La Verginella (Byrd, William)
Scores and Parts
Dallas: Hawthorne Early Music, 2013.
This is the consort setting from the Dow partbooks.
|Work Title||La Verginella|
|Librettist||Lodovico Ariosto (1474–1533)|
|Instrumentation||Voice, 4 instruments|
This piece by Byrd exists in several forms. It appeared in more than one manuscript in the 1580s as a consort song. In 1588 it was reworked and appeared in two important published books: Byrd's own Psalmes, sonets, & songs, with all 5 parts texted with the Italian, and also in the Musica Transalpina, translated into English as "The Fayre Young Virgin".
The text, an ottava from canto I of Orlando Furioso, was the single most popular text by Ariosto in the 16th century among madrigal writers. James Haar identifies 19 separate settings of it, including Byrd's own.