Accords nouveaux

François-Pierre Goy & Andreas Schlegel


Andreas Schlegel was born in 1962 into a family of musicians. He studied historical plucked strings with Eugen Dombois and Hopkinson Smith at the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis, and with Jürgen Hübscher at the Karlsruhe music academy. His deep interest in connecting research and praxis brought him to hear musicology with Prof. Wulf Arlt at the Basel university. He lives in Menziken in the canton Aargau.

Andreas Schlegel defines himself as a researcher-musician. In 1989/90 he conducted the research, recorded the music, and wrote the text for the accompanying booklet to the CD Schweizer Lautenmusik – Lautenmusik aus Schweizer Handschriften (Swiss lute music – lute music from Swiss manuscripts), wich was produced for DRS Radio. He has written a number of articles (see the list of publications further down in this text).

Since 1987 he has been active as a guitar teacher at several music schools in the cantons Solothurn and Aargau. From 1990 to 1997 he directed the music school in Reinach (Aargau), and was in the board of the Vereinigung Aargauischer Musikschulen (association of music schools in the canton Aargau). Following this and until 2005 he was one of the directors of the music school Menziken. 

In 1998 he set up the publishing house The Lute Corner A. Schlegel, which since 1999 also comprises a recording studio and a CD label. He has been the project manager for the Seventh European Youth Music Festival 2002, which took place in the Swiss region Wynental / Aarau / Lenzburg. On this occasion he also conducted the mixed ensemble of the music school Menziken. This festival brought together in Switzerland around 5.000 young musicians (among them 2.700 from Switzerland itself) from 27 European countries plus Japan and Ecuador. With the music school ensemble he also participated in the Eighth European Youth Music Festival 2004 in Malmö and Copenhagen.

For some years now he has laid the focus again more on his own artistical work. In 2002 he produced the second of his solo recordings. His activities as an accompanist have increased too, for example with the Bachcollegium Zurich, the ensemble La Partita, or for the festival Klosterspiele Wettingen. In 2006 the CD Sonaten für Laute und obligate Violine with music by Friedrich Wilhelm Rust and Bernhard Joachim Hagen appeared, which he has recorded with the concert master of the Zurich Bachcollegium, Myrtha Albrecht-Indermaur. Andreas Schlegel plays most of the historical plucked strings, namely Renaissance and Baroque lutes, Theorbo, and Baroque guitar.

In 2006 the book The Lute in Europe. A History to Delight appeared. It was soon sold out, so that a considcerably enlarged edition was produced with the help of Joachim Lüdtke as co-author, Mihaly Horvath who took care of the image editing and the graphics, and a group of nine authors writing about special subjects. In addition to lute history, the new edition The Lute in Europe 2 includes the history of guitars, citterns, and mandolins, and so offers a broad survey of the European plucked strings with the single exception of the harp. The book appeared in May 2011 and has achieved the status of a standard reference work. This is a link to website pages about the book.

Andreas Schlegel has held numerous lectures, often in combination with his lute playing, among others for the German and the British lute societies, the Early Music Festival Utrecht, and the museum of musical instruments in Berlin. 

From June 2013 to January 2018 he was again directing a music school, this time the Musikschule Unteres Furttal (the Lower Furt valley, a region in the canton Zurich comprising the communities Otelfingen, Boppelsen, Dänikon, and Hüttikon). Since February 2017 he directs the music school Menziken-Burg.

 For the thirty-years anniversary of the music school Menziken-Burg he planned the programme, arranged music, and co-authored the commemorative publication Musik & Schule. The concert programme for the occasion consisted of the following items:

  • Music from 1525 (starting with Huldrych Zwingli’s Kappeler-Lied “Herr, nun heb den Wagen selb”) to 2001 (“Ond öberhoupt”, a song from the band deteil, which developed from a band project initiated by Andreas Schlegel at the music school Reinach, and has been dissolved in the meantime),
  • examples of the rarely touched-upon musico-historical subject of the Liedflugschriften (songs printed on broadsides or in small booklets): the Wilhelmus von Nassauen; a song about a bride who drowned on the way to her marriage in Lake Hallwil; the Scheckenlied (a seventeenth-century song mentioned by Grimmelshausen, the music of which is extant in a lute book - see the remarks on PAN 13.014); or the Geistliches Meienlied (spiritual May song),
  • examples of adapted or rearranged music (Mozart’s early keyboard piece KV 33b is an arragement of a piece for chamber ensemble with lute by a Herr Hirschtaller), and even
  • the popsong “Ich fange nie mehr was an einem Sonntag an” (I will never do anything again on Sundays) by Monica Morell from Menziken.

