The 15th-Century Lute: New and Neglected Sources Author(s): Christopher Page Source: Early Music, Vol

. 9, No. 1, Plucked-String Issue 1 (Jan., 1981), pp. 11-21 Published by: Oxford University Press Stable URL: Accessed: 24/10/2010 17:43
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propter quinque cordarum semperduplatas et novem ligaturasin collo. pectorisclibanum foramenvero oris. the neck lof the lutel resembles the human windpipe. A mid-15th-century description of the lute In his Liber Viginti Artium (c 1460) the Jewish scholar Paulus Paulirinus of Prague describes a citharawhich appears to be a lute:3 musicumcommuniter [C/ithara est instrumentum [sejunctum/4 sonorum ceteris suorum habens choros subtilitatem. fingerplucked instrument.collumvero habet similitudinem canne pulmonis. officium registrantis The lute is a musical instrument which is generally [kept apart] from others on account of the delicacy of its sound.' In the hope of casting some light upon these neglected years of lute playing I have assembled an anthology of new and neglected sources for the history of the lute before 1500. Its hollow vessel performs the office of the [human] chest. late 15th-century). All of the information is practical. St Hilda's College. corde nervalesgerunt lingue et officiumquibus vox formatur. In another section of his treatise Paulus comments EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 11 .2 together with some well-known but misinterpreted material such as the passages from Tinctoris' De Inventione et Usu Musicae.faciens sonorum varietates tamenregistracione. The lutenist performs the task of playing the music intelligently. concavum cuius digitorum habetofficium. and social position. the rose [performsthe office] of the mouth. percussio habetsimilitudinem a vox sed penularum pulmonis quibus efflatur. used for polyphonic as well as monophonic playing. Oxford. Citarista autem habet intellectus cantum. yet many makers and players still feel that the history of the Western lute really begins with the first decades of the 16th century. and nine frets on the neck making the distinctions of notes with the application of the fingers. always double. f. the striking of the strings is similar to the covering of the lungs by which the voice is blown out. MS 1 (Dutch. repertory. super quod digiti habentofficium autemcordarum perambulantes epigloti. but the gut strings perform the task of the tongue with which the voice is articulated. These innovations rested upon some two hundred years of lute playing in Europe. its tuning. tuned in fourths around a third.55v It was the period of Dufay (d1474) that saw the development of the 'classic' lute: a fretted.The new lute: 15th-century and neglected sources Page Christopher ALi iA 1 Lutenist with singers. and associated with its own system of notation. It has five courses of strings. pertaining to such matters as the physical characteristics of the lute. the fingers running over it perform the office of the epiglottis.

Textband 7. Caorsin. 2 Lutenist (? with singer) plucking with the fingers and reading from a book of music. 219f'. From G.7 nor.aut digitisejusautplectro. as far as I can discern. Tafelband 7. it also raises and lowers the strings by means of the contact of the fingers.that the psaltery (psalterium) is 'played with a quill held in the hand. uti cithara). Geschichte des im Katalog deutschen. The other hand strikes these same strings. Firstly. (Vienna. Tafel 204 12 EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 .6 In view of the importance of this work it is a matter of some urgency to distinguish what Tinctoris actually says from what has been attributed to him. 1496) % ''I -4 Inventione et Usu Musicae by Johannes Tinctoris. Altera chordas percutit. either with the fingers or with a plectrum. Techniques of performance A great deal of our knowledge about the 15thcentury lute is derived from the printed treatise De -------- "k 3 Two lutenists (one clearly singing) performing with a singer at a meal.5 From this we learn that c1460 Paulus associated the lute with plectrum playing. The music appears to have five lines with underlay and clefs. does he imply as much: Et hanc[collum]sonitor manusinistranon modosustinet. From M. like the lute' (cum penna percutitur tenta in manu. 1908-34). Lehrs. pp. Kupferstichs niederlindischen undfranz6sischen 9 XVJahrhundert. vero. his account also provides the earliest literary evidence we have in the West for the pairing of lute strings. Tinctoris does not say that finger plucking was a new technique. De CasuRegisZyzymy (Ulm. probably published at Naples (?1481-3).chordas ipstius deprimit elevat. ipsas The player's left hand not only supports [the neck of the lute]. Detail from an engraving by Alart du Hameel und kritischer (end of 15th century). vols.verum etiamdigitorum et attactu.

