We use cookies to enhance your experience on our website. By continuing to use our website, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. You can change your cookie settings at any time. Find out more

Contents

Music from the Earliest Notations to the Sixteenth Century

DANCES OLD AND NEW

Chapter:
CHAPTER 15 A Perfected Art
Source:
MUSIC FROM THE EARLIEST NOTATIONS TO THE SIXTEENTH CENTURY
Author(s):
Richard Taruskin

We have seen written traces of instrumental dance music going back to the thirteenth century (Fig. 4-8). But of course dance music, being an eminently functional genre, was one of the slowest to “go literate” in any major or transforming way; and when it did, it did so piecemeal. The earliest extensive manuscript collections of instrumental dances come from the fifteenth century and were devoted to the noblest and courtliest ballroom dance genre or the time, a processional dance for couples known in Italian as bassadanza and in French as basse danse. The English equivalent would be “low dance,” the adjective referring to the dignified gliding steps—low and close to the floor—that the noble ballroom dancers employed. The lower the steps, one might say, the higher the social rank of the dance. Peasant dances—oftentimes mimicked by the nobility for their fun and games—were the ones for leaping and prancing.

Citation (MLA):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 15 A Perfected Art." The Oxford History of Western Music. Oxford University Press. New York, USA. n.d. Web. 19 Dec. 2018. <http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume1/actrade-9780195384819-div1-015013.xml>.
Citation (APA):
Taruskin, R. (n.d.). Chapter 15 A Perfected Art. In Oxford University Press, Music from the Earliest Notations to the Sixteenth Century. New York, USA. Retrieved 19 Dec. 2018, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume1/actrade-9780195384819-div1-015013.xml
Citation (Chicago):
Richard Taruskin. "Chapter 15 A Perfected Art." In Music from the Earliest Notations to the Sixteenth Century, Oxford University Press. (New York, USA, n.d.). Retrieved 19 Dec. 2018, from http://www.oxfordwesternmusic.com/view/Volume1/actrade-9780195384819-div1-015013.xml
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content. Please, subscribe or login to access all content.