The concept behind the programme was to chose music connected to Menziken: a walk through music history with the eyes (or better: ears) of a person from the Upper Wynen Valley.

121 players in formations from a ‘comprehensive’ orchestra with all musicians together to a Ländler group were heard with eleven pieces. The publication Musik & Schule provides historical information on all of the pieces. The authors, Markus Widmer-Dean and Andreas Schlegel, have seen for that the music chosen for the occasion is given its respective proper place in history. An essay opening the publication shows the special position the canton Aargau has with respect music teaching: Starting as early as 1865 pupils of primary schools received tuition in the playing of musical instruments there.

The 28 pages strong publication can be asked for via the contact page.


Read more about: 

Concerts with Liuto Obbligato

CH-SGv VadSlg P 3060

Swiss sources for lute and cittern

The Odes of Horace with lute intavolations

The tuning of the lute for the Judentanz of Hans Newsidler

A parallel reading of the prefaces to Reusner’s prints from 1676 and 1697


Publications (assorted samples)


A) On La Rhétorique des Dieux (D-Bkk 78.C.12)

  • Bemerkungen zur Rhétorique des Dieux (part 1: Zur Entstehungsgeschichte; part 2: Die Tabulatureinträge vor dem stilistischen Hintergrund der französichen Lautenmusik des 17. Jahrhunderts; part 3: Die Tabulatureinträge in der “Rhétorique”), in: Gitarre & Laute 11 (1989) 2 pp. 17–23; 3 pp. 17–23; 4 pp. 27–32.

  • Was ich dank der Rhétorique des Dieux bisher lernen konnte, in: Die Laute. Jahrbuch der Deutschen Lautengesellschaft 1 (1997), pp. 45–83.

  • Faksimile der Handschriften D-Fschneider Ms. 12 und S-Smf MMS 23 und weitere Abschriften von Notator B der “Rhétorique des Dieux” (together wie François-Pierre Goy; in preparation).

The Rhétorique des Dieux is a subject of much interest for Andreas Schlegel since the time of his studies. In 1986 he first wrote about it after detecting in a microfilm, that among the parchment of the manuscript paper leaves are inserted with the “Accords”. When shortly later the dissertation of David Buch (La Rhétorique des Dieux: A Critical Study of Text, Illustration and Musical Style, PhD Northwestern University 1983) became available at the musicological institute of the Basel university, he began to study the structure of the manuscript in depth, traveling to Berlin to see the original and learn about the way the gatherings of the Rhétorique are formed in order to arrive at new conclusions concerning its genesis. It showed however that the original organisation of the gatherings can not be reconstructed any more, as the book has been partly trimmed or cut down at the spine, and the pages are held today by joint strips. The present binding is very tight, so that an exact description of the gatherings was not possible without the danger to impair the structural safety of the book.

The results of his research and his reading of Buch’s dissertation have found their way into the series of articles in the journal Gitarre & Laute. These were translated on request from the Lute Society of America by an American musicologist, but the Lute Society never published them, and did not give reasons for this. Instead they published Buch’s article On dating the Lute Music in La Rhétorique des Dieux: New Evidence from Watermarks (1). For his English-language readers Buch characterizes Schlegels articles from 1989 with the following words:

