Dallis lute book; Dublin virginal. IE TCD MS 410 Public Deposited

Dallis lute book; Dublin virginal. IE TCD MS 410

Alternative title
  • Dublin virginal
  • Dallis lessons for the lute, 1583
Shelf Mark/Reference Number
  • IE TCD MS 410 ; former shelfmarks: D. 3. 30 i ; D. 3. 30 ii ; A.56
Rights statement
  • Copyright The Board of Trinity College Dublin. Images are available for single-use academic application only. Publication, transmission or display is prohibited without formal written approval of the Library of Trinity College, Dublin.
Copyright status
Date Created
  • circa 1570-1583?
  • IE TCD MS 410 gathers in one volume the Dallis lute book and the Dublin Virginal, which were bound together in the late 17th or early 18th century.1) The Dallis Lute Book (MS 410 pp. 1- 270): This is one of the best surviving sources of lute songs that would have been heard prior to the 1590s. This manuscript is associated with Thomas Dallis due to the Latin inscription on p. 12 which may be translated as 'I began on August 9 with Mr Thomas Dallis as my preceptor. Cambridge 1583'. Nothing is known of the scribe(s). The music is written in French tablature notation on 254 pages, most of which have at least four six-line staves. The pages as well as the repertory of the manuscript have been divided into Continental and English sections; the manuscript is perhaps best characterised as a collection of the most popular works from the 1560s to the 1580s. The composers represented in the manuscript are Philips, Newman, Brewster, Cotton, Robert Parsons, Nicholas Strogers, Thomas Mudd/Wudd, John Johnston, and William Byrd all of whom were active before or during the 1580s. It is based on continental printed works and English tunes, with many pieces based on passamezzo patterns, religious pieces (including fourteen Psalm settings), and pieces attributed to Thomas Dallis. It contains 288 compositions (228 complete works), 198 of them for lute solo (of which nearly 150 are dances, mainly passamezzos, pavans and galliards). There are also some lute songs, sacred pieces, chansons and madrigals. Not all of the songs are texted.Includes: --p. 26: Greenwillow: All in a greane willowe--pp. 32-34: O passi sparsi ; O pensier vaghie pronti --pp. 49-50: Fortune is now my fo: Fortune is now my fo Sometime she was not soe --p. 52: Where righteousness doth say: Where righteousness doth say Lord for my sinnefull part --pp. 172-173: My swete babi; 'My little sweet darling my comfort and joy' or My little sweet darling--p. 176: Chi in Donna Bella: Chi in Donna Bella loca losuo--p. 177: Psalm 128--pp. 185-186: But this and then no more: But this and then no more it is my laste and all --pp. 202-203, 212: O Heavenly God: P heavenly God o faether deare --pp. 204-207: In Youthfull Yares; In youthfull yars when first my young desires --p. 208: Man is blessed: Man is blessed that lyves in rest --p. 210: Cur Mundus Militat: Cur mundus militat sub vana gloria --p. 209, 233-234: Fortune ys fickle: Fortune ys fickle and wonderful tickle --p. 216: Vola Vola Pensier: Vola Vola Pensier fuor del miopetto. Description based on: John Ward, The Dublin virginal manuscript, 3rd edition (London: Schott, 1983), and: Christopher Goodwin,The English lute song before Dowland: 1 Songs from the Dallis manuscript. (Lute Society Music editions 1996) The Dublin Virginal (MS 410 pp. 271-338):2) The Dublin Virginal manuscript was compiled about 1570, and is one of the earliest extant collections of English secular keyboard music, pre-dating My Ladye Nevells Booke by about twenty years. Almost all of the 30 pieces it contains are dances, and only one is ascribed - a pavane by a 'Mastyre Taylere' (perhaps the John Taylor who was organist of Westminster Abbey, 1562-70). The manuscript shows clear signs of actual use, and contains important evidence relating to the ornamentation of early keyboard music. Please see the Manuscripts & Archives Research Library’s catalogue entry for the MS here:
Collection title
  • Music manuscripts
  • The Dublin Virginal manuscript came from the collection of Archbishop James Ussher (1581-1656); there is no evidence that the Dallis lute book belonged to Ussher.
Resource type
  • ink
  • leather
  • paper (fiber product)
Digital Object Id
  • MS410_001
  • 0101629


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