During the Renaissance the lute held the highest
respect of all musical instruments. The repertoire for this courtly
instrument is vast. Delicacy, expressiveness and nuance of performance were
made possible when the use of a plectrum to pluck the strings was replaced
by use of the fingers.
The lute was an ideal accompaniment for voice
and other soft instruments, and the most eloquent of all solo instruments.
In paintings and other art works the lute is often associated with Apollo,
angels, or Orpheus, and it is often mentioned at climactic points in
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