Matteis, Nicola


Seventeenth Century Italian violinist, composer for the violin and writer on musical topics; is said to have invented the half-shift for the violin. He has been praised by Evelyn and Roger North; but little is known about his life except that he was eccentric and inclined to luxurious living, which resulted in an early death. His works are collections of ayres for the violin, including fugues, preludes, alemands, sarabands, courants, fancies, etc.; and Ode in honor of St. Cecilia's day, in 1696; The False Consonances of Music, or Instruction for Playing a True Base upon the Guitarre. His son Nicholas was also a fine violinist, and was the instructor of Berney.