This classic introductory text focuses on the polyphonic vocal style perfected by Palestrina. Unlike many other texts, it maintains a careful balance between. Counterpoint: the polyphonic vocal style of the sixteenth century / by Knud Jeppeson [sic] ; translated [from the Danish] with an introduction by Glen Haydon . COUNTERPOINT. The Polyphonic Vocal Style of the Sixteenth Century. Knud Jeppesen. Jeppesen. This clau intrusion titles i ilir poliiburi Yul style titted by.

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It is evident that Tinctoris was a practical musician who displayed an independence quite foreign to his time of the classic “auctores,” otherwise regarded as unshaken authorities, and of their philosophical speculations.

Another valuable advance in the endeavor to find a richer, more ar- tistic style is the introduction of thirds and sixths, not merely ‘ as acci- dental harmonies, but as basic consonances, as factors upon which the musical sixtenth primarily rests.

In Part One, Knud Jeppesen —the world-renowned musicologist and leading authority on Palestrina, offers a superb outline history of contrapuntal theory. Though in the beginning it was for the most part naively cheerful, it became little by little an art of the court, a matter of polished, affected rhymes with a predilection for bombastic, exaggeratedly passion- ate ways of speaking. Musical theory may neither entirely wixteenth contempo- rary practice nor follow it blindly.

While the treatment of the text in the fifteenth century was charac- terized for the most part by a striking indifference, and while the use of effective, unequivocal tone painting as a means of expression can be found only in very rare cases in European music beforethe sixteenth century brought a decisive change in this situation.

Counterpoint: the polyphonic vocal style of the sixteenth century; ( edition) | Open Library

In res facta, that is, in written counterpoint, tonal repetition may well be used where the text warrants it. And therefore I stylr now undertaken to write briefly about counterpoint — which is made up poylphonic well-sounding consonances — in God’s honor and for the use of those who are striving for skill in this excellent art. And if I must now refer to that which I have seen and learned, I must confess that some old compositions of unknown composers have come into my hands, pieces that sound quite simple and tasteless, so that they rather disturb than please the ear.


At any rate, towards the end of the fourteenth and the beginning of the fifteenth century there is a whole series of important English composers who within a short time exercise an influence on the Continent, especially in the Netherlands and in France. In the course of the fifteenth century the law for the conjunct treatment of dissonances became established, as has been pointed out, not only to a certain extent in actual practice but also in theory, especially as formulated by Tinctoris.

The decisive factor really appeared at the beginning of the sixteenth century, when the need for making music serve the ends of poetic expres- sion was first clearly manifested. Vicentino expresses this most briefly and stle One cannot help noticing this fault in a large part of the con- trapuntal literature based upon Tinctoris which uncritically takes over his teaching.

Today, however, we think of counterpoint ccounterpoint one particular style among other polyphonic types. There are, however, in the Liceo Musicale of Bologna — which possesses one of the richest and choicest music libraries of the world — a few hitherto entirely unnoticed manuscripts of theoretical con- tent, which come from important composers of the Palestrina style.

Counterpoint: The Polyphonic Vocal Style of the Sixteenth Century

And apparently Vicentino is the first to introduce the rule concerning the tonal answer of the fugue theme: For us, music falls into two large divisions: The cantus firmus — whether it is now an ecclesiastical melody or a folk song — occurs generally in the tenor but occasionally in one of the other voices. One wishing to acquire compact, forceful voice leading naturally would not go to Chopin; nor would one study Obrecht for a refined, sensitive use of chromatic harmony.

Berardi Doubtless the reason the theorists clearly comprehend the trend of this whole development so quickly is that the time was ripe for it. Imitation a principle in accordance with which the voices imitate each other by introducing the same theme in sttyle voice after the other was employed less fruitfully and logically at the end of the fifteenth century, but began to play a principal role cohnterpoint musical construction dur- ing the sixteenth century.

Counterpoint: The Polyphonic Vocal Style of the Sixteenth Century

Usually each historical period or school concentrates upon its own peculiar fundamental problems and more or less neglects the others. The ideal of the composers was to work out their art in such a way that as many as possible could understand it and rejoice in it. So far as I know, the idiom with the skip of a third is especially designated as cambiata for the first time inthe year in which the Austrian royal chapelmaster Johann Joseph Fux published his famous textbook on counterpoint, Gradus ad Parnassum.


Search the history of over billion web pages on the Internet. But, according to their professional custom, they formulate these rules in an all too siixteenth and inelastic manner. The requirement 7 Zarlino. In counterpoint — the art of preserving the melodic independence of the voices in a polyphonic, harmonically acceptable complex — only two periods are to be considered seriously: But he also cites ex- amples showing that contemporary composers, Petrus de Domarto and Antonius Busnois for example, break this rule and write dissonances equal in length to the whole unit of measure.

Dissonances are admitted in this species only on the unaccented portion of the measure, and then only if they arc treated as polgphonic notes.

Counterpoint: the polyphonic vocal style of the sixteenth century;

The will, how- ever, was present and persisted until finally, after gaining sufficient mastery over the musical means of expression, it attained its goal: If this passage applied to the passing dis- sonances, such a comprehensive exposition of the intervals of resolution would have been superfluous; for the passing second resolves just as well into the unison as ths the third, the fourth as well into the fifth as into the third, and so on, according to whether the movement is ascend- ing or descending.

One can also use syncopations without dissonance as long as syncopations do not occur simultaneously in all parts; if they should, one would not be able to get a clear oof of the syncopation at all. Meanwhile it is quite significant that contrapuntal theory is in the process ;olyphonic changing from a discipline concerned with describing a style as best it can to one which emphasizes pedagogical ends.