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«Fonti Musicali Italiane» è la rivista della Società Italiana di Musicologia dedicata alle ricerche sulle fonti. Pubblica saggi in italiano, inglese e francese, relativi alle fonti utili alla ricerca sulla storia della musica in Italia: cataloghi e studi su manoscritti, edizioni musicali, libretti; spogli di periodici musicali e non; documenti d’archivio, carteggi, epistolari; documentazione utile alla ricerca organologica e iconografica; discografie; interventi sulle nuove tecnologie in rapporto alla ricerca sulle fonti musicali. I saggi pubblicati su «Fonti Musicali Italiane» intendono offrire – accanto ai materiali documentari presentati – una loro attenta valutazione critica. Ogni volume contiene infine un’ampia Rassegna bibliografica in cui sono elencati monografie, saggi, edizioni di musiche comparsi nell’anno precedente in Italia e all’estero, e relativi alla musica italiana.

«Fonti Musicali Italiane» è una rivista peer-reviewed che si attiene a una revisione double-blind per la selezione e la pubblicazione dei saggi. 

Fonti Musicali Italiane, 3 (1998)

Inserito in Fonti Musicali Italiane


  • Marco Gozzi, Le fonti liturgiche quattrocentesche con notazione della Biblioteca comunale di Trento. Abstract.
  • Ausilia Magaudda - Danilo Costantini, Un periodico a stampa di antico regime: la «Gazzetta di Milano». II parte: Spoglio delle notizie musicali per gli anni 1642-1685. Abstract.
  • Luisa Cosi, Settecento musicale inedito tra Napoli e Terra d'Otranto: professioni e società di musica attraverso nuove fonti d'archivio. Abstract.
  • Licia Sirch, La stanza della memoria. L'archivio della Società filarmonica di Cremona. Abstract.
  • Tiziana Grande, Contributo alla storia della Biblioteca del Conservatorio di Napoli: gli anni 1889-1935. Abstract.
  • Alessia Ferraresi, Alberto Franchetti: una biografia dalle lettere. Abstract.
  • Renato Meucci, Gli strumenti musicali nell'Italia meridionale nei secoli XVI-XIX. Abstract.
  • Fiamma Nicolodi - Maria Adelaide Bacherini - Andrea Chegai, Per un censimento della letteratura musicale a stampa nelle biblioteche toscane (secoli XV-XIX). Abstract.
  • Rassegna bibliografica: 1996-97, a cura di Carmela Bongiovanni, con la collaborazione di Sonia Teramo.


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Marco Gozzi
Fifteenth-century liturgical manuscripts with notation in the Municipal Library of Trento

The Trentino abounds in musical manuscripts and fragments of plainsong of the fifteenth century which are of considerable importance and which have been up to now neglected by scholars and researchers. The importance of these musical and liturgical documents is increased by the fact that, in most cases, these books were used in the same geographical area, and at the same period of compilation, as the celebrated musical Trento codex of fifteenth-century polyphony. The largest collection of manuscripts of this type is to be found in the Municipal Library of Trento (BCT) and consists of the following codices:

  1. BCT, ms. 1588: Vesperae et Missae sanctorum (Antiphoner-Gradual);
  2. BCT, ms. 1617: Gradual-Vesperale of 1492, from Prazöll (Bolzano);
  3. BCT, ms. 1787: with the lives and Offices of Saints Emmerano and Wolfgang;
  4. BCT,.ms. W 1795: Historiae rhythmicae of Saints Stanislas, Adalbert and Hedwig;
  5. BCT, ms. 1947/1: Gradual (25-28 December)-Antiphoner;
  6. BCT, ms. 1826: Franciscan Antiphoner de sanctis.
The paper describes these codices in detail, analyzing the contents and submitting for each manuscript hypotheses on dates, origins and historical contexts, evidencing the numerous points in common with the polyphonic repertory contained in the Tr 87-93 codices. The presence of brief tropes (particularly in the Glorias) and of other liturgical characteristics (numerous Sequences and Alleluias differing from the Roman-Franciscan tradition) demonstrates the strong influence in these manuscripts of the liturgical practices of German-speaking countries, in particular the neighbouring diocese of Passau. Another characteristic encountered in some manuscripts is the absence of the Gradual in the proprium missae (indicating that the section was not sung), but this could be a specific local feature.


