Musica getutscht (Basel, 1511) is the earliest printed treatise on musical instruments in the West. Written by a priest and chapel singer named Sebastian Virdung, it provided rudimentary instruction on playing three instruments: the clavichord, the lute and the recorder. This early 'do-it-yourself' manual of instruction not only tells us about music-making in that era, it also illumines other aspects of society in the years just before the Reformation. Its author communicates in a popular style, choosing a mixture of media: a written text in the guise of an informal conversation, coupled with woodcut illustrations and visual aids. Enthusiasts of early music and its performance as well as historians of art, society and the German language will welcome Beth Bullard's substantial introduction and annotations, which help explain the text of this important work and its place in intellectual history.
Suburban sprawl, advertising clutter, vast industrial plantations of spindly pines punctuated by stone-lined gutters in place of streams--this was the thoroughly modern landscape of Germany by the turn of the century. Most people ignored the devastating changes in their environment, or quickly rationalized them away as the price that had to be paid for "progress." But in 1904, three-quarters of a century before Greenpeace, one group arose that did not compromise on conservation: the movement for "homeland-protection," or "Heimatschutz."
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