Handel's Italian trip. From about autumn 1706 to spring 1710. Initially, possibly at the invitation of a member of the de' Medici family to Florence or possibly Gian Gastone. (Mainwaring reports an invitation from Ferdinando de' Medici, but according to research by D. Burrows his visit to Hamburg cannot be verified.) The sequence of the stops (Florence, Rome, Naples, Venice) and the itinerary of the whole trip are not known exactly.
January: Arrival in Rome before 14th January. Appearance at the residences of Cardinals Carlo Colonna, Benedetto Panfili and Pietro Ottoboni as well as Duke Francesco Ruspoli during their so-called academia or conversatione, which were weekly social and artistic gatherings. Made the acquaintance of Arcangelo Corelli, Alessandro and Domenico Scarlatti and Agostino Steffani who was in the diplomatic service of the Elector of Hanover between October 1708 and April 1709 in Rome.
11 April: Composition of Ps. 110, "Dixit Dominus" (HWV 232) in Rome.
May: Composition of the dramatic cantata "Il Trionfo del Tempo e del Disinganno" (HWV 46a) in Rome. Handel must have finished the compositions in the first half of May at the latest. It is probable that the work had been already performed during lent, presumably in Cardinal Ottoboni's Palace. For a second version with English text cf. 14 March 1737 "The Triumph of Time and Truth" cf. 11 March 1757.
May-October: Since May of this year it is possible to verify Handel's compositional works for duke Francesco Ruspoli. He lived as a popular guest in his Roman palace. He received no wages, but the compositions expected of him and his other musical duties appear to be laid down quite explicitly. A large number of Italian cantatas were composed for Ruspoli which were performed in the Bonelli palace on Sunday afternoons during the conversazioni. (cf. U. Kirkendale) The first period of Handel's work for Ruspoli takes in the months May-October 1707.
During this time his works included the cantatas
"Sei pur bella" (HWV 160), "Se per fatal destino" (HWV 159), "Udite il mio consiglio" (HWV 172), "Aure soavi e liete" (HWV 84), "Tu fedel? Tu constante?", (HWV 171), "Nella stagion che di viole" (HWV 137), "Poich giuraro amore" (HWV 148), "Un'alma innamorata" (HWV 173), "O qualis de coelo sonus" (HWV 239), "Coelestis dum spirat aura" (HWV 231), "Dietro l'orme fugaci" ("L'Armida abbandonata", HWV 105), "Qualor l'egre pupille" (HWV 152), "Nó se emendera jamas" (HWV 140), "Sarei troppo felice" (HWV 157), "Menzognere speranze" (HWV 131), "Ne' tuoi lumi, o bella Clori" (HWV 133), "Cor fedele" (HWV 96), "Salve Regina" (HWV 241) as well as "Sans y penser" (HWV 155).
May/June: Performance of Handel's "Cantata della caccia (HWV 79) in Ruspoli's country seat in Vignanello, where Handel was staying with Ruspoli.
June: Performance of the cantata "O qualis de coelo sonus" (HWV 239) on Whit Sunday 12 June and the cantata "Coelestis dum spirat aura" (HWV 231) on the feast of St. Anthony of Padua on 13 June in Vignanello where, around the same time (before 21 June), Handel's "Salve Regina" (HWV 241) was also performed.
8 July: Completion of "Laudate pueri dominum" (HWV 237). Composition of "Gloria Patri", the
last verse of Ps. 127 for double choir.
13 July: "Nisi Dominus" (HWV 238) in Rome.
November: First performance of his opera "Rodrigo" (HWV 5) in Florence. After his stay in Rome until October it appeared that Handel made his way to Florence where his first Italian opera, later called "Rodrigo", was performed. The uncompleted work is occasionally dated as 1709 as it can be proved that Handel was in Florence another time that year (cf. 1709, March and November); however the printed liberetto that was found gives the performance of this opera as early as 1707: "vincer se stesso la maggior vittoria. Drama per musica rappresentato in Firenze nell'autunno dell'anno 1707. Sotto la protezione del Serenissimo Principe di Toscana …" (Teatro Civico Accademica in der Via del Cocomero).
End of the year: Handel travels to Venice where he possibly meets Prince Ernst August of Hanover (the brother of the Elector).
