"never seen a single note of his"

Albert, Heinrich. Erster (-achter) Theil der Arien etlicher theils Geistlicher, theils Weltlicher, zur Andacht, guten Sitten, keuscher Liebe und Ehren-Lust dienender Lieder zum Singen und Spielen gesetzt [...].

Königsberg, Johann Reusner (1-7) und Paschen Mense (8), 1650-1654.

Folio (206 x 327 mm). 8 parts (all published; in various editions, dated I: 1652; II-V; 1651; VI: 1652; VII: 1654; VIII: 1650) in one volume. Engraved half-title; (28); (28); (28); (28); (28); (28); (28); (28) pp. Letterpress with numerous woodcuts in the text. Contemporary black morocco (spine rebacked), covers blindstamped with giltstamped initials "S. B." and year "1666".


Extremely rare: "unquestionably the most representative of all German song collections published in the 17th century" (Osthoff); also an important source for the study of German Baroque literature due to the poems of Simon Dach. Heinrich Albert (1604-51) was the cousin and student of Heinrich Schütz. "With Simon Dach, Albert formed the nucleus of the Königsberg poetic circle, which was of especial importance for the Baroque song" (Riemann). The poems of Dach, the "Prussian Opitz", were never published in a complete collection during his lifetime.

The legendary rarity of these "Arias" has been remarked upon even by E. L. Gerber in 1812: "In spite of the number of editions which Albert's works enjoyed, they have now become so rare that I have never seen a single note of his, although I have dedicated more than three decades of my life to the pursuit of musical products" (Neues historisch-biographisches Lexikon der Tonkünstler II, 48).

The richly illustrated engraved half-title, which actually belongs to part 8, has been bound first of all (lower edge trimmed and rebacked with old paper; final two letters of the word "Achter" erased, so as to form a common title to the entire collection: "Acht Theil der Arien theils geistlicher zu christlichem Leben und Sterben anreitzender, theils weltlicher zu geziemender Lust dienender Lieder"). Modern spine and endpapers. Occasional annotations in an old hand; one interleaved sheet of handwritten music; a few slight flaws repaired. Save for two slightly stained pages a very clean copy.


RISM A, 620, 623, 626, 629, 633, 635, 638, 639. Faber du Faur 357. Goedeke III, 129. Wolffheim II, 2091. Hirsch III, 599. BSB I, 45 ff.

Stock Code: BN#48018 Tag: