Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Horsley, Imogene. "Monteverdi's Use of Borrowed Material in Sfogava con le stelle." Music and Letters 59 (July 1978): 316-28.

Monteverdi used a monodic setting of Sfogava con le stelle by Caccini included in Le nuove musiche as the basis of his madrigal by that name, included in Book IV of the madrigals. Monteverdi altered the melodic line to achieve a smoother contour, and adjusted the text-setting to remove unimportant syllables from positions of prominence. He manipulated the material in Caccini's piece in various ways, using Caccini's melody as a bass line, for example. As only seven months separated the publication of Le nuove musiche and the publication of Book IV of Monteverdi's madrigals containing its parody, Horsley speculates that Monteverdi used the parody as an indirect reply to criticism leveled by Caccini in the preface to his volume aimed at the new style of polyphonic madrigals, a style championed by Monteverdi. Monteverdi's setting of Sfogava con le stelle is somewhat atypical of his style, and it counters each of Caccini's points of contention.

Works: Caccini: Sfogava con le stelle; Monteverdi: Sfogava con le stelle.

Index Classifications: 1600s

Contributed by: Nancy Kinsey Totten

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