Le premier mort
Le second mort
Le tier mort
Le quart mort
The four musicians were not included in the original dance on the mural. They are among the additions that Guy Marchant made to his books shortly after his first publication, namely in 1485/86. The funny thing is that musical instruments are not used anywhere in the original Danse Macabre, even the minstrel's lute is lying on the ground.
Another five years later, in 1491, images were produced of the female dancers, and the Women's Danse Macabre was initially released separately. For this book a new version of the four musicians were produced (picture on the right). These cadavers have long spiky hair, like the cadavers have in the rest of the women's dance.
The dances of death were for a long time reprinted in Troyes, and during the years it became necessary to produce new copies of the woodcuts.
Oddly enough, the publisher in 1766 had two different versions of these copies, and what is even stranger is that he choose to feature the coarsest copy (pictured left) on the frontpage, and the more detailed one inside the book.
The musical cadavers may have inspired the Danish book Døde-Dands from 1762 (picture to the left).