this jottings. The passage runs: Siquidemnonnulliassociatisupremam partemcujusviscompositi cantus cum admirandis modulorumsuperinventionibus adeo eo personant. a". Detail from an engraving of the Madonna and Child with musician angels by the Masterof the Death of Mary(Netherlands.13 Folios 77-99 of the manuscript compose a paper notebook compiled within the reign of Henry VII (1485-1509) which contains miscellaneous materials. Cambridge. and on f. MS 0. private formulary. Tinctoris does not say that the lutenist's technique of decorating the top lines of chansons was an improvised one. . MW. • .Secondly. but there are three other 15th-century 4 /*.TrinityCollege. Lehrs. Folio 97v of the manuscript (illus. to play a com- . est sententia) Alii (quod multodifficilius soli cantusnon mododuarum est) verum etiamtrium quatuor et partium.97v of sectionlastdecade the 15thcentury). Tafel34 . Others do what is much more difficult. 6•. or 'things found above'. promunt. The tuning of the lute Tinctoris also gives an account of lute tuning which is well known. clearly shown to be cut into a 'nib'.ut profectonihil prestantius.A6•4p.r 4 Angel lutenist using a quill. so very elegantly that nothing is more excellent.. but also in three and four in a most artful manner. f.*... Tafelband From M..Inter quos eleganter PetrusbonusHerculisFerrarie ducis incliti lyricen(mea quidem ceteris preferendus.94 is headed 'The fourme how warauntz be made'. withothermiscellaneous Trinity College. There is also a list of the EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 13 lff------: .9 There are recipes of various kinds. artificiosissime Some teams play the top part of any polyphonic song you please with wondrous decorative figures composed upon it. accounts of the subject. 5) seems to have been arranged with some care. in my opinion. 1430-40).. a.twi~~iu:jt.MS 0. One on f.8 he says only that players encrusted top lines with superinventiones. . ? f' so" for 5 Englishinstructions tuninga lute.2. It focuses upon literary and musical interests. one of which (a) has been published but is generally unknown..94 there begins a series of documents in Latin and English which amounts to a small. and two more (b and c) which have been hitherto overlooked.. r t.. Kritzscher Katalog. 278f.2. to be preferred before all others. Cambridge. and other documents transcribed into the manuscript include the forma for letters of attorney and for letters of obligation.! position alone not only in two parts. 1. J . -. pp.13 (English.4 . and at the head of the page are four Versus boni. " -96tor ". Among whom Pietrobono lutenist to the renowned duke of Ferrara is. Textband 1.

Lyons. The seconde trebill to be sett a iiijte from the trebill/The meene a iiijte from the seconde trebill. parhypate. hypate. Cuerda de medio. on God and the angels. Fortunately the documents gathered in the manuscript are dated. 1491). Nebrija's Vocabulario Espaiol-Latino A new source for the tuning of the 15th-century lute is Elio Antonio de Nebrija's Vocabulario Espaiol-Latino published at Salamanca. but before 1509. Xucrda nete.. mese chorda Cuerda de laud primera. jCucrda laud ccrca parancte. which have obviously been deliberately placed on this page of cultural and 'learned' concerns. Cuerda cerca de aquesta.)."2 The intervals (from lowest to highest) are: fourth-third-fourth-fourth (relative pitch: cfa d' g'). es.96v). The earliest date (with which we need not concern ourselves) is 1465 (f. The lines on how to set a lute were probably copied some time after 3 September 1493. though they must date from the reign of Henry VII. and therefore a reasonable terminus post quem can be established. . %uu b.bypate. de Cuerdaarriba de cerca aqucfta. Ferget (Proprietes choses. And the Basse a iiijte from the tenor. A list of the seven Liberal Arts follows. These five definitions amount to a tuning for a five-course lute (illus. two folios before the lute instructions). with the aid of the Greek string terminology (nete. Seconde trebill. etc. Below the commentary on the moralizing Latin lines are four lines of Middle English headed 'To sette a lute'.eight psalm-tones in stave notation. possibly in 1495.35 14 EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 .nicfe cborda. These may be translated: Firststring of the lute String beside it String above. obordon. Tenor/and basse. Finally there is a list of the seven sacraments. revised by P. paranete etc) common in medieval Latin treatises on music. Cuerda cerca de aquesta. paranete.Auct. es. Bodleian accompanied by a neume (a punning abbreviation for nota). At 7 Angel lutenist with other musicians. This is a tuning for a five-course lute with the strings referred to by English names not recorded in any other Middle English document with reference to the lute. beginning lacte lava vinum. Corbichon. the end of Henry VII's reign. I. Reproduced by permission from The date when these instructions were copied out cannot be determined with any degree of certainty. es. The tenor a iijde / from the meene.parbypate.'0 The text of the instructions reads:" To sette a lute Loke that there be a. Curda deaqucIa. es. Detail from prefatory woodcut to Book 2.11 Nebrija defines the word cuerda ('string') five times. and the latest is 3 September 1493 (f. Trebill.necte. or bordon String next to it Middle string a' nete [hyperbolaion] paranete [diezeugmenon] d' B hypate [hypaton] f parhypate [meson] a mese If we assemble these into their proper order we have the following arrangement (where course 1 is the highest course): courses 1 2 3 4 5 nete paranete mese parhypate hypate a' d' a f B 4000. Meene. and next a pair of Latin lines. 6): de primera. Cuerda de arriba o bordon.3. complete with the solmization syllables appropriate to each (re From the translation of Bartholomaeus Anglicus' De Proprietatibus Rerumby des J.

