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Contents

Music from the Earliest Notations to the Sixteenth Century

VERSUS

Chapter:
CHAPTER 3 Retheorizing Music
Source:
MUSIC FROM THE EARLIEST NOTATIONS TO THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY
Author(s):
Richard Taruskin

The same urge to regularize tonally and formally, and to use the two stabilizing dimensions to reinforce one another, can be seen in late Frankish sequences as well, together with the additional regularizing element of metrical verse, eventually replete with rhyme. Settings of such texts, especially rhymed metrical sequences, are often called versus to distinguish them from the older prosa. Ex. 3-7 contains two of the sequences that have survived into the modern liturgy. The Easter sequence, Victimae paschali laudes (“Praises to the Paschal victim”), is attributed in both words and music to the German monk Wipo, chaplain to the Holy Roman Emperor Conrad II (reigned 1024–39). It has the paired versicle structure common to the form: A, BB, CC, DD. The constituent phrases describe the principal parts of the modal scale with great regularity. The two phrases of verse A describe the modal pentachord, with the first phrase darkened by the Dorian lower neighbor, and the second compensating by adding the previously withheld top note. Verse B makes a steady descent from the authentic tetrachord (cadencing on the tuba) through the pentachord, through the darkened pentachord with lower neighbor and no tuba. Verse C extends downward, like the second Kyrie in Ex. 3-5, to describe the plagal tetrachord, proceeding through the “darkened” pentachord to the full pentachord. Phrase D, which resembles phrase B, begins like it with the authentic tetrachord at the top of the modal ambitus, and again gradually descends to the final, with the final phrase (and also the paschal alleluia) colored dark by the use of the subtonium (the lower neighbor).

Citation (MLA):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 3 Retheorizing Music." The Oxford History of Western Music. Oxford University Press. New York, USA. n.d. Web. 23 Apr. 2014. <http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume1/actrade-9780195384819-div1-003006.xml>.
Citation (APA):
Taruskin, R. (n.d.). Chapter 3 Retheorizing Music. In Oxford University Press, Music from the Earliest Notations to the Sixteenth Century. New York, USA. Retrieved 23 Apr. 2014, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume1/actrade-9780195384819-div1-003006.xml
Citation (Chicago):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 3 Retheorizing Music." In Music from the Earliest Notations to the Sixteenth Century, Oxford University Press. (New York, USA, n.d.). Retrieved 23 Apr. 2014, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume1/actrade-9780195384819-div1-003006.xml
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