PRoMs - The Production and Reading of Music Sources

Mise-en-page in manuscripts and printed books containing polyphonic music, 1480—1530

Manuscript: Florence, Italy, Biblioteca Riccardiana, MS 2356

Manuscript type: choirbook

RISM siglum: I-Fr 2356

DIAMM Source Key: 1003

Folio(s): All folios

Date: c. 1480-1485

c. 1480-1485 (Atlas 1975-6); late 15th century, with some additions from the 1540's (Plamenac 1954).

Location of origin: Florence, Italy


In the mid-16th century, the manuscript belonged to a Florentine, Andrea Sardelli, who, on 19th June 1550, wrote an inventory of his library onto f. 4v of this manuscript, where it is referred to as 'Io [= uno] chanzoniere di carta pechora franzesse coperto dasse.' On f. 94r, the following note is written, beneath a short added four-voice piece 'sir ieronimo di monopoli me fecit 1547 [sic - not a 1541] in burgo sancti laurencii E ser andrea sardellj la scricto in quisto libro'. The manuscript was already in the Biblioteca Riccardiana by the 1810 inventory of manuscripts. (Plamenac 1954, RISM)


Person: Anonymous, Anonymous
Person type: None
Location of origin: Italy
Note: The scribe was probably Italian; scribal concordance with last two pieces in I-Fn Magi. 176 (<a href="/bibliography/#entry815" data-tooltip="" class="has-tip tip-top reference" data-placement="top" rel="tooltip" data-original-title="" title="Rifkin, Joshua, 'Scribal Concordances for Some Renaissance Manuscripts in Florentine Libraries', Journal of the American Musicological Society, 26 (1973), 305–26 "><i class="fa fa-book"></i>Rifkin 1973</a>).


Plamenac 1954a; Plamenac 1956; Rifkin 1973, 313, 318, 320; Atlas 1975–6, 256; Baker 1978, 57-8, 431-4, 448-9, 476, 511; Perkins 1979, I, 15, II, 161-2, 193ff; Census-Catalogue 1979-88; I 244-5, IV, 384.

Basis for description: original

Florence, Italy, Biblioteca Riccardiana, MS 2356, All folios

Physical description

Material: parchment

Number of leaves: i + 100 + i

Format: upright

Page dimensions: 230 x 168

Quire structure: Text version

Index / Table of Contents: 1. original alphabetical index, ff. 1v-3r

Non-musical texts: f. 1r: notes […]
ff. 3r-4r: various notes regarding visitors etc., partly with dates
f. 4r: Gudonian hand with various solmisation instructions (also partly on f. 3v)
ff. 4v-5r: Inventory of Andrea Sardelli's books, 1550
ff. 92v-93r: various notes, mostly regarding basic musical theory, including Guidonian hand in f. 93r.
ff. 95v-98r: various notes and scribblings, some with musical notation.
f. 100v: Italian poem: 'Tu say ben che in pene amare'

Other devices: 1. Original foliation, red ink recto top middle, I-LXXIII (lacking numbers XI-XX). Original index also only including pieces up to that point, with later additions), not including index.
2. Older foliation, brown ink recto top right, 1-102 (lacking numbers 11-20), not including index.
3. Modern foliation, stamped recto bottom right, 1-100.

Page details (zoom):

Preparation and Copying

All folios


Disposition of Voice Parts Key

Pricking sometimes,
Some pricks visible for vertical bounding lines, but not always aligned with actual lines. No pricking for staves visible.
Ruled grid always
Ruling pattern highly regular
Staves omitted from grid never
Incomplete staves never
Medium and colour of grid Frequency Folios Note
brown ink always Justification lines only.
Colour of staves Frequency Folios Note
brown always
Ruling medium Frequency Folios Note
triple rastrum always staves 5-7 of every page, as visible from slight variations in horizontal alignment and ink colour. Stave height 15, 15, 14.5 mm, distance 12 mm.
quadruple rastrum always staves 1-4 of every page, as visible from slight variations in horizontal alignment and ink colour. Stave height 15, 15, 15, 14.5 mm, distance 12-12.5 mm.
Indentation for initials Frequency Folios Note
single often Music and text indented on staves.
Extra space between voice parts Frequency Folios Note
empty ruled staves on grid often
Space provided for separate text Frequency Folios Note
not in dedicated space always
Adhoc adaptation Frequency Folios Note
staves extended into margin often
notation and staves extended into margin rarely 7v-8r, 23v-24r, 29v, 34r, 51r, 70v-71r, 81r, 90r
notation extended into margin rarely 14v, 41v, 44v-45r, 50v, 81v, 85v, 87v-88r
staveline added rarely 5v, 12r, 18r, 37r, 42r, 45v, 50v, 64v-65r, 66r, 78r, 91v-92r

