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Classical tragedy in the history of early opera in Rome

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  05 December 2008

Margaret Murata
University of California at Irvine


The earliest operas are few, and their history is a history of particulars: of the interests of individual Renaissance humanists; of the ways in which certain musicians sang; of the development of Italian poetry for music; and of the theatrical traditions within which the new genre was accepted and propagated. Recent music history has tended to stress the sixteenth-century antecedents for these aspects of opera, without forgetting, however, that the common inspiration for Dafne, Anima e Corpo and Euridice – as well as for some earlier Florentine intermedi – was the desire to emulate the effects of the music of the ancient Greeks and Romans. In Florence this was realised at the granducal court with the help of its satellite circles of educated nobles. In Rome, knowledge of the ancients was the province of professional scholars, the priests and religious who taught in the seminaries and colleges, and for whom Seneca and Terence would have been more familiar fare than Tasso and Guarini. Thus after Cavalieri staged his Rappresentatione di Anima et di Corpo under the auspices of the Oratorians, it is not surprising that the next Roman musical drama is a carnival school play given by boys and composed by their professor. In Rome, furthermore, the princes and prelates of the Church exercised their tastes for fine literature with transformations of Pindar and Horace designed to inspire Christian devotion.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1984

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1 As studied by Nino Pirrotta and Claude Palisca (see bibliographies in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians, ed. Sadie, S.,20 vols., London, 1980),Google Scholar Barbara Hanning and more recently Gary Tomlinson (see n. 3 below). See, for example, Hanning, B., ‘Pathos, Homeopathy and Theories of the Affections’, in Of Poetry and Music's Power: Humanism and the Creation of Opera (Ann Arbor, 1980), chap. 2.Google Scholar A recent summary of the pertinent bibliography is in J. Peri: Euridice, ed. Brown, H. (Madison, 1981), pp. xiv–xv.Google Scholar

2 The rivalry between Giulio Caccini and Jacopo Peri has entered most studies of the early Florentine operas, although musical comparisons outside the operas is made difficult by the relative scarcity of compositions by Peri. Musical comparisons are in Pirrotta, N., Li due Orfei: da Poliziano a Monteverdi (Turin, 1975, pp. 220, 225–9, 276–95Google Scholar; Eng. trans., 1982) and Brown, H., ‘Music–How Opera Began: an Introduction to Jacopo Peri's Euridice (1600)’, The Late Italian Renaissance, 1525–1630, ed. Cochrane, E. (London, 1970), pp. 421–43.Google Scholar See also Carter, T., ‘Jacopo Peri (1561–1633), his Life and Works’ (Ph.D. thesis, University of Birmingham, 1980).Google Scholar

3 See especially Tomlinson, G., ‘Rinuccini, Peri, Monteverdi, and the Humanist Heritage of Opera’ (Ph.D. thesis, University of California, Berkeley, 1979), chaps. 1–2.Google Scholar

4 For the most part as intermedio, pastoral, tragicomedy and festa teatrale. See Pirrotta, , Li due Orfei, pp. 4590, 201–75Google Scholar; Osthoff, W., Theatergesang und darstellende Musik in der italienischen Renaissance (Tutzing, 1969), chap. 8Google Scholar; Sternfeld, F. W., ‘The Birth of Opera: Ovid, Poliziano, and the Lieto fine’, Analecta Musicologica, 19 (1979), pp. 3051Google Scholar; Bianconi, L., Il Seicento (Turin, 1982), pp. 216–18,Google Scholar a summary of his unpublished lecture of 1977 on the history of the lament; and Murata, M., ‘The Recitative Soliloquy’, Journal of the American Musicological Society, 32 (1979), pp. 4552.CrossRefGoogle Scholar For a general bibliography on the theatre in Florence, see Il potere e lo spazio: La scena del principe, exhibition catalogue for ‘Firenze e la Toscana dei Medici nell'Europa del Cinquecento’ ([Florence], 1980), pp. 403–4.

5 Hanning, , Of Poetry, pp. 912.Google Scholar Pirrotta, in his extended discussion of the 1589 Florentine intermedi in Li due Orfei (p. 235), points out that altogether ‘they cannot be interpreted as a formulation or allegory intended to assert a musical esthetics and poetics’.

