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Sunday July 19, 2020

Among other rare pleasures assembled for the delight of the chosen company was Francesco da Milano, a man who is considered to have attained perfection (if such is possible) of playing the lute well. He had barely disturbed the air with three strummed chords when he interrupted conversation that had started among the guests. Having constrained them to face him, he continued with such a ravishing skill that, little by little, making the strings languish under his fingers in his sublime way, he transported all who were listening into so pleasurable a melancholy that they remained deprived of all senses save that of hearing, as if the spirit, having abandoned all of the seats of the senses, had retired to the ears to enjoy the more at its ease so ravishing a harmony.

—Anonymous 16th century observer

Source: Liner notes for La Serenissima 2(Lute Music in Venice, 1550-1600) by Jakob Lindberg (buy from Amazon)

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