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Ausilia Magaudda - Danilo Costantini
The "Gazzetta di Milano", a printed periodical of the Ancien régime. Part II: selection of news items concerning musical events for the years 1642-1680

The paper is based on a selection of information regarding musical events in the State of Milan, drawn from the «Gazzetta di Milano», for the years 1642-1680. The introductory essay evidences the more important, or unknown, news items, for instance among others: music theatre performances; masses, vespers, funeral offices; Te Deums of thanksgiving for the nomination of cardinals or for military victories; performances in honour of saints with "musica isquisita"; concerts in churches on the occasion of beatifications or canonizations; dances in aristocratic palaces; academies with "sinfonie di suoni e canti"; music performances in colleges and monasteries, etc. In addition, particular attention is given to the fundamental role played by the Spanish governors and the nobility.
Appendix A includes 559 items of musical information; Appendix B contains the chronology of theatrical performances with music in Milan (1649-1699) drawn from the "Gazzetta di Milano". There is also an analytical index.

Inizio pagina Luisa Cosi
From Naples to the Terra d'Otranto: unknown features of the eighteenth century musical world, musical professions and societies discovered by researching new archival sources

The paper gives the results of an exhaustive work of research into notarial records and Catasti onciari which covered organ-builders, guitar-makers, choirmasters, singers, music teachers and players of all kinds of instrument who were active in south Apulia during the eighteenth century. The image emerges of a flourishing musical microcosm, notable for the quantity and quality of the enterprises continually undertaken during the decades and, in particular, in the middle of the eighteenth century, when Lecce (the chief town of what was at that time an extensive province) gained the designation of "little Naples" - in other words, the second city in importance of the Bourbon kingdom - for the splendour and exuberance of its artistic traditions.
The productive cycle of music in the Terra d'Otranto in the eighteenth century was therefore relatively autochtonous: in fact, practically all the musical professions of the time were represented in this peripheral environment, often through the versatility of one single artist who moved freely (and well rewarded) between churches, palaces and theatres - and even more often through forms of association between musicians (supported in this instance by three notarial documents given in the Appendix).
At the same time, the musical milieu of the Terra d'Otranto was almost entirely conditioned by and moulded on the example of Naples, as can be seen from the "commuting" of numerous less illustrious maestri between the province of origin and the capital of the kingdom, through an activity programmed to accept and reflect without delay artistic forms and contents.

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Licia Sirch
The Archive of the Pia Istituzione Musicale in Cremona

The object of research was the fondo of the Pia Istituzione Musicale, preserved at the State Library of Cremona, which consists of an archive of documents and a collection of music. The last-named includes around 130 musical editions (mainly vocal scores of nineteenth-century operas) and 234 manuscripts. The aim of the investigation was first to identify the nucleus of the collection so as to portray the identity of the entire fondo.
The Pia Istituzione Musicale of Cremona was a self-governing society of mutual assistance whose aim was to assist and provide pensions for local musicians using funds realized either from concerts or from financial operations. The authors of the project, and therefore the administrators and organizers, were the representatives of the city's musical institutions, that is: the Kapellmeister and harpsichordist at the theatre (Ruggero Manna), the first violin and conductor of the theatre orchestra and of the choir (Carlo Bignami), the coordinator of the wind instruments and music teacher of the orchestral players (Giovanni Maini). The collection - which did not constitute (except to a very minor degree) the repertory of the Pia Istituzione - was instead drawn from three principal sources. The first - the donation of don Cesare Paloschi, who had various responsabilities in the Società filarmonica di Cremona (1816-1855 circa) - consists of manuscripts which can be dated as falling between the end of the eighteenth and the beginning of the nineteenth century and containing sacred and symphonic music by Haydn, Pleyel, Witt, Wranitsky, Küffner and Mozart, as well as some musical editions published by Johann André of Offenbach-am-Main. The second, contributed by the Manna family, formed part of the repertory of the company of buffi, the Ragazzi napoletani, who were active in Italian theatres from the end of the eighteenth to the beginning of the nineteenth century. The mother of Ruggero Manna was, in fact, Carolina Bassi, one of the favourite singers of Meyerbeer, Rossini and Mayr. The Manna donation includes full scores of operas by Cimarosa, Fioravanti, Guglielmi, Portogallo, Pavesi and Rossini, and opera excerpts by the above composers as well as by Mayr, Meyerbeer, Paer and Pacini. The third contribution consists of manuscripts of Italian symphonies (Bonfichi, Fioravanti, Nicolini, Rolla, Dusik...) found in the repertory of the Società filarmonica di Cremona in the second decade of the nineteenth century and donated by one of the families which founded the society. The three sources of the collection provide tangible evidence of three aspects of musical civilization in nineteenth-century Cremona in that they are closely related to the didactic, institutional and idealistic activities of its protagonists and supporters.
Transcriptions of the antique inventories and the catalogue of the manuscripts actually present in the library are given in the Appendix.

