Basso continuo was an approach to writing music during the Baroque music era (1600-1750).
Scores from the Baroque period (1600-1750) are very often in the form of a bass line in the bass clef and the melodies played by instrument or sung on an upper stave (or staves) in the treble clef.
Italy retained its artistic dominance into the 17th century with the Baroque (1600-1750).
In a Baroque era (ca. 1600-1750) piece accompanied by basso continuo, the accompanying musicians would include a chordal instrument (e.g., harpsichord, pipe organ or lute) and a number of bass instruments might perform the same bassline, such as the cello, viol, double bass, theorbo, serpent (an early wind instrument), and, if an organist was present, the lower manual of the organ and the low-pitched pedal keyboard.