As the dawning of 2006 occurred and I went through the process of updating and transferring this site to a new web host, I did some reflecting about this site and its purpose. I thought I might take a brief moment to share them with you.
Back in 1999, when I first started this site, it was done so merely on a whim. At the time I knew very little about web pages and their construction. I thought at the time, Could I build a web site? After a few experiments with some WYSIWYG editors and some free (ad-based) web space, this site was born.
At the time I named it Renovata Cythara after Sixtus Kargel's work of the same name. The title itself translates from Latin into English something like "The cittern renewed/renovated." Kargel himself probably intended the title as a reference to the ancient Greek Kithara — renewed and renovated into the form of the Renaissance cittern. For authors and musicians like Sixtus Kargel and Paolo Virchi, the cittern was in a state of decline compared to its cousin, the lute, which had almost reached a state of perfection. By comparison, the cittern was lagging far behind — an instrument fallen into disuse (or into the use of only the most simple of players).
In my own personal research and interest in the cittern, I had discovered that the information that existed about the cittern, its music, and its history was scattered, erroneous, or difficult to access. My intention at the time (aside from trying my skill at building a web page) was to help remedy what I saw as a continuation of the problem that both Kargel and Virchi recognized: The disuse and under-appreciation of a worthy and noble instrument. Hence I adopted Kargel's title, Renovata Cythara, as my way of stating my goal for this site: The renewal and appreciation of the Renaissance cittern.
As this page has grown in both content and scope, it has been necessary for me to reevaluate my goals for this site. As such, it has been (and remains!) the goal of this site to present as accurately and objectively as possible information about the cittern and all things pertaining to it. It is my wish that this page will be a source of information for people who know nothing about the cittern as well as an on-line resource for both scholars and players alike. Since Internet download times have largely decreased due to advancing technology, I have tried to make use of that technology while still keeping with my original goal of having as few "frills" as possible in order to present quick and ready access to the information on these pages.
I more than welcome any comments you may have regarding this site. It is only through the input of people interested in the cittern (both those who are familiar with it, and those who are not) that this site can improve and grow. I also welcome any comments on errors that may be contained in these pages, either technical or factual.
Please check back often. And in the words of my friend Gian Luca, "Viva la cetra!"
All site contents, unless otherwise stated, are copyright © Andrew M. Hartig, 1999-2012. All rights reserved.