Detail from an engraving of the Madonna and Child by the Master ES (German. Tifel 56 (137). Textband 2. Tafelband 2. Kritischer Katalog. For the lute as a woman's instrument. Tafel 162 (423).Textband 2.Vi Ap? "d 4 . From M. An engraving by Wenzel von Olmuitz(last quarter of the 15th century). 165f. Kritischer Textband 8. Tafel 225 (544) 11 A female lutenist. Kritischer passim. From M. pp. Textband 6. passim. From M. Tafelband 6. Kritischer Katalog. 11 8 Angel lutenist with plectrum. Tafelband 8. I ?P. Lehrs. mid-15thcentury). Lehrs. 178f.. Lehrs. From M.- 4 10 Lutenist (playing a five-course instrument) and dulcimer player. EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 15 .=1 . see also illus. Katalog. Tafel 50 (126) 4 > o. pp.i• •.' . Katalog. mid-15th-century). Tafelband 2.Aft o 9 A female lutenist.o 41 ! & . Engravingby the monogrammist b (x 8 (last quarter of the 15th century). Lehrs. An engraving by the Master ES (German.

so that the first makes prolambanomenos. strings 4. in Sed quiahocnuncmagis usuest. sed quarta mesenpronuntiet. et istae similiter pulsantis. tertia ab parhypate hypaton hypate d Tinctoris (native of Brabant. a twelfth] with the first..ut disponi fit. The third [string sounds] hypate meson two tones higher than the second.quinta sive sonumemittat. Die deutsche Bicherdlustration Gothik Friihrenaissance der und (1460-1530) (Munich and Leipzig.?1495) We are surprisingly informedabout the tuning well of the 15th-century for thereis yetanotherpiece lute. published at meson ditono altior ista. but because this system [the one first described] is most in use. making an octave and a fifth [i. 1884) There can be little doubt that this lyra is a lute. which we call r ut. as we have seen. tertiameseet aliae secunda lichanos. primasit proslambanomenos. possiblythe correctorder(as I am proposingit).becauseof the gap of a diminished fifthbetweenthe fourthand fifthcourses I suggestthat the final termshould have been (B-f).e. Other players arrange the strings concordantly in different ways. grossior totasua r extensione tonosubproslambanomeno. Nebrijaconsistently the second element in each pair of Greek terms. Tunings for the late 15th-century lute: a Cambridge notebook (England. .with of a double(andadjacent) led occurrence parhypate. ?1490s) c. (AL ?1481-3. we have given it fuller consideration.. From a calendar published at Augsburg in 1479. Now five [strings]are used arranged so that the thickest. unstopped] sounds a tone below proslambanomenos. Reproduced from R.. someone to alter the list.diezeugmenon. 12 A lutenist accompanied by a female harpist (for this combination of instruments see also illus. omits or parhypate [hypaton] c. and the fifth gives paranete diezeugmenon or nete synemmenon.this is unlikely. and the tunings he gives. 51 may be placed according to the wishes of the player. alibi locaripossuntad arbitrium alibi. It is particularly interesting that Ramos describes the fourths around a third tuning as the most common. to printfor manyyears. but completed some yearsearlier). .. but not the onlyaccord for the lute. the third mese.sicpotiusposuimus. These li.1482) noticedthatthe lyra whosetuningRamosdescribes is ? ? a a lute:'4 Utuntur autem nunc sic ut in quinque dispositis.Nec tamenhocde necesdiapason diapente 16 EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 ?Naples.As it stands. ?c1487) . Ramosde Pareja's Musica Practica b Nebrija (Spain [Salamanca]. Muther. uses the term lyra for the lute. set a fourth apart from the first. are (relative pitch) rc fa d' (the variant (the tuning most in use) and A d a [?] [P?] of which only the first three strings are tuning specified). this is not done so from necessity.e. netessynemmenon et sonanscumprima. The fourth [string] makes the mese. sonet quod secunda diatessaron distans ea.This treatisehas been in c Ramos de Pareja (Spanish writer published at Bologna. Ramos' lyra has five courses. dicimus ut. sitate Aliis enimmodisdiversisconcorditer possunt. However.e. and the others are set elsewhere. This would then give a tuning(relative pitch):cf a d' a'..but it appears havegone un. the second [string sounds] parhypate hypaton. paraneten. the second lichanos. --. of evidence:a chapterin Ramosde Pareja's Musica Practica (publishedat Bologna in 1482. 13). in all its length [i. Tinctoris. . easily translated from the Greek terminology into modern notation.

