Lelio Colista


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(b Rome, 13 Jan. 1629; d Rome 13 Oct. 1680). Italian lutenist and composer. He enjoyed the patronage of Pope Alexander VII from 1656 and became one of the most renowned musicians of his day, amassing a considerable fortune, helped by a lucrative sinecure as custode delle pittore at the Sistine Chapel. He worked periodically at the chief Roman churches, notably S. Luigi dei Francesi and S. Marcello, and accounts survive of his performance at ‘academies’. Like some other Roman contemporaries he felt no need to publish his works, which circulated across Europe in manuscript, and this no doubt contributed to his oblivion soon after his death. He was well received at the French court in 1664, and his sonatas were acclaimed by Purcell.

From The Oxford Companion to Music in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Music.

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