfardo Bercanovich (1840-1908), a well-known theoretician and singing teacher who had all of his books identically bound--which in the case of the Zarlino volume, cut away the last letters of the marginalia during the trimming. The skilled eyes and imagination of a musicologist well versed in reading late sixteenth-century Italian handwriting will be needed to complete the words and to decipher the annotations.

Gesualdo Partbooks

[Interim description of a purchase]

In March 2000, the Brandeis University Libraries purchased an important collection of six partbooks of madrigals by Carlo Gesualdo (ca. 1561-1613). Bound together in contemporary vellum and inscribed with the title "Principe del Venosa" in an early hand, the collection includes the altus partbooks of all six books of Gesualdo's five-voice madrigals in the following imprints:

Madrigali del Venosa a cinque voci. Libro primo. Tertia impressione. In Venetia: Stampa del Gardano; appresso Bartholomeo Magni, 1616. RISM G1724; Vogel 1156.

Madrigali del Venosa a cinque voci. Libro secondo. Terzia impressione. In Venetia: Stampa del Gardano; appresso Bartholomeo Magni, 1617. RISM G1729; Vogel 1161.

Madrigali a cinque voci del Venosa. Libro terzo. Novamente ristampato. In Venetia: Appresso Angelo Gardano, & Fratelli, 1611. 22 p. RISM G1733; Vogel 1166; Aigee, p. 338.

Madrigali a cinque voci del Venosa. Libro quarto. Novamente ristampato. In Venetia: Appresso Angelo Gardano, & Fratelli, 1611. RISM G1737; Vogel 1170; Aigee, p. 338.

Madrigali a cinque voci libro quinto del Prencipe di Venosa. Dedicati al molto illustre signor Alfonso Strozzi. Con privilegio. In Venetia: Stampa del Gardano, [Ære Bartholomei Magni], 1614. RISM G1740; Vogel 1173.

Del Prencipe di Venosa Madrigali a cinque voci. Libro sesto. Novamente stampati. In Venetia: Stampa del Gardano, appresso Bartholomeo Magni, 1616. 24 p. RISM G1742; Vogel 1176.

Although copies of the many early editions of books 1-6 are widely held by European libraries, this newly acquired Brandeis collection marks the only recorded copies in the United States of alto partbooks for any of the imprints of Gesualdo's six books of five-voice madrigals. Identical imprints of the superius and quintus partbooks in bound collections are found in the Col. Frank V. de Bellis Collection at San Francisco State University Library. Harvard University's Houghton Library holds an almost identical bound compilation of tenor partbooks (with the 1619 rather than 1611 edition of book 3).

Partbooks of Sacred Polyphony

Giovanni Battista Biondi (Cesena). Li salmi sacri a sei voci, che si cantano alli Vespri nelle solennità di tutto l'anno, commodissimi per cantare, & suonare con ogni sorte di stromenti. Con il basso generale per suonare nell'organo, opera XVI. Novamente composti & dati in luce da F. Gio. Battista Cesena, minore osservante. In Venetia: appresso Giacomo Vincenti, 1615. Canto partbook only. RISM A/1 BB 2718a.

Giovanni Battista Biondi (fl. 1605-1630), a friar of the Minorite order, was often referred to as Cesena (as on the title page to his Salmi sacri a sei voci) after his birthplace in Italy. He was a prolific composer of church music, publishing some nineteen volumes of sacred music between 1605 and 1630 (the 1630 Salmi intieri concertati a quattro voci is labeled op. 19; Biondi began assigning opus nos. with 11 in 1609). All of his works contain parts for the basso continuo, and reflect the styles of church music developing in Italy during the early decades of the seventeenth century under Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643), Lodovico Viadana (ca. 1560-1627), and many others. Curiuously, Biondi appears never to have held a church post. He was living in Bologna before 1606 and at Brisighella, near Faenza, in 1610, and may have died in 1630 from the plague (see Grove Music Online; op. 16 is missing from the works list).The dedication to Don Gieranimo Costalbono of Verona in the Salmi sacri a sei voci bears the inscription "from Venice, June  6, 1615."