We know a considerable amount about Cely's studies. MS O. Other musical manuscripts survive. the quality of practical teaching materials depended therefore on the professional competence of one's teacher. As John Stevens has pointed out:'9 . Oxford. three songbooks [Ritson's MS. 6d.. 1476). for we have evidence that Cely's French was very rudimentary during the time that he was in Calais. from the early Tudor period . and it is easy to imagine that their prices would vary greatly according to teachers' prestige.18 This payment is therefore all the more surprising since there is little evidence that instrumental tutors of any kind circulated in early Tudor England..... If-as seems likely-Rede copied the bills out himself. a professional harpist. MS Douce 256 (Flemish. and there can be little doubt that he was a professional music master (and dancing master). The teacher was one Thomas Rede.12v: Aristotle's counsels to Alexander EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 17 .. as far as we know.11. together with the titles of songs that he learned. then we must view him as a combined scribe and author selling not merely his time at the desk (like any scrivener) but also selling his professional expertise.. and there are no instrumentaltutors or books of that sort. From Basle University Library. a scrivener. Henry VIII's MS. Cely refers to him as Thomas Rede 'harpar'. No English lute music can be dated earlier than 1540.An English tutor book for the lute (1474) During the years 1474-5 an English wool-merchant named George Cely took music lessons at Calais whilst he was in residence there as a merchant of the staple.42v 4f' Rede was not. Cely could have stayed in Calais for a whole week with 3s. c 1500). not merely the utility of having them. There were no printed instrumental tutors at this date as far as we know. Bodleian Library. and possibly also a part-time minstrel. for a small booklet at the Public Record Office contains his own expenditure accounts for the lessons. of course. The note of the payment runs :16 Item the xiiij day off Novembyr payd to the sayd Thomas ffor a byll ffor to lerne to tevne the levte iijs vjd which is an enormous price. Pupils paid for the privilege. of poems set to music . and the Fayrfax MSI contain between them almost the whole repertory of early Tudor songs-that is. But they are of a different kind and do not contain vernacular songs . 14 The lute recommended to tame the lusts of a king. f. f.17 The 'byll' must have been in English."5 One of the documents Cely purchased from his teacher is of particular interest to us. Here Cely has noted the written materials that he bought to help him in his studies. ''.26 (German. mom :it -? 13 Lute and harp..

These are 'ijd a lef' which is mentioned twice. This hypothesis has a certain common-sense appeal.Douce 304 18 EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 . f. w4w Mill 15 A lutenist leading men and women in a dance in the sixth age of the world. purchased a set of instructions aloft Jf -vr op Jz. In two letters written to John Paston II (1468 and 1469) Ebesham reviews the work he has undertaken and mentions his rates per leaf. Schedel. let us consider the prices charged by William Ebesham. we arrive at an even more remarkable 42 leaves and 84 sides. it seems rather unlikely that Rede would have sold a mere set of tuning instructions to a pupil he had been teaching to play 'xiiij davnsys and an horne pype on the levte' some weeks earlier. or several years before Cely purchased his bills. and 'a peny a leef' which is mentioned once and which Ebesham considers 'right wele worth'20 ('a leef' represents two the two sides of a leaf). the pages-i. an Englishman probably capable of reading his native tongue only. At 'ijd a lef'. Reproduced by permission from Oxford. The ac darent('In crossing homines sexussuperpontemcoreis vanitatibus operam utriusque accompanying text includes the sentence Cumin traiecto over the bridge people of both sexes give themselves over to dances and vainglory'). and at Ebesham's price of a penny a leaf 'which is right wele worth'.2' No instrumental tutors or 'books of that sort' survive from medieval England. LiberCronicarum (1493). a scrivener producing routine work for the famous Paston family in the late 1460s. flor to lerne to tevne the levte' emerges as a vast 'byll document of 21 leaves (42 sides). From H. yet this is the chronology of events dictated by Cely's activities.217r. Bodleian Library. This evidence suggests that Cely's bill contained rather more than his description of it suggests. yet in 1474 George Cely.e.With this in mind.

