Early Guitars and Vihuela

A network for historic guitars and vihuelas

Hi all, I have a Portugese guitar made in Madeira, probably from the 1870's or so, I am trying to find appropriate solo music for it, and would appreciate any advice. I did find a very interesting article/essay online from Rogerio Budasz, and found Rob McKillop's arrangements of a few of the pieces (thank you Rob!) from the Coimbra manuscript. However, I wonder what they were playing on this instrument in the 2nd half of the 19th cent? I can send photos of the instrument if that would be helpful. The maker is Antonio Quintal. It is wire strung, and has five courses. at the moment I have it in Baroque guitar tuning, with bourdons on the 4th and 5th course.



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Do you mean Budasz' phd dissertation the "Five-course guitar (viola) in Portugal in Brazil in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries"?

Interesting thesis and if i recall it mentions basically all known portuguese sources of guitar music.

It's a pity the 200 page appendix, the music anthology, is missing from the online version... i tried ask him but he didn't answer me and also about another issue which i think is a lapse when he mentions a portuguese king that according to the context, the dates being discussed, should be dead already for some 200 years or so.

Hello James, photos would be interesting! 


Here are a few pics.



Among other things, they would have been accompanying the machete. See the info on my Machete page, but also contact Manuel Morais on this site, as he actually plays one, I think.


Dear James,


You may also be interested in a paper in the current edition of Early Music Performer (Issue 31):


'Influences of the viola and guitar (guitarra) in local keyboard repertoires during the reign of Maria I (1777-1816): modinhas, minuets and dance rythms''  by Vanda de Sa Silva. 


Some of the earlier 19th century repertoire mentioned in the paper may well have continued to be played in conservative Portugal in the latter decades of the century.




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