Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 23 October 2019


  • Kurt von Fischer,
  • Gianluca D’Agostino,
  • James Haar,
  • Anthony Newcomb,
  • Massimo Ossi,
  • Nigel Fortune,
  • Joseph Kerman
  •  and Jerome Roche


A poetic and musical form of 14th-century Italy; more importantly, a term in general use during the 16th century and much of the 17th for settings of various types and forms of secular verse. There is no connection between the 14th- and the 16th-century madrigal other than that of name; the former passed out of fashion a century before the term was revived. The later madrigal became the most popular form of secular polyphony in the second half of the 16th century, serving as a model for madrigals and madrigal-like compositions in languages other than Italian throughout Europe. It set the pace for stylistic developments that culminated in the Baroque period, particularly those involving the expressive relationship between text and music, and must be regarded as the most important genre of the late Renaissance.

Kurt von Fischer and Gianluca D’Agostino

The origin of the word ‘madrigal’, which appears in various forms in early sources (...

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.

Faenza, Biblioteca Comunale Manfrediana, Raccolte Musicali
Miscellanea musicologica [Australia]
Musica disciplina
Italian Secular Song 1606-1636 (New York, 1986)
Polyphonic Music of the Fourteenth Century
N. Pirrotta and E. Povoledo: Li due Orfei: da Poliziano a Monteverdi (Turin, 1969, enlarged 2/1975; Eng. trans., 1982, as Music and Theatre from Poliziano to Monteverdi)
Sammelbände der Internationalen Musik-Gesellschaft
Bologna, Civico Museo Bibliografico Musicale
Corpus mensurabilis musicae
B.J. Blackburn, E.E. Lowinsky and C.A. Miller: A Correspondence of Renaissance Musicians (Oxford, 1991)
Analecta musicologica
Musical Quarterly
Journal of the American Musicological Society
A. Einstein: The Italian Madrigal (Princeton, NJ, 1949/R)
Monthly Musical Record
Revue belge de musicologie
Handwörterbuch der musikalischen Terminologie
N. Fortune: Italian Secular Song from 1600 to 1635: the Origins and Development of Accompanied Monody (diss., U. of Cambridge, 1954)
Rivista musicale italiana
Gesellschaft für Musikforschung: Kongress-Bericht [1950-]
Journal of Renaissance and Baroque Music
Music Review
H.M. Brown: Instrumental Music Printed Before 1600: a Bibliography (Cambridge, MA, 1965)
Padua, Duomo, Biblioteca Capitolare, Curia Vescovile
Music & Letters
Acta musicologica
Nuova rivista musicale italiana
Archiv für Musikwissenschaft
Early Music History
Journal of Musicology
Note d'archivio per la storia musicale
Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart
Lucca, Archivio di Stato
Vierteljahrsschrift für Musikwissenschaft
Chicago, Newberry Library
A. Newcomb: The Madrigal at Ferrara, 1579-1597 (Princeton, NJ, 1980)
J. Kerman: The Elizabethan Madrigal: a Comparative Study (New York, 1962)
E. Vogel: Bibliothek der gedruckten weltlichen Vocalmusik Italiens, aus den Jahren 1500 bis 1700 (Berlin, 1892/R)
The New Oxford History of Music (Oxford, 1954-90)
Rivista italiana di musicologia
International Musicological Society: Congress Report [1930-]
Journal of Musicological Research
Early Music
Music Analysis
Rome, Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana