11 - 13 July 2000
BYRD, William (1538?-1623), John BULL (1563?-1628) and Orlando GIBBONS (1583-1625). Parthenia; or The maydenhead of the first music that ever was printed for the virginals. London: M[ris] Dor: Evans, to be sould by G. Lowe, [1613?].
2° (291 x 192mm). Engraved throughout with title, dedication to Frederick V and 'his betrothed lady Elizabeth,' and 19 leaves of music. (Title lacking but supplied in facsimile, dedication laid down.) Gilt-panelled red morocco by Francis Bedford, gilt edges. Provenance: Julian Marshall (bookplate).
FIRST ISSUE OF THIS VERY RARE WORK ON THE VIRGINALS, an early form of harpsichord. There are two columns of laudatory verses by Hugh Holland and George Chapman at the head of the first page of music. On some leaves, the music is engraved on the recto only; on others, on both recto and verso. The music continued to be printed from the same copperplates throughout the 17th century. Hind Engraving in England II p. 335; STC 4251.5 locates only one copy at the Huntingdon Library.
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