6 See Palisca, C., ‘The “Camerata Fiorentina”: a Reappraisal’, Studi Musicali, 1 (1972), pp. 203–36,Google Scholar and his ‘The Alterati of Florence, Pioneers in the Theory of Dramatic Music’, New Looks at Italian Opera, ed. Austin, W. (Ithaca, NY, 1968), pp. 938Google Scholar; Pirrotta, , Li due Orfei, pp. 280–2Google Scholar (also in English in New Looks, pp. 46–50); and Kirkendale, W., ‘Emilio de' Cavalieri, a Roman Gentleman at the Florentine Court’, Quadrivium, 12 (1971), pp. 921.Google Scholar

7 [Agazzari, A.], Eumelio, dramma pastorale (Venice, 1606)Google Scholar. The most recent consideration of this score, which recapitulates its brief bibliography, is Gianturco, C., ‘Nuove con-siderazioni su il tedio del recitativo delle prime opere romane’, Rivista Italiana di Musicologia, 18 (1982), pp. 226–9.Google Scholar

8 Two solo compositions of his were printed in a Roman anthology (listed as 16212 in Vogel, E., ed., Bibliothek der gedruckten weltlichen Vocalmusik Italiens aus den Jahren 1500–1700, Berlin, 1892,Google Scholar ed. A. Einstein, Hildesheim, 1962; and listed as 162115 in Lesure, F., ed., Recueils imprimés XVIe–XVIIe siècles, Répertoire International des Sources Musicales (hereafter RISM). b/1, Munich and Duisburg, 1960).Google Scholar John W. Hill has found a solo lament by Catalani, apparently from a Roman theatrical production given before 1620 (personal communication). To the short list of Catalani's works in The New Grove can be added two motets, Absterget Deus omnem lacrymam, for alto, tenor, bass and basso continuo, and Dulce jesu Christi, pectus tuo, for alto, tenor and basso continuo, in Scelta di motetti de diversieccellentissimi autori.… raccolti da Antonio Poggioli (Rome, 1647).Google Scholar The six partbooks from the collection of H. Prunières are now Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, Rés. Vmc. 157. In the three-part motet Catalani is identified as ‘già M. di Cappella dell'Illustr. Senato di Messina’, which still does not conclusively provide us with the year of his death.

9 Between 1495 and 1546 the seven tragedies of Sophocles and the nineteen of Euripides appeared in print in Italy, with translations into Latin as well. The seven of Aeschylus were issued between 1518 and 1557.

10 See Charlton, H. B., ‘The Senecan Tradition in Renaissance Tragedy’ (Manchester, 1921; repr. Folcroft, Penn., 1969), pp. xxix–lviiGoogle Scholar; and Bergel, L., ‘The Rise of Cinquecento Tragedy’, Renaissance Drama, 8 (1965), pp. 197217, esp. pp. 201–16,CrossRefGoogle Scholar where earlier studies of Greek dramatic models are reported. Bergel concludes that ‘essential features of [Aristotle's] Poetics were disregarded, and that the Greek plays that served as models were greatly transformed. The real classical influence was that of Seneca’ (p. 216). His article attempts to explain why Cinquecento tragedy became what it did, without measuring it against a preconceived conception of what the tragic is – the critical stance taken by in Schrade, Leo ‘Music Drama Reborn’, Tragedy in the Art of Music (Cambridge, Mass., 1964), chap. 3.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

11 See Fellerer, K. G., ‘Zur Erforschung der antiken Musik im 16.–18. Jahrhundert’, Jahrbuch der Musikbibliothek Peters für 1935, 22 (1936), pp. 8495;Google ScholarPöhlmann, E., ‘Antikenverständnis und Antikenmissverständnis in der Operntheorie der Florentiner Camerata’, Die Musik-forschung, 22 (1969), pp. 513Google Scholar; Walker, D. P., ‘Musical Humanism in the 16th and Early 17th Centuries’, Music Review, 2 (1941), 3 (1942)Google Scholar [in 5 instalments; published in German (Kassel and Basle, 1949)], reviewed by Lowinsky, E., The Musical Quarterly, 37 (1951), pp. 285–9CrossRefGoogle Scholar; G. de'Bardi, ‘Discorso sopra la musica antica e '1 cantar bene’ (Rome, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana, Barb, lat., MS 3990, fols. 4–13v), discussed by Palisca in ‘The “Camerata Florentina” ’, pp. 215–17; and Hanning, , Of Poetry, p. 240, n. 70.Google Scholar

