PRoMs - The Production and Reading of Music Sources

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

Manuscript: Florence, Italy, Conservatorio di Musica Luigi Cherubini, MS Basevi 2441

Manuscript type: choirbook

RISM siglum: I-Fc 2441

DIAMM Source Key: 245

Image repositories: Internet Culturale

Folio(s): All folios

Date: 1510-1515

Made in the early 16th century (Jeppesen 1968-70); according to Rifkin 1973, written in Milan by the scribe of Milan 2267 (Librone 3), one of the four 'libroni' made for the Milan cathedral in c. 1500, under the supervision of Franchino Gaffurio, maestro di capella at the cathedral; according to Prizer written after 1510: includes a poem 'Fami, donna, el mio dovere', composed by Bartolomeo Cavassico of Belluno in 1510, perhaps during the period following the return of Massimiliano Sforza to Milan in 1512 and before his renunciation of the ducal title in 1515

Location of origin: Milan, Italy


Abramo Basevi (b. 1818, d. 1885), Italian musicologist and composer: bequeathed in his last will with his entire collection of books and manuscripts to the library of the Regio Istituto Musicale di Firenze, now Conservatorio di Musica 'Luigi Cherubini'.


Person: Anonymous, Anonymous
Person type: scribe
Location of origin: Milan, Italy
Note: Copied by a single scribe, who also wrote parts of Archivio della Veneranda Fabbrica del Duomo, Sezione Musicale, Ms MS 2267 (Librone 3), according to <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>.


Gandolfi et al. 1929, 248-249; Becherini 1964, 264-266; Jeppesen 1968–70, II, 50,140-143, Facs. XXXVII; Rifkin 1973, 306; Census-Catalogue 1979-1988, I, 235; Prizer 1980, 336; RISM B/IV, 5, 1991, 129-132; Prizer 1996; Borghi 1996; Merkley/Merkley 1999, 321, 329, 486; Boorman 2005, 280, 324, 1127.

Basis for description: original

Florence, Italy, Conservatorio di Musica Luigi Cherubini, MS Basevi 2441, All folios

Physical description

Material: paper

Number of leaves: iii + i + 72 + i + iii

Format: oblong

Page dimensions: 145 x 210

Quire structure: Text version

Title page / Frontispiece: Title added in a 19th-century hand: 'Musica antica a 4 parti cantanti / con le parole / dell secolo circa il 1460'. (f. 1r)

Other devices: 1. Modern pencil foliation recto bottom left, 1-72

Page details (zoom):

Preparation and Copying

All folios


Disposition of Voice Parts Key

Pricking none visible
Ruled grid always,
single vertical bounding lines; no text lines
Ruling pattern fairly regular
Staves omitted from grid never
Incomplete staves never,
Added staves only (see ad hoc adaptations).
Medium and colour of grid Frequency Folios Note
lead point always Justification lines only.
Colour of staves Frequency Folios Note
dark brown always
Ruling medium Frequency Folios Note
double rastrum always Top two staves of every page, rastrum size 9.75 mm with interspace of 5.5 mm
triple rastrum always Bottom three staves of every page, rastrum size 10-9.75-9.75 mm with interspace of 5.5 mm
Indentation for initials Frequency Folios Note
none always
Extra space between voice parts Frequency Folios Note
empty ruled staves on grid sometimes
Space provided for separate text Frequency Folios Note
not in dedicated space often 2v-11v, 12v, 13v-14v, 16v-19r, 20v, 21v-32v, 33v-56v, 57v-70v, 71v Height of music/text area including additional text 105-110 mm
Adhoc adaptation Frequency Folios Note
notation and staves extended into margin sometimes 2r, 10v-11v, 25v-26r, 29v-30r, 33v-34r, 36v-37v, 43v-44r, 45r, 48v-49r, 50v, 52v, 55v, 56v
partial additional staves occasionally 6r, 11v, 19v, 20v, 44v-45r, 70v-71v
made for complete additional staves rarely 25v, 51r
staveline added sometimes 6r, 7v, 11v, 17v, 18r, 20v, 23r-24r, 25r, 27r, 42v, 45r, 54r, 57r, 65r, 66v, 71r, 72r

Copying of text and music

Language(s) Italian
Order of Copying music first
Presence/absence of text Voice part Frequency Folios Note
fully texted with one or two texts discantus always
untexted all except discantus always
Colour(s) of notation brown
Type(s) of notation void mensural
Type of notation note rhomboid shaped
Monophonic notation absent
Level of calligraphy high
Non verbal performance instructions Folios Note
repeat signs 2v-5r, 6v-16r, 18v-23r, 26v-29r, 33v-39r, 43v-45r, 46v-47r, 48v-49r, 51v-52r, 53v-55r, 56v-57r, 58v-59r, 60v-61r, 62v-63r, 64v-66r
Types of script cursive (humanistic)
Level of calligraphy high
Colour(s) of text brown
Multiple texts yes
2v, 6v, 7v, 10v, 14v, 15v, 18v, 19v, 25v, 32v, 34v, 35v, 36v, 37v, 43v, 44v, 45v, 46v, 48v, 50v
Text repetitions few
Abbreviations few
Non underlaid vocal text additional
2v-11v, 12v, 13v-14v, 16v-19r, 20v, 21v-32v, 33v-70v, 71v
Liminary text 'verte folium' or 'verte' (ff. 2r, 18r, 70v); 'residuum' (f. 2v); 'ut supra' (ff. 2v, 4v-5r, 10v, 15v, 32v, 34v, 37v, 40v, 42v, 43v, 48v, 50v); 'Soneti' (f. 39v),
2r, 2v, 10v, 4v-5r, 15v, 18r, 32v, 34v, 37v, 39v, 40v, 42v, 43v, 48v, 50v, 70v


Level of Decoration fair
Decoration initial type Frequency Folios Initial type(s) Size position Description Discrepancies
penned initials always calligraphic with decoration, calligraphic with grotesque heads Beginning of voice parts. Calligraphic initials in dark brown ink with pen-flourished decoration, highlighted in yellow, some including human faces or heads.