Trombone in 18C Rome

Today I added the below post to the Trombone History Timeline (18th century).


1708—Rome, Italy: Musicians are among those responsible for paying a special tax, sometimes called the “1708 Grand Taxation,” to raise funds to fight the imperial army, which is threatening Rome. The tax is divided by the Congregazione di Santa Cecilia among 5 categories of professional musicians: singers, maestri di cappella, organists, music copyists, and instrumentalists. Of the woodwind and brass instrumentalists listed, trombones are by far the most numerous: trombone (13), cornet (2), flute (2), trumpet (1), oboe (1), horn (1). All musicians who list trombone as their instrument also list at least one other instrument, violin being the most common: violin (9), cello (4), double bass (3), violone (1), lute (1), horn (1), trumpet (1). The best-paid on the list of instrumentalists are Antonio Montanari (violin) and Matteo Fornari (trombone and violin). Fornari, who is labeled as guardino (in charge) of the whole group of instrumentalists. is a trombonist for the Capitol (Rome city hall) and a personal friend of Arcangelo Corelli (Barbieri, An Assessment of Musicians).

Map of Rome from 20 years earlier (1688)

Map of Rome from 20 years earlier (1688)


  1. Interesting, Will! Thanks for posting this. I very nearly did my doctoral essay on the use of the trombone in 17th century Italian music!

    Jim Roberts

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