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date: 26 February 2020


  • Claude V. Palisca


A group of intellectuals, musicians and musical amateurs who frequented the salon of Count Giovanni de' Bardi in Florence between approximately 1573 and 1587. The term has sometimes been extended to cover the group that experimented with music drama under the auspices of Jacopo Corsi in the 1590s leading to the production of Dafne in 1598 and Euridice in 1600.

The first to use the term ‘camerata’ for Bardi's circle was Caccini in his dedication of the score of Euridice to Bardi (20 December 1600). Bardi's son Pietro also called it the ‘Camerata’ in a letter to Giovanni Battista Doni in 1634. Only three musicians can be linked securely with the Camerata: Caccini, Vincenzo Galilei and Pietro Strozzi. Caccini, however, testified that ‘a great part of the nobility and the leading musicians and men of genius and poets and philosophers of the city’ convened there, and Galilei recalled that many noblemen used to go there to pass the time in songs and discussions, which, according to Pietro Bardi, ranged over a variety of subjects, including poetry, astrology and other sciences. The earliest evidence of a meeting at Bardi's is in the ...

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