A Provisional List of 16th and early 17th Century Builders of Citterns, Orpharions & Bandoras

Last updated Wednesday, July 19, 2017.
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What follows is a list of known 16th and 17th century builders of citterns, orpharions, and bandoras. The list is sorted roughly by region and provides links to information about surviving wire-strung instruments.

For related content, see also Cittern Picture Gallery — Old Instruments and Peter Forrester's Provisional List of Extant 16th and Early 17th Century Citterns.

If you know of something that I have not listed here, or if you have a correction, please contact me.

Name Dates Working Locale Known Citterns, Orpharions, or Bandoras Notes / Sources
Raitta, Petrus

1579?
1679?

England?

The dating of this cittern is still controversial, as is the ascription to Raitta as being an English builder.

For additional information, see the page at the National Music Museum web site.

Rose, John 1580 London, England Orpharion or bandora; 6 courses, originally 5?
Mallet, Robert ? mentioned 1612 Oxford, England  

Mallet was Manciple of St. Edmund Hall. His 'workhouse' or workshop was inventoried in 1612 and lists "4 orpharions, 5 citternes wherof one in a case, 2 citternes unfinisht, a flatback lute & case, 2 chists, working tooles, with divers lumber" and furniture, all valued at £5. 4s. 4d. (Spring)

Was he a luthier in addition to being Manciple?

Palmer, Francis 1617 London, England Orpharion, 9 courses.
Plebanus, Francesco 1536 Italy  
Campi [or Canpi], Girolamo   Italy The instrument in Florence is a ceterone.
Bertolotti (da Salo), Gasparo b. ca.1542
d. 1609
Brescia, Italy
  • Ashmolean, Oxford, Hill Collection
    No. 31

Said to have been a student of Girolamo Virchi. His son Francesco also followed in the luthiery trade until Gasparo's death and may have sold the business to Paolo Maggini, one of Gasparo's students. (Grove's)

Mentioned as "magister a citharis" in February 1597. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

Note: Instruments in the National Music Museum, Vermillion

Virchi, Girolamo ca. 1523 - after 1574 Brescia, Italy

Virchi is said to have been the master of Gasparo da Salo.(Grove's) He was the father of Paolo Virchi, an oganist who also published a cittern book in 1574.

Mentioned as "magister cithararum" from 1563-1564. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Virchi, Benedetto ca. 1520 - after 1568 Brescia, Italy  

Mentioned as "de l'arte mia de le cetere" in 1568. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Doneda (or d'Oneda), Battista mentioned 1568 Brescia, Italy  

Mentioned as "lavorento de istrumenti de cetere" in 1568. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Micheli (di Peregrino), Zanetto ca. 1489/90 - 1560/61 Brescia, Italy  

Father of Micheli Pellegrino. Maker of violins and mentioned as a possible maker of citterns by Dasenno/Ravasio.

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Note: Viola in the National Music Museum, Vermillion

Micheli, Pellegrino ca. 1520 - 1606/09 Brescia, Italy  


Son of Zanetto Micheli and father of Giovanni, Battista, and Francesco. Mentioned as "maestro de cittare et liree" in 1588. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Micheli, Giovanni ca. 1562 - after 1615 Brescia, Italy  

Son of Pellegrino Micheli and brother of Battista and Francesco, mentioned 1606. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Micheli, Battista

ca. 1568 - after 1615

Brescia, Italy  

Son of Pellegrino Micheli and brother of Giovanni and Francesco, mentioned 1606. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Micheli, Francesco 1579 - 1615 Brescia, Italy  

Son of Pellegrino Micheli and brother of Giovanni and Battista, mentioned 1606. (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Crespi, Giovanni mentioned February 1597 Brescia, Italy   Mentioned as "magistro a corde cetere" (master of cittern strings!) in February 1597. (Dasenno/Ravasio)
Maggini, Giovanni Paolo 1590-1640

Brescia, Italy

  • Vienna, C62

Paolo Maggini was a student of Gasparo da Salo. He may have purchased the da Salo business from Francesco Bertolotti (G. da Salo's son). (Grove's)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Note: Instruments in the National Music Museum, Vermillion.

Benti, Matteo ca. 1580 - after 1661 Brescia, Italy  

In 1641: "Benti, Matteo, quondam Gio Giacomo, fa cittare a S.to Antonio, da Maclò, ...." (Dasenno/Ravasio)

See more information at Liuteria Bresciana.

Note: There may be a surviving lute by him in Paris?

Amati, Andrea(?)   Italy Note: Instruments in the National Music Museum, Vermillion.
Citaraedus, Franciscus late 16th / early 17th C? Urbino, Italy The side of the neck is inscribed: "Franciscus Citared. Urb." "Citared." is most probably an abbreviation for "Citaraedus," which might mean either "cittern player" or "cittern maker."
Citaroedus, Augustinus 1582 Urbino, Italy
  • V&A 10/1
    Inv. No 392-1871
For "Citaroedus," see note above.
Salvatori, Giovanni 16th C.? Italy  
Paulo, Piero [Pietro?] 16th C.? Italy
  • Private collection, France
 
Rossi, A. mid-16th C. Urbino, Italy

Current location unknown.

The words "A Rossi [da?] Urbino" and a date (possibly "1530" or "1550"?) are written on the neck.

Klemm, Johann or Johann George ca. 1590 Randeck, Germany
  • 4 citterns in the Mariendom Cathedral, Freiberg, Germany?
The citterns in the Mariendom Cathedral are all unsigned, though other instruments in the collection bear the Klemm label. (Michel)
Tilman, Abraham 1602 Antwerp?
  • Berlin
    Inv. No. K 64 n
Label reads "Abraham Tilman van Antwerpen 1602." "'Van Antwerpen' may mean that he worked in that city, but it could also indicate that he left it, whether for another town in the Southern Netherlands or for the Northern Republic, as did many thousands of Protestants from Antwerp in the last decades of the sixteenth century." (Grijp)
Burlon (Borlon), Artus (Aert) fl .1593-1619 Antwerp / Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Burlon (Borlon), Hans Aertsz mentioned 1593-1627 Amsterdam   Son of Aert Burlon. (Giskes)
Burlon (Borlon), Thomas Aertsz mentioned 1595 & 1605 Amsterdam   Son of Aert Burlon. (Giskes)
Coop (Cop), Gerrit Aertsz mentioned 1597-1627 Amsterdam   Son-in-law of Aert Burlon. (Giskes)
Coop (Cop), Nicolaes Aertsz mentioned 1608-1613. d. 1621 Amsterdam   Son-in-law of Aert Burlon. (Giskes)
Bochs (Bosch), Pieter Fransen mentioned 1604-1640 Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Bouterse, Jan mentioned 1613-1660 Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Gerritsz, Dirck mentioned 1612-1625 Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Jansen, Jan mentioned 1618 & 1625 Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Lupo, Francis Fransz mentioned mentioned 1607-1659 Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Menslage, Gerrit b. ca. 1607
d. 1661
Amsterdam   (Giskes)
van Offenbeeck, Abraham Joosten mentioned 1605-1637 Antwerp / Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Pietersen, Pieter mentioned 1606-1666 Utrecht / Amsterdam   (Giskes)
Vredeman (Vreedman), Michiel after 1583 Utrecht  

Son of citternist Sebastian Vreedman (who published a cittern book in 1568 and another in 1569) and maker of violins and citterns in Utrecht from 1583 on. He supposedly invented a violin-cittern, for which a method (in tablature) was published. (Waldbauer)

Michiel also made two six-course citterns that were catalogued in an inventory of Frisian clerk Pibo Gaulthieri of Leeuwarden in 1618 along with a copy of Michiel's book Der Violen Cyther. (Visccher)

Sources:

  • Dassenno, Flavio and Ugo Ravasio. Gasparo da Salò e la liuteria bresciana tra rinascimento e barocco, Fondazione Civilità Bresciana: Brescia, and Editrice Turris, Cremona (1990). See also Ravasio, Ugo. Liuteria Bresciana. <http://www.liuteriabresciana.it>
  • Forrester, Peter. "A Provisional List of Extant 16th and early 17th Century Citterns", supplement to Wood and Wire — A Lecture by Peter Forrester. Published in Lute News: The Lute Society Magazine (2005).
  • Giskes, Johan H. Tweehondred jaar bouw van strijkinstrumenten in Amsterdam (1600-1800), in: Jaarbook Amstelodamum 79 (1987), p. 56-64, cited in: Grijp, ibid. below.
  • Grijp, Louis Peter. "The cittern of Sweelinck and Vermeer. Contextual information for the excavated Zuyderzee citterns," in: Michaelsteiner Konferenzberichte 66: Gittare und Zister — Bauweise, Spieltechnik und Geschichte bis 1800. (2005).
  • Grove's Dictionary of Music and Musicians. Macmillan & Co., ltd.: London (1908).
  • Michel, Andreas. "Quellen zur Geschichte der Zister in Sachsen vom 16. bis 19. Jarhundert," in: Michaelsteiner Konferenzberichte 66, ibid.
  • Spring, Matthew. “Reconstructing the consort lessons of Richard Reade.” in Lute News 54 (June 2000), pp.6-14.
  • Visscher, R. Iets over het muziekleven te Leeuwarden in het begin der 17e eeuw, in: De vrije Fries 28 (1928), pp.17-31, cited in: Grijp, ibid.
  • Waldbauer, Ivan. The Cittern in the Sixteenth Century and its Music in France and the Low Countries. Dissertation. Harvard University (1964).

How to cite this page: Hartig, Andrew. "A Provisional List of 16th and early 17th Century Builders of Citterns, Orpharions & Bandoras." Renovata Cythara: The Renaissance Cittern Site. Ed. Andrew Hartig. [an error occurred while processing this directive] 18 December 2017. <http://www.cittern.theaterofmusic.com/misc/early_builders.html>.


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