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Mus. 996

This is one of the many manuscripts of 17th-century Italian cantatas now in Christ Church Library.

Manuscript. Cantatas by Giacomo Carissimi, Luigi Rossi and others, copied in score; copyist unidentified, probably Italian, before 1672. (The same copyist was also responsible for Mus. 377.) The first layer of the collection (ff. [0]-62) is headed (f. [0r]): 'Arie à tre, et à Dui, del / Sign. Giacomo Carissimi / Mastro in santo Apolinare / di Roma'. (These cantatas were subsequently copied by Richard Goodson Sr into Mus. 52 and Mus. 54.) The remainder of the collection is headed (f. 63r): 'Arie à quattro, à tre, et à Dui del / Sign. Luigi Rossi'.

  • For facsimiles of items 1 and 6 in the inventory below, see Cantatas by Giacomo Carissimi, selected and introduced by Günther Massenkeil, The Italian Cantata in the Seventeenth Century, 2 (New York, 1986), nos. 18-19.
  • For facsimiles of items 14, 20, 11 and 34, see Cantatas by Luigi Rossi, selected and introduced by Francesco Luisi, The Italian Cantata in the Seventeenth Century, 1 (New York, 1986), nos. 23 and 25-7.
Table of titles and composers in modern form. Display form found in manuscript.
1 Giacomo Carissimi Tra più riposti abissi ff. [0]v-7r
2 Giacomo Carissimi Sciolto havean dall'alte sponde ff. 7v-17v
3 Giacomo Carissimi Le ferite d'un cor ff. 18r-23v
4 Giacomo Carissimi E pur vuole il cielo ff. 24r-31r
5 Giacomo Carissimi Chi fugge d'amor gl'affanni ff. 31v-38r
6 Giacomo Carissimi Alma, che fai, che pensi? ff. 38v-44v
7 Giacomo Carissimi Più non ti chieggio, ò Filli ff. 45r-51v
8 Giacomo Carissimi Non piangete, ò ciechi amanti ff. 52r-58v
9 Giacomo Carissimi Lungi, homai, deh spiega ff. 59r-60r
10 Giacomo Carissimi Vaghi rai, pupille ardenti ff. 60v-62r
11 Luigi Rossi Pur è ver che fiero danno ff. 63v-69r
12 Luigi Rossi Cor dolente, ferito ff. 69v-71r
13 Luigi Rossi Or che fra l'ombre del notturno velo ff. 71v-73r
14 Luigi Rossi Or ch'in notturna pace (Serenata) ff. 73v-77r
15 Luigi Rossi Mio cor, di che paventi ff. 77v-79r
16 Luigi Rossi Udite, amanti, opra d'amor novella ff. 79v-81r
17 Luigi Rossi Di desire in desire ff. 81v-83r
18 Luigi Rossi Lasso, benché mi fugga ognor lontano ff. 83v-85r
19 Luigi Rossi Amanti, ardire o goder o morire ff. 85v-87r
20 Luigi Rossi Piangea l'aurora ff. 87v-98r
21 Luigi Rossi In questo duro esiglio ff. 98v-100v
22 Luigi Rossi Mio core, impara dal mare ff. 101r-103r
23 Luigi Rossi Quand'io credo esser disciolto ff. 103v-105r
24 Luigi Rossi Deh, perché non m'uccide ff. 105v-107r
25 Luigi Rossi Tu parti, core, addio ff. 107v-108v
26 Luigi Rossi A te mio core ff. 108Br-109r
27 Luigi Rossi Non cantar libertà ff. 109v-110r
28 Luigi Rossi Risolvetevi, o martiri ff. 110v-111v
29 Luigi Rossi Datemi pace una brev'ora almeno ff. 112r-113r
30 Luigi Rossi Queste dure catene ff. 113v-114r
31 Luigi Rossi Pene, pianti e sospiri ff. 114v-115r
32 Luigi Rossi Tu giuri ch'è mio ff. 115v-116v
33 Carlo Caproli Purche lo sappi tu ff. 117r-v
34 Luigi Rossi Spiega un volo così altero ff. 118r-119r
35 Luigi Rossi O cieli, pietà ff. 119v-120v
36 Luigi Rossi Poiché mancò speranza ff. 121r-124v
37 Luigi Rossi Il contento che mi deste ff. 125r-126r
38 Luigi Rossi Soffrirei con lieto core ff. 126v-127v
39 Luigi Rossi Mortale, che pensi ff. 128r-129v
40 Luigi Rossi Al far del dì per saper che facea ff. 130r-131r
41 Luigi Rossi Amor, se devo piangere ff. 131v-132v
42 Marc'Antonio Pasqualini Già son morto e non lo crede ff. 133r-134v
43 Marco Marazzoli Amanti, sentite Amor ff. 134v-136r
44 Marco Marazzoli? All'assedio del cor mio ff. 136v-138v
45 Luigi Rossi Dolenti pensier miei ff. 139r-142r

