According to the movie Tous les matins du monde, Marin Marais was kind of a sexy superstar on the viola da gamba. These are suites for recorder, with added harpsichord and five stringed cello piccolo. They were written around 1690.
I like the French baroque music a lot more than the German or English. It is more sweet, less in your face. Of course the nature of the recorder is also like that. Listening to these suites is a nice experience.
Marin Marais started his career as a choir boy at Sainte-Chapelle in Paris. He studied with Sainte-Colombe (the subject of the aforementioned movie) and was admitted to the royal orchestra as the ‘violon du roy’ with the help of Lully, the director of the Musique Royale. A fast career.
Suites like this focused on dances. It is not that you were supposed to dance on them, it was more the rhythm and the expression of the music. They developed until Bach’s time in the eighteenth century, and then slowly died out.