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Tiziana Grande
Contribution to the history of the Naples Conservatory Library during the years 1889-1935

The history of the library of the Conservatorio S. Pietro a Majella is still little known, particularly for the years following the death of Francesco Florimo, librarian from 1826 to 1888. The librarians who succeeded Florimo were all well-known personalities in the literary and musical world of the time and contributed notably to the present set-up and organization of the library.
On the basis of documents in the Conservatory Archives, the paper reconstructs approximately fifty years of the history of the library. Contrary to what has long been assumed, the library added to its original collection also after Florimo. In particular, when Rocco Pagliara was librarian (for over twentyfive years), the library acquired important autographs, first editions, librettos, letters and heirlooms. The management of Pagliara, however, was so chaotic and 'personal' that a ministerial inspection became necessary in 1914. The inspection marks a significant moment in the life of the library as it was then put in the hands of the poet and scholar Salvatore Di Giacomo, librarian of the Biblioteca Nazionale of Naples, who brought his experience of twenty years in a public library to the Conservatory and provided S. Pietro a Majella, for the first time, with inventories, registers and regulations. His successor, Fausto Torrefranca, musicologist of international fame, drew up extensive plans for restructuring the library - since he considered that, given its importance, it should be transformed into an up-to-date centre of study and research equal to the other major music libraries of the world - but did not succeed in realizing them. After him, Guido Gasperini, president of the Association of Italian Musicologists, renewed the patient work of inventorying the immense patrimony of the library that had been begun by Di Giacomo and completed the cataloguing of the autograph material and of the historical collection, publishing in 1934 the printed catalogue which still today represents an indispensable tool for consulting the greater part of the original fondo of the library of the Conservatorio di S. Pietro a Majella.

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Alessia Ferraresi
Alberto Franchetti: a biography

The discovery of a substantial and interesting corpus of letters has permitted the reconstruction, even if for a relatively short period of time, of the biography of Alberto Franchetti, the Turin musician who was active between the end of the nineteenth and the beginning of the twentieth century. Addressed for the most part to his father, Raimondo and to the superintendent of the Carlo Felice Theatre of Genoa, Cesare Gamba, the letters (which are the property of his heirs) not only throw light on the artistic tastes of Franchetti and on his aesthetic ideas, but also provide specific information on his operas. In particular, the letters examined give information on the beginnings of Franchetti's musical career; on the vicissitudes of the performances of Asrael, Fior d'Alpe, Il signore di Pourceaugnac; on the origins and performance of Germania; on the relations between Franchetti and the librettist Luigi Illica and with the publishers Ricordi and Sonzogno; on his projects (never completed) for the operas Tosca, Maria Egiziaca, Macboulè.
The later period of Franchetti's life has been reconstructed on the basis of the recollections of his daughter Elena. A particularly important document dates back to this period: the score of the last work of Alberto Franchetti, Don Bonaparte, which he finished a year before he died and which was never published and has remained unknown until today.

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Renato Meucci
Musical instruments in Southern Italy (XVI-XIX centuries)

The research on musical instruments may largely benefit from Southern Italian sources, witnessing the existence of many instruments devised or improved in that area, as well as of many inventions successfully exported from.
This study deals either with the description of instruments themselves or the explanation of unusual names found in musical treatises, in literary sources, and in musical scores from Southern Italy.
These instrumental traditions survived for centuries, but eased off - or even arrested - during the last one hundred years, after the political reunification of the Italian Peninsula.
Amongst many others, the following items are discussed: viola 'da arco' and 'da mano' (bowed and plucked vihuela), chitarrino or bordelletto (gittern), chitarra spagnola (baroque guitar), colascione (a long necked 'lute'), tiorba a taccone (quilled theorbo), mandolino, chitarra a sei corde (classic guitar), chitarra-lira (lyre-guitar), lira organizzata (organized hurdy-gurdy), arpa doppia (double harp), sambuca lincea and tricembalo (enharmonic harpsichord and clavichord), cembalo pieghevole (folding harpsichord), spinetta rettangolare (virginal), fortepiano a tangenti (Tangentenflügel), pianoforte, corde (strings), sordellina (Italian musette bagpipe), buttafuoco (a sort of tamburin de Béarn), vox humana (a tenor oboe), tromba da caccia (horn), neocorno (a bugle), armonica and melodium (musical glasses), glasschord (crystallophone), etc.

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Fiamma Nicolodi - Maria Adelaide Bacherini - Andrea Chegai
A census of printed musical literature in Tuscan libraries - XVth to XIXth centuries

In the years 1995-1998 the Tuscan Region - Cultural Assets and Libraries Department - financed a three-year project for cataloguing the texts of printed musical literature from 1470 to 1899 that are preserved in the libraries of Tuscany. This initiative was set up concurrently with the activity of LESMU-Lessico Musicale Italiano (Italian Music Lexicon). The paper presents the results of the census of printed books in Italian, Latin and other European languages on musical theory, aesthetics and criticism (treatises, epistolary biographies, pamphlets and also dedications, prefaces to scores, etc.) in the possession of the principal Florentine libraries (Conservatorio L.Cherubini, Laurenziana, Marucelliana, Nazionale, Riccardiana-Moreniana). Attention is then drawn to new findings and to the possibility of integrating, correcting and completing information extracted from current repertories.

Fonti Musicali Italiane, 2 (1997)

Inserito in Fonti Musicali Italiane


  • Francesco Facchin, Le fonti di polifonia trecentesca italiana alla luce degli ultimi ritrovamenti. Parte prima. Abstract.
  • Antonio Addamiano - Arnaldo Morelli, L'archivio della cappella musicale di S. Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa nuova) a Roma nella prima metà del Seicento. Una ricostruzione. Abstract.
  • Patrizia Florio, La produzione editoriale dei Carulli: Milano 1823-1833. Abstract.
  • Consuelo Giglio, La musica nei periodici dell'Ottocento e del primo Novecento pubblicati a Palermo. Abstract.
  • Giorgio Sanguinetti, Un secolo di teoria musicale in Italia. Bibliografia critica (1850-1950). Abstract.
  • Roberto Leydi, Discografia della musica popolare italiana, III: Sardegna. Abstract.
  • Rassegna bibliografica: 1995-1996, a cura di Carmela Bongiovanni.


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Francesco Facchin

The sources of fourteenth-century polyphony in the light of the latest discoveries. First part

Studies on Italian Medieval music of the last decade have been characterized by a new impulse toward research. This has been made possible on the one hand by the discovery of new and important documentary and musical sources and on the other by the constant clarification of the web of intercrossing relationships - the role of musicians, musical chapels, religious Orders, musical archives, trade - that convey a remarkably more elaborate picture of Medieval musical life. It is at the same time important to notice that methods apparently distant from this field of study, as ethnomusicology and anthropology, have recently become closer to these studies. These contributions have enabled us to reconsider the already known aspects of musical philology in a new light and to read the well known phenomena of alteratio of textual traditions in a wider sense, as the development of a 'history of thought' through the production of musical events.
The first part of the essay intends to assess the amount of sources of Italian fourteenth-century polyphony and of the specific studies concerning them. Manuscripts and fragments recovered in Italy and abroad from 1985 to date and the specialiazed bibliography produced from the same date are examined. In particular: a) new Italian sources of polyphonic fourteenth-century music; b) new foreign sources connected to Italian sources or containing a repertory also found in Italian sources; c) mew sources for the study of simple poliphony in the Veneto.

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Antonio Addamiano - Arnaldo Morelli

The archive of the musical chapel of Santa Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa nuova) in Rome in the first half of the 17th century. A reconstruction

The idea of attempting a reconstruction of the musical archive of Santa Maria in Vallicella (Chiesa Nuova) in Rome in the first half of the 17th century arose from the publication of the Catalogo del fondo musicale della Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale Vittorio Emanuele II di Roma (Rome, 1989). On that occasion, a relevant number of manuscripts originally possessed by the Chiesa Nuova were brought to light. The greater part of these can be dated between the late 16th and the early 17th century.
Further discoveries of manuscripts and printed books pertaining to the Chiesa Nuova in various Roman libraries, together with two inventories dated 1608 and 1794, have unabled us to reconstruct the msucial archive as it appeared in the first part of the 17th century.
The inclusive examination of this material and of the archival documents (concerning the acquisition and restoration of books, payments to singers and choir masters, work on organs and organ galleries) has led us to outline the contemporary presence of different performance practices (the 'a cappella' polyphony without organ continuo, motets for few voices with organ continuo, and polychoral music), alternatively employed in accordance with the importance of the different liturgical feasts.