12 Charlton, , ‘The Senecan Tradition’, p. xlii,Google Scholar observes Trissino's use of the Petrarchan canzona for choral odes. The recognition of the Greek antistrophic forms occurred in the 1570s. The Italian translation of Sophocles’ Oedipus, however, performed in Vicenza in 1585 (with music for the choruses by Andrea Gabrieli), follows Trissino's practice; of. the introduction to Schrade, L., ed., La représentation d'Edipo Tiranno au Teatro Olimpico (Paris, 1960), pp. 2032, 35–9.Google Scholar

13 Pirrotta, N., ‘Tragédie et comédie dans la Camerata fiorentina’, Musique et poésie au XVIe siècle [conference of the Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, 1953], ed. Jacquot, J. (Paris, 1954), pp. 287–8Google Scholar; Palisca, ‘The “Camerata Fiorentina” ’, passim.

14 Hanning, , Of Poetry, pp. 31–3.Google Scholar

15 The sections of the Greek Pythian nome for aulos were described by Pollux and Strabo as phases in Apollo's mythical battle with the serpent. Hanning gives Strabo's description in Of Poetry, p. 189, n. 61; Strabo's account of the five parts of the story, and therefore of the music, differs from that of Pollux, described by Pintacuda, M., La musica nella tragedia greca (Cefalù, 1978), p. 40.Google Scholar The discrepancy could indicate that the nome was in fact not programmatic, but that the narrative ‘stages’ were explanations of Hellenistic instrumental practice, possibly improvisatory.

16 Ingegneri, A., Della poesia rappresentativa e del modo di rappresentare le favole sceniche (Ferrara, 1598), pp. 1011Google Scholar; quoted in Ariani, M., La tragedia del Cinquecento, i (Turin, 1977), pp. LXIILXIII.Google Scholar

17 Published in Lyra Barberina amphichordos ii, ed. Gori, A. F. (Florence, 1763; repr. 1975), pp. 1144Google Scholar; excerpts appear in Solerti, A., Le origini del melodramma (Turin, 1903; repr. 1969), pp. 186221.Google Scholar

18 The mainstream flowed out of Venice; see Bianconi, L., Il Seicento, pp. 162–81.Google Scholar

19 One handbook, for example, analyses Io's monody from the third episode of Aeschylus' Prometheus as: anapestic entrance, dochmaics mingled with iambics, occasional cretics and ‘a run of bacchii’ (Raven, D. S., Greek Metre, an Introduction, London, 1962, p. 108Google Scholar; ‘Uniformity of rhythm is not on the whole characteristic of Greek chorus’, ibid., p. 123). (Greek Old Comedy also had a high degree of metric structure, different from that of tragedy, but Aristophanes seems to have had no influence on Baroque opera and is not relevant here.) For Greek dramatic music in general, see the bibliography in Pintacuda, La musica nella tragedia greca. Webster, T. B. L., The Greek Chorus (London, 1970),Google Scholar attempts to match metric analysis to dance movement and types of dances via visual sources. For an examination of the poetic-dramatic functions of the choral odes see Parry, H., The Lyric Poems of Greek Tragedy (Toronto and Sarasota, 1978).Google Scholar

20 Beare, W., The Roman Stage (rev. ed., London, 1964), p. 217Google Scholar: ‘Continuous performance, which is the negation of act-division, was the rule for ancient drama from Aeschylus to Terence’.

21 Metric analyses of Seneca are in Raven, D. S., Latin Metre, an Introduction (London, 1965), pp. 178–80.Google Scholar A wide-ranging and detailed guide is the introduction in Fantham, E., Seneca's Troades (Princeton, 1982),Google Scholar which also provides up-to-date references for ‘Seneca's Predecessors and Contemporaries’, pp. 3–9. Pintacuda, La musica nella tragedia greca, pp. 72–3, summarises the history of the triadic choral form, which is more the rule in Aeschylus and possibly begins to dissolve in Euripides' time. This history is relevant to Renaissance literature in that the Greek dramatists become known in reverse historical order, from Hellenistic descriptions backwards through Euripides to Aeschylus.

22 Florence, Biblioteca Medicea-Laurenziana, MS Plut. Lat. 37.13. Fantham, , Seneca's Troades, pp. 116–22Google Scholar, reviews the manuscript tradition.

