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 Language: English
 Collection: Virtual Music Rare Book Room
Proserpine; tragedie

Proserpine; tragedie

Date: 1680
Creator: Lully, Jean Baptiste, 1632-1687 & Quinault, Philippe, 1635-1688
Description: With Proserpine, composer Jean-Baptiste Lully returned to his collaboration with librettist Philippe Quinault, which had been interrupted when the poet was banned from Court for offending Madame de Montespan (the king's mistress) with unflattering references in Isis. By 1679, Quinault had been restored to favor. Proserpine was first performed at St. Germain-en-Laye in February of 1680. Though seventeenth-century audiences were familiar with the story of Proserpine being carried off into Hades from numerous ballets and stage plays, Quinault returned to the source in Ovid's Metamorphoses to embellish the plot. In addition to details drawn from Ovid, Quinault added some of his own, making Proserpine among the most convoluted of Lully's operas. While the prologue alludes to King Louis XIV in the guise of Jupiter, the play itself refers specifically to the king's recent victories over the Spanish and Dutch when Jupiter battles and defeats the giants. Robert Isherwood notes that Jupiter's trip to Phrygia may represent Louis' inspection of Flanders after its defeat in 1679.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
The Theater of music

The Theater of music

Date: 1685
Creator: Playford, Henry, 1657-1710
Description: A note at the bottom of the final page reads, "In the Title Page of this Book, instead of Theorbo-Bass, read Thorow-Bass." Although this seems to suggest that chordal accompaniment should be used, bass lines are unfigured and meant for either a plucked or bowed string instrument per the suggestions on the title page. Three-part ritornelli are interspersed throughout this volume. All vocal lines (the top one of each system) use the treble clef. Only the text of the first stanza is underlaid; any subsequent stanzas are printed under the music.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Rosamond

Rosamond

Date: 1707
Creator: Clayton, Thomas, 1673-1725
Description: This three-act opera is to a libretto by Joseph Addison. Content is printed only on the recto side of each leaf. The score features two title pages: the first, with an engraving and small print describing the contents; the second, with large font. The work opens with a three-part "symphony or overture" for an ensemble of unspecified instrumentation: two treble instruments and one bass instrument. The indication "with Violins" on some the songs suggests the nature of the high instruments. No figures are included on the bass line. All the songs are followed, on the same page, by a version of the vocal line for flute.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Three Cantatas

Three Cantatas

Date: 1717
Creator: Hayden, George, d. 1722?
Description: It is upon this set of three Italianate cantatas - "Martillo," "Thyrsis and Neptune" and "Amymone" that Hayden's reputation mainly rests. The second and third works include unspecified obbligato instruments. Content is printed only on the recto of each leaf. The bass line contains no figuration.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Harmonia Sacra

Harmonia Sacra

Date: 1730~
Creator: Purcell, Henry, 1659-1695
Description: This collection of six anthems for various combinations of voices employs a figured continuo accompaniment. Instrumental interludes labeled "symphonies" can also be found interspersed among the choral selections. Though the music cites no particular scriptural passages, the text seems inspired by - if not directly derived from - the Bible.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Devil to pay: or, The wives metamorphos'd

Devil to pay: or, The wives metamorphos'd

Date: 1732
Creator: Coffey, Charles, d. 1745; Mottley, John, 1692-1750 & Jevon, Thomas, 1652-1688
Description: English libretto to Charles Coffey's ballad opera The devil to pay or, The wives metamorphos'd. The Devil to Pay is an adaptation of Thomas Jevon’s play The Devil of a Wife (1686). Nearly fifty years later, the ballad opera appeared at Drury Lane with Charles Coffey and John Mottley each responsible for half of the three acts. However, a much shorter and more well-received one-act version, edited by Theophilus Cibber, is represented in the printed libretto. Today Coffey is generally the only name widely attached to The Devil to Pay. The opera’s popularity is attested by the frequent performances and a translation into German, which contributed to the development of the Singspiel.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Achilles. An opera.

Achilles. An opera.

Date: 1733
Creator: Gay, John, 1685-1732
Description: John Gay is credited with inventing the ballad opera, a genre that blends spoken plays and previously composed songs to new texts. Although The Beggar’s Opera (1728) was his most successful endeavor, he continued to compose English musical dramas. Achilles was finally performed in 1733, one year after Gay died. In this story, Achilles appears as a girl named Pyrrha, unknown to most of the inhabitants of the island of Scyros, in order to circumvent a prediction that he will die in battle. Deidamia (the king’s daughter) knows the secret, however, because she is carrying the disguised man’s child. After Achilles’s identity is revealed, he and Deidamia are able to wed. Then, in a fateful twist of irony, Achilles plans to join the Greeks in the Trojan War.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Beggar's opera

Beggar's opera

Date: 1735
Creator: Pepusch, John Christopher, 1667-1752. & Gay, John, 1685-1732.
Description: This is a 1735 fourth ed. of the three-act ballad opera "The beggar's opera" by John Christopher Pepusch and John Gay. It includes the score for the overture (for violins (2), viola, and bass ensemble) and the melodies of each song. The inscription, "Nos haec novimus esse nihil" (transl. as, We know these to be nothing) that appears on the t.p. is an epigram by Marcus Valerius Martialis from his Books of Epigrams. On the back of the t.p. appears the advertisement of these works printed by John Watts: Fifty one new fables in verse; The tunes to the songs in the Beggar's Opera, transposed for the flute; and Gay's opera "Achilles." A table of songs shows the first lines of text for each act. The item includes a list of characters.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Ode on St. Cecilia's Day

Ode on St. Cecilia's Day

Date: 1736
Creator: Handel, George Frideric, 1685-1759.
Description: A sacred work for mixed chorus (SATB) with orchestra acc. (2 oboes, 2 violins, viola, and basso continuo). A contents index is given on p. 74. Plate no. 105.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
Judas Maccabaeus

Judas Maccabaeus

Date: 1740
Creator: Handel, George Frideric, 1685-1759.
Description: This is a [ca. 1740] score of Judas Maccabaeus, a sacred oratorio by Handel. It contains a table of songs for each of the three acts of the oratorio and a descriptive catalog of music composed by Handel, which includes: Italian operas, English oratorios as well as concertos, chamber music and transcription of vocal music for instruments. The performance forces include: vocal soloists (SATB or SATB), strings (violins, viola, violoncello and contra bass), oboes, traverse flute, and bassoon. It also includes figured bass for continuo playing. The names of singers (Gambarini, Galli, Reinhold, and Beard) appear at the heading of each aria. Page [73], incorrectly numbered 48, contains a keyboard march identified as: No.484 Marche.
Contributing Partner: UNT Music Library
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