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Instruments and the Faenza Codex


  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    Instruments and the Faenza CodexAuthor(s): Timothy J. McGeeSource: Early Music, Vol. 14, No. 4 (Nov., 1986), pp. 480-490Published by: Oxford University PressStable URL:

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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    TimothyJ.McGeenstruments a n d t h e a e n z a C o d e x

    Since its rediscovery in 1939, the so-called FaenzaCodex(I-FZc117)has been recognized by performersand scholars as an extremely valuable source ofinstrumentalmusic. It contains the largest survivingcollection of instrumental pieces from before 1450,and provides rare examples of ornamentation andimprovization.1But for whom, for what purpose, oreven for what instrument(s)the manuscriptwas in-tended has never been clear,nor has anyone answeredthe question of whyit contains evidence of a perform-ance tradition that was usually extemporized. Theresults of the present inquiry, while not entirelyconclusive, shed some new light on both the instru-mental practices and the manuscripttraditionsof the15th century.Several different theories have been advancedcon-cerningthe instrument(s) or which the FaenzaCodexwas intended: van den Borrenthought it was for twoinstruments, although he did not specify which; twowind instrumentswere favoured by Jeppesen, a key-board by Plamenac, organ and clavichord or harpsi-chordby Apel,organby both CavicchiandBrown,andeither a two-manual organ or duet for positive andportative nstrumentswas suggestedby MarroccoandHuestis.2The earlyhistory of the Faenzamanuscript s onlypartiallyknown. Its oldest section is thought to havebeen writtenin the earlydecades of the 15thcentury,in northern Italy.3A case for its probable origin inFerrarawas made by AdrianoCavicchi,based in parton the presence of the dance 'Bel fiore danqa',apparentlyrelated to 'Belfiore',the castle of Niccol6III,rulerof Ferrararom 1393 to 1429.4 In 1473-4 theMSwas in the libraryof the CarmeliteConventof SanPaolo in Ferrara,where Johannes Bonnadies copiedinto it several music treatises and some later 15th-century polyphony.A single scribe was responsible for copying all theintabulations.Mostof the Italian recento-styleotationis written in black, with some sections in red. Themanuscriptwas not elaborately prepared,and thereare no illuminations or decorations; the works arecopied one afteranother,often without identification

    or clear separation. This is the appearance of apractical(as opposed to a presentationor ceremonial)manuscript,and the possibility that it was writtenbythe person who performed rom it is discussed below.In attemptingto narrowdown the choice of instru-ments capableof playingthis repertory,an analysisofthe technical requirements of the works that themanuscriptcontains is of assistance. The overallrangeis two octaves and a 5th, fromB flat tof" (see Table1).Of the solo instruments that usually performedpoly-phony, only harp,lute and keyboardshad the neces-saryrange.5 f the two partsareconsideredseparately,the tenorrequiresan overallrangeof two octaves lessa semitone, fromB flat to a', and the trebletwo octavesand a 4th, c to f"'.Even then, the instruments with alarge enough rangefor the treblepartremainthe sameas before-harp, lute and keyboards.As for the tenorpart,most instrumentsof the periodwould have hadthe range,butallexcept those mentioned above canbeeliminated: the loud winds (shawms, bagpipe, etc)never performed in the company of any of theinstrumentscapable of the treble part,and the softerwoodwinds and other plucked strings played treble,not tenor.6Itis possible that these pitches werenot intendedtobe taken literally. There is ample evidence in theMiddleAgesthat staff notationreferredonly to modalassignment and writing convenience, without indi-catingactualperformancepitch. Inthis case, however,the rangeof the music as writtendoes correspondwiththe limits of the instruments on which it may havebeen performed,and maythereforeprovidesome clueto the intended instrumentation.Onecuriosityin thisregardis that seven works-five of the intabulationsand the two Benedicamus Domino settings-weretransposed up from the pitch of their vocal models.The most obvious reason for this would seem to be adesire to keep the partswithin the rangeavailableonthe instrument.With three exceptions, however, thetranspositionsdo not affect the overallrangedemandsof the manuscript; our of the transposedworkscouldbe performedat the lower pitch of their vocal andcantus firmusmodels without exceeding the existing


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


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    1 Consort of soft instruments. Pierre de Nessons, Les neuf legons de Job (French,15th century) (Paris,Bibliotheque Nationale)EARLY MUSIC NOVEMBER 1986 481

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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    range(nos.3,4, 5, 35).Ifthe two Benedicamus Dominosettingshadbeen left at theiroriginal pitchtheywouldextend the rangeof the tenorpartdown toA,but wouldstill lie withinthe existing rangeof the treble.Only heoriginalvocal pitch of no.15, Deduto ey, would haveaffected the range of both parts, this unusually lowsetting requiringthe tenor to descend to C and thetreble to E. This suggests that the bottomnotes couldnot have been the only reason forthe transpositions.Ishall returnto this point below.Let us consider first the possibility of performingboth parts on a single instrument. Lute can immedi-atelybe eliminatedbecause althoughit possessed thenecessary range, it was not played polyphonicallybefore the late 15thcentury.Until then aplectrumwasused, precluding the performanceof more than oneline.7Little is known about the repertory of the harpbefore the 16th century, although the instrument'spopularity, especially in France but also in Italy, isdocumented in many sources from the 14th centuryonwards.8Thelate 14th-andearly15th-centuryharp sknown to have had a large enough range for thedemands of this repertory,with between 17 and 26diatonic strings, and B tuned either flat or naturalasrequired.9Manyof the compositions in the FaenzaMSdo, in fact, lie within the technical capabilitiesof theharp,andcan be playedby a performerof exceptionaldexterity. There are, however, technical limitationsthat make performance of some of them highlyunlikely, if not impossible, such as problems in theexecution of chromatic notes, as well as awkward,unidiomaticwriting.In some passagesrapidchromaticchange is required n acontextwherepre-tuningof thestringswould not be possible. In orderto makethesechromatic alterations, the player must remove onehand from the normal position and press the stringagainst the cross brace of the instrument, therebyshorteningthe stringand raisingits pitch a semitone.This manoeuvre cannot be done quickly, and apassagesuch as ex.1(foundin secularworksas well as

