The Vihuela de mano and related instruments in Renaissance Spain

This site houses information about the vihuela de mano, or simply vihuela, the plucked musical instrument that flourished during the approximate period 1475-1625 in Spain and throughout the Spanish empire, as well as other regions that had cultural links with Spain. In total, the vihuela was known and played in Spain, Portugal, ltaly and Latin America, as well other places from the Netherlands to Japan. This is a continuously growing database of all things pertaining to the vihuela that aims to be as comprehensive as possible. The three main fields of the database concern 1) the vihuela itself, 2) vihuela music and 3) people who can be associated with the vihuela, especially players, composers, makers, and many others. The site integrates information concerning the sources of all this information, modern scholarship concerning the vihuela, and recordings of vihuela music.

Each of the interrelated sections of this database can be browed separately. Broad searches of each database can be initiated from the homepage or from the more advanced search features within each of the sections.

All the surviving instruments, iconography from paintings, sculptures, drawings, prints, and written texts that offer specific detail of the vihuela and its performance technique.

Details of each of the c. 700 known piece of vihuela music, with notes about sources, concordances, musical structure, song texts, and other technical characteristics.

A searchable database of the approximately 1200 themes that are used within the 219 surviving Fantasias for the vihuela.

Players, makers, composers, owners, buyers, sellers, string makers — anyone who can be connected with the vihuela whether real or imaginary from literature and mythology.

Documents, chronicles, literary sources from the 15th, 16th and 17th centuries that inform which our knowledge of the vihuela.

Modern writings on the vihuela and its music, and other relevant aspects from music history and cultural history.

Recordings made in the last hundred years of vihuela music on original instruments or copies.

This site was first published on the web in October 2019. It is still in development. Only a small proportion of the total amount of data is published here so far. Thousands of records are being revised and are being uploaded onto the site regularly. My priority is for all the music records to be uploaded. If anything is missing, or if you find any errors, please let me know by email at

Current number of records on 16 June 2023:

193 of 580 676 of 735 1179 of 1179 172 of 1273 236 of 1232 1763 of 2537 137 of 189