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Patrizia Florio

The publishing house of Carulli (Milan, 1822-32)

In 1822 Giuseppe Antonio Carulli started a music publishing business within the precincts of the Milan Conservatoire which remained there until 1828, the date of his removal to 984 Contrada di Santa Radegonda. After Carulli's death in 1830, his son Benedetto (clarinettist and teacher at the Conservatoire) continued the business until 1832. In 1832-33 the firm was taken over by Ricordi. The Carulli publishing house printed mainly instrumental music by Milanese composers, the majority of whom were connected with the Conservatoire, with a repertoire which concentrated on fantasias and variations on operatic themes. The editions were frequently part of periodical series containing pieces for specific instrumentation.
The catalogue of the music publishing house includes approximately 300 plate numbers and has been reconstructed by means of examining the editions themselves, the lists of the Censor's office, the periodical press and the Ricordi catalogue. Arranged chronologically by plate number, the catalogue gives for each edition the date of publication, title, name of publisher, eventual inclusion in a periodical series, instrumentation and presentation, name of dedicatory (if any), edition number in the Ricordi catalogue. An index of names accompanies the catalogue.

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Consuelo Giglio

Music in nineteenth and early twentieth-century periodicals published in Palermo

The distribution of periodicals on musical topics in Italy during the nineteenth century evidences a notable geographical homogeneity, including also Sicily. The lines along which the newspapers of Palermo developed are significantly similar to those of the most representative journals in Milan. At the beginning of the nineteenth century, both in Palermo and in Milan, the reports on music were limited to generical information supplied by the political newspapers. The first "politico-literary", "informative-entertainment" and "fashion, variety and theatre" periodicals with ample music sections (like the "Passatempo per le dame" or "Il vapore") appeared in Palermo during the Thirties, concurrently with the affirmation of similar journals in Milan ("La moda", "Il pirata"). During the decade following 1848, many periodicals of fine arts, literature, theatre and variety (first and foremost "La lira") began to give preference to music, adapting themselves to the new public demand. The first magazines devoted entirely to theatrical news ("Corriere dei teatri", "Corriere teatrale") appeared in Palermo only after Italy had become one nation and were short-lived; their premature demise was due to the brevity of theatrical seasons and to the scarcity of theatrical agencies. The first periodicals dedicated entirely to music appeared even later still; in fact, it was not till 1894 that a publisher, Luigi Sandron, first issued "Sicilia musicale" which survived until 1910 despite financial difficulties. The publication of the "Gazzetta musicale di Palermo" (1874-76) and "La musica" (1886), like the later "L'arte musicale" (1898), was due to the individual enterprise of musicians connected with the Conservatoire.
Several magazines of varied subject-matter appeared at the end of the century giving ample space to music ("Psiche", "Flirt", "La Sicile illustré"), an essential feature of the intense life of fashionable society in the belle époque, and proved more permanent. With these elegantly illustrated publications, Palermo shared the new Italian predilection for the image. During the first years of the twentieth century, the city ranged itself with the national trend through the proliferation of newspapers of theatrical advertising, published by agencies in this sector, while occasionally specialized magazines of a more intellectual character were also published ("Rassegna d'arte e teatri", 1922-36). The periodicals of musical interest have been catalogued in alphabetical order, accompanied by the data held to be more important for musicological research; in addition, a chronological list has been compiled of the same periodicals to assist in following their development. Separately, newspapers of general interest with music features are listed which were published during the same period.

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Giorgio Sanguinetti

Music theory in Italy 1850-1950: a critical bibliography

It is generally acknowledged that, after padre Martini, Italian theorists of music suffered an abrupt extinction. The reasons for this misconception are historically well-grounded. Throughout the 19th century, while other European countries developed more 'rational' theories, Italy was an operatic monoculture whose theoretical mainframe was the time-honored Neapolitan tradition of the partimento. In this period there were two main issues: some of the theorists, such as Luigi Felice Rossi, tried to update the partimento merging it with the idea of the fundamental bass or Fétis's theory of tonality; others, like Abramo Basevi and Luigi Mazzucato, were more interested in developing a philosophy of tonality.
About the turn of the century the rise of modern music was accompanied by an increasing urge to find new harmonic systems. A leading role in the development of theory was played by music journals which published essays, reviewed treatises and pamphlets, and offered space for discussion. The common ground among the new harmonic systems theories is that most of them were 'centric', i.e. they described an enlarged, even over-embracing harmony, but without relinquishing a tonal center. Luciani claims that the dominant function consitutes the true essence of music; and Frazzi (who described the octatonic collection in 1929) suggests that the octatonic scale consistutes a summary of the dominant chord.
The present bibliography lists more than 600 entries including treatises, manuals, essays and translations published in Italy from 1850 to 1950. Each entry includes a brief discussion of the content; a history of the development of Italian thought on music theory during the period is presented in the introduction.

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Roberto Leydi

Discography of Italian popular music - Sardinia

The third part of the classified reference list of Italian popular music (first part: Northern Italy, in "Le fonti musicali in Italia", 7, 1993; second part: Central Italy, in "Fonti musicali italiane", 1, 1996) is dedicated to Sardinia; here, too, as in the previous parts, the list covers 33 rpm lp and cd (multi-regional and only Sardinia), 45 rpm and ep and 78 rpm records.


Fonti Musicali Italiane, 1 (1996)

Inserito in Fonti Musicali Italiane


  • Michael Twyman, La litografia musicale in Italia nella prima metà dell'Ottocento: uno studio di bibliografia materiale. Abstract.
  • Ausilia Magaudda - Danilo Costantini, Un periodico a stampa di antico regime: la «Gazzetta di Milano». Spoglio delle notizie musicali per gli anni 1686-1699. Abstract.
  • Giuliana Gialdroni, La musica a Napoli alla fine del xviii secolo nelle lettere di Norbert Hadrava. Abstract.
  • Paologiovanni Maione - Francesca Seller, Il Tribunale di Commercio di Napoli: documenti sull'attività teatrale del primo Ottocento. Abstract.
  • Roberto Leydi, Discografia della musica popolare italiana, II: Italia centrale. Abstract.
  • Klaus Keil, Il RISM e la ricerca sulle fonti musicali: un compito nazionale con coordinamento internazionale. Abstract.
  • Claudia Parmeggiani, La base dati musica del Sistema centrale Indice SBN. Abstract.
  • La ricerca nelle regioni, 1994, a cura di Federica Riva.
  • Rassegna bibliografica, 1994, a cura di Laura Ciancio.

Alla rivista è allegato un fascicolo di supplemento: Sammartini e il suo tempo: fonti manoscritte e a stampa della musica a Milano nel Settecento, a cura di Marco Brusa e Attilio Rossi.


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Michael Twyman

Lithographed music in Italy during the first half of the XIX century: an artefactual study

The collection of lithographed music, created by Hermann Baron and actually housed at Reading University Library, consists mainly of editions from the first half of the XIX century. In the period under examination, Italy and Germany emerge as the two most prolific sources of lithographed music: in effect, almost two-fifths of the thousands of items collected are of German origin, while a further fifth comes from various Italian centres. Ninety percent of the Italian items in the collection come from Roma, Florence and Milan; the remainder from Bologna, Modena, Novara, Naples, Turin and Venice. They were printed by a relatively small group of publishers: Cipriani, Lorenzi and Lucherini in Florence; Ricordi in Milan; the Litografia delle Belle Arti, Litografia Tiberina (Società Litografica Tiberina and Ratti & Cencetti in Rome.
On the whole, the Italian publishers of lithographed music adopted one of the four principal methods used in the first hal of the XIX century: that is, writing directly on stone or plate with greasy ink. Compared to publishers in ogher countries, the Italians made greater use of caption-titles (rather than title-pages), especially for publications of landscape-format. Skilful lithographic writers of title-pages were not son common in Italy as (for example) in France or Germany and, consequentely, the greater part of the Italian title-pages were less orthodox; sometimes direct and bold solutions were archieved, at other times somewhat inaccurate realizations. The style of music writing in Italian publications is far more varied than those in other European countries. Among the characteristics of Italian lithographed music, there is the relative frequency with which music pages carry some acknowledgment of their writer (by the use of initial letters, either isolated at the foot of the page, or combined with a plate number); the irregularity of the use of plate numbers; the use of fold and trim marks end of signature (in a bibliographical sense) of each printed sheet. Examination of these characteristics enables the formulation of some hypotheses on the methods of producing lithographed musica and the identification of the motives inducing some publishers to adopt the lithographic process for printing music.