The Salmi sacri a sei voci contains nineteen individual settings of Vesper psalms sung throughout the church year, ending with two settings of the Magnificat (primi toni and sexti toni a dialogo), and complements the composer's two books of Vesper psalms for four voices (1606 and 1609, op. 11) and five voices (1606 and 1610, op. 13), Alas, Biondi's Salmi sacri a sei voci survives incomplete, with only another copy of the canto partbook in the Archivio dell' Annunziata in Florence and a copy of the tenore partbook in Siena's Biblioteca dell'Accademia Musicale Chigiana. Partbooks for the other four voices as well as the basso continuo (organo) are lost

In November 1999, The Brandeis University Libraries purchased two remarkable track volumes of nineteen partbooks published between 1555 and 1589, thus greatly enhancing the scope and importance of the then recently established Walter F. and Alice Gorham Collection of Early Music Imprints, 1501-1650. Compiled and bound in southern Germany in the late sixteenth century into two composite volumes, the editions are splendidly preserved in their original decorative tooled bindings inscribed with the dates 1571 and 1592 on their respective front covers.

The hefty superius volume of 1571 comprises sixteen partbooks, offering a rich compendium of motets and other sacred pieces by numerous composers and published by several important printing establishments in the Netherlands, Germany, and Italy. The volume includes the superius or cantus partbooks of the following sixteen editions.

Six anthologies of motets compiled and published by Hubert Waelrant:

(1) Hubert Waelrant, comp. Sacrarum cantionum (vulgo hodie moteta vocant) quatuor vocum, ad veram harmoniam concentumque ab optimis quibusque musicis, in philomusorum gratiam compositarum, liber primus. Antwerp: Hubert Waelrant & Jan de Laet, [1556]. RISM B/1 [1556]4, Weaver no. 10.

(2) Hubert Waelrant, comp. Sacrarum cantionum . . . quatuor vocum . . . liber secundus (Antwerp: Hubert Waelrant & Jan de Laet, [1556]), RISM [1556]5, Weaver no. 12.

(3) Hubert Waelrant, comp. Sacrarum cantionum . . . quinque et sex vocum . . . liber tertius (Antwerp: Hubert Waelrant & Jan de Laet, 1555), RISM 15557, Weaver no. 5.

(4) Hubert Waelrant, comp. Sacrarum cantionum . . . quinque et sex vocum . . . liber quartus. Antwerp: Hubert Waelrant & Jan de Laet, 1556), RISM 15566, Weaver no. 9.

(5) Hubert Waelrant, comp. Sacrarum cantionum . . . quinque et sex vocum . . . liber quintus (Antwerp: Hubert Waelrant & Jan de Laet, [1556]), RISM [1556]7, Weaver no. 14.

(6) Hubert Waelrant, comp. Sacrarum cantionum . . . quinque et sex vocum, sancta aliquot Iesu Christi Evangelia continentium . . . liber sextus (Antwerp: Hubert Waelrant & Jan de Laet, [1558]), not in RISM, Weaver no. 17.

(7) Homer Herpol, Novum et insigne opus musicum, in quo textus Evangeliorum totius anni vero ritui ecclesiae correspondens, quinque vocum modulamine . . . (Nuremberg: Ulrich Neuber & heirs of Johann Berg, 1565), RISM H 5187.

(8) Jacob Meiland, Cantiones sacrae quinque et sex vocum harmonicis numeris in gratiam musicorum compositae . . . (Nuremberg: Ulrich Neuber 1569); RISM M 2174.

(9) Mathias Gastritz, Novae harmonicae cantiones ut piae, ita etiam suaves et iucundae, quinque vocibus concinnatae . . . (Nuremberg: Ulrich Neuber, 1569), RISM G 565.

(10) Ivo de Vento, Latinae cantiones, quas vulgo motteta vocant, quatuor vocum, suavissima melodia, etiam instrumentis musicis attemperatae . . .(Munich: Adam Berg 1569), RISM V 1114.