    altematimKyries),would be verydifficult;althoughtheFsharpscould be pre- et, the change from Cto Csharpwould require the technique described above. Ex.2illustrates unidiomatic writing in which the rapidascending and descending figuresbecome blurredonthe harpbecause of their speed. Althoughnot entirelyimpossible, these passages would be extremely un-comfortable,and they cast doubt on the harp as theintended instrument.'0This leaves only the keyboard instruments, andbecause of the manner in which the partssometimescross and overlapwith one another it is clear that theFaenzarepertorywould pose technical problemsfor asingle-manual nstrument.Passagessuch as thatshownin ex.3 requireawkwardand all but impossible super-impositions of one hand over the other. It is thereforeunlikely that the two parts were played on a single-manual instrument.Theobvious solution wouldbe atwo-manual nstru-ment,but the earliestknown Italianorganof this typedates fromthe mid-16thcentury,andthe earliesttwo-manualharpsichordfroma little later."I f a keyboardinstrument was in fact used, it must have been asingle-manualorganwithpedals;at least one is knownto have existed in Italy as early as 1379, at SsAnnunziata n Florence.'2Therangethat its 12pedalscovered is not known, but it would not have beenadequatefor some of the Faenzapieces, which makeuse of up to 16 notes. Butwe should not yet fully dis-count this instrumentas a possibility, for despite therangeof the tenor partsas a whole, that of the sacredworks only is somewhat smaller. The tenors of theKyrie,Gloriaand Benedicamus Domino settings, andthatofAvemaris tellarequirearangeof a9th,c-d'. Itispossible, therefore, that the sacred workscould havebeen performedon an organknownto have existed inItaly at the time.In consideringthe possibility of instrumentalduet,the two-organhypothesis can, I believe, be ruled outon simple, practical grounds: the portative organlacked a large enough range to perform the treble

    Ex.1 Adiscort sont desir, bars 23-8

    8 Eclos Secundaars 3 3 33 3

    E R L Y M U S I N O V E M E R 9 8 6

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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    Ex.2 lo me son, bars 57-61 3

    Id 17tF

    Ex.3 Imperialesedendo fra piuistelle, bars 11-173 3

    parts, and had no bass range to speak of, thereforeprecluding it from either part. There is no evidencethat two positive organswerekept in one place duringthis period, and the Marrocco-Huestissuggestion ofpositive-portative duet would involve enormousbalance problems even if the lack of range couldsomehow be overcome.Harpand lute as possible joint participantsmustnow be reconsidered. The popularityof duets for twolutes or for lute and harp during the 15th century iswell documented in iconography.3 The harp'stech-nical problems with rapid chromatic changes andunidiomaticwriting,as discussed above,also exist if itplays only the treble line, making it an unlikelycandidate for that part.The tenor, however,does notmakethe same demands, and the use of harpon thatpart is a distinct possibility.Thelute, on the otherhand,hadno such limitations

    withchromaticnotes, andcould have playedtreble ortenor. The 15th-century five-course lute with ninefrets andtunings of cf a d'g', orcf a d'a', as describedin the mid-15th-centuryLibervigintiartiumof PaulusPaulirinus,could adequatelyhave covered the treblerangeof the whole collection.14 Thetenor partwouldhaverequiredeitherthe additionof a stringtuned to Bflat, or a lower overall tuning, such as G c f a d' of

    Ramosof Pareja,to encompass the lowest note. Thistuning, perhapson a slightlylarger nstrument,wouldeasily accommodatethe highest as well as the lowestnotes of the tenor part.From the standpointof technical ability,therefore,the lute becomes aprimecandidateforthe repertorynthe Faenza Codex. In addition to the available rangeand chromatics, the technique required in rapidpassages such as those shown in exx.1,2 and3 laywellfor the lutenist's left hand.IsPlayingthe treblepartona lute would also explainthe puzzle mentioned aboveconcerning the transpositionof pieces whose ranges,if left untransposed,do not exceed those requiredforthe other works. Upwardtransposition results in amuch largerpercentage of the ornamentedpassageslying on the highest strings, where rapid motion ismore comfortable for the performer.Forexample, inthe transposed version of A discortsont desir, thecompass c'-e" would be playedalmost entirelyon thehighest two strings (assuming that the first of theabove-mentioned tunings is used), whereas at thepitch of its vocal model (a5th lower), he highest stringwould be played very little, while many of the noteswould lie on the less convenient third and fourthstrings.In this regardthe two settings in Faenza of Rosetta


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    offer an interesting comparison; only one is trans-posed and the technical demands of the two arequitedifferent.Thearrangement ransposedup a 5th(no.39)makes most use of the first and second strings, andcontains long passages that, like the other high-pitched intabulations, demand a virtuoso technique.In contrast,the setting at the lower pitch of the vocaloriginal(no.20) s concentratedon the thirdand fourthstrings.Herethe technical writing s far moremodest,and the rapid passages are written so as to avoidfrequent changes of string.David Fallows has documented a practice of luteplaying from later in the 15th century that lookssuspiciously similarto the style found in Faenza.16 Heand Peter Danner point to the 16th-century elabo-rations of chansons forlute by SpinacinoandCapirola,as well as the LaSpagnasettings in other early lutesources, as evidence of a long-standing traditionofelaboration. 7

