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De tribus generibus instrumentorum musicae veterum organicae dissertatio. Rome, Fausto Amideo,

BIANCHINI Francesco (1742.)

£1400.00 

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Seven engraved plates of musical instruments, engraved device on title-page, five engraved initials, four engraved head-pieces and one engraved tail-piece, two signed "M.T.".4to. XI, 58pp. [1] (blank) f. Contemporary vellum.

Posthumous first edition of this renowned study of the musical instruments of the ancients. The author, a most distinguished mathematician and philosopher, was born in Verona in 1662. He held many important positions including that of Secretary to the Congregation for the reform of the Calendar, and was librarian to Cardinal Ottoboni. Many of his works were published in his life-time, but this work remained in manuscript at the time of his death and not published until 1742. It exhibits considerable learning and research and was generally considered very authoritative (see: Nouveau Dictionnaire Historique). The plates depict 23 wind instruments, 18 stringed instruments and 17 percussion instruments; there are also illustrations of several old Jewish instruments which are discussed in detail, with their names printed in Hebrew letter.Provenance. The copy of the impresario and writer William Ayrton (1777-1858), with his signature on the title and notes about Bianchini on the fly-leaf. Ayrton was responsible for introducing several Italian operas to England, and he also edited The Harmonicon, 1823-1833, an invaluable record of the time which included very full reviews and substantial musical examples. Eitner II, 32. Hirsch I, 71.

Stock Code: 44429