“His (Schlegel’s) main points are these: he sees the lute music by Denis Gaultier in the Rhétorique as distantly removed from its mid-seventeenth-century origins, and he described the manuscript as a peripheral source with no direct connection to Gaultier’s own version of his lute music or to the notation style of the repertory during its apex in the grand siècle.” He writes of “Schlegel’s revisionary history”. (2) “Mr. Schlegel contrives two scenarios where the lute music is inscribed at a significant later phase of the manuscript’s assembly by individuals who had no contact with the original creators. His reasons are based mostly on his belief that the unusually sparse tablatures of the Rhétorique are not consistent with contemporary national practices. In both of his scenarios the twelve paper pages are created and inserted when the manuscript is bound in its present form, and he believes that these pages with their accords precede the inscription of the music. In his preferred scenario the two scribes copy the music into the manuscript after the present binding is completed. I believe the evidence presented below will show all of these hypotheses to be specious.” (3)

These ‘summaries’ have to be rejected in several respects:

  1. In the articles there are no specific statements concerning the dating of the tablature entries. It is only stated that an interruption occurred and that the manuscript was not completed as originally planned.
  2. It is stated that the music comes in unusually sparse versions, but this statement is not part of an argumentation. The variants to all other extant versions of the pieces are however discussed and used as an argument against the assumption, that the music in the Rhétorique could be seen as coming in versions which are particularly authorized by Denis Gaultier.
  3. In the articles there are indeed several scenarios discussed concerning the sequence of different types of work on the manuscript. But it is also clearly stated: “These remarks [= on the missing portraits of Anne-Achille de Chambré and his wife; AS] and the fact that one can come to two different hypothetical reconstructions, which each exclude the possibility of the other, show how manifold interpretations based on the present state of knowledge about the genesis can be. The author thinks that it is important not to answer his position expressed here (which stands in opposition to the customary view on Rhétorique’s genesis) with renewed creeds, but to let deeper going research follow from it.” (4)

Buch does not respond to the arguments behind the the main point expressed in the articles, namely that “Denis Gaultier had not been directly involved in formulating the versions of his pieces [= in the Rhétorique] and in writing them down” (5), but replaces the author’s points with his own ‘summaries’ which he ascribes to the author and then tries to refute.

In 1995 Buch presented the following results from his research:

Based on the watermarks in the endpapers and the styl of the present binding he can date the binding into the late eighteenth ot mid nineteenth century and thus confirm what Jean Cordey has presented as a hypothesis in 1933. The author has found the binding of the covers irrelevant for the history of the manuscript’s genesis and has therefore left it out of his considerations, particularly since the body of the book and the way it is bound with joint strips does not allow to draw any conclusions about the order of binding parts of it, except that it is clear that all of the book (not only the leaves with the “Accords”, which may have been bound in later) is bound with the help of joint strips.

Buch dates the paper of the “Accords” based on the watermarks to 1624 (6), while François Lesure in the preface to the Minkoff facsimile avoids defining a date (7), and Gustafson dates it to 1645–1675. (8) A watermark helps in constituting a Terminus Post Quem: Information about the date of a paper’s fabrication does not allow to state more than that the paper was written on only after it was made.

Buchs discussion of the “Accords” and if they were written first, or only after the music had been written down (another question would be, when they were inserted into the book), is useless, because he does not consider that while the book was written “according to plan”, sources must have been available from which the music was copied. These sources could have just as well been the reference material for the notator of the “Accords” formulas as the music which we find today in the book. Statements about the order in which the elements of the Rhétorique were produced are therefore hypothetical and always based on a number of doubtful assumptions. They are so of little value, and cannot be used as arguments against a critical evaluation of the music itself. (9)

In 1997 Andreas Schlegel answered to Buch’s argumentation with an article, in which he exemplified his theory of approaching the problem of different versions of a given piece via the concepts of a transmissional spectrum and a formulational latitude first represented in his article series from 1989 (see below, note 4). The piece taken as an example for this, La Champré by Denis Gaultier, can be found in two manuscripts (in the Rhétorique and in D-Fschneider Ms 12), both times in the hand of Notator B. These two versions differ very strongly from each other, and the version in the Rhétorique stands very clearly outside of the French baroque lute music’s formulational latitude.

This spawned the interest of Andreas Schlegel and François-Pierre Goy to follow the tracks of Notator B further. At the moment they are preparing an edition of all works written by Notator B, complete with synopses of music which is also to be found in e.g. Gaultier’s prints. Thus, the discussion about the Rhétorique and the tablatures in it has returned to where it should concentrate on: a differentiated source criticism.

François-Pierre Goy has published essential contributions to the knowledge about images and texts in the Rhétorique, and about Anne-Achille de Chambré, the commissioner. (10) These publications have in the meantime been thoroughly revised and will also be printed in the up-to-date version of our edition.


(1) David Joseph Buch: On Dating the Lute Music in La Rhétorique des Dieux: New Evidence from Watermarks, in: Journal of the Lute Society of America 25 (1992) 1995, pp. 25–37. 

(2) Op.cit., p. 26.

(3) Op.cit., p. 28.

(4) Andreas Schlegel: Bemerkungen zur Rhétorique des Dieux, part 2: Die Tabulatureinträge vor dem stilistischen Hintergrund der französichen Lautenmusik des 17. Jahrhunderts, in: Gitarre & Laute 11 (1989) pp. 17–23, 22a.

(5) Op.cit., p. 22b.

(6) Buch, On dating …, p. 34.

(7) François Lesure (ed.): Denis Gaultier, La Rhétorique des Dieux, facsimile with a preface, and a table of concordances by François-Pierre Goy, Geneva 1991, p. XXI, note 1.

(8) Bruce Gustafson: French Harpsichord Music of the Seventeenth Century, Ann Arbor: UMI Research Press 1979, vol. I, p. 181.

(9) Buch does not even mention what the author has written on this in 1989; see Andreas Schlegel: Bemerkungen zur Rhétorique des Dieux, part 2: Die Tabulatureinträge vor dem stilistischen Hintergrund der französichen Lautenmusik des 17. Jahrhunderts, in: Gitarre & Laute 11 (1989), pp. 17–23, esp. pp. 19–22.

(10) François-Pierre Goy: Antiquité et musique pour luth au XVIIème siècle: les sources de l’iconographie et des arguments de “la Rhétorique des Dieux”, in: Bulletin de l’Association Guillaume Budé, October 1995, pp. 263–276; Anne-Achille de Chambré et sa famille, in: Tablature (Bulletin de la Société française de luth), 12 (1996), No. 3, S. 8–11.


B) On Friedrich Wilhelm Rust

The lute music of Friedrich Wilhelm Rust is preserved in two tablature sources: D-B Rust 53 and PL-Kj 40150 (formerly Berlin, intermediately at the storage site Fürstenstein). Rust 53 is characterized by a completely un-lutenistic style, and there are even unplayable passages in the music. A comparison with the lute parts of the Sonatas I and II, which are contained in PL-Kj 40150, was only possible after the manuscripts stored in Fürstenstein in WW2 had become available again in c. 1987. It then showed that the Sonatas in Rust 53 had undergone far-reaching arrangements introducing additional voices into the music which were written directly into the tablature. In 1988 Andreas Schlegel visited the Deutsche Staatsbibliothek in what was then still East Berlin (GDR) and examined the source in in detail, uncovering the original layer of the tablature. This allowed to see that the versions in PL-Kj 40150 were almost identical with the primary layers in Rust 53. The third Sonata which only survives in the arrangement in Rust 53 could now be reconstructed in its original form by applying the criteria arrived at while comparing the other compositions with the versions in PL-Kj 40150.

The arrangements of the music in Rust 53 are probably connected to the “Rust affair”: Wilhelm Rust, Cantor at St Thomas in Leipzig and grandson of Friedrich Wilhelm Rust, wanted to let his grandfather appear as an predecessor of Beethoven. To that end he published editions of his grandfather’s compositions, which he had arranged and equipped with additional parts in the style of romantic music. As Rust was also the author of an article on lute tablature in an encyclopaedia, he might have felt the need to cover up the the differences between the original tablature and his edition of his grandfather’s sonatas. For a new edition and a recording of the music (see below), the original form of the violin part also had to be reconstructed, as Rust had arranged it too. The new edition consists therefore of music in a reconstructed original version and can thus not be understoot as a critical edition. Earlier editions based on Rust 53 (for example that of Neemann) should not be used anymore!