    Theonly objection to the affirmationof lute duet asthe intendedperformancemediumof the FaenzaMS sthe presence of the sacred music, especially the alter-natimKyrieand Gloriasections. These are obviouslyintended for use within the Mass, in alternationwithsinging, but there is to my knowledge no document-ation of lutes or harps being heard in this context.Twopossible solutions maybe suggested:first,thatthis manuscriptwas not compiledas repertory oroneparticular instrument, but rather for a particularperformer,providinga varietyof musicfora varietyofduties. If the sameperformerweresometimesrequiredto function as church organist and at other times ascourt entertaineron another instrument,the diversecontents of the Faenza collection would make moresense. Asalreadynoted, the secularworkscould allbeplayed by two lutes or lute and harp, and the sacredrepertoryon the organ,using pedals forthe tenorline.In the studies by Fallows and Danner cited above,parallelsare drawnbetween the style and the type ofrepertory in the early keyboard and lute sources,findingswhich appear o ringjustas truewhen appliedto the Faenzarepertory. nthe early16thcenturytherewould seem to have been little difference between thestyle of lute and keyboard writing, and there isevidence to suggest that these instrumentsmay haveshared not only repertory and ornamentation, butnotationas well. Itis thereforenot difficult to supposethat they were associated at an earlierdate. What isquestionable about this solution is whether it wouldhave been common for a single player to have

    performedon both organ and lute or harp.Surprisingly,ute,harpandorganseemto havebeencustomary doublings'duringthe 14th and 15thcentu-ries.Both FrancescoLandiniand ConradPaumann, orexample, were reputed to have played the organ andother instruments, including lute. To a modern per-former accustomed to doubling instruments chosenbecause their techniques are similar, there wouldseem to be no obvious reasonto recommendthe sameperformer earning these three instruments, or evenanytwo of them, since theirtechnical demandsaresodifferent. But they have one thing in common: theywerenormallyplayedby people who couldreadmusic,a rare attributeat that time. In addition, they wouldhave been the mostuseful instruments orthe perform-ance of polyphonic music:organforthe sacredworks,and lute and/or harp for the secular. It comes as nosurprise,then, that the performersnamedabove werealso composersof polyphonic music, andwould havebeen interested in these instruments in order toperform heirown sophisticatedcompositions.Astorysupportingthis doubling in a sacredcontext has beenpreservedin the form of an interviewbetween PopeBenedictXIIand the RomanabbotMonozella,c1435:

    Benedict:oyou knowhowto playan instrument?Monozella: do.Benedict.meando youknowhowto play he organandthe lute?Monozella:Too well.Benedict:t is thus that the abbot of the venerablemonasteryf SanPaolomakesa clownofhimself?Getbackthere to your properbusiness 18Andyet, possible as this solution appears,one thingcauses a nagging doubt: the absence in the Faenzaintabulationsof somethingforthe organist's eft handto do while the rightperforms he intricateornament-ationoverthe pedal tenor. Inthe Buxheimmanuscript

    (D-MbsCim352b),wherea clearindicationforpedal isgiven, another line is also present for the left hand.Andin all the otherearlyworksdefinitely knownto befor keyboard,some use is made of chords in the lefthand (andsometimes the right)-an obvious possibi-lity, as seen, for example, in the preludes of the 1448tablatureof Adam Ileborgh.19The absence of theseelements in the Faenza MS leads me to believe thatnone of the manuscript'scontents werefor keyboard,but ratherprobablyfor lute duet (orlute andharp).Itseems to follow that in some cases these instrumentswould have been used in chapel instead of organ,aswe shall see below.


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    2 Amateur music-making. Circular ornament by Israhel vanMeckenem (German,late 15th century) (Washington, NationalGalleryof Art)In consideringthe lutenists knownto have possess-ed the exceptional technique called for by the FaenzaCodex, as well as the circumstances in which lutescould have been used in the Mass,we are led back toFerrara.Thinkingthat the MSwas for organ,Cavicchiproposed that it was by and for Bartolomeo daBologna,organistat the Cathedraln Ferrararom 1405to 1427, and Prior of the Convent of San Nicolo.20

    AlthoughBartolomeo s known to have writtensecularmusic,21 there is no evidence that he was a lutenist;even if he doubled on the lute, it is doubtful that heplayedwell enough to be connected with this MS. Forif he did,some recordwouldprobably urviveattestingto his technical prowess-as it does for his organplaying.Alsopresentat the court of Niccolo IIIfrom as earlyas 1424 was the lutenist Leonardo Chitarino;22woharpists are also known to have been there in the1430s. Further, Lewis Lockwood believes that therenowned lutenist Pietrobono de Burzellis (c1417-1497)was not only born in Ferrara,but also trainedthere,atheorythatlends credenceto Ferrara s a likelyplace of origin for a manuscript of virtuoso lutemusic.23One might speculate that whoever taughtsuch a fine performer--probablyLeonardo-wouldhimself have been capableof the virtuositydemandedby the Faenza compositions.The unusual technical prowessof Pietrobono s welldocumented from as early as 1441, when he was

    probably 24. The banquet at Francesco Sforza andBianca Maria Visconti's wedding, celebrated in Cre-mona that year, was described in a poem by AntonioCornazzanowhich singles out Pietrobono in wordsthat seem particularly appropriate to the Faenzarepertory:24E la guidavatuctain semitoni,proportionandosincoppandoempre,e fugivael tenorea i suoi cantioni.(Heraneverythingn fastrunningnotes,[literallysemi-tones']5continuouslyplayingproportionsndsyncopations,andfollowing he tenorwith his treblestring)26This seems to describe the impressionthatwouldbegiven by two lutenists playing the Faenzarepertory,with the trebleplaying'fastrunningnotes'in constant-ly changing rhythmic patterns, guided by the tenor.From1449onwards, he payrecordsshowthe hiringofa 'tenorista', hat is, a performer probablyon the lute)

    assigned to Pietrobono to play the tenor partsof histrebleelaborations;27Cornazzano's eferencesuggeststhat this may have been a long-standing practice.28Tinctorismade a similarreference to Pietrobonoinc1487:Siquidem:onnulliassociati"upremamartem ujusvis ompositicantus:cum admirandismodulorumuperinventionibus:deoeleganter a personant. t profectonihilprestantius.nterquos:PetrusbonusHerculisFerrarie ucis incliti yricen meaquidemsententia)ceterisest preferendus.Thussometeamswilltakethe treblepartof anypiece youcareto givethemandimprovizemarvellouslyponit withsuchtastethat theperformanceannotberivalled.Amongsuch,PietroBono, utenist o Ercole,Dukeof Ferrara,s inmyopinionpre-eminent.29

    David Fallows points out that the pay recordsstrongly suggest that here too the reference includesPietrobono's lute-playing 'tenorista'.30Fallows alsostates his belief that the 'tenorista'probablyplayedthelowertwopartsof athree-partchanson, but the Faenzarepertorysuggests that he could just as likely haveplayed only the tenor part. On the other hand,Tinctorisalso speaks of the late 15th-centurydevelop-ment of performing polyphony on the lute withfingers, so the possibility of both two- and three-partrenditions existed at the time he was writing.Onthe strengthof the extremevirtuosityrequired operformthe music in the MS and the reputation ofPietrobono,we should considerthe possibilitythattheFaenzaCodex could even have been his manuscript.Froma studyof the notationMichaelKugler oncluded


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    thatthe date of the manuscriptwas 'um 1430',31whichis a bit earlyfor Pietrobono;one could speculate thathe had such technique at the earliest by his 18thyear- around1435. Itwouldtherefore be necessarytosuggest a slightly later date for the intabulations inFaenza, perhaps 1435-40. The Faenza MS could, onthe other hand, have been associated with LeonardoChitarino,a possibility that conforms moreclosely tothe earlier date, although there is no evidence thatChitarinopossessed the spectacular echniquerequiredto performthis repertory.Onepeculiarityof the MS'snotationsuggests that itmay have been a student's book. Many of the shortsections arewrittenin red,not to changethe rhythmicvalues but to identify those notes taken from theotherwise missing contratenorpartand incorporatedinto the treble or tenor lines. There seems to be noreason fordoing this otherthan to indicate the sourceof the elaboration.One can imagine a gifted studentdemonstrating o his teacher both his commandof theItalian notation system and his abilityto turn a three-part piece into one for two parts,while also workingout the techniques of rapidornamentationandimpro-vization. With its strange mixture of compositionaltypes, the Faenza manuscript could easily be thecollection of a diligent student (with an unusualtechnical facility),a work-bookormusical'sampler'.32With the practiceof lute duet firmlyestablishedforthe secularrepertory,what about the sacred?Althoughthere is no recordthat lutenists played the altematimpartsof the Mass chants in Ferrara,t is not entirelybeyond the realm of possibility. Martin Luther'srecollection of an incident in the late 15th centuryindicatesthat the lute was used duringMassat least onsome occasions:Da ich,zu Erfurt injungerMonchwar undterminirenndnachhasengehenmussteaufdieDorfer, amichaufeinsund hieltdaMesse.Da ich michnu angezogenhatteundfiirdenAltar rat nmeinerkleidung und Schmuckda fing der Kirchner n dasKyrieleison n Patrem ufderLauten u schlagen; a konnte chmichschwerlichdes Lachensenthalten,denn ich war solchesOrgelnsnichtgewohnet;musste mein Gloria n excelsis nachseinemKyrierichten.33WhenI was a youngmonkat Erfurt, nd had to visitthevillagesandcollectalmsandcheese,I came oonevillageosayMass here.When haddressed ndwentout to thealtarin my vestmentsand ornaments,he sacristanbegantostrum he Kyrie ndthe Patrem n a lute.I couldscarcelykeepfrom aughingbecauseI wasnotaccustomedo suchorganplaying,andI hadto fit myGlorian excelsisto hisKyrie.

    I returnonce again, therefore, to my earlierspecu-lation concerning the possible connection betweenthe manuscript and Pietrobono or Leonardo, in theabsence of any other known candidates. Leonellod'Este, Pietrobono's fervently religious patron, isknown to have constructed a chapel by 1444, forwhich he laterpurchased an organ.34But what of theperformancepractices there before the arrivalof theorgan?It is not so difficult to believe that Leonellowould have requested the assistance of his courtlutenists to perform he altematimpartsof the chant ina celebration of Mass. If this were so, then after theinstallationof the organ(whichmusthavetakenplacesometimeafterthe completionof the 1444inventory)alutenist's services in this regardwould no longerhavebeen needed. Bythis time, too, even Pietrobonowouldhave outgrownthe need to writedown his ornament-ations, thus discardingthe manuscript,which turnedup 30 years laterin the Convent of San Paolo when itwas found by Bonadies in need of music paper.Andalthoughthe association of this manuscriptspecific-ally with either or both of these two lutenists wouldrequirefar more proof, that is not reallymy point. Ifnot Leonardo and Pietrobono, Ferrara,and Leonello,then some other lutenists, northernItalian court andpatronwould be the subjects of a similar story. Theunusual repertory, its physical appearance, and itsknown fate suggest that a storymuch like thatwhich Iproposemust have been the sequence of events in thecreation of this unique manuscript.35

