If I remember correctly the first copyright law appeared in England ca. 1714. Pirated editions made the bread and butter of many printers before then. But, it is only when copyrights were in force that authors started to make a living out of their published works. Before that it was a system of sponsorship and patronage (cf the lavish dedications in most works of the 16th and 17th century). On a somewhat ironic note, Alexander is supposed to have met secretly with the publisher who had systematically pirated his editions, to provide him with a "stolen" copy of his own forthcoming poetry. Being pirated was good publicity.

Dowland bitched quite a bit about incorrect versions of his pieces being in circulation, but I don't think this really affected his bottom line. I can be wrong.


On 02/20/2018 12:45 AM, Martin Shepherd wrote:
Hi Leonard,

They could be derived from a common model, such as a recercar by Giulio Segni (da Modena).  A more explicit case of this is Ness 88, which is very close to no.16 in DaCrema's 1548 book, where it is attributed to Julio da Modena.  It appears in Ness as Appendix 15.  Julio Segni (1498-1561) was a highly regarded organist who worked at St Mark's in Venice from 1530-1533, and subsequently worked in Rome.  Very little of his music survives, but his works had a considerable influence on many lutenists.

Ness 84 also has some passages in common with Ness 51 and Ness 73 as well - some ideas seem to be common currency.

Best wishes,


On 19/02/2018 22:35, Leonard Williams wrote:
    I’ve just been playing through some recent da Crema recercars (Lutezine Supp 123) and found No. 11 (p 37) remarkably similar to Francesco da Milano's  (Ness) No. 84 (Lute News 107 Supp).  I believe the only difference is barring and the last couple of measures.     Could someone more musicologically savvy than I put ears and eyes to these and tell me whose compositions they are?

Thanks and regards,
Leonard Williams

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