(11) Giaches de Wert, Motectorum quinque vocum liber primus . . . (Nuremberg: Theodor Gerlach, 1569), RISM W 850 (an abbreviated edition of no. 15 below).

(12) Clemens Stephani (compiler), Beati omnes: psalmus CXXVIII. Davidis sex, quinque et quatuor vocum, a variis, iisdemque praestantissimis musicae artificibus harmonicis numeris adornatus, et modis septendecim concinnatus, hinc inde autum collectus, atque in unum volumen redactus . . . (Nuremberg: Ulrich Neuber 1569), RISM 15691 .

(13) Gallus Dressler, XIX cantiones quatuor et quinque vocum. A title page is lacking, but identified on the basis of a copy of the complete set of part books for this publication held by the Stadtarchiv Heilbronn (Magdeburgi: Wolffgangus Kirchner, 1569. RISM A/1 D 3519

(14) Claudio Merulo (compiler), Motectarum divinitatis liber primus que quinque absolute vocibus ex multis prestantissimorum musicorum academiis collecta sunt . . . Venice: Claudio Merulo, 1569), RISM 15692 .

(15) Giaches de Wert, Motectorum quinque vocum liber primus . . .(Venice: Claudio Merulo & Fausto Bethanio, 1566), RISM W 849.

(16) Paolo Aretino, Magnificat . . . cum quinque vocibus liber primus . . .(Venice: Claudio Merulo, 1569), RISM, P 865.

The 1592 volume of altus partbooks contains three editions of motets by Orlando di Lasso published in Nuremberg by Catharina Gerlach (widow of the printers Johann Berg and Dietrich [Theodor] Gerlach):

Selectissimae cantiones, quas vulgo motetas vocant, partim omnino novae, partim nusquam in Germania excusae, sex et pluribus vocibus compositae (1587; RISM L 976).

Altera pars Selectissimarum cantionum, quas vulgo motetas vocant, quinque et quatuor vocibus compositarum (1587; RISM L 977).

Fasciculi aliquot sacrarum cantionum cum quatuor, quinque, sex et octo vocibus . . . (1589; RISM L 991).

Until now, sixteen of these editions had no representative partbooks in North American collections. The three editions issued by Claudio Merulo (Claudio da Correggio) in 1565-69 are very scarce (no. 14 remains incomplete). Of particular note, Brandeis now records the only known copies of the superius partbooks to the 1556 imprints of Waelrant's first and second books of motets. The only other extant examples for both collections are the contratenor, tenor, and bassus partbooks held by the British Library--the description "STB" for RISM [1556]4 is incorrect (see Robert Lee Weaver, A Descriptive Bibliographical Catalog of the Music Printed by Hubert Waelrant and Jan de Laet [Warren, Mich.: Harmonie Park Press, 1994], 53, 67). Weaver's note regarding the missing superius partbooks for these two publications is happily no longer correct.

A tract volume bound in 1574 of six deluxe, quarto-sized, altus partbooks published in Venice by Antonio Gardano between 1559 and 1568 (the binding is stamped ALTVS 1574). The publications include:

Pietro Giovanelli, comp. Novi [atque catholici] thesauri musici liber primus [-liber quintus] quo selectissime planeque nove, nec unquam in lucem edite cantiones sacre (quas vulgo moteta vocant) continentur octo, septem, sex, quinque ac quatuor vocum. . . . : Venice: Antonio Gardano, 1568. RISM B/1, 15681-15686. 5 vols. Altus partbooks.

Adrian Willaert. Musica nova. Venice: Antonio Gardano, 1559. RISM A/1, W 1126; Lewis no. 254 (2:397-406).