    A detailed analysis of the FaenzaMS,whateveritsexact origins, leads to a broaderunderstandingof theearly polyphonic instrumentalrepertoryand perform-ance practices.Whenthis is consideredin conjunctionwith the informationset forthby Fallowsand Danner,strongevidence is producedthat the traditionsof luteornamentationandimprovizationwerelong-standing,similarto those for organ,and fully developed by themid-15th century. Because keyboard, lute and harpplayers were most often the instrumentalistsable toreadmusic, it is entirely possible that they sharednotonly functions and ornamentation techniques, butalso repertoryand manuscripts,for in some instancesthe samepersonplayedseveralinstruments.Itfollows,therefore,thatall the collections previouslyidentifiedas being for 'keyboard'should now be examined forthe possibility that they were not solely for thisinstrument.Most of the earliest tablaturesources discussed byWilli Apel,36are fragments or independent composi-


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


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    p,~?~~4 rd ??:''

    3 Consort of soft instruments. Valerius Maximus,Histoires (French,c1475) (London,BritishLibrary)tions inserted in collections of other material,oftennotated with notes for the upper, more rhythmicallyactive voice, and letters for the lower."3None of thesources indicates what instrument was intended. Thecurrent heorythat they were all intended for organisbased on a combination of facts and assumptions:thederivation of their tenors from sacred material, al-though most sources also contain secular music; thepresence of Paumann'sFundamentumrganisandinthree of the sources, and the mistakenassumptionthatorganisandiefers to 'organ';38nd the knowledgethatlutenists in the 16thcenturyreadfrom lettertablatureonly. The possibility that instrumentsother than theorgan may have been intended seems never to havebeen considered. The music is not a unified corpus;the manuscripts include works intended for sacreduse, as well as ornamented versions of songs anddances, and a series of clausulae (fundamenta) sexamplesof cadentialdecorations.Mostwouldprovidegood trainingfor performersof both lute and organand probably harp, and a few may not have been

    intended for instrumentalperformanceat all.39Whatis commonto all of them and also to the FaenzaCodexis that the writingconsists of a moving treble over asustained lower part.Some of the compositions in these manuscriptsmust have been intended only for keyboardperform-ance, as they aretoo polyphonically complex to playeven on two lutes. This is certainlytrue of the entirecontents of MS Erlangen (D-ERu)554, which arechordal throughout. Many of the works in the Bux-heim collection also contain chords ordividedmotionin one or more voices whichsuggestkeyboardperform-ance, andthere are several indications that the lowestnotes are for pedal. But even here a number of theintabulations aresuitable forlute, and one is inscribed'in Cytarisvel etiam in organis'; cytaris'could meanlute," as it does in the name of LeonardoChitarino.Berlin40613, which contains the Fundamentumf theorganistandlutenist ConradPaumann, ncludes someworks hat areclearlyforkeyboardbecause of two-partmovement in the lower voice, but others that are


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    Table 1 Faenza Codex InventoryNumbers according to DraganPlamenac, ed., KeyboardMusicoftheLateMiddle gesnCodexaenza 17,Americannstituteof Musicology, 1972.Title Ranges

    tenor treble1. Kyrie d-c' f-e"2. Gloria C-c' g-f"3. "Adiscort sont desir g-g' c'-e"4. "Honte, paour, doubtance f-a' b-e"5. *De toutes flours f-g' a-e"6. Aspre refus contre f-f' c'-e"7. Elas mon cuer (1) f-f' a-e"8. De ce que fol pense f-d' c'-e"9. J'ay grant d6spoir c-d' f#-d"10. Constantia f-g' c-e"11. Le ior f-a' c'-e"12. Jour a jour la vie c-d' d-Bb'13. Viver ne puis c-d' c-b'

    14. Elas mon cuer (2) e-f' e-f"15. "Deduto sey f-a' a-e"16. Or sus, vous dormes trop f-g' c'-e"17. d-d' a-e"18. J'aime la biaut6 d-d' a-d"19. (copy of 12)20. Rosetta che non cangi Bb-d' d-a'21. Tupes c-d' e-c"22 &23. Sangilio c-d' c-b'24. Biance flour f-a' c'-ef"25. "Benedicamus Domino (1) d-d' g-e"26. Soto l'imperio f-a' b-e"27. Qualle lece move f-e' c'-e"28. La dolhe sere f--e' c'-e"29. O ciecho mondo f-f' a-e"30. Aquila altera d-g' a-e"31. Imperiale sedendo c-d' d-e"32. Io me son uno che c-Bb g--e"33. Non al suo amante f-f' c'-e"34. Kyrie d-c' a-e"35. Che pena questa d--e' g-d"36. Bel fiore danca c-d' b-e"37. Non ara may pieta g-g' Bb-e"38. Un fiore gentil m'apparse g-b' c'-e"39. "Rosetta f-a' Bb-e"40. Kyrie d-c' e-e"41. Gloria C-c' fo-e"42. f-g' c'-e"43. c-d' g-b'44. c-a c'-e"45. c-Bb e-e"46. c-a g-e"47. Ave maris stella c-d' g#-e"48. "Benedicamus Domino (2) d-d' f--e"S= transposed rom vocal pitch

