Boston College digitizes in Miranda do Douro ″Livro de Missas″ unique from the 19th century. XVII

The only surviving copy of “Livro de Missas, Magnificas e Motetes”, by Diego de Bruceña, printed 400 years ago and discovered at the Concathedral de Miranda do Douro, is being digitized by Boston College, before the performance in concert.

For the musicologist Michael Noone, responsible for the Department of Music at the North American university – one of the main academies in the investigation of early music and the Baroque period, worldwide – this collection of the sacred polyphony of the Renaissance constitutes “a great treasure of the history of music from the Iberian Peninsula”, as he told the Lusa agency.

Of the 40 copies of the “Livro de Missas, Magnificas e Motetes”, by Diego de Bruceña, printed in 1620 by the house of Susana Muñoz, the existence of the copy discovered in 2015, in Miranda do Douro, in the district of Bragança, is only proven. Therefore, it immediately aroused the curiosity of the international musicological community.

“Until this date [2015]it was thought that all Bruceña’s compositions were lost forever, but the exceptional discovery of this copy allowed the recovery of a large part [da sua obra] of sacred music, from the beginning of the 17th century”, Celina Pinto, director of the Terra de Miranda Museum, told Lusa.

The book has a wooden cover measuring 92 centimeters wide and 60 centimeters high, and was printed in the city of Salamanca, Spain, by the “prodigious record company of sacred music Susana Muñoz”.

This “entrepreneurial businesswoman, through successive strategic marriages, with key figures of the flourishing typographic activity of Salamanca”, such as Antonio Pérez and Artus Taberniel, maintained a constant activity between 1602 and 1625, having printed more than 120 titles of sacred music , a record number compared to any other Iberian company in the Modern Era, according to the researchers.

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