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The Civic Muse

Music and Musicians in Siena during the Middle Ages and the Renaissance

Siena, blessed with neither the aristocratic nor the ecclesiastical patronage enjoyed by music in other northern Italian centers like Florence, nevertheless attracted first-rate composers and performers from all over Europe. As Frank A. D’Accone shows in this scrupulously documented study, policies developed by the town to favor the common good formed the basis of Siena’s ambitious musical programs.

Based on decades of research in the town’s archives, D’Accone’s The Civic Muse brilliantly illuminates both the sacred and the secular aspects of more than three centuries of music and music-making in Siena. After detailing the history of music and liturgy at Siena’s famous cathedral and of civic music at the Palazzo Pubblico, D’Accone describes the crucial role that music played in the daily life of the town, from public festivities for foreign dignitaries to private musical instruction. Putting Siena squarely on the Renaissance musical map, D’Accone’s monumental study will interest both musicologists and historians of the Italian Renaissance.

886 pages | 3 color plates, 7 halftones, 70 musical examples | 6-5/8 x 9-3/8 | © 1997

Music: General Music

Table of Contents

List of illustrations
List of Tables
List of Musical Examples
Note on Sources, Citations, and Transcriptions
Note on Sienese Dating and Money
Pt. 1: The Cathedral
1: The Cathedral and Its Administration, Personnel, and Liturgical Calendar
2: Chant and Improvised Polyphony in Later Medieval Times
3: Singers and Organists, 1380-1448
4: Building a Chapel, 1448-1480
5: Expansion and Retrenchment in the Chapel, 1480-1507
6: The Development of a Stable Chapel, 1507-1555
7: Decline and Transformation of the Chapel, 1555-1607
Pt. 2: The Palazzo Pubblico
8: Origins and Establishment of the Trumpeters’ Corps, 1230-1399
9: Pomp, Circumstance, and Security: The Trumpeters’ Corps as an Ongoing Institution in the Fifteenth Century
10: Diminishing Importance and Nostalgia for Times Past: The Trumpeters’ Corps in the Sixteenth Century
11: Establishment and Consolidation of the Pifferi in the Fifteenth Century
12: Triumph of the Wind Band in the Sixteenth Century
Pt. 3: Music in the Life of the Town
13: Beyond Cathedral and Palace Walls: Professional Musicians and Dancing Masters, Amateurs, Builders, and Repairmen, 1300-1607
14: Music at Social Events, Public and Private
Register of Musicians


Association of American Publishers: PROSE Book Award

Sixteenth Century Studies Conference: Roland H. Bainton Book Prize

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