only rarely mentioned in wills and inventories.24 The mention of a mentary evidence is not a definitive index of instru'woman's face' carved upon the gittern also reveals a mental skills and interests. MA. 'a sword ornamented with a luxurious strap'. it and the prices assigned to them are remarkably low.for tuning the lute. and we may expect that any recurrent patterns of possession genuinely reflect the instrumental interests of bourgeois amateur musicians. We can Sometimes. but which 46s. decorative bindings and clasps. these mundane instruments are mentioned.3 The very best harps of a leading London document that probably made up the greater part of maker such as John Boor could cost as much as lay reading material in the 15th century. As they stand.25 Yet there is a positive corollary to all this.distinguished by their decoration. just as any more than we can be certain that the owner of a inventories of books sometimes mention specially book was a reader. We may assume-with Braggs. 8d. are below tenpence. in exceptionally full inventories.26 while William a will.27 The goods of John Hosear (not apparently a member of the University) included 'an harpe' valued at fourpence in 1463/4.33 was ephemeral and therefore rarely mentioned in If functional instruments-like functional bookswills and testaments. were destroyed? valued at two shillings among his effects at Vine Hall in 1468. but the evidence we do have suggests that they are extremely low. and a number of musical reveal far more books than instruments. Thus testaChaucer-has been passed over. the wills and testaments of private property. in the second decade of the 15th century. mentions a 'great pretation from the studies of book ownership which and a 'gittern [? a small lute] with have been undertaken by historians. left '1 harpe' that not all the instruments listed in the wills were ornaments only.instruments for inclusion. Bachelor of Canon and Civil Law. when worn or no longer needed. owned a lute valued at tenpence in 1468. EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 19 . a wealthy Somerset references show that we must take our line of interlandowner with property in Bristol. we cannot automatically telling detail. George Cely Ownership of lutes in 15th-centuryEngland: some evidence from wills and testaments lent his teacher Thomas Rede nine shillings 'appon Cely's 'byll' of unbound sheets represents a class of an harpe'. Lydbery' (not possible that many more people owned (and used) an had a 'lewt price vid' instrument than owned a book worth mentioning in apparently an Oxford alumnus) some justificationamongst his possessions in 1462/3. some of them were surely used. but it is instruments appear there. This decoration has clearly been assume that the owner of an instrument was a player. Carving ('a sion.11 while only a decade or so after the references to instruments on the Chancellor's register were written. There can be harp' (harpa magna) a woman's face [carved on the pegbox]' (quinternam little doubt that instruments were often passed over . perhaps a humbler instru. perhaps such unelaborate. on the contrary. save one.28 while Reginald Stone. but all the prices. just as lavish bindings and ment-such as the 'harpe smale' mentioned by illuminations recommended books. but that our records take no notice of Oxford contains several 15th-century inventories of the fact. singled out for purposes of identification. but could it be that tutor material circulated in a more ephemeral form than is suggested by the words 'tutor-book'? Cely's instructions were written on a 'byll' and were thus probably unbound.23 Both of these instruments are by testators and inventory makers unless they were mentioned along with an obviously luxury posses. may be that the number of functional instruments The register kept by the Chancellor of the University was considerable. The records of Durham Priory show that a new harp could cost as much as three shillings in 1335/6. In woman's head') or luxurious appearance ('my faire the reference to the 'great harp' the use of the epithet lute') were probably the features that recommended magna is suggestive. instruments were rarely played. These The will of John Bount (1404/5).. or in now see that the rarity with which instruments are inventories listing the possessions of relatively poor listed in wills does not necessarily indicate that persons.. The question to be asked is clear: it is true that no tutor-books survive. 'Syre W.30 The valuations given here range from fourpence to two shillings.29 Simon Beryngtone owned '1 hornpipe price Id'. it is hardly surprising that instruments are period do often seem to have been luxury models. There is little with which to compare these figures. cumfacie damisett).22 could be valued so low in the second half of the 15th The instruments that we find in English wills of the century. 'loose-leaf' tutors were in wide circulation amongst literate amateur musicians and.

