Diary in the Music Museum of Brussels
The “Mother and Child” Virginal is a copy from 1999 after the original of Ioannes Ruckers from about 1600, which is preserved in the castle Sforzesco of Milan.
As the nice title suggests, this is a 2 manual Virginal, composed by a small manual (child) which rests on the larger manual(mother). It can be removed after use and stowed in the “belly” (a cavity) of the Virginal.
The piece I have chosen for this instrument is a Courante by William Byrd. He was probably born in Lincolnshire in 1543 and died in 1623 in Stondon / Essex.
Byrd was the most important composer in the times of William Shakespeare.