23 ‘gemitus, eiulatus, planctus, melodias, ceterosque mentis affectus per metra diversis distincta pedibus edit, ut materie singula metra conveniant’ (A. Mussato, Evidentia tragediarum Senece, quoted in Pastore-Stocchi, M., ‘Un chapitre d'histoire littéraire aux xive et xve siècles: “Seneca poeta tragicus”’, Les tragédies de Sénèque et la théâtre de la Renaissance, ed. Jacquot, J. and Oddon, M., Paris, 1964, pp. 2930)Google Scholar. The author points out that the observations of Mussato and his commentators (of 1317) ‘not only … established a new relationship between the polymetre of tragedy and the variety of its styles, but they also gave to this variety its true significance, essential for the poetry of drama’ (n. 58). Pastore-Stocchi connects the Laurenziana manuscript (see n. 22 above) to Mussato via the scholar Lovato Lovati, but Fantham, , Seneca's Troades, p. 117Google Scholar, reports the current uncertain opinion about this.

24 Bradner, L., ‘The Latin Drama of the Renaissance (1340–1640)’, Studies in the Renaissance, 4 (1957), pp. 3170,CrossRefGoogle Scholar surveys the repertory by type and includes a handlist of original neo-Latin plays published before 1650. None of the collections in Italy, however, seems to have been included except for that of the Biblioteca Marciana in Venice. Nor have the major Jesuit bibliographies been collated, notably Sommervogel, C., Bibliothèque des écrivains de la Compagnie de Jésus (Liège, 18691876).Google Scholar

25 Pirrotta, , Li due Orfei, pp. 50–3.Google Scholar

26 ‘con tanta varietà di strumenti esquisiti, e di voci elette, ch'imitando a parte a parte l'alterazioni della tragedia commovevano da un contrario all'altro gli affetti dell'animo, forse con maggior forza di quella che si legge aver fatto la musica d'Alessandro a' suoi tempi’. This passage, which precedes the description of the intermedi, is found on p. 992 of the modern edition of Il successo dell'Alidoro(Reggio Emilia, 1568) in Ariani, , La tragedia del Cinquecento, ii, pp. 9841008Google Scholar. Pirrotta describes the choruses to Alidoro in Li due Orfei, pp. 224–5.

27 ‘So ch'in diverse maniere si sono fin qui recitati i cori all'età nostra: alcuni hanno fatto parlare un solo della moltitudine con un certo tuono costante, grave e magnifico: ma questo non mi può piacere, parendomi a punto quel modo di cantare ipodorio, il quale (come attesta ne' Problemi Aristotele) altrettanto al canto de' cori disconveniva per la sua eroica maestà, quanto si disconvenisse l'ipofrigio per la sua troppa mollizie e dissoluzione. Altri hanno fatto cantare un solo senza unione d'alcun altro concerto: ma qual diletto può venir dal canto d'un solo, se l'armonia, la quale insomma non è altro che relazione, si genera solamente dalla composizione del grave e dell'acuto? Ad alcuni altri è piaciuto che tutta la moltitudine canti unitamente, la qual maniera (lasciando da parte la difficoltà di ritrovar tanti musici istrioni a proposito, che non è picciola) non sarebbe da dispiacere, ogni volta che tante voci non confondessero e non impedissero totalmente l'intelligenza de' concetti e delle parole, le quali ne' cori di sua natura sono per lo piú molto oscure: ma con tutto ciò ancora questo modo non é da essere dannato a fatto, perché non vi essendo regola, né osservazione alcuna che ci astringa piú a far cantare un solo, che tutti insieme.… parmi che debba esser permesso cosí l'un modo, come l'altro. E io per me credo che gli antichi ciò facessero indifferentemente, secondo che tornava lo meglio’ (Ariani, , La tragedia del Cinquecento, ii, pp. 1000–1).Google Scholar

28 von Liliencron, R., ‘Die Chorgesänge des lateinischen-deutschen Schuldramas im XVI. Jahrhundert’, Vierteljahrsschrift für Musikwissenschaft, 6 (1890), pp. 309–87.Google Scholar

29 The plays are surveyed in Bradner, ‘The Latin Drama’, pp. 45–7. The Horatian settings are discussed in von Liliencron, R., ‘Die horazischen Metren in deutschen Kompositionen des 16. Jahrhunderts’, Vierteljahrsschrift für Musikwissenschaft, 3 (1887), pp. 2691.Google Scholar

30 From Asotus, first published in 1537; the music, published in 1552, is available in Liliencron, ‘Die Chorgesänge’, p. 368. Another solo is from Hypomene, in Liliencron, ibid., p. 375.

