chapter  17
3 Pages

Postscript: A Late Discovery

While this book was in press, the secret but always bountiful ‘reserve’ of Vivaldi works awaiting discovery yielded up a new work for one of our instruments, which was immediately taken into the main section of the Ryom catalogue as RV 806. This is a sonata in G major for recorder and bass preserved in the large but still not readily accessible collection of the Sing-Akademie zu Berlin, a treasure-house whose vicissitudes during the last half-century kept it out of the sight of scholars until a few years ago. 1 The manuscript containing RV 806, a copy in a German hand on the usual paper in upright format, has been bound into a disorganized collection of sonatas for transverse flute, whose title-page reads: ‘General-Pass [sic] | Notten-Buch | Pro | Joanne | Christiano Vossio’. Whereas the sonatas on either side of RV 806, which are all anonymous except for a single item attributed to a certain ‘Sig. Ghirasdas’, 2 are designated for ‘Flauto Travers’ or ‘Traversiere Solo’, the one by Vivaldi is described as ‘Sonata Flauto Solo & Cembalo Vivaldi’. The expression ‘Flauto Solo’ appears to have been taken directly from an Italian manuscript that served as the exemplar for this copy, in which case it must refer to the recorder rather than to the transverse flute.