Copying of text and music

Language(s) French, Italian, Spanish
Order of Copying music first
Presence/absence of text Voice part Frequency Folios Note
untexted all voice parts rarely 5v-6r, 7v-8r, 44v-45r, 81v-82r, 90v-91r
provided with single incipit all voice parts sometimes
partially texted with one text discantus rarely 23v-24r, 29v-30r, 36v-37r
untexted discantus rarely 26v-27r, 34v-35r, 45v-46r, 61v-62r, 70v-71r, 77v-78r
provided with single incipit discantus rarely 79v-80r, 81v-84r, 89v-90r, 99v-100r
fully texted with one or two texts discantus sometimes 9v-10r, 11v-12r, 16v-17r, 19v-20r, 24v-26r, 28v-29r, 30v-32r, 33v-34r, 38v-39r, 41v-42r, 51v-52r, 56v-57r, 69v-70r, 74v-75r, 86v-88r, 91v-92r
provided with single incipit all except discantus sometimes 9v-10r, 25v-26r, 28v-29r, 30v-32r, 33v-34r, 38v-39r, 51v-52r, 69v-70r, 74v-75r, 87v-88r, 91v-92r
untexted all except discantus rarely 19v-20r, 41v-42r, 79v-80r, 81v-84r, 86v-87r, 89v-90r, 99v-100r
partially texted with one or two texts tenor rarely 11v-12r, 24v-25r
untexted bassus rarely 11v-12r, 24v-25r
provided with single incipit altus rarely 16v-17r
untexted all except discantus and altus rarely 16v-17r
provided with single incipit all except bassus rarely 17v-18r
untexted tenor rarely 22v-23r, 46v-47r, 48v-49r, 71v-74r, 78v-79r
provided with single incipit all except tenor rarely 22v-23r, 46v-47r, 48v-49r, 71v-74r, 78v-79r
provided with single incipit bassus rarely 67v-68r
untexted all except bassus rarely 67v-68r
provided with two incipits all except tenor rarely 76v-77r
untexted bassus rarely 17v-18r, 56v-57r
provided with single incipit tenor rarely 56v-57r, 76v-77r
Colour(s) of notation black red
Colour of notation note <p>Written mostly in dark brown/black ink, but occasionally one or two voice parts are copied in light red (ff. 52v-53r, 60v-61r, 61v, 66v-68r, 69v-72r, 73v-74r, 79r, 83v). This is apparently intended as a visual effect since it is usually offset against other voice parts on the same opening in black and also against the verbal text in the opposite colour.&nbsp;</p>
Type(s) of notation void mensural
Type of notation note rhomboid notehads, very slender, almost triangular
Monophonic notation absent
Level of calligraphy fair
Non verbal performance instructions Folios Note
end symbol 76r
pointers Pointers (often in form of hand) are usually drawn each time a voice part spans across both sides of an opening.
signes-de-renvoi 12
signa congruentiae 16v, 74v-75r
repeat signs 25v-26r, 29v-30r, 36v-37r, 44v-45r, 56v-57r
Later changes Folios
Erasure 25r, 78r
Notation added in blank staves: practice note shapes etc. 21v, 34v-35r, 45r, 48v, 79r, 83v-84r, 94r-96r, 99r
The book obviously grew over a period of time as is evident not only by the original index only reaching 73 (= f. 67), but also by a number of additions in different hands (either not reflected by the original index at all or added there later), and by the decreasing care taken over precision and calligraphy in the latter sections, even by the main scribe.
Types of script cursive (humanistic)
Types of script size position Text incipits or underlay. Voice names in slightly larger, rotunda script, placed at start of stave (not before). First letter usually missing, never provided as initial.
Level of calligraphy fair
Colour(s) of text black red
Written in black (or dark brown) ink with some texts, incipits or voice names in light red ink, usually as a visual offset against black notation or vice versa (notably from ff. 51v-74r).
Multiple texts yes
24v-25r, 74v
Text repetitions very few
Abbreviations fairly few
Non underlaid vocal text none
Liminary text Voice designation for all parts except discantus, below stave or rarely in margin. Composer designation (Cornelius <.>ianus) f. 44v. Verte instruction, f. 60v,
44v, 60v, 61v
Later changes Vocal text (extensions of incipits, not always clear whether actually appropriate to the piece in question) added on ff. 9r, 13v, 22r, 61v, 74v-75r (?), 73r, Non-vocal text added (pen trials etc.) ff. 1r, 2v-4r, 21v-22r, 42v-43r, 48v, 55v, 92v-93r, 94r-98r, 100v Calculations: ff. 80r, 84r,
1r, 2v-4r, 9r, 21v-22r, 42v-43r, 48v, 55v, 80r, 84r, 92v-93r, 94r-98r, 100v


Level of Decoration poor
Decoration initial type Frequency Folios Initial type(s) Size position Description Discrepancies
penned initials rarely 6v-7r, 8v-9r, 10v-11r littera notabilior Before stave, approximately one stave tall.
initials planned normally 7v-14r, 15v-17r, 19v-21r, 22v-29r, 30v-37r, 41v-50r, 51v-53r, 54v-76r, 77v-87r, 89v-92r Indentation of music and text on one stave. Sometimes each voice is indented, but more typically indentation occurs on only the first voice on each page, or sometimes only the discantus.
Other decoration frequency Folios Other decoration type(s) Size position Description Discrepancies
rarely 6r, 15r-17r, 20r-21r, 31r, 57r decorative final long Decorative final note.