A Librarian needs your help

Unknown print of music, pasted in front of incunable as flyleaf

Unknown print of music, pasted in front of incunable as flyleaf

Last week I suggested that Librarians might be able to help. This week, it’s time for me to ask you to help us; or, more precisely to assist one of my colleagues who is cataloguing incunabula at Cambridge University Library.

If you can help us in identifying the music and perhaps the edition from which this comes, this would be really helpful. Obviously it’s a fragment, and it was used as a flyleaf in this incunable; however, it is very likely that the music is quite a bit younger than the incunable. Even to a researcher of twentieth-century music, like me, this looks as if this leaf is the seventh part of a piece for two choruses, and this being part of the second choir.

Unknown music print, pasted in front of incunable

Unknown music print, pasted in front of incunable

The recto leaf (see right) might help even more, as it bears the page number 72 – so this page should have formed part of a much bigger volume of the original edition.

A colleague of mine has suggested that this looks like an Italian print to him…. I should add that I have improved the digital images’ brightness and contrast – so what you see here is not how the original paper looks.

If you can shed any light on this, please either write a comment underneath this post (it will not appear immediately, but will be approved as soon as possible), or email me at cg474 [atsign] cam [dot] ac [dot] uk. Let’s hope that by using crowdsourcing we can help my colleague.

About cg474

Since August 2010 I have been working as a librarian at the University of Cambridge (Cambridge, UK). Since October 2015 I am the librarian at the Faculty of Divinity Library. Between August 2010 and November 2013 I was the Deputy Head of Music at Cambridge University Library and at the Pendlebury Library of Music. Between December 2013 and September 2015 I was the Librarian at the Marshall Library of Economics. Since October 2015 I have been the Librarian at the Divinity Library.
This entry was posted in Uncategorized and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to A Librarian needs your help

  1. Hmm… I wish I could put my finger on it, but I’m afraid I can’t. A quick search through Grove (which I wish had a better advanced search) shows that there are really quite a lot of 8-voice Mass and Magnificat settings out there. Have you tried asking the students? One of them might, you never know, be writing about just this work or composer!


    • musicb3 says:

      Thank you for looking Girl in the Moon; it’s not straightforward, I know – we have been scratching our brains already in our department…

      I just had a phone call from a local scholar whom I had contacted directly, confirming that this is most probably:
      – venetian early 17 / late 16th print (-> upright format!)
      – so possibly around 1600
      – old(er) type still used
      – composer could be Giovanni Croce (or similar Venetian composer)
      – written in Venice


  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention A Librarian needs your help | MusiCB3 Blog -- Topsy.com

  3. cg474 says:

    Finally, I have time to follow up some of the leads….
    I have just checked
    Messe a 8 voci / Giovanni Croce ; edited by Michael Procter.
    Bibliographic Record Display

    * Main author:Croce, Giovanni, ca. 1557-1609.
    * Title:Messe a 8 voci / Giovanni Croce ; edited by Michael Procter.
    * Uniform Title:[Masses, voices (8). (1596)]
    * Other Entries:Procter, Michael, 1951-
    * Published:Weingarten : Michael Procter, c2009.

    but unfortunately, it is not one of the following mess settings:
    Missa Percussit Saul mille — Missa Sopra la Battaglia — Missa Decantabat populus.

    I will keep on searching for 8-part messes.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.