Turin, P.P. Porro 1527.
Folio (298 x 204 mm.). [x], CLII leaves. Double-column gothic type, PRINTED ON VELLUM IN RED AND BLACK, fine floriated metalcut initials, PRINTED MUSIC, a woodcut Porro title device.
Blind-decorated white pigskin over beveled wooden boards (T. Lloyd), two brass clasps and catches.
MAGISTERIAL NOTED BREVIARY, PRIVATELY PRODUCED. This is especially well suited for use in the choir or by a small group of priests of religious. It is the most comprehensive source of texts, music and instructions for the coduct of the Office. It was commissioned by the Chapel Canons of the Turin cathedral. Music professor and Chapel Canon member Giovanni Antonio de Levioni (fl. 1524-27) edited the volume, and local cantor Antonio Martini (1500-20) contributed a TREATISE ON POLYPHONIC MELODY WITH MNEMONICS FOR VOCAL PERFORMANCE. These are cleverly keyed to Arabic numerals inserted in the staves to guide the singers. Martini also added his own four-voice hymn to Mary (Inviolata, integra et casta).
Porro introduced music printing to Turin, and his liturgical folios for its Cathedral comprise nearly half his output. In excellent condition (three margins with natural vellum flaws, one neatly sewn closed). I have located five complete copies (Cremona, Ferrara, Rome, Seville, Turin).
¶Baldi, “La musica nella Cattedrale di Torino nel Cinquecento” in Musica sacrae disciplina ed. Bianco 93-155, esp. 94-98; Dell’Ara, Editori di musica a Torino e in Piemonte I: 125; Bersano Begey, Le Cinquecentine piemontesi I: 344; EDIT16 CNCE 11117.