    suitable also for two plucked instruments.The con-tents of Hamburg 225 and the IleborghTablatureseefn.34) could easily be for either keyboardor pluckedstringduet. Theirpreludes (praembulae)nd exerciseswould suit either, although the ranges sometimesoverlap in such a way that they would be morecomfortable played on plucked strings. The lowerparts of the three sacred works in the RobertsbridgeCodexoccasionallycall fortwomovingvoices, perhapsan indication of keyboard, but the three secularcompositions could be performedeither by keyboardor plucked strings. All the works in the Breslaufragment I F 687 could be for either keyboard orplucked strings, but we might now suspect that luteduet could have been intended for the two composi-tions labelled 'Incipit bonus tenor Leohardi' and'TenorBonusIII Petri' LeonardoChitarinoandPietro-bono?).41Enlarging n the conclusions of FallowsandDanner,agreatsimilaritymaybe observedbetweenallthe earlyintabulationsources, fromthe RobertsbridgeCodexofthe late 14th century to the early 16th-centuryreper-tories for both keyboard and lute. I believe it isprobable hatmostof the earlyexampleswereintendedfor performanceon either instrument, though someweremore suitableforone thanthe other,even thoughI have rejected this as the probable intention of theFaenza Codex. Most of the early repertorypresentlyidentified as solely for keyboard should now be re-classified as for lute, harp and/or keyboard.ArnoltSchlick's Tabulaturen etlicher lobgesang und lidlein(1512),42 containing compositions for both organandlute, notated in a combination of notes and letters, istherefore not an oddity but the last example of acentury-long raditionof mixed instrumental epertory.TimothyJ.McGee s associate professorof musicologyat theUniversityof Toronto.His most recent books are Medievaland Renaissance Music: a Performer'sGuide(Univ.ofTorontoPress) and The Music of Canada (Norton).

    1Fora discussion of the manuscript'sornamentationstyles seeT. J. McGee, 'Ornamentation,National Styles, and the FaenzaCodex', orthcoming.For studies of the manuscriptandits contentssee: C.van den Borren, LeCodex de Johannes Bonadies musiciendu xve siecle', Revuebelged'archeologiet d'histoire e lart, x (1940),pp.251-61; M. Kugler,Die Tastenmusikm Codex aenza,MfinchnerVer6ffentlichungenzurMusikgeschichte,Band 21, ed. T. G.Georg-iades (Tutzing,Hans Schneider, 1972);D. Plamenac, A Note on theRearrangement f FaenzaCodex 117',JAMS,xvii (1964),pp.78-81;--, 'Alcune osservazioni sulla struttura del codice 117 dellaBiblioteca comunale di Faenza',L'arsnova italianadel trecento I,Certaldo969,pp.161-75; --, 'KeyboardMusic of the 14thCentury


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    in CodexFaenza117',JAMS,v(1951),pp.179-201. TranscriptionnKeyboardMusicof the LateMiddleAges,ed. D. Plamenac, CMM,Ivii(1972); and Transcriptionsrom the Faenza Codex,ed. R. Huestis(Westwood,1971).Facs. in Musicological Studies and Documents,x, AIM(1961).2Vanden Borren,opcit;K.Jeppesen,DieitalienischeOrgelmusikmAnfangdesCinquecentoCopenhagen,1943),pp.16-17; Plamenac,opcit(1951), p.185;W.Apel,TheHistory f KeyboardMusic o1700, transl.and rev. H.Tischler Bloomington, nd., 1972),pp.28,30.;A.Cavicchi,'Sacro e profano.Documenti e note su Bartolomeoda Bologna e gliorganistidella cattedrale di Ferrara el primoQuattrocento',Revistaitaliana di musicologia,x (1975), pp.46-71; H. M. Brown, 'TheTrecentoHarp', n Studies n thePerformancefLateMediaevalMusic,ed. S. Boorman Cambridge,1983), p.56, fn.62; W. T. MarroccoandR. Huestis, 'SomeSpeculationsConcerningthe InstrumentalMusicof the Faenza Codex 117',TheDiapason, xiii (1972), 3, pp.16-18.3Fordate and history, see van den Borren,opcit;Plamenac,opcit(1951, 1964);--, 'KeyboardMusic of the 14th Century n CodexFaenza 117',JAMS,v(1951), pp.179-201; RISM, I B44, p.898 andKugler,op cit. Whereas a date of 1410-20 is suggested by van denBoren, Plamenac and von Fischer, Kuglerprefers a date closer to1430.4Cavicchi,op cit5Bowedstrings are not considered here because there is littleevidence that they commonlyplayedpolyphonic music duringthisperiod. See my article 'The Social Status of Drone Instruments',Continuo, ii (1984),pp.9-12.6Fordiscussion of late medieval instrumental groupings andrepertory,see K. Polk, 'Ensemble Performance in Dufay's Time',DufayQuincentenaryonferenceapers, d. A. Atlas(NewYork,1976),pp.61-75; E Bowles, 'Haut and Bas: The Grouping of MusicalInstruments in the MiddleAges',Musicadisciplina MD],vii (1954),pp.115-40; H. M. Brown, Instrumentsand Voices in the Fifteenth-century Chanson', Current houghtn Musicology, d. J. W. GrubbsAustin, Texas, 1975),pp.89-137; T.J. McGee,Medieval nd Renais-'anceMusic,A Performer'suide Toronto,1985),pp.63-81.7SeeS. Marcuse,A SurveyofMusicalInstrumentsLondon, 1975),pp.416-7; Brown,opcit (1975);C. Page, The 15th-century ute: newand neglected sources', EM,ix (Jan 1981), pp.11-21.8Brown,op cit (1983),pp.35-73