Oblong format, 265 x 210 mm. Struicture: ii+148+ii folios; the textblock is foliated in modern pencil as follows: [0], 1-108, 108bis, 109-146. Small adjustments to the foliation were made in October 2003; these will not be present in microfilms made before that date. Two layers:

  • Layer 1: ff. [0]-62 (items 1-10), with the following heading added by the copyist on f. [0r]: 'Arie à tre, et à Dui, del / Sigr. Giacomo Carissimi / Mastro in santo Apolinare / di Roma'. 10 gatherings, numbered '1-10' by the copyist, in each case in the upper left-hand corner of the first page. Collation: A6 (ff. [0]-5), B6 (ff. 6-11), C6 (ff. 12-17), D6 (ff., 18-23), E6 (ff. 24-9), F8 (ff. 30-7), G6 (ff. 38-43), H6 (ff. 44-9), I6 (ff. 50-55), J8 (of which J1 has been excised; ff. 56-62). The closing page of this layer (f. 62v) is blank, without ruled staves.
  • Layer 2: items ff. 63-146 (items 11-45), with the following heading added by the copyist on f. 63r: 'Arie à quattro, à tre, et à Dui del / Sigr. Luigi Rossi'. 12 gatherings, numbered '1-11' and (duplicate) '11' by the copyist, in each case in the upper left-hand corner of the first page. Collation: K6 (ff. 63-8), L6 (ff. 69-74), M6 (ff. 75-80), N6 (ff. 81-6), O6 (ff. 87-92), P8 (ff. 93-100), Q8 (ff. 101-8), R8 (ff. 108bis, 109-15), S8 (ff. 116-23), T8 (ff. 124-31), U8 (of which one leaf has been excised; ff. 132-8), V8 (ff. 139-46). Unused ruled staves on ff. 142v-146v.
Rear flyleaves i and ii have been used for two lists of contents; these have been added not by the main copyist but rather by a contemporary hand. The first lists cantatas 'di Carissimi' (items 1-9 only), the second cantatas 'di Luigi' (items 11-37, 39-45). Composer attributions within the textblock appear to have been added by another hand, not that of the music-copyist. 17th-century binding of white parchment over boards. Bookplate 2 on inside upper cover. 19th-century shelfmark: G.7.

Provenance: an annotation on the upper cover (partly illegible) reads: 'I give this Book [to] Doctor ?Rogers'. An inscription on f. [0r] reads: 'E Libris - Guliell: Rogers / 1672'; inside lower cover inscribed 'W. Rogers' and 'May 29th 1672'. Front flyleaf signed 'Timothy Nourse 1672', presumably recording a change of ownership in that year. (For comments on Rogers and Nourse, see below.) Then probably part of the Aldrich bequest. The earliest catalogue entry for this item is by Hind in Dowding, where it is listed at position P4 as 'Arie à bc, et [illegible], dell Giacomo Carissimi. M.S.'; in Mus. 996 itself, the shelfmark 'P.4' is written in Hind's handwriting on front flyleaf i, and the number '4' on the spine. For another item acquired by Aldrich from Nourse, see the entry for Mus. 887-92.

Microfilm: manuscript music, reel 58.

The description above incorporates information kindly supplied by Margaret Murata and Alessio Ruffatti.


  • Geoffrey Webber, 'Italian Music at the Court of Queen Christina: Christ Church, Oxford, Mus. MS 377 and the Visit of Vincenzo Albrici's Italian Ensemble, 1652-54', Svensk Tidskrift för Musikforskning, 1993:2, pp. 47-53.
  • Alessio Ruffatti, 'La diffusion des cantates de Luigi Rossi en Europe', Le jardin de musique, 4 (2007), pp. 51-69.
  • Alessio Ruffatti, '"Curiosi e bramosi l'oltramontani cercano con grande diligenza in tutti i luoghi": La cantata romana del Seicento in Europa', Journal of Seventeenth-Century Music, 13 (2008), published online at
William Rogers (1646/7-in or before 1730) matriculated from University College, Oxford, in 1663, and was called to the bar in 1673. He was one of a group of Roman Catholic intellectuals gathered around the Franciscan Christopher Davenport. For a full biography, see the entry for Rogers in The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.

Timothy Nourse (d. 1699) matriculated from University College, Oxford, in 1655, and was subsequently elected a fellow of the college. On converting to Roman Catholicism in 1673, he was deprived of his fellowship, and moved to his estate in Newent. He is known to have attended Mass at Somerset House, ostensibly 'to heare the musick'. For a full biography, see the entry for Nourse in The Oxford Dictionary of National Biography.