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Ausilia Magaudda - Danilo Costantini

The «Gazzetta di Milano», a printed periodical of the Ancien Régime (XVII-XVIII centuries). Excerpts of music information for the period 1686-1699

Although rarely consulted till now by musicological researchers, the periodicals published during the XVII and XVIII centuries in fact supply an abundance of information on the musical activities of that time in Italian towns and cities. The first number of the «Gazzetta di Milano» came out sometime between 1637 and 1638 and the periodical soon became the official journal of the State of Milan. The excerpts presented are the result of a systematic screeening of the numbers published during the period 1689-1699 (only recently discovered in the collection of the Biblioteca della Società napoletana di storia patria) and give a detailed account of the solemn religious and secular celebrations in the State of Milan at the time of the Spanish domination: carnival festivities (processions, masquerades, musical performances, serenades tournaments); religious services in churches, convents, monasteries and colleges; performances of oratorio, etc. The «Gazzetta» also supplies information, so far unpublished, on the Congregazione dei musici in S. Fedele.
The appendixes to the work cover: (I) a list of news items dealing with music events in the State of Milan, classified by geographical location; (II) news of events in the city of Milan, transcribed in full; (III) a list of operas quoted in the «Gazzetta»; (IV) a list of the libraries where the numbers of the «Gazzetta di Milano» traced so far (from 1641 to 1782) are kept, with the relative classifications.

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Giuliana Gialdroni

Music in Naples at the end of the XVIII century as described in the letters of Norbert Hadrava

The Musiksammlung of the Österreichische Nationalbibliothek of Vienna houses, under the reference S. M. 8979, the letters of Norbert Hadrava, secretary of the Austrian Ambassador to the court of Naples, to Johann Paul Schulthesius, theologian and pastor of the German and Dutch Protestant community of Leghorn. The letters were written from Naples, Caserta and Capri during the years 1783 and 1799 and, taken as whole, give a vivid picture of musical and theatrical life during the reign of the Bourbon king Ferdinand IV and his Austrian queen Maria Carolina, often providing detailed accounts of interesting musical events (opera performances, public and private concerts) as well as reporting the names of the protagonists, whether composers, performers or persons well-known in the musical and cultural world of that time.
Among the musical events described with a greater wealth of detail are the performance given at the Teatro dei Fiorentini on December 11, 1783 dedicated exclusively to works by German authors (a symphony by Carl Ditters von Dittersdorf; Der Schatz, a juvenile comedy by Lessing; Benda's melodrama Ariadne auf Naxos) and the performance of Gluck's Alceste at the Teatro del Fondo (1785). The letters reveal Hadrava's firm intention of encouraging the affirmation in Naples of German culture, music and musicians. Other interesting points in his letters are the frequent mentions and descriptions of ordinary and unusual musical instruments such as, for example, the lira organizzata which appealed so much to Ferdinand IV, the chalumeau, the vis-à-vis piano-harpsicord built by Stein.

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Paologiovanni Maione - Francesca Seller

The Commercial Court of Naples: documents fro the study of early XIX century theatrical activities

During the first half of the XIX century, the Commercial Court of the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies was competent also to hear cases involving the performing arts, since public performances were then considered commercial activities. The records of the Court dealing with theatrical claims include judgements which are often incomplete and sometimes even contradictory; the rules in such matters were, in fact, based on precedents established by contracts drawn up between impresario and government. In addition, the Court of Commerce was often called upon to settle claims for financial damages arising from breach of contract: controversies over artists' fees, over the definition of the relations between the impresario and representatives of the various trades, over management changes or sub-contracting.
A significant action was brought at the expiration of the contract for managing the Reali Teatri Napoletani (1819-1822). From the court records it is possible to reconstruct the terms and conditions of the partnership between Domenico Barbaja, Isabella Colbran, Antonio Niccolini and Gioachino Rossini and, in particular, the role of the Pesaro composer himself. The collection of records of the Neapolitan Courts also provides information on the frequent lawsuits brought by artists and theatre staff against impresarios, especially in the case of the Teatro San Carlo and of the Teatro del Fondo di Separazione. The artists apply to the courts in connection with all sorts of problems, from disputes on the correct interpretation of contractual conditions to complaints concerning periods of illness, unpaid fees, allotment of lodgings, etc.
The proliferations of music publishers in Naples, each intent on defending his own interests, led to violent disputes concerning protection of rights acquired through printing monopolies. Exemplary in this connection are the proceedings for establishing effective ownership of Donizetti's opera Roberto Devereux.
The monograph ends with an appendix containing the transcription of a number of documents concerning the most significant court cases.