Adrian Willaert's monumental collection of motets and madrigals, the Musica nova, is one of the most important music publications of the Renaissance and attained an almost legendary status by the end of the sixteenth century. Subsidized by Duke Alfonso d'Este, Gardano's impressive publication, issued in an unusual upright quarto partbook format in 1559, includes a portrait of the composer and presents Willaert's music in a beautiful newly designed typeface with a fresh set of historiated initials. Gardano reused this typeface and format in 1568 to print the five books of Pietro Giovanelli's lavish compilation of motets, the Novi thesauri musici (The first [second-fifth] book of a new [and Catholic] musical thesaurus in which are contained the choicest and entirely new never before brought-to-light [i.e. published] sacred songs (whcih are commonly called motets) for eight, seven, six, five, and four voices), dedicated to (and subsidized by) the new Hapsburg emperor Maximilian II (r. 1564-76). Giovanelli, an Italian merchant and amateur musician in residence at the Hapsburg court in Vienna, assembled 257 motets by thirty-two composers working within the orbit of Maximilian and his brothers, archdukes Ferdinand and Karl. The first volume includes woodcuts of Maximilian's father Ferdinand I, plus the coats of arms of Maximilian and the two archdukes, and elegiaic couplets by court poet Wolfgang Piringer. Among the composers are Josquin Desprez, Orlando di Lasso, Giaches de Wert, Andrea Gabrieli, Orlando di Lasso, Jacob Regnart , Jacobus Vaet, and Giaches de Wert.
Brandeis University now holds the second recorded North-American copy of a partbook from the Musica nova (the other is at the University of California, Berkeley). Three other recorded copies of the Giovanelli are in North America (Baldwin Wallace College, UC Berkeley, and the Library of Congress). It is particularly appropriate for the Brandeis University Libraries to acquire a Gardano edition in light of Brandeis alumna Mary S. Lewis's (Ph.D. 1979) three-volume definitive catalog of the publications issued by Antonio Gardano (see sources cited).

Partbooks of Secular Polyphony

Giovanni Piccioni. Il quarto libro de madrigali à cinque voci. Novamente composto & dato in luce / di Gio: Piccioni, organista del domo d'Orvieto. Venice: appresso Angelo Gardano, 1596. Tenore partbook only. RISM A/1, P 2230; Vogel 2224; Agee, p. 301.

Giovanni Piccioni (Pizzoni, Pisoni) was born in 1548 or 1549 in Rimini and served as organist at the cathedral there from 1569 to 1577. He held an appointment as maestro di musica in Conegliano (Veneto) from late 1577 and may have returned to the Romagna by the early 1580s. From 1583 to 1586 he may have been in Dalmatia with Marc'Antonio Venier, and from 1586 until 1591, he served as organist at the cathedral of Gubbio. He held the post of organist at the cathedral of Orvieto from 1592 until 1617, and was appointed maestro di cappella as well in 1615. He was recalled to Orvieto as organist in 1619, his last documented year of activity.

Four of Piccioni's collections of five-voice madrigals are partially or completely extant: books 1 (Venice: Scotto, 1577), 4 (Venice: Angelo Gardono, 1596), 6 (Venice: Giacomo Vincenti, 1602, with title Il pasto fido musicale), and 7 (Venice: Giacomo Vincenti, 1605, with title Gli'affetuosi madrigali a cinque voci). Giuseppe Ottavio Pitoni (Notitia de contrapuntisti e de compositori di musica, ca. 1725; modern edition, ed. Cesarino Ruini [Florence: Olschki, 1988], 218) sites an eighth book, now lost. Also extant are the first book of madrigals for six voices (Venice: Angelo Gardano, 1598) and four books of canzoni for five voices, all published by Scotto in Venice in 1578 (book 1), 1580 (book 2), and 1582 (books 3-4).

Orazio Vecchi and Gemignano Capilupi. Canzonette a tre voci di Horatio Vecchi, et di Gemignano Capi Lupi da Modena. Venezia: Angelo Gardano, 1597. Basso partbook only. RISM A/1, V 1032.

The canzonetta is a light secular vocal piece that flourished in Italy during the late Renaissance with usually strophic texts that address amorous, pastoral, erotic, or satirical subjects. The music combines a mostly syllabic, unmannered style of text setting with occasional use of contrapuntal or rhetorical devices typical of the more learned madrigal.