it is sobering to find middle-class landowners. 5) to some kind of merchant or civil servant. and the fact that this tuning was the most common according to Ramos. to whom I owe almost all the informationtakenfrom wills and testaments.Above all.34 Date Name Instruments 1404 1406 John Bount Bristol landowner John Parker cleric. D. 7-33 (see also the other articles on the early tablatures there cited). Oxford students. MA Oxford Reginald Stone Bachelor of canon and civil law 1488 1494 Robert Morton an old harp gentleman William Case a lute escheator of Somerset for experiment with variant tunings for this is sanctioned by the remarks of Ramos. The chronology of finger plucking remains obscure. Fallows. p. 1976). it would seem. pp. doctor of medicine. Lydbery Oxford 1463/4 John Hosear 1468 1468 William Braggs. 87. joining forces from time to time with any other musicians or singers at hand. I As long ago as 1958 Daniel Heartz characterized 1500 as a Our materials clearly show that by the final decades of the 15th century. civil servants. By the 1480s therefore. Danner. and high-ranking ecclesiastics. LeLuthetLsa 2nd edition (Paris. MA Oxford 'great harp' and gittern with carved female head cithera (?harp) in custody of a cleric. or perhaps to a steward with legal responsibilities in a prosperous household.Lewis Jones and David Fallowsfor reading this article and making many helpful suggestions. it probably goes back to at least the mid-century. Our evidence for this tuning begins in the 1480s with Ramos de Pareja and Tinctoris. I am grateful to Regine Page. Jacquot ed. MA Oxford 1458 John Tidman chaplain.. as the examples assembled here show. 'Before Petrucci: the Lute in the Fifteenth Century'. I. The wills and inventories show us the kinds of middle-class persons who played the lute. Harwood. and probably appreciably earlier. though by no means universal. LSJ 16 (1974). 'Fifteenth century Tablatures for Plucked Instruments: A Summary. Musique. 4-17. it was probably well established. The case of the English wool merchant George Cely shows how the practicalities of learning the lute could be conducted. Robert Clerk organ. 'Lute-making in the Late Fifteenthand the Sixteenth Century'. After the angelic lutenists that abound in 15th-century pictures. We probably owe the lute instructions in the Cambridge notebook (illus. there was already a lute literature. My thanksare due to Michael Lowe. There is thus not a shadow of doubt as to how reconstructions of 15th-century lutes should be tuned. MichaelMorrow. pp. but does not describe it as new. but they are rare. depictions of finger plucking before the decade 14901500 are not unknown. York Henry Bowet Archbishop of York Thomas Mokking cleric of London Robert Wolveden treasurerof the Church of York Thomas Cooper. as a member of the newly literate middle class with surplus spending power Cely was able to buy a tutor-book which probably contained a great deal more than his description of it implies. Hellwig. 3-8. P. The possibility that this tuning was an Italian peculiarity is discounted by the English evidence. York 1462/3 Sir W. 2 The principal studies available at present include: P. pp. domestic circumstances. Such men doubtless performed in informal.The table lists all the references to instruments that have come to my notice in printed collections of English wills. inJ. In view of this consistency. or imply that it was an innovation. LSJ 19 (1977). We have seen that Tinctoris mentions it. pp. Yet the pictures consistently show plectra until late in the century. but at the same time there is scope 20 EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 . and a Suggestion'. 'coupure vraiment arbitraire' in the history of the lute ('Les Premires Instructionspour le Luth'. a Revision.JLSA5 (1972).35 It is time for a systematic investigation of lute iconography with a view to establishing a chronology for this technique. and the elegant courtiers. the lute was established as a five-course instrument tuned in fourths around a third. By the 1470s. and book of (?) organ music in his chapel organ a clavicimbalum (?harpsichord) and a lute an old cithara (?harp)and a broken lute a hornpipe clavichord a lute a harp a (?) lute a harp 1423 1427 1432 1438 1448 Simon Beryngtone. LSJ 2 (1960). F. 24-38. 'A Fifteenth Century Lute Design'.