31 The composer is not known. The description is from one of the Jesuit quarterly reports for 1559, quoted in Freches, C.-H., Le théâatre neo-Latin au Portugal (1550–1745) (Paris and Lisbon, 1964), p. 187Google Scholar: ‘Avía en cada acto un choro de letra muy devota, y muy bien compuesto en puncto de canto de órgano, y 8 o nueve músicos que los cantavan muy bien … Unos dezían que en media de Grecia no se pudiera representar mejor’. Freches also gives a detailed description of the play, pp. 175–80.

32 Rome, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (hereafter I-Rvat), MS Barb. lat. 1658, fol. [1] names ‘Musici praestantissimi Sorianus, Nerius, Asprilius’. The play was published in several editions and was translated into Italian as early as 1609 by Padre Cristofaro Virgilio (Rome, Biblioteca Corsiniana (hereafter I-Rli) MS 640). The Jesuit rector of the Collegio Greco in Rome discussed the play in Gallucci, T., Rinovazione dell'antica tragedia, e difesa del Crispo: discorso all'Emin. mo e Sig. Card. [Francesco] Barberino (Rome, 1633).Google Scholar At least six different seventeenth-century Roman performances are known from printed scenarios; see Cairo, L. and Quilici, P., Biblioteca teatrale dal '500 al '700: La raccolta della Biblioteca Casanatense, i–ii (Rome, 1981), nos. 1163–8Google Scholar (Casanatense holdings hereafter I– Rc). The music in 1628 was by Virgilio Mazzocchi, in 1644 by Carlo Cecchelli. Different productions have different prologues and intermedi.

33 ‘Martedi mattina il medesimo Ambasciatore Cesareo fu banchettato dal Cardinale Bellarmino insieme col Padre Generale de' Gesuiti, et mercordi mattina fu a desinare nel Collegio Germanico a Santo Appollinare dove fu fatta una rappresentatione bellissima con continue musiche et altre compositioni … Mercordi sera per ricreatione spirituale nel Collegio Germanico fu di nuovo recitata la rappresentatione di David et Saul già scritta latina et in musica alla quale intervennero li Signori Principe di Sulmona et Marchese della Mentana’ (I-Rvat Urb. lat. 1081, Avvisi di Roma, 2 February 1613, fol. 29r;–29v; 16 February, fol. 49r. The later notice is partially cited in Clementi, F., Il carnevale romano nelle cronache contemporanee, 2nd ed., Città di Castello, 1939, p. 395).Google Scholar

34 Rome, Università Gregoriana, Archivi, MS 2800, Nappi, G., Annali del Seminario Romano, ii, p. 621Google Scholar; cited in Casimiri, R., ‘“Disciplina musicae” e “mastri di capella” dopo il Concilio di Trento’, Note d'Archivio, 19 (1942), p. 114.Google Scholar For Donati's other writings, see Sommervogel, Bibliothèque, under ‘Donati’. I have not been able to consult Nessler, N., ‘Dramaturgie derjesuiten Pontanus, Donatus, und Masenius’, Programm der kk. Gymnasiums zu Brixen, 55 (1905), pp. 148,Google Scholar which probably deals with Donati's published play La Svevia of 1629 (see n. 53 below).

35 Culley, T., Jesuits and Music, i (Rome and St Louis, 1970), p. 123.Google Scholar Catalani may very well have balked at the problem of setting Latin quantitative, unrhymed verse. The metric problems do not arise in the setting of the Latin prose of the liturgy or the Latin oratorios later written for the same college. For a survey of music in the college, see Culley, T., ‘The German College in Rome: a Center for Baroque Music’, Baroque Art: the Jesuit Contribution, ed. Wittkower, R. and Jaffe, I. B. (New York, 1972), pp. 111–28.Google Scholar

36 Sapphic stanzas occur in: (1) three stanzas in the first duet between David and his brother (Act i, scene 1); (2) four stanzas between a metrically contrasting refrain in the choral set that closes Act i; (3) six stanzas as the first part of the choral set that closes Act ii; (4) David's answer (one stanza) to an angel (Act iii, scene 2), echoed in the next scene; (5) Jonathan's plea for David to sing to Saul (Act iii, scene 3); and (6) two stanzas in the first part of the choral set that closes Act iii. The following analyses of David musicus and of the works by Ciampoli were first presented in a paper given for the American Musicological Society in Denver in November 1980.

