Orpheus playing the vihuela

(1536) - Luis Milán, El Maestro.
instrument: vihuela de mano | century: 16cent/2/mid | catalogue nº: 16-216

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Creator Díaz Romano, Francisco

Medium Artwork: Woodcut


City Valencia | Region Valencia | Old kingdom Aragon

Body Waisted Strings 6 strings Neck Long Pegbox Angled flat
Bridge Fixed Frets Yes Back Not visible Pegs Rear
Technique Plucked fingers thumb in

Frontsipiece of Luis Milán El Maestro, Valencia, 1536. It is not known if the print was intended in any way to be a portrait of Milán. It depicts the legendary Orpheus, surrounded by awe-struck birds and animals. He is dressed in a Grecian tunic, but placed in a contemporary landscape with a modern castle in the background. In the border of the woodcut is the inscription “El grande Orpheo, primero inventor / Por quien la vihuela paresce enel mundo / Si él fue primero, no fue sin segundo / Pues Dios es de todos, de todo hazedor. [The great Orpheus, first inventor / by whom the vihuela appeared in the world / If he were the first, he was not without a second / for is God is of all, the creator of all.]

6-course vihuela, Depicted with single strings, but 10 pegs. Single rosette near neck, Inlaid taraceas on soundboard: four large and three small. The bridge is glued close to the bottom of the soundboard, the instrument has a flat pegbox, etc. Large body and long neck.

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