Collections of canzonettas began to appear in print in the 1560s, and canzonettas for three voices written in a treble dominated style came briefly into vogue in the 1580s. Those composed by Orazio Vecchi (1550-1605) are particularly outstanding examples of the genre, employing a wide variety of styles ranging from genuine dance and theatrical songs, to settings of pastoral poetry and deliberate verbal and musical satires of the late Italian madrigal's complex musical rhetoric. Gemignano Capilupi (1573-1616) was Vecchi's pupil in Modena, who eventually turned on his teacher by engineering Vecchi's dismissal from the post of maestro di cappella and succeeding him in 1604. Teacher and student were apparently still on good terms when they collaborated in 1597 to issue this joint collection of 34 three-voice canzonettas, 18 by Vecchi and 16 by Capilupi.

The basso partbook of this edition is a representative example of the music issued by the prolific Venetian publisher Angelo Gardano and features 34 fanciful historiated initials at the start of each canzonetta. It is almost impossible to find complete sets of partbooks on the antiquarian market today, particularly those issued by renowned printers such as Gardano. From the library of noted French musicologist Henry Prunières, this bass partbook is the first recorded copy of the 1597 canzonetta edition in North America.

Collections of Chant and Liturgies for the Catholic Church

Cantus ecclesiasticus officii Maioris Hebdomadae a Joanne Guidetto bononiensi Basilicae Vaticanae clerico beneficiato olim collectus, & in lucem editus; nunc autem a Francisco Suriano romano Basilicae S. Mariae Maioris de Urbe beneficiato decano, ac Vaticanae Cappellae Prefecto emendatus, & ad meliorem vocum concentum redactus; officium vero a Scipione Manlilio romano ejusdem Basilicae beneficiato, juxta formam Breviarii Romani Clementis VIII. auctoritate recogniti, restitutum. Romae: Ex Typographia Andreae Phaei, 1619.

This deluxe folio collection of the liturgy for the Office of Holy Week, printed in red and black and replete with large, finely rendered engravings of the Passion, was originally assembled by the Bolognese cleric and editor Giovanni Domenico Guidetti (1530-1592) and published in Rome in 1587. A pupil of Palestrina and a singer in the papal chapel, Guidetti compiled plainchant in the most complete and authoritative editions after the Council of Trent. Unlike the plainchant revisions of Palestrina and Annibale Zoilo, Guidetti's edition does not modify the melodic material but does provide rhythmically differentiated plainchant notation to represent proportionate durations. Further distinguishing Guidetti's edition is the inclusion of seven falsobordone psalm settings for four, five, six, and eight voices, four of which are known to be written by Palestrina.

The 1619 edition, revised by Palestrina's pupil and friend Francesco Soriano (1548 or 1549-1621), was published by the Roman ecclesiastical printer Andrea Phaeus. Soriano served as maestro di cappella at the Roman churches of Santa Maria Maggiore (1587-99, 1601-03), St. John Lateran (1599-1601), and the Cappella Giulia at St. Peter's (1603-1620), and along with Felice Anerio, he was appointed by a papal commission in 1611 to complete the chant book revisions begun in 1577 by Palestrina and Zoilo--finally published in 1614 as the Editio medicaea.

Missale secundum morem sancte romane ecclesie. Venice: Boneto Locatello, 1501.

The publication information is from the colophon on p. 232, which reads: Explicit missale secundum mores romanum curie. Venitiis per Bonetum Locatellum Presbyterum diligenter impressum. 1501. The Brandeis copy lacks fol. 105-12. Bound in a fine, contemporary, richly blindtooled pigskin over wooden boards with brass clasps and catches, and a spine with raised bands. Written in Gothic letters printed throughout in red and black. Includes many pages of chant, capturing readings in use before the Council of Trent's revision of the liturgy.

Missale Romanum, ex decreto sacrosancti Concilii Tridentini restitutum, Pii V. Pontificis.mi Maximi iussu editum et Clementis VIII. auctoritate recognitum. Venice: Apud Iuntas [Heredi di Lucantonio Giunta], 1626.

Images from the Brandeis copy:
Front cover Title page Text pages Music pages

Rituale Romanum Pauli V. Pont. Max. iussu editum. Editio novissima. Lutetiæ Parisiorum: apud Societatem Typographicam Librorum Officii Ecclesiast[ici] ex Decreto Concil[ii] Tridentini, 1623.

Published in Paris, this new edition of the Roman Ritual, as revised by the order of Pope Paul V and the Council of Trent and Pope Paul V and first published in 1614, was intended for use by priests with official pastoral responsibilities. It contains, with the accompanying chants notated on red staves, the services for baptism, confession, marriage, visitation of the sick, burial of the dead, communion outside of Mass, and blessings and processions for various occasions. Bound at the end of the Ritual is a twenty-seven-page set of religious instructions and devotions in the vernacular (the prone), Instructions des curez et vicaires pour faire le prosne (France, ca. 1630-60), to be read before the sermon at Mass on Sundays and other feast days. Serving as the pastedowns for the volume are two consecutive leaves from an incunable edition of Cicero's De officiis (Deventer: R. Pafraet, ca. 1480; Gesamtkatalog der Wiegendrucke [2d ed.; Stuttgart: A. Hiersemann, 1968], no. 6946).

Sacerdotale Romanum ad consuetudinem S. Romanae ecclesiae aliarumque ecclesiarum ex apostolicae bibliothecae, ad sanctorum patrum iurium sanctionibus, & ecclesiasticorum doctorum scriptis, ad optatum quorumcumqum sacerdotum commodum, collectum: atque summorum pontificum authoritate multoties approvatum. Venetiis: Apud Dominicum Nicolinum, 1585.

This specialized collection of chants and prayers for Roman Catholic priests is a particularly fine example of sixteenth-century Venetian liturgical music printing, graced throughout with Gothic text printed in red and black and numerous decorative woodblock initials and vignettes. This edition is particularly important for the treatise on ecclesiastical music found on leaves 319-328, which includes a Guidonian hand, a chart of pitches, and music examples. This copy is from the library of Henri Barbier.

Theoretical Writings

Adriano Banchieri. L'organo suonarino . . . entro il quale si pratica quanto occorrer suole à gli suonatori d'organo, per alternar corista à gli canti fermi in tutte le feste, & solennità dell'anno. . . . Opera terza decima. In Venetia: appresso Ricciardo Amadino, 1605. RISM B/6, p. 117.

Copies of the first edition of Banchieri's landmark treatise on playing from a figured bass and accompanying liturgical chant are extremely rare (subsequent editions were issued in 1611 [Amadino], 1622, 1627, and 1638 [all Venice: Alessandro Vincenti]). Brandeis now holds the fifth recorded copy, and the only one located in North America. The 126-page book (numbered through p. 118) divides into 5 registri or chapters that provide instructions for the organist as well as written-out bass accompaniments for the Mass, vesper psalms, hymns, Magnificat, and Marian antiphons. The treatise also includes twenty sonatas (intonations) for the organist--notated in score format at the end of the first, second, and fourth registri--and written in a variety of then-contemporary instrumental styles (fuga, concerto, aria francese, ripieno, in dialogo, and capriccio).

Angelo Rocca. De campanis commentarius. . . . Romae: Apud Guillielmum Facciotum [Guglielmo Facciotti], 1612. RISM B/6, p. 709.

Angelo Rocca (1545-1620) is best known as the founder of the Angelica Library, the first public library in Rome. He was also head of the Vatican printing office and superintended editions of the Bible and the Church Fathers, including the first edition of the famous Clementine Vulgate. He was appointed papal sacristan in 1595 and in 1605 was made titular Bishop of Tagaste, Numidia. He was a prolific author, writing more than sixty works. Being papal sacristan gave Rocca a broad knowledge of the nature and use of bells, and in De campanis commentarius (A Commentary on Bells), Rocca addresses the origins of bells, the rite of consecration for bells, the ecclesiastical usage (including the liturgy), the office of bell ringer, secular uses of bells, musical uses of bells, and clock chiming. The four plates show the 24-hour astrological clock with its bells in the tower of St. Mark's Cathedral, Venice; a man at the keyboard of an organum of 33 bells; a bell so large that it takes 24 men to ring; and the Horologium Leodii, the elaborate chiming clock of St. Lambert's Cathedral in Liège.