37 Printed scenario in I–Rc Vol. misc. 2013.3; the text is found in I–Rli MS 643, fols. 135r– 196v, ‘Sigismundus, tragoedia habita in Seminario Romano’. It does not have a chorus to close each of the five acts; instead, the chorus does not enter until Act iv, scene 1. A hand difFerent from that of the principal copyist added a text for four choruses after the last act, ‘Italam diro properata ferro’.

38 Published in Santi, L., Eroparthenica (Rome, 1634)Google Scholar as ‘Carmina melodrammatica action-ibus harmonice interjecta’ and in his Floridorum liber secundus (Rome, 1636)Google Scholar as ‘Dramatica ad nostratem potissimum harmoniam accomodata’. The performances are dated in Nappi, Annali as published by Casimiri, , ‘“Disciplina musicae” e “mastri di capella”’, Note d'Archivio, 15 (1938), pp. 242–4.Google Scholar These will be listed with dates and locations of sources in the forthcoming chronology of Roman operatic performances edited by Bianconi, L., Lindgren, L., Murata, M. and Walker, T.. Bjurstrom's, P. assessment of these melodramas, in ‘Baroque Theater and the Jesuits’, Baroque Art, ed. Wittkower, R., pp. 101–2,Google Scholar as representing ‘the dominant trends in Jesuit drama’ is quite off the mark. Aside from being sung throughout, which is untypical of school plays, Santi called them only ‘opuscula varia’ (1636), and Nappi's notes show that at least three were sets of intermedi, not proper dramas. Fully-fledged Roman Jesuit plays were quite different, including Santi's Il Gigante of 1632 (argomento in I–Rc Vol. misc. 2013.18; copy in I–Rvat Barb. JJJ.I.14), Somniator of 1648 (copy in I–Rvat Barb. GGG.III.13) and his Philippus of 1656 (argomento in I–Rc Vol. misc. 2214.15: copy in I–Rvat Barb. GGG.II.59).

39 Santi, , Floridorum liber secundus, p. 197Google Scholar: ‘Quoniam in hisce Melodramatis non scaenicae Actionis modo, sed Italicae Musicae pariter, ac Latinae Poeseos rationem habere debuimus: morem gerere tarn multis, & a se diversis dominis, laboriosa provincia fuit. Propterea primum quidem rerum novitate, ac brevitate verborum, amoliri auditoribus taedium, Cantoribus laborem adimere, omnibus verò delectationem homine a vitijs libero dignam afferre curavimus: turn multiplici carminum varietate sententias disposuimus: animadvertimus enim metra Latina expressa nostratis harmoniae modis multum afferre satietatis in Dramate, si tenore simili diutius cadant’.

40 Santi, , Eroparthenica, pp. 16, 42.Google Scholar

41Donati, A., Ars poetica (Rome, 1631), p. 274:Google Scholar ‘Caeterum non modo cantibus intermissa recitatio, sed etiam integrae tragoediae decantatae’.

42 ‘Alas, Saul, Saul! Alas, wretch, wretch! You groan by night, you groan by day…. Sing, boy, the Furies will flee, the wild rage of our chief will subside and will cease with music’ As a choral exclamation, this compares with the chorus from Act v, scene 4, from Stefonio's Crispus: ‘Patris heu, moeror patris, heu, heu! Puer infelix, miserande puer! Pius, heu, frustra puer infelix! Pudor, heu, fortis sacer, heu, frustra. Heu, heu, heu, heu (eight times), Puer infelix, puer infelix, Miser heu, reditus ducis invictj’ (I–Rvat Barb. lat. 1658).

43 See Murata, M., Operas for the Papal Court, 1631–1668 (Ann Arbor, 1981), pp. 219–20, n. 6.Google Scholar

44 The close of ‘scene 1’ in Euridice and the close of scene 3 in Arianna (although there survives no musical setting for the eight-line stanza in the latter chorus, which alternates with a four-line refrain).

45 For biographical details and bibliography, see Dizionario biografico degli italiani (Rome, 1960–)Google Scholar, under ‘Ciampoli’.