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Roberto Leydi

Discography of Italian popular music - Central Italy

The second part of the classified reference list of Italian popular music is dedicated to Central Italy; here, too, as in the first part, the list covers 33 rpm LP and CD (multi-regional and single regions), 45 rpm LP and EP and 78 rpm records (up till 1960, Italian and USA releases).

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Klaus Keil

Research on music scores: a national task under international coordination

The preservation of ancient music sources is today ensured, in more than 30 countries, by work groups associated to the local RISM, an organization with the object of compiling a comprehensive catalogue of the music sources of the country in question. The RISM head office is at Frankfurt and its particular task is to collect, and store in one central place, the information supplied by the national groups and to publish the results of this collaboration. The principal objective is the compilation of directories of printed music editions (Series A/I) and of music manuscripts (Series A/II). Nine volumes, with related supplements (A-F and G-L), have been produced to date of the A/I series, while it is hoped to publish the remaining supplements and indexes in the near future. In the case of the A/II series, it is planned to computerize the information (approx. 365,000 entries) and to release the acquired data progressively on CD-ROMs. A first step was taken in this direction at the end of 1995 with the issue of a CD-ROM containing approx. 160,000 titles of which more than 20,000 titles were in Italian sources. In order to accelerate and facilitate the editing and loading operations, the RISM headquarters decided to allow the national groups to use its Pikado software, so as to receive the information on floppy disks instead of on paper printouts; in the case of those national groups which have developed their own cataloguing programs, the exchange of information is via data conversion systems.
The publications of Series B (systematic series) are instead the responsibility of experts in the various research fields; in 1995 a new volume in Section B/XII will be added to the 25 already published. Since Series C, on the other hand, is published jointly by RISM and IAML, the revision of the volumes is entrusted to a chief editor who will act in collaboration with the two institutions. At the moment, Elizabeth Davis is editing the second volume (Austria, Belgium, Switzerland, Germany, Denmark, Irish Republic, Great Britain, Luxemburg, Norway, Holland, Sweden, Finland) and the third volume (Spain, France, Italy, Portugal).
Other fields of activity of RISM are the publication of individual library catalogues, the documentation of collections of letters of musical interest and the cataloguing of librettos: a subcommittee has recently been set up within the Commission Mixte for the purpose of creating a data bank for librettos.
Information of RISM activities is published in the newsletter Inforism, edited by the Frankfurt headquarters and circulated to the national groups. Information on RISM is also available on Internet on Home Page WWW compiled by United States RISM ( The facilities included in the WWW page do not concern solely the activity of the United States group, but cover various branches of RISM activity.
The paper ends with two appendixes: the first, a list of the publications edited by RISM and the second, a list of Italian libraries known to RISM headquarters.

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Claudia Parmeggiani

The MUSICA database of the SBN Sistema Indice.

MUSICA is one of the databases of the Servizio Bibliotecario Nazionale (SBN) and contains approximately 245,000 files of information on music documents dating from the XV to the XIX century (more than 83,000 manuscripts and almost 160,000 printed editions).
This material is distributed and housed in over 700 public and private libraries and archives in Italy. The kernel of the database consists of information acquired from the catalogues compiled by the Ufficio Ricerca Fondi Musicali (URFM) of Milan and by the Istituto di Bibliografia Musicale (IBIMUS) of Rome and will be expanded to include a further 200,000 items of information from the A.CO.M. project and data provided by the Santa Cecilia Library of Rome.
Access to the database is possible via the ITAPAC public network, the GARR network of Universities and Research Institutes, or a dedicated telephone line. As an experiment, the databases of the SBN Cataloguing System have been made accessible via Internet at the address:
The user can also call up adn consult the System from terminals available at over 400 libraries of the SBN network located in the various regions of Italy. Before the end of 1996, a more user-friendly mode of access to the MUSICA database will be implemented under an ICCU project, designed for specialist research and having greater integration with the other SBN databases.
Input to MUSICA is controlled by a procedure for personal computer which ICCU supplies to libraries upon request. The procedure manages an Authority File giving access to 40,000 names, the schedules prescribed for SBN cataloguing and the lists for musical cataloguing (musical instruments, keys, RIMS library acronyms). A list is given of the libraries present in the MUSICA database, together with their RISM acronyms and with an indication of the manuscripts and printed editions connected with them.


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