January and February: Performance of Handel's opera "Florindo" which had been previously composed. This performance was in two parts, "Florindo" (HWV 3) and "Daphne" (HWV4), in the theatre in Gänsemarkt in Hamburg. The music is no longer extant and the cast is unknown. It is assumed, though not verified, that Handel could have travelled to Hamburg for the first performance in between his trips to Italy.
February – April: From the end of February to the end of April, Handel's second and verifiable stay in Bonelli Palace and work for Ruspoli.
3 March: Handel finished the cantata "Lungi dal mio bel Nume" (HWV 127), therefore by this date at the latest he must have been in Rome.
8 April: First performance of the oratorio "La Resurrezione" (HWV 47) on Easter Sunday in Bonelli Palace. There had been three rehearsals in front of invited guests on the previous days and there was a repeat performance on Easter Monday 9 April – Arcangelo Corelli is the leader of the orchestra. Mainwaring reports a typical anecdote about the rehearsal, that Corelli was incapable of playing an overture in the French style to Handel's satisfaction. Another unusual feature was the appearance of Margherita Durastiani. At the time it was generally forbidden for women to appear in public performances and so she was replaced next day by the castrato Pippo.
May – July: Handel's stay in Naples
During the first half of May Francesco Ruspoli moved to his country seat in Vignanello. At about the same time Handel left Rome and travelled to Naples.
Composition of the cantata "Partenza di G.B.Cantata di G. F. Hendel" ("Stelle, perfide
stelle", HWV 168).
16 June: In Naples Handel finished the dramatic cantata "Aci, Galatea e Polifemo" (HWV 72)
in the Duke of Alvito's palace. First performance probably on the occasion of the Duke's marriage
on 19 July of this year.
12 July: In Naples Handel composes the trio "Se tu non lasci amore" (HWV 201).
July – September: From the middle of July Handel is once again in Ruspoli's palace in Rome. He leaves on 12 September. Whether this was the end of his work for Ruspoli or whether he moved to Ruspoli's country seat is not known.
From this time we can date, among others, the cantatas, "Hendel non pu mia musa" (HWV 117), "Manca pur quanto sei" (HWV 129), "Dite, mie piante" (HWV107), "Lungi da voi" (HWV 126), "Clori, vezzosa Clori" (HWV 95), "Quando sperasti, o core" (HWV 153), "Stanco di pi soffrire" (HWV 167), "Se pari la tua f " (HWV 158), "Lungi n'andó Fileno" (HWV 128), and "Mentre il tutto in furore" (HWV 130). The following cantatas were also composed for which there are no exact dates: "Ninfe e pastori" (HWV 139), "Da sete ardente" (HWV 100), "Chi rapi la pace al cuore" (HWV 90), Del bell'idolo mio" (HWV 104), " Fra tante pene"(HWV 116), "Filli adorata" (HWV 114), "Dalla guerra amorosa" (HWV 102), "Sento l che ristretto" (HWV 161), "O Numi eterni" ("La Luzrezia", HWV 145), "Lungi da me, pensier tiranno" (HWV 125) and "Ah crudel, nel pianto mio" (HWV 78).
14 July: Performance in Rome of the cantata "Arresta il passo" (HWV 83).
2 September: Performance of a cantata, probably "Ah crudel" (HWV 78), in Rome.
9 September: Performance of the cantata "O come ciare" ("Il Tebro", HWV 143) in Rome.
26 September: Handel's older sister Dorothea Sophia marries Dr Michael Dietrich Michaelsen.
March: It is assumed that Handel was again in Florence at the courts of Ferdinand von
29 March: Performance of the cantata "Il Pianto di Maria" ("Giunta l'ora fatal", HWV 234),
presumably under Handel's direction on Good Friday in Siena.
16 July: Handel's sister Johanna Christine Handel dies.
November: With a reference of recommendation from Ferdinando di Medici dated 9 November,
Handel leaves Florence to go to Carl Philipp von Neuburg, Count Palatine of Rhine, governor of
Tyrol, in Innsbruck.
26 December: First performance of the opera "Agrippina" (HWV 6) in Teatro San Giovanni
Grisostomo in Venice. 27 performances during the season. Further performances, Hamburg 23 October
1718 – Naples 15 February 1713 - Vienna 1719 (Deutsch p 98, no exact date)
Spring: It is assumed that Handel travelled from Vienna to Hanover and Düsseldorf via Innsbruck at the end of February or the beginning of March.