46 ‘… sendovi intervenuti oltr'il medesimo Cardinal di Savoia, li Cardinali Borghese … et altra nobilità, per trattenimento de' quali fu recitata in musica la rotta, che li Polacchi diedero ultimamente a' Turchi, qual si cantò, come si scrisse la settimana passata alla presenza del Pontefice, e del Principe di Polonia’ (I–Rvat Urb. lat. 1095, Avvii di Roma, 1 February 1625, fol. 63r). Mazzarino is the future Cardinal Mazarin. Although no notice for ‘last week’ appears in the Avvisi, the academy performance was probably the second. For later contemporary references to the first performance after a public banquet in the pope's chambers, see Targosz-Kretowa, K., Teatr dworski Wtadystawa IV (Kraków, 1965), pp. 243–5.Google Scholar

47 Leopold, S., ‘Chiabrera und die Monodie: die Entwicklung der Arie’, Studi Musicali, 10 (1981), p. 79.Google Scholar

48 I–Rvat Vat. lat. 13363, letter from Giulio to Camillo Rospigliosi, Rome, 6 March 1638, fol. 9r–9v; the original Italian is given in Murata, , Operas, p. 260,Google Scholar document 6.

49 See Targosz-Kretowa, , Teatr, p. 243Google Scholar, document (g). I am indebted to Anna Szweykowska for information establishing the status of Targosz-Kretowa's source: a manuscript relazione in Polish, edited in 1854, and missing from Berlin since World War II (personal communication). Szweykowska draws attention to Kapsberger's authorship in her review of Targosz-Kretowa, in Muzyka, 9 (1966), p. 163.Google Scholar (Her statement is misinterpreted in Sandelewski's, W. review of Targosz-Kretowa in Rivista Italiana di Musicologia, 4 (1969), p. 152.Google Scholar) One hundred scudi paid to Kapsberger at the time by Cardinal Francesco Barberini were for musicians' services at Sant'Agata and are not connected with Ciampoli's work (see I–Rvat, Archivio Barberini, Card. Francesco, sr., Registro de' mandati, item 477, 4 February 1625). That Ciampoli's text was set by Sigismondo d'India is a remote possibility, if Rospigliosi's letter cited in note 48 above does not refer to La vittoria (d'India would have been dead). G. Rua noted expenses in Cardinal Maurizio di Savoia's house-hold accounts (which I have not seen) for a representation set by d'India, presumably in 1625; Rua's suggestion that this was for a S. Eustachio by L. d'Aglié cannot be confirmed (see Rua, G., Poeti della corte di Carlo Emmanuele I di Savoia, i, Turin, 1899, p. 46).Google Scholar

50 Ciampoli's choral work for the pope's anniversary of the previous year is not narrative. I cinque cigni, however (see Table 1), describes some of the musical forces that might have been used again in Il cantico. The earlier text mentions bass, alto and tenor soloists, ‘sonorous strings’, ‘the celebrated harp’, an ‘Apolline lute’, ‘resounding harpsichords’, ‘golden flutes’, ‘acute violins’ and a ‘long-stringed tiorba’, all of which are in a modern style to increase ‘i vanti dell'Aonio coro’. The text is published in Costanzo, M., Inediti di Giovanni Ciampol (1590–1643) (Rome, 1969), pp. 156–74.Google Scholar

51 ‘Now cease all your weeping: no more sighs, no, no more horrors. Place a crown of laurels O suff'ring hosts, upon your heads, turn to song your grieving: of tragedy so bleak, happy is the end’ (from I–Rvat Barb. lat. 3767, fol. 86r; this manuscript is not listed in Costanzo, Inediti.

52 These literary aspects of Ciampoli's life are mentioned in Costanzo, , Inediti, p. 71,Google Scholar and brought forward in Guglielminetti, M. and Masoero, M., ‘Lettere e prose inedite (o parzialmente edite) di Giovanni Ciampoli’, Studi Secenteschi, 19 (1978), pp. 141–4.Google Scholar From the correspondence it appears that Ciampoli was writing theatrical pieces as early as 1616: ‘From him [G. B. Strozzi] Your most Illustrious Lordship will also receive a little book of dramatic trifles I did this summer, while I stayed at Civitanuova with Don Virginio Cesarini’ (Ciampoli to Cardinal Federico Borromeo, Florence, 24 October 1616; Guglielminetti and Masoero, p. 161). E. Raimondi paints an image of the Counter-Reformation poets rejecting Hellenistic models for more archaic ones, both grand and picturesque, in his ‘Di alcuni aspetti del classicismo nella letteratura italiana del Seicento’, Lettere Italiane, 15 (1963), pp. 269–78.Google Scholar The DBI entry for Ciampoli (see n. 45 above) notes that Ciampoli joined the Alterati after 1608. On the musical interests of the Alterati in the late sixteenth century, see Palisca, ‘The Alterati’.

