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MUAR 211 Study Guide - Henry Purcell, Aria, Viol

Music-Arts Faculty
Course Code
MUAR 211
Jerry M.Cain

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Kathleen Rose Kennedy
Study Guide #1
Medieval Period (450 - 1450)
Manuscript : A document that contains the notation of a composition. Refers to
sheets of paper with the composer's handwritten notation of a composition.
Sacred culture (and art): anything intended to serve as part of religious worship
Secular culture (and art): everything else, including art intended for entertainment
Liturgy : Customary public worship done by a specific religious group, according
to its particular traditions. Standardized order of events observed during a
religious service.
Plainchant :
oPeople often mistakenly refer to all monophonic, a cappella, sacred vocal
music with a Latin text as ‘Gregorian chant’, but that is only correct when
referring to the 3000 or so melodies that became associated with Pope
Gregory I’s sixth-century liturgical reforms. There are in fact many
plainchants that are older or more recent than the sixth century.
oThe most important part of a plainchant is its text, and therefore the
specific genre of a plainchant is determined by the function of that text,
and most of those texts were intended for one of the two primary worship
services of the Roman Catholic Church: the Mass or the Divine Office.
oText: Latin & sacred
oChurch modes
oMonophonic textures
Nonmetrical : rhythmically ‘free’, there has no discernible beat of meter.
Two Worship Services :
oDivine Office: The Ministry of Divine Office has a mission to gather
assets beneficial to our community in praying the Liturgy of the Hours.
oMass: the most solemn service of the liturgy.
Proper Mass: the latter days in the liturgical year. Choirs & solos
Ordinary Mass : the former days in the liturgical year. Entire
congregation sings
Fore-Mass Eucharist
Kyrie Sanctus
Gloria Agnus Dei
Church modes (Medieval modes): the scales (a hierarchical and limited set of
musical pitches) that served as the basis for the harmonic language of medieval
Responsorial performance : a solo singer or ‘leader performs verses of the text
and the choir and/or congregation answers each verse with the following verse or
with a response or refrain. Common responses were the simple Hebrew words
amen (an expression of affirmation) and hallelujah (‘praise Jahweh’), but others
were more expansive.
Antiphonal performance : singers were divided into two groups that take turns

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Kathleen Rose Kennedy
Study Guide #1
singing phrases of text in alternation (with no individual ‘leader’).
St. Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179): One of the first composers for whom we
have numerous pieces of music and a well established biography. Obviously she
was well known in her day, for her musical works, poetry and other writings were
widely copied and disseminated around Europe. Her poetry is characterized by
brilliant imagery and visionary language. Hildegard’s musical style is rather
unusual for her time; it uses an expansive range (most chant is much more
limited), occasional wide intervallic leaps, and florid melismas.
Drone: Any note performed throughout a composition as a sustaining bass note.
In the 12 th
oEarliest manuscripts of secular music
oEarliest manuscripts of instrumental music
oBeginning of Notre Dame polyphony
Organum : The earliest kind of polyphonic music. Developed from the practice of
adding voices above a plainchant (cantus firmus); these added voices at first ran
parallel to the plainchant at an interval of a fourth or fifth.
Troubadour : Aristocrat poet-musician of the middle ages.
Jongleur : musicians of common (or worse) status, typically illiterate (like most
folks), who traveled, playing a memorized repertory, improvising, getting paid
when possible, and occasionally organizing into guilds.
Estampie : One of the oldest surviving purely instrumental forms of the 13th and
14th centuries. Constructed in three to seven separate sections called puncta, each
repeated immediately with two closes, the first called ouvert, and the second
called clos.
Courtier: A person who is often in attendance at the court of a king or royalty.
Chanson : French for song; a genre of French secular vocal music.
Cantus firmus : a chant melody that serves as the basis for a new musical creation.
Notre Dame School : The group of composers working at or near the Notre Dame
Cathedral in Paris in late 12th (beginning about 1170) and 13th centuries.
LÉONIN and PÉROTIN are the only composers whose names have survived in
the historical record, thanks to a student (known today only as Anonymous IV)
who described these composers in his own later writings. Léonin, Pérotin and the
other anonymous composers whose music has survived are representatives of the
era of European music history known as the ARS ANTIQUA
Ars nova : Contemporary term for the new polyphonic music of the 14th century.
Guillaume de Machaut (1300-1377): Widely known as the greatest musician of
his time; renowned even long after his death—the foremost composer-poet of the
Ars Nova style:i.e., the ‘new style’ of complicated, polyphonic music in the 14th
century. This term was used to contrast the new music with the older Notre Dame
polyphony of the 13th century, known as the Ars antiqua (antique art).
oComposed both sacred and secular music of the highest craftsmanship.
oComposed the earliest extant complete setting of the Mass Ordinary (i.e.,
all five parts: Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, and Agnus dei)

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Kathleen Rose Kennedy
Study Guide #1
oThe five individual parts are based on some of the same borrowed and
Renaissance Period (1450 – 1600)
Humanism: an intellectual movement and ethical system centered on humans and
their values, needs, interests, abilities, dignity and freedom, often emphasizing
secular culture in a rejection of the sacred.
Printing press (1450) : Music printing soon followed, greatly expanding affordable
access to vocal and instrumental music of all genres, both sacred and secular.
Lutheran Reformation (c. 1500 and after): Martin Luther (1483-1546) The
separation of protestant Christian sects from the Roman Catholic Church leads to
a great diversity in post-1500 Christian sacred music.
The Counter-Reformation and Council of Trent
oIn the second half of 16th century the Roman Catholic Church responded
to the revolt led by Martin Luther by reforming Church practices in the
spirit of “true Christian piety.” This was the RCC’s attempt to regain the
loyalty of its people, as well as regain the loss of power and wealth that
had resulted from the “split” of the Church.
oThe Council of Trent (1545-1563) issued general recommendations in
favor of a pure vocal style that would respect the integrity of the sacred
Trope : A musical addition to or a substitution for an item of plainchant. May or
may not have words, and is often an introduction to a chant.
Paraphrase: A melody borrowed from another source and then elaborated freely
such as Missa l' hom arme by Guillaume de Machaut.
Text/word painting : Musical illustration of the meaning of a word or a short
verbal phrase.
Point of Imitation : A succession of imitative entrances.
Josquin des Prez (c. 1450-1521)
oLike his predecessor, Dufay, born and received early musical training in
northern France; known as the greatest of the great and influential lineage
of fine Flemish composers.
oMoved to Italy, where he likewise served in several royal courts, including
those of Cardinal Ascanio Sforza of Milan, Duke Ercole d’Este of Ferrara
and in the papal choir in Rome.
oLike most musicians of his caliber at that time, he composed both sacred
and secular music, setting both sacred texts and contemporary poetry.
oAchieved international fame, and multiple printed collections of his works
circulated widely; known to Martin Luther (also a musician and
composer), who referred to Josquin as ‘the greatest living composer.’
oAgain, as with Dufay, late in life Josquin returned to northern France,
where he served until his death and was entombed in the choir of the
church in Condé.
Madrigal (16 th
century) : Written for four to six voices that may or may not be
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