2 p. who is completing a doctoral thesis on Tinctoris. op cit. Baines. p. a basyn and lavor of siluer. 1837). pp. A Bibliography EnglishHistoryto 1485 of (Oxford. 4579-80. op cit. 1951).JAMS 19 (1966). 1979). p. 1966). of (Oxford. H. 1957). Lockwood.p. 17 As pointed out by Hanham. of California. Hosear.. and pp. followed directly by ceteris. 8 (1957). Brown. 271.. for the efflatur.. and 391-2. 25 Vale. This is obviously a luxury instrument. It is inevitably incomplete and makes no claim to comprehensiveness. I have restored the second element in the Greek terms. 13 Elio Antonio 19 Stevens. 349Language 58. A Biographical to Register theUniversity Oxford AD 1500 (Oxford. See V. Deanesly. 181. Marcuse in A Surveyof MusicalInstruments (Newton Abbot and London. 21 In his accounts (Hanham. edition (Cambridge. p. The transet lations given here are mine. (1975). 69-85 (Henry Bowet). p. and I have supplied sejunctum 'kept apart from' to complete the sense as I comprehend it. 30 Salter. escheator of Somerset. Another Somerset will. Review of English Studies. 32 Hanham. no. Graves ed. Reiss. 273. 262. IThe text given here has been edited from a microfilm of the original manuscript. 1117. de Nebrija. Weaver and A. 91-2 (Robert Wolveden). and pp. p. Weaver ed. of of 28 Salter. pp. Zeitschriftffir Musikwissenschaft.Oxfordshire Record Society. Registrum (inventories) (Beryngtone. The text given here has been taken from K.40f. 'The Musical Studies of a Fifteenth Century Wool Merchant'. Cambridge. E. and Fallows. and Fallows. and Journal of the British ArchaeologicalAssociation.. made a will in the vernacular to dispose of his luxury possessions. See H. PastonLetters and 2 Century. 160. Fischer (Tutzing. Pirrotta. The objects listed include 'a cheyne of goold. ?1495 F Madrid.and pattern-books that were made during the plectrum period. H. 24 F. 1961 R Carter. and also seems to imply by its wording that one or more humbler instruments have been passed over (Weaver. Somerset Record Society.2 vols (Oxford. 80. p. pp. 19-26. TheWorks Geoffrey second edition Chaucer. 1903) 2. 20 For the texts of the letters see N. On the 15th-centurylutenist Pietrobono see N. Extracts Hen from the IssueRollsof theExchequer Ill-Hen VI (London.. * It is possible that the pictures are conservative in this respect. 22 See M.coirected J. 1900-02) 3. p. p.JLSA 12 (1979). op cit. 'Vernacular Books in England in the Fourteenth and Fifteenth Centuries'. 'Robert Morton's Songs: a Study of Styles in the Mid-Fifteenth Century' (diss. op cit. Dissertation Abstracts39 (Feb. 'Pauli Paulirini de Praga 7 Tractatus de Musica (etwa 1460)'. 16 (1901). op cit. 6 For new information about the date of the publication of this treatise I am indebted to Ronald Woodley of Christ Church. pp. p. Vale. The period during which the notebook was compiled is established by a list of kings on f. 1971 and 1976) 2. Salter. op cit. Fallows. 11 The text has been printed by J. 127-61. pp. Emden. pp. 27 ibid 2. 1976). A. R. EARLY MUSIC JANUARY 1981 21 . Cely records payment for the tuning instructions on 14 November 1474. 14 The text given here has been taken from J. and M. 1975). IReiss. Stage. Braggs. 'Fifteenth Century Instruments in Tinctoris's De Inventione Usu Musicae'. p. The wills referred to here have been taken from the following sources: J. p. 129. Folio 79 of the manuscript shows a watermarkwhich is an anchor. op cit. Testamenta Eboracensia pp. Charity Literacy and Gentry. 'Right hand Position in Renaissance Lute Technique'. (I have removed the 15th-centurypointing of the text and introduced modern punctuation of my own. Grubbs ed. amongthe Yorkshire 1370-1480. line 457. p.Rivista italianadi musicologia. dating from the last decade of the 15th century. F. 1 See F.corrected edition with introduction by W. 367. 102. Some Wills. Stone. Case mentions his 'faire lute' which he leaves to a certain lady Fitz Watereyn. In line 8. University Microfilms order no. (1944-5). L. " For the text of the accounts. Hanham. Piety. 