Author Identifiers

Aidan Paul Deasy

ORCID: 0000-0001-6207-0344

Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA)

First Advisor

Dr Jonathan Paget

Second Advisor

Stewart Smith

Field of Research Code



This research presents a translation and commentary of Il leuto anatomizzato (c.1650) by musical polymath Pier Francesco Valentini (c.1570-1654). Housed at the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana (Barb. Lat. 4433) yet available in modern facsimile, the manuscript has arguably been ignored by many due to its sheer complexity. Grappling with these interpretative difficulties, this essay explicates Valentini’s virtuosic account of the fretboard mechanics of transposition by any interval, relating closely (if imperfectly) to his speculative writings on equal temperament. With aesculapian rigour, Valentini also considers embellishment, basso continuo, intabulation, chord voicing, and counterpoint, illuminating the arcane musical practices of the early seventeenth-century Roman lute.

Access Note

The Anatomized lute, by Pier Francesco Valentini, translated by Aidan Deasy, is not included in this version of the thesis.