53 After David musicus, the second drama was Il Pirimalo, attributed to Donati in Villoslada, R. G., Storia del Collegia Romano (Rome, 1954), p. 285.Google Scholar The argomento for the 1623 performance is in Cairo and Quilici, Biblioteca teatrale, no. 3201. Il Pirimalo, more than David, was a special, festive production, part of the Jesuit celebrations in honour of St Francis Xavier. The play, set in Indonesia, had extraordinarily lavish sets and machines. The chorus was composed of both students and non-students. In it ‘si rinova l'antico numero di cinquanta, che avanti Eschilo compariva su le scene’. It first entered in five lines often, representing ‘il choro delle tragedie antiche’ (copy of argomento in I–Rvat Loreto iv.3.2, p. [6]). The production was highly appreciated, and Pope Gregory xv was dissuaded from attending with great difficulty (I–Rvat Urb. lat. 1093, Avvisi di Roma, 25 February 1623; quoted in Clementi, Il carnevale, i, p. 427). A copy of the 1629 argomento of La Svevia is I–Rc Vol. misc. 2013.4; of the 1629 edition of the play, Rome, Biblioteca Nazionale, MS 6.21.G.23. The text was published in Cologne (1630) and again in Antwerp (1634). The attione tragica called Liciniano given in the 1629 season at the Collegio Romano had only three acts (argomento in Cairo and Quilici, Biblioteca teatrale, no. 2480).

54 Rome, Archivio di Stato, Biblioteca, MS 368, fols. 1–83. [‘Discorso secondo di Pier Francesco Valentini romano dove si tratta dell'origine della nostra battuta e del modo col quale gli antichi poeti cantavano i versi loro’]. The autograph, in a highly deteriorated state, is on paper with a watermark from the mid-1630s. Another, non-Roman, treatise from around 1628–37 also demonstrates this historical self-consciousness of ancient practice and of its influence in the early Florentine operas, in the context of criticising and producing opera in the current style See Bianconi, , Il Seicento, pp. 176–81,Google Scholar and Fabbri, P. and Pompilio, A., eds., Il Corago, o vero alcune osservazioni per metter bene in scena le composizioni drammatiche (Florence, 1983).Google Scholar

55 Doni, , Trattato, pp. 810.Google Scholar Doni's position in this matter is discussed in Gallico, C., ‘Discorso di G. B. Doni sul recitare in scena’, Rivista Italiana di Musicologia, 3 (1968), pp. 286302.Google Scholar See also Doni's Discorso della Ritmopeia de'versi latini e della melodia de'cori tragici, al Sig. Gio.Jacopo Buccardi, published in Lyra Barberina, ii, pp. 203–25, written ‘con occasione della Troade di Seneca, che si rappresenta in questo carnevale in gran parte al modo antico d'ordine dell'Eminentissimo Sig. Cardinal [Francesco] Barberino’. Buccardi is Bouchard.

56 J.J. Bouchard to (?) Giulio Mazzarino, Rome, 8 March 1640; Paris, Ministère des Affaires Étrangères, Archives, Correspondance Politique, Rome, vol. 71, fol. 248. Barberini's expenses are noted in Hammond, F., ‘Girolamo Frescobaldi and a Decade of Music in Casa Barberini, 1634–1643’, Analecta Musicologica, 19 (1980), pp. 121–2.Google Scholar The music was by Virgilio Mazzocchi.

57 Le vendemmie is published in Costanzo, , Inediti, pp. 127–47.Google Scholar

58 I–Rvat Ferraioli MS 897: ‘Il trionfo dell'autunno, drama ditirambico col gareggiamento morale … del Ottaviano Castelli, posto in musica dal Sig.r Angelo Cecchini … quale si doveva rappresentare … il di 28. d'ottobre … del presente anno 1636’ (fol. 3).

59 Murata, , ‘The Recitative Soliloquy’, pp. 4556.Google Scholar

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