Enríquez de Valderrábano

Diferencias [44] sobre el tenor de Conde Claros


Silva de sirenas (1547), fol. 97v


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Source title Siguense las difere[n]cias sobre el tenor del cõde claros, estas primeras sõ del primero y segu[n]do grado/y adelãte se hallarã pa discãtar cada difere[n]cia del dicho cõde claros/se conoscera e[n] vna señal como esta [congruence sign] pa[ra] q[ue] cada vno taña la difere[n]cia q[ue] meior le agradare, el cõpas sea de tañer algo leuãtado porq[ue] si va despacio no parecera bie[n].
Title in contents   Diferencias sobre el tenor del conde claros por dos partes, y para discantar, la pauana real.
Text incipit


Category variations

Genre conde claros

Fantasia type

Mode 6

Voices 3

Length (compases) 295


Tuning G

Courses 6

Final V/5

Highest I/10

Lowest VI/0

Difficulty not specified

Tempo medium

Song Text


Vocal notation


This is a very long set of 44 variations on the Conde Claros formula. It demonstrates Valderrábano’s ingenuity in several ways; through his clever counterpoint, but also through his ability to shape the piece in a way that is different from the typical growth model of variations pieces. The piece is in many ways quite beguiling.

A duet version was published by Phalèse, Hortus Musarum [1552/11, nº 100] using the first dozen variations of this setting with a second lute part a fourth higher.

Information on the original romance and its text is in Binkley Spanish Romances (with English translation), 120-30
• “Conde Claros” (Don Claros de Montalbán) was the protagonist of a popular Carolingian romance. See diaz1978