This includes more than 650 items from 1600 to 1830, including the first opera in Europe, Jacopo Peri
and Ottavio Rinuccini's Dafne, published in Florence in 1600.
Orpheus in the Marketplace: Jacopo Peri
and the Economy of Late Renaissance Florence.
Only a few fragments of the music, by Jacopo Peri
and Jacopo Corsi, have been preserved.
These include works by Jacopo Peri
, Marco da Gagliano, and Francesca Caccini, composers who exercised remarkable influence on the development of early seventeenth-century opera, a genre still at its inception.
Over half of the chapters concerned with the court musicians (276 pages) deal with just seven figures (Alessandro Striggio, Giulio Caccini, Jacopo Peri
, Vittoria Archilei, Francesca Caccini, Giovanni Maria Pagliardi, Giuseppe Maria Orlandini); 47 of the 62 pages given over to 'Men of Letters, Court Gentlemen, etc.' consist of an updated article on Francesco Rasi already available in German.
The earliest operas, beginning in 1597 with Ottavio Rinuccini's Dafne, set to music by Jacopo Peri
, were court entertainments, and as a commemoration the words were printed in a small book, or "libretto." In the 1630s Venetian opera became a public spectacle, and audiences used printed librettos to follow the drama.
What may with some justification claim to be the first opera per se was Dafne, by Jacopo Peri
, performed in Florence in 1598.
The first extant opera, by Jacopo Peri
, was based on it, as were many others, including those by Monteverdi and Haydn; the most famous is Gluck 's Orpheus and Eurydice (1762).
The first three essays are devoted to the pioneering opera composer Jacopo Peri
, while his contemporary, Giulio Caccini, is treated in a later chapter.