This site is written by Ian Pittaway, singer and player of medieval, renaissance and early baroque music on period instruments – harp, lute, bray harp, cittern, gittern, citole, etc. – and traditional/folk music on modern guitars in various tunings.

The content of articles on Early Music Muse and Ian Pittaway’s performance videos are © Ian Pittaway. They are not to be reproduced elsewhere without written permission.

Early Music Muse is intended to appeal to both casual observers and specialists in medieval, renaissance and traditional music.

The purpose of Early Music Muse is:

  • as a starting point for those new to the subject, with entries, for example, on historical periods of music and their associated instruments;
  • to present new research and analysis, with entries, for example, on the stunningly crafted and never before analysed Boissart mandore in the V&A; a detailed picking-through of the many myths surrounding Greensleeves; a series about the 13th century Cantigas de Santa Maria; a series about Elizabethan clown and taborer Richard Tarleton; and a regular return to manuscripts to interpret medieval and renaissance music from the source.
  • to link early and traditional music to its cultural and historical context through an examination of individual songs and tunes, to ask what this tells us about their times and our own.