1968). drawing upon traditions established in model. Oxford.) There is a text of Tinctoris' material on instruments. 12 which is in the main hand and ends with Henry VII. p. 30. is A participle seems to be required. 326. 50 (York. 1788. 10 27f. Towards the end of the document. pp. Papersof theFifteenth 386-7. E. and never subsequently revised to keep up with developments in lute playing. pp. 33 (1877). pp. 2. 1961). p. after which there is a jump to c 1500. is ibid. pp. 115-33. 31 See E. M. Emden. 15 (1920).A Dictionary MiddleEnglish of New York.. 7. 3 1 pp. 13-14 Oxfordshire Cancellari (Thomas Mokking).Johannes et Traktat'De Inventione Tinctoris (1445-1511) und sein unbekannter Usu Musicae'. 5-24. the epithet 'fair' and the general context in which the reference appears leave us in little doubt. 270-4. 11-14. Mogin. see A. p. in A. W. op cit. Emden. Modern Review. 23 F. Robinson ed. op cit. op cit. and 'Treble'. 1976). Somerset MedievalWills 1383-1500. U. pp. 342-4 (John Parker). 10 There is some evidence-though it is not very sound-that the text was copied before c 1500. H. N. 247. he records payment for learning 'xiiij davnsysand an horne pype on the levte' on thefirst day of the same month in the same year. For a discussion of the will of Robert Morton see D. 16-17.3 vols (Cambridge. op cit. 101. TheMedieval p. Musica Practica BartolomeiRami de Pareia (Leipzig. see A. op cit. 79-04431). myne armes printed thereon' and 'a stonding cuppe covered with gilt'. 1. cf the remarksin Brown. There is no adequate edition of the material on instruments. Borthwick Papers. 318. sv 'Mene'. 271). 1979). ActaMusicologica. 29f. 26 See H.. H. Registrum Oxford Historical Society. 4 In the manuscript the word communiter (line 1). K. (1924-5). pp. p. pp. Wolf ed. 213 (John Tidman). Those which appear in that form (with the fold across the centre of the anchor shaft) seem to have been current up to 1490. 2 vols (1932) 2. pp. vols (Oxford. 2. W. TheWestern Manuscriptsin the Libraryof Trinity College. MedievalWills. 1973). Lydbery and Cooper). 39 (1958). which is how I read the contraction after musicum. Yet the suspicion lingers that 'fair' has been included to make a distinction rather than express pride in ownership. 16 ibid. 262-4. which must be read in a confusing and inaccurate transcription by J. Somerset 317-8 (William Case). Davis ed. 'Meene' and 'Tenor' are well attested in Middle English as the names of vocal parts in polyphonic music. B. Handschin in 'Aus der alten 16-17 Musiktheorie. 647f. in J. 29 Salter. just before disposing of his 'gowne of tawny furred with shankes'. Weaver. and by S. 4 This table is based upon a survey of the printed will collections listed in E. pp. Salter ed. Anchor Watermarks (Amsterdam.GSJ 3 (1950). 271. pp. Musicand Poetryin the Early TudorCourt. 327.. p. 28. 1901). MS has effagitatur. contains an unequivocal reference to a fine instrument. 'Music and Cultural Tendencies in Fifteenth Century Italy'.. W. for Braggs. Chambers. op cit. now in the library of the Jagiellonian Universityat Krak6w(MS 257). 'Instrumentsand Voices in the Performance of Fifteenth Century Chansons'. Zur Instrumentenkunde'. VocabularioEspadol-Latino (Salamanca. p. sv 'cuerda'. 1975). 9 For a description of the manuscript see M. Devon ed. p. pp. V. Raine ed. pp. 8 ibid. 2. B. A date in the early 1490s agrees remarkablywell with the evidence of the dated documents in the manuscript. 1979. J. 102f (on the use of Thought Musicology the lute). 'Pietrobono and the InstrumentalTradition at Ferrarain the Fifteenth Century'. p. 12 'Trebill'.Beier. Cancellarii Oxoniensis 1434-1469. 317-18). p. R. MusicalTerms (Indiana. 11-14 (John Bount). 'Tenour'. with English translation. 417.op cit.. in Current (Austin. pp. James. Beardwood. Weinmann. In 1494 William Case. 241.

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