Music for the
Lute, Guitar, and Vihuela (1470-1799)

Compiled by Dr. Gary R. Boye
Music Librarian, Appalachian State University

There are thousands of printed and manuscript books of music for plucked-string instruments from the late fifteenth century through the end of the eighteenth century. Most of these sources were written for the lute or guitar; there were also a few books for lesser-known plucked string instruments: the vihuela, cittern, bandora, mandora, and orpharion, as well as instruments related to the lute such as the arch-lute and theorbo. This site concentrates primarily on sources that employ a notational system called "tablature," but also includes music in standard notation (such as those calling for continuo accompaniment or later 18th-century guitar music).

The list contains basic bibliographical information for as many of these tablatures as I can find. Sources used include various volumes in the Répertoire international des sources musicales (RISM) series, the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (2000), and Howard Mayer Brown's Instrumental Music Printed before 1600: A Bibliography (Cambridge, Mass., Harvard University Press, 1965). A variety of other sources were used as well, cited in the bibliographies for each entry, and new sources have come to light since the publication of the core bibliographic works.

This remains a work-in-progress, but I felt the inclusion of manuscripts and materials outside the sixteenth century was important enough to warrant a basic list, however incomplete. Detailed information on the tablatures will only be available for the sources I have studied either first-hand or from copies. See the STATUS REPORT for more detailed information on upcoming work.







List of Lute/Guitar Sources for Continuo

List of Undated Late Sources

Vermeer Baroque Guitar Page