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Reviewed by:
  • I Kyrie di Tr93 ed. by Antonio Chemotti
  • Robert Nosow
I Kyrie di Tr93. Edited by Antonio Chemotti. (Codici musicali trentini del Quattrocento, 2.) Trent: Provincia autonoma di Trento, Soprintendenza per i Beni culturali; Rome: Fondazione Istituto Italiano per la Storia della Musica, 2014. [Presentazione & pref., p. 7–8; abbrevs. and sigla of sources, p. 8–9; list of tables, p. 10; introd., p. 11–19; problemi di edizione, p. 20–52; cantus firmi, p. 53–62; prosulae, p. 63–65; criteri di edizione, p. 68; score, p. 69–167; critical apparatus, p. 168–217; appendix, p. 217–25; trascrizioni dei Kyrie in canto piano, p. 226–30; bibliographic sigla, p. 231; bibliog., p. 232–35; index, p. 237–40. ISBN 13 978-88-95349-12-1. €26.]

The succinct title of the volume I Kyrie di TR93 refers to a series of thirty-nine consecutive Kyrie settings in the manuscript Trent, Archivio Diocesano, 93, pertaining to the seven Trent Codices so important to our understanding of polyphony in the early- and mid-fifteenth century. This volume is the second in the ongoing series Codici musicali trentini del Quattrocento, which will provide a complete scholarly edition of the codices. (The first, devoted to the sequences, was published in 2012 and edited by Marco Gozzi.) The editor, Antonio Chemotti, refers to the manuscript as a “Kyriale” (p. 11), in reference to chant manuscripts transmitting the Ordinary of [End Page 587] the Mass. The Kyries in Trent 93 fill up three separate gatherings, IX to XI, and are followed by extensive sections of polyphonic Glorias, Credos, and mixed Sanctus and Agnus Dei movements.

As Chemotti shows in table 5 (pp. 53–54), the two main scribes of the Kyrie section organized them according to cantus firmus. All but five of the works paraphrase the plainchant, usually in the discantus, as shown in the table. The twelve relevant plainchants very helpfully appear in transcription at the end of the volume (pp. 226–30). After the first six works, Nos. 80–85, however, the cantus firmus designations do not appear in the headings to the individual works. Instead, Chemotti elects to present the liturgical designations in parentheses wherever they appear in the manuscript: “Paschali,” “de Apostolorum.”

The settings in this volume are surprisingly limited in scope. All have either two or three voices. Given the position of Trent on the alpine route between Verona and northern Italy to Innsbruck and the Holy Roman Empire, the sources of the music are correspondingly diverse. They range from Binchois, in the Burgundian court chapel, to Petrus Wilhelmus, working in central Europe. Despite the presence of only two composer attributions, several more can be added from concordant sources, noted in brackets (table 3, pp. 17–18). One of the more extensive settings, No. 117, is attributed in the manuscript to Johannes Pullois, who worked in Antwerp and Rome, where he arrived in 1447. It has three sections in all: two Kyries in o, two Christes in , and two Kyries in o. The sections here are not longer than in other settings, there are simply more of them.

Nine settings have attributions in one source or another to Guillaume Dufay. Seven pertain to the annual Kyrie cycle postulated by Alejandro Enrique Planchart, a thirteen-movement cycle perhaps composed for the papal chapel (“Music for the Papal Chapel in the Early Fifteenth Century,” in Papal Music and Musicians in Late Medieval and Renaissance Rome, ed. Richard Sherr [New York: Oxford University Press, 1998], 109–14). Given the liturgical organization of the Kyries in Trent 93, the Dufay settings are scattered throughout the three gatherings. As Planchart shows, the underlying chants have stable designations across Europe, meaning that a Kyrie Lux et origo, for example, would have been intended for Easter. All four settings based on this plainsong, Nos. 93–96, in fact carry the designation “Paschale” in the manuscript. Chemotti fails to cite the Planchart study in either text or bibliography, so that an important repertorial connection is lost to the reader.

Another missing connection is to the Aosta Codex, Biblioteca del Seminario Maggiore, 15. The Aosta Codex transmits a shorter series of eleven Kyrie settings, folios 20v...


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