Music 1710F/G Lecture Notes - Upper Paleolithic, Cithara, Good Music

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5 Feb 2013
November 5 Readings/Class Notes – History
What evidences do we have for music making in the prehistoric world?
- The musicology of prehistory? From What's Up, Doc? (1972)
What role did music play in the ancient world?
Middle Paleolithic: 50,000 BCE
Upper Paleolithic: 30,000 BCE
Mesolithic: 10,000 BCE
Bronze Age
Iron Age: 5,000 BCE
Ancient Greece: 500 BCE
Fall of Roman Empire: 476 CE
Bone Flutes
Approx. 40,000 BCE
often found in caves, which also have cave paintings
Music making involved in artistic practices. Art played an important role in their
The Evolutionary Advantage of Music?
“[…] early Upper Paleolithic music could have contributed to the maintenance of
larger social networks, and thereby have helped facilitate the demographic and
territorial expansion of modern humans relative to culturally more conservative
and demographically more isolated Neanderthal populations.” (Conard, Malina,
Münzel 2009, p. 740)
What role did music play in the ancient world?
Instruments of the Ancients
kithara (lyre). Much like a harp. Guitars developed from this.
aulos (l. Tibia).
In what esteem did Aristotle hold musicians?
Music is for entertainment and relaxation, but musicians are seen as low
Concerned with the way people communicate with music
He that takes part in such performances does not do so in order to improve
his own character, but to give pleasure to listeners, and vulgar pleasure at that.”
The kind of music we listen to determines our character. When we listen to
music for pleasure, we will become more vulgar individuals.
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