See also: Chamber music

  • Zur Neuausgabe der Sonaten für Laute und obligate Violine/Flöte von Friedrich Wilhelm Rust, in: Gitarre & Laute 6 (1989), pp. 41–47 (On the new edition of Friedrich Wilhelm Rust’s Sonatas for Lute and Violin/Flute obbligato)

  • Friedrich Wilhelm Rust: Drei Sonaten für Laute und obligate Violine/Flöte, Menziken (The Lute Corner) 1998 (Three Sonatas for Lute and Violin/Flute obbligato)

  • CD Friedrich Wilhelm Rust (1739–1769) & Bernhard Joachim Hagen (ca. 1720–1787): Sonaten für Laute und obligate Violine (Sonatas for Lute and Violin obbligato), together with Myrtha Indermaur (Violin), Menziken (The Lute Corner) 2006


C) Practical Editions

  • Ms. Herold, Padua 1602. Facsimile edition with an introduction by Andreas Schlegel and François-Pierre Goy, Munich (Tree Edition) 1991

  • Preface to the facsimile edition of the manuscript Brussels, Royal Library, MS II 4087: Music for the lute / Ernst Gottlieb Baron, Sylvius Leopold Weiss, Peer (Alamire) 1992

  • Musik für Accords nouveaux aus Ms. Basel, F.IX.53 für 11-chörige Barocklaute in d-Moll-Stimmung bearbeitet (Music for Accords Nouveaux from Ms. Basel, F.IX. 53, arranged for 11-course Baroque lute in D-minor tuning), Menziken (The Lute Corner) 1999

  • Monsieur Jacobi: Sonate Es-Dur für Laute (Sonata in Eb major for Lute), Menziken (The Lute Corner) 1999


D) Article for the new MGG

  • Ernst Gottlieb Baron, in: Die Musik in Geschichte und Gegenwart (MGG), second edition, Personenband 2, Kassel etc. 1999, cols. 271–274


E) Books

  • Die Laute in Europa. Geschichte und Geschichten zum Geniessen / The Lute in Europe. A History to Delight, Menziken (The Lute Corner) 2006, 120 pp. (out of sale)

  • Considerably enlarged new edition: Die Laute in Europa 2. Lauten, Gitarren, Mandolinen und Cistern / The Lute in Europe 2. Lutes, Guitars, Mandolins, and Citterns, Menziken (The Lute Corner) 2011, 447 pp. plus poster, see here

  • The Von Erlach Lute Book, Menziken (The Lute Corner) 2019, 112 pp., with 2 Audio-CDs


F) Studies

  • Eberhard Nehlsen & Andreas Schlegel: Der Benzenauer – Lied, Ton und Tanz (The Benzenauer – Song, Melody, and Dance), in: Albrecht Classen, Michael Fischer & Nils Grosch (eds.): Kultur- und kommunikationshistorischer Wandel des Liedes im 16. Jahrhundert, Münster etc. (Waxmann) 2012, pp. 187–218 (Populäre Kultur und Musik 3). Link to the publisher’s website
    The catalogue of sources which supplements this study has been published on the website of the University of Freiburg (Breisgau), and can be consulted via this link. 

  • Andreas Schlegel: On Lute Sources and Their Music – Individuality of Prints and Variability of Music, in: Journal of the Lute Society of America 42-43 (2009-2010), © 2011, pp. 91–164

  • Andreas Schlegel: The Lute in the Dutch Golden Age: What we know and what we play today, in: The Lute in the Netherlands in the Seventeenth Century: Proceedings of the International Lute Symposium Utrecht, 30 August 2013 (Jan W.J. Burgers, Timothy Crawford & Matthew Spring, eds.), Newcastle upon Tyne (Cambridge Scholar Publishing) 2016, pp. 73–101