    9See Marcuse,op cit, pp.389-90; Brown,op cit (1983),pp.49-54.'OForhese performance observations I am grateful to CherylFulton, a specialist in early harp performance."The earliest Italiantwo-manualorgan,built between 1534-39,was at Santa MariaMaggiorein Trent,and the first two-manualharpsichordwas a productof Hans Ruckers he Elder, n 1588. SeeMarcuse,op cit, pp.629, 625.12Marcuse, op cit, p.619"See Brown,opcit(1975),pp.105-12; P.Danner, BeforePetrucci:The Lute in the Fifteenth Century',Journalof the LuteSociety ofAmerica, (1972),pp.4-17.14Trans. and commentaryin Page, op cit.15Forthis observation I am indebted to John Nadas.16D.Fallows, 15th-centuryTablatures or PluckedInstruments:ASummary,a Revisionand a Suggestion',TheLuteSociety ournal,xix(1977), pp.7-33 "Danner,op cit18L. Muratori,Antiquitates talicaeMediiAevi, iii (Milan, 1740),cols.277-78, quoted in A. Tomasello, Music and Ritual at PapalAvignon 309-1403, Studies in Musicology,vol.75(AnnArbor,1983),p.10. Tomasello considers the story to be possibly apocryphal.1gCorpus f EarlyKeyboardMusic [CEKM],, pp.28-3220Cavicchi, p cit, p.4721L. Lockwood, Music in RenaissanceFerrara1400-1505 (Cam-bridge, Mass., 1984), pp.17-25. Transcriptions n G. Reaney, ed.,EarlyFifteenth-centuryusic,CMM,xi/5 (1955-76).220nthe identification of LeonardoChitarinowith the lutenistLeonardode Alamania at Brescia during the years 1409-19, see

    Purcell'sgenius was long honouredmore n the breach than theobservance - as BernardShaw put it 'TheEnglish musiciansays, "Purcell was a great composer let us go and doMendelssohn's 'Elijah'overagain, and make the lord-lieutenantof the county chairman of the committee'"'Thefoundation ofthe Purcell Society was an attempt by some of those whogenuinely appreciated him to improve matters by at leastmaking the music more easily available.Notwithstandingthe unanimity of feeling shown whenMr.Turlerecently invited public attention to the state ofthe Latin inscription upon the tomb of Purcell, inWestminsterAbbey, it is remarkablehow little is reallyknown of his compositions in this country. True,he isalways spoken of with reverence, and two or three of hissongs areoccasionally introducedbyour mostclassically-inclined vocalists; but beyond these tributes to hismemory,his fame is almost buriedwith his works. Thisstate of things is likely to be speedily remedied, for Mr.W. H.Cummings,a most zealous musical antiquarian,aswell as an excellent singer, has broached the idea offounding a Society for the publication of our greatEnglishwriter'scompositions, and a meeting has alreadytaken place in furtherance of this object.MusicalTimes,xiv (March1876), p.397

    Theannual Ladies'Night of the BristolMadrigalSociety seemsto have been one of the most important musical (and social)events of the year in the West Country. Ladies'Night referstotheirpresence in the audience;the top parts were taken by boytrebles.) The early items on this occasion included pieces byFesta and Marenzio as well as a representativeselection ofEnglish madrigalists.The BristolMadrigalSociety gave its forty-ninth annual'Ladies'Night'Concertat the VictoriaRooms,on the 15thult., and, in spite of the bitter wind, long before theopening of the doors a greatcrowdhad gatheredbeforethem, eagerto be admitted,andquitethree-quartersof anhour before the time of commencing the programme helarge saloon was nearly filled. The choir numbered 119voices, divided thus: trebles, 44; altos, 19; tenors, 28;basses, 28 . . . Most of the pieces were well knownfavourites at these Concerts, and the work of the choirwas most admirable throughout, the phrasing beingespecially good, and the tone excellent. Owing to thenumberof encores, the trebles showed signs of fatiguetowards he close of the evening, andbegan to sing flatly.This could not be wondered at, considering the severestrainput upon them, and it is much to be regrettedthatthe practice of allowing any numberof encores remainsin force at these Concerts...

    MusicalTimes,xxiv (February1885), p.83


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  • 5/26/2018 Instruments and the Faenza Codex


    A. Atlas, On he identityof some musicians at the BresciancourtofPandolfo IIIMalatesta',CurrentMusicology, xxvi (1983),pp.14-16.23Lockwood,op cit (1984), p.16; and --, 'Pietrobono and theInstrumentalTradition at Ferrara n the FifteenthCentury',Rivistamusicale taliana,x (1975), pp.115-3324Quotedn N. Pirrotta,Music and CulturalTendencies in 15th-century Italy',JAMS, ix(1966),pp.127-61. Pirrottauspects that theactual date of the performance described is 1456, for althoughPietrobono could have been present at the 1441ceremony,Cornaz-zano would have been a child. This,however,does not rule out thepossibility that the latter was describinga performance hat he hadheard about, having subsequently come to know Pietrobono'splaying.25Pirrotta,p cit (1966), reasons that by 'semitoni' Cornazzanomeant 'semifuse'.