Jacobus Faber Stapulensis (Jacques Le Febvre). Musica libris quatuor demonstrata. Parisiis: Apud Gulielmum Cavellat, in pingui Gallina, ex adverso collegii Cameracensis, 1552. RISM B/VI, p. 493.

Born in Étaples, Jacobus Faber Stapulensis (Jacques Le Febvre; Jacques Lefevre d'Étaples; ca. 1455-1537), a leading French theologian, humanist, and music theorist, taught theology and philosophy in Paris. He published commentaries on the writings of Aristotle and edited treatises on mathematics and astronomy. Suspected of heresy, Faber fled from Paris in 1520; but he later returned, appointed in 1526 by Francis I as librarian and tutor to the royal princes.

Faber's treatise Musica libris quatuor demonstrata (Music Demonstrated in Four Books), first published in 1496 in Paris (Johann Higman & Wolfgang Hopyl), rests firmly upon Boethius (d. 524) by focusing on music as a branch of mathematics with little concern for music performance. Farber's treatise expands some upon Boethius's principles and calculations, demonstrating that the intervals of the third and sixth are not consonances, although they are harmonious to the ear. From the sixteenth through the eighteenth centuries, many music theorists refer to Faber or quote him--hence the new editions of Faber's Musica issued by various Parisian publishers in 1503, 1511, 1514, 1522, 1551, and 1552.

The 1552 edition owned by Brandeis is a particularly fine example from the Cavellat press, with a very large engraving of the distinctive Cavellat device on the title page and numerous mathematical diagrams and charts.

Andreas Papius. And. Papii Gandensis De consonantiis, seu Pro diatessaron libri duo. Antverpae: Ex officina Christophori Plantini, architypographi regij, 1581. RISM B/VI, p. 635.

Andreas Papius (André de Pape; 1542-1581) was a Flemish theoretician, composer, and Jesuit priest. His treatise De consonantiis seu pro diatessaron, libri duo (On the Consonances; or, In Defense of the Fourth, in Two Books) is important for the theorist's evidence (derived from Boethius) that the interval of the fourth (even when appearing over the bass) was always treated as a consonance, and for the negative response to Papius from the Italian theorist Gioseffo Zarlino (1517-1590) in his 1589 edition of Le istitutioni harmoniche.

Papius's treatise is a fine, late example of the elegant editions produced by the Antwerp printer Christopher Plantin (ca. 1520-1589), official printer to King Philip II of Spain. The beautiful music fonts used by Plantin are evident in the extensive music examples throughout the treatise, particularly in the complete compositions notated on the twenty-three pages following page 208.

Camillo Perego. La regola del canto fermo ambrosiano, composta già d'ordine di S. Carlo dal Rever. P. Camillo Perego, uno de' notari della chiesa metropolitana di Milano. Ed hora data alla stampa per commessione di Monsignor illustrissimo e reverendissimo Federico cardinale Borromeo arcivescovo. Milano: Erede di Pacifico Pontio e Gio. Battista Piccaglia, 1622. RISM B/VI, p. 644.

This Italian treatise by Milanese musician, poet, and cleric Camillo Perego expounds upon the rules of Ambrosian chant and is of particular note for the comparisons made between the Ambrosian and the Gregorian chant traditions. This lovely edition includes a title page printed in red and black with a decorative woodcut vignette of St. Ambrose, a two-color preface by Cardinal Borromeo, an attractive full-page woodcut of the Guidonian hand, and intriguing historiated initials at the beginning of each chapter. The chant is printed in simple syllabic and neumatic notation on four-line staves throughout.

The copy owned by Brandeis is of particular interest for its contemporary vellum binding and for the clearly visible binding strips made from fragments of a liturgical imprint printed in red and black.

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