The Archlute (and Liuto Attiorbato): Solo Music

The archlute was the long-necked instrument most closely related to the Renaissance lute. Archlutes preserved the normal tuning of the earlier instrument (G-c-f-a-d'-g'), with doubled courses, in addition to up to 8 extended basses. Compared to the theorbo, the body and string length of an archlute are much smaller, and the tuning is not re-entrant. In contemporary sources, it is sometimes referred to as the "arciliuto," but also commonly as just the "liuto." An early form of the instrument was normally called "liuto attiorbato" ("theorboed lute").

The actual solo repertoire for the instrument is surprisingly small: a few early, experimental works primarily by Pietro Paolo Melli, and a handful of later manuscript sources. For the archlute as a continuo instrument, see the continuo section.

Liuto attiorbato

Melli 1612 [LOST]
Melli 1614
Saracini 1614
Melli 1616a
Melli 1616b
Melli 1616c
Melli 1620
Gianoncelli 1650


US-SFsc Ms. M2.1.M3 [1615-1625]
I-PEas Ms. VII-H-2 [1620-1640; beginning of the 18th century]
PL-Kj Mus. ms. 40153 [1620-1621]
Piccinini 1623
D-LEm Ms. III.11.26 [1625-1630?]
A-KR Ms. L 81 [1630-1658]
D-Ngm Ms. 33748, VIII [1630]
I-Fn Ms. Magliabechiano, classe XIX, codice 45 [1630]
Piccinini 1639
I-Bc Ms. AA/360 [1640-1680]
D-B Mus. ms. 40068 [1656-1674]
I-Vnm Ms. Italiano classe IV, No. 1793 [1657-1666]
J-Tn Ohki collection, N-4/42 [c1690-1720]
Zamboni 1718
A-RO Ms. without Sign. 2 [1735-1740]
I-Bologna Ms. EE 155 [1769]