    26ToFallows' re-translation of Pirrotta,I add my own changes.Both Pirrotta and Fallows translate 'fugiva'as 'imitating'.For theword'cantioni',Pirrottagives 'low string',but Fallowssuggests thatCornazzanowas confused and intended 'cantino' (high string).27Lockwood, p cit (1984),p.6928The earliest documents of payments to what must be a'tenorista' are those reported in the documents from Bresciabeginning in 1441, in which paymentsto the lutenist Salamonearealways accompaniedby a notice of paymentto another nstrument-alist. See Atlas, op cit, p.15.29K. Weinmann, ed., Johannes Tinctoris 1445-1511) und seinunbekannter raktatDe nventionetusumusicae'(Tutzing, 961), p.45;trans. in A. Baines,'Fifteenth-centuryInstruments n Tinctoris'sDeInventione t UsuMusicae',GalpinSocietyJournal, ii (1950),p.2430Fallows, p cit (1977) 31Kugler, p cit, p.5132I have rejected the possibility that Leonello d'Estecould havebeen involved with this MS either as the writer or the recipient.Althoughit is known that he had a lute (chitarino) romas earlyas1437 (Lockwood,op cit (1975), p.118, fn.10), the demands of thisrepertoryare most certainlybeyond all but the finest virtuoso.3Dr MartinLuthersdmmtlicheWerkeFrankfurt.M.undErlangen:Verlag von Hender & Zimmer, 1826-57), lx (1854), p.399. I amgratefulto Leslie Korrick or calling my attention to this passage.34Lockwood, p cit (1984), pp.44-535Thepossibility must also be considered thatthe MS could havebeen writtenfor the Conventof SanPaolo,whereno organwas built

    until 1459 (see Lockwood,ibid,p.51).Atthe presenttime, however,thereis no evidence that a virtuoso lutenist was connected withtheConvent.360pcit(1972), pp.24-7 1. Transcriptionsn CEKM,. TheMSSare:GB-LbmAdd.18550 (RobertsbridgeCodex);A-W Cod.3617; PL-WI Qu438, I Qu 42 and I F 687; D-M, lat.5963, andCim.352b BuxheimMS);D-Btheol. lat. quart.290;D-N N D VI3225;tablatureof AdamIleborgh,1448(US-Phci);undamentumrganisandiMagistriConradiPaumannsCeci de NirenbergaAnno 1452 (D-ERuHs.554. See also T.G611ner,Notationsfragmentus einerOrganisten-werkstattdes 15. Jahrhunderts',ArchivfitrMusikwissenschaft,xxiv(1967),pp.170-77.37See Fallows,op cit (1977), pp.29-30.3'Organisandi'means literally 'to organize'. In the context ofmediaeval music it seems to have meant 'to compose one or more

    partsover a cantus firmus'.39GB-Obouce 381 contains only a single work that could easilybe a counterpointexercise, and the one piece inA-W3617 is a two-part Kyrie with a texted lower part, suggesting vocal performance.

    4See Fallows, op cit (1977), p.32.41See F. Feldmann, 'Ein Tabulaturfragment des Breslauer Dominik-anerklosters aus der Zeit Paumanns', ZeitschriftfiirMusikwissenschaft,xv (1933), pp.241-58, and Apel, op cit (1972), pp.33-4. Transcriptionin CEKM, i, pp.18-22.42Ed. G. Harms (Hamburg, 1924, 2/1957)

    Before the LP era, the recordedrepertoryconsisted mainly ofstandard orchestral, chamber and instrumental music, andsongs. Apart rom afew English madrigals,such earlymusic aswas available tended to be contained in special sets of recordsdesigned mainly for educational use, though broad-mindedreviewers were always quick to emphasise that they were asvaluable to the ordinary listener as to the teacher The setreviewed here by W. R Anderson was unusual in that themusic was provided with a spoken rather than a writtencommentary; 2LO was the call-sign of the BBC's Londonbroadcastingtation

    INTERNATIONALDUCATIONALOCIETY(Published by Columbia.)In the March ssue (page 450) were noticed the first fiverecords of an importantset which Dr.George Dyson ismaking.These contained talksand illustrationscoveringa period in musical history which the recent popular-isation of early music does not fully cover-the very

    beginning of art-music, even before those exacting andseminal days round about 1500, when music cast off theleading-strings of the church. In three furtherrecords(D.40137, 8 and 9) Dr. Dyson continues his discourse,dealing with Early KeyboardMusic-variations, dances,descriptivepieces and those resourceful and advancedminiature sketches of Giles Farnaby's hat have causedhim to be called a TudorSchumann.We have had a fewmadrigalsand virginalpieces recorded,but not enoughto allow anyone to get a very clear idea of the develop-ment of earlymusic. It is so easy to fail to appreciateoldthings because one has no sufficient means of fittingthem into their place in the general story of life, andcannot find opportunities of having them demonstratedin the right sequence. Therein ies the high value of theseillustrated ectures. Dr.Dyson concentrates andclarifies.I wish we could hear him often at 2LO.It is curious thatwe have so few talks on music, apartfrom the regularseries that have now been going on for some years. Somesuch set of talks as this now recorded would be verywidely appreciated. The illustration on 40137 is Byrd'shappyset of variationson 0 MistressMine. On 40138 wehave the pavane, galliard, almand and jig; and the lastrecordcontains Farnaby'sHis Humour nd Dr.John Bull'sTheKing'sHuntingJig.ThewildlywhirlingJohn Bull,'as acontemporarycalled him,was the cleverest writer or thekeyboardat that time, and apparentlya mightyvirtuoso.The pieces on the first two records are played on thepiano, and those on the last upon a harpsichord ofsonorous tone. I hope Dr. Dyson will continue in thisseries his admirableexpositions, and carryus throughthe ages ....Gramophone,ii (July 1929), p.79


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