Modal melodies of the early christian church are similar to melodies and scales from

Modal melodies of the early christian church are similar to melodies and scales from

Dorian minor (mode) examples in songs- analysis and

Based on the number of pitches sung to each syllable, Gregorian chants are divided into three melodic forms. One note per syllable is common in syllabic chants. Two or three notes per syllable are popular in neumatic chants, while melismatic chants have syllables sung to a long series of notes, varying from five or six to over sixty in the more prolix melismas. Recitatives and free melodies are the two types of melody used in Gregorian chants. The liturgical recitative is the most fundamental form of melody. A single pitch, known as the reciting tone, dominates recitative melodies. In melodic formulae for incipits, partial cadences, and complete cadences, other pitches appear. The bulk of the chants are syllabic. The Easter Collect, for example, is composed of 127 syllables sung to 131 pitches, with 108 pitches reciting note A and the remaining 23 pitches flexing down to G. Liturgical recitatives are generally found in the liturgy’s accentus chants, such as the intonations of the Collect, Epistle, and Gospel during the Mass, and in the Office’s direct psalmody.

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The Roman Catholic Church’s Gregoran chants are a set of chants, the majority of which are used in two liturgical rites: the Mass and the Offices. The beginnings are historically attributed to Pope Gregory I, who reigned from 590 to 604. Plainchant, or plainsong, was another name for the sacred music of the Gregorian Chant, which was named after Pope Gregory. This music consisted of a single melody line with a flexible rhythm sung by unaccompanied male voices to Latin phrases. Manuscripts from the ninth century used a system of modes, which were described as distinct patterns of whole and half measures. Monophony, or music with only one melody line, characterized music until about 1000 AD.
For use in the Roman Rite, the Gregorian repertory was systematized. The central liturgy of the Roman Mass, according to James McKinnon, was compiled over a short time in the late seventh century. Other researchers, such as Andreas Pfisterer and Peter Jeffery, have suggested an earlier origin for the repertory’s oldest layers.
Within a short period of time, Gregorian chant had become strikingly uniform in Europe. While elevated to Holy Roman Emperor, Charlemagne vigorously propagated Gregorian chant in his empire in order to consolidate religious and secular influence, obliging the clergy to use the modern repertory or face death. Gregorian chant spread north to Scandinavia, Iceland, and Finland, thanks to English and German sources. Pope Stephen V outlawed the Slavonic liturgy in 885, paving the way for Gregorian chant to take hold in Eastern Catholic countries such as Poland, Moravia, Slovakia, and Austria.

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The central tradition of Western plainchant is Gregorian chant, a type of monophonic, unaccompanied sacred song in Latin (and sometimes Greek) used by the Roman Catholic Church. Gregorian chant originated in western and central Europe in the ninth and tenth centuries, with subsequent additions and redactions. While common legend attributes the invention of Gregorian chant to Pope Gregory I, scholars claim it originated from a later Carolingian synthesis of Roman and Gallican chant. [requires citation]
Gregorian chants were divided into four modes at first, then eight, and eventually twelve. A characteristic ambitus, as well as characteristic intervallic patterns relative to a referential mode final, incipits and cadences, the use of reciting tones at a specific distance from the final, around which the other notes of the melody revolve, and a vocabulary of musical motifs woven together through a process known as centonization to create families of relatable melodies are all typical melodic features. The scale patterns are set against a background pattern of conjunct and disjunct tetrachords, resulting in the gamut, a wider pitch system. Hexachords are six-note patterns that can be used to sing the chants. Neumes, an early type of musical notation from which the modern four-line and five-line staff evolved, are historically used to write Gregorian melodies. 1st Organum, which were multi-voice elaborations of Gregorian chant, were an early stage in the growth of Western polyphony.

1. music of the middle ages, plainchant

Ars subtilior and Mannerism

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The ars subtilior style was a strongly manneristic effort to merge French and Italian styles. This chanson is marked by rhythmic complexity, complex rhythms, intense syncopations and metric trickery, and even examples of augenmusik (“eye music” identifies visual features in music that are not apparent to the listener). Cordier’s chant “Belle, bonne, sage” (4:34):
Transitioning from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance
It’s difficult to say when the Medieval Era ends and the Renaissance Period starts musically. While the 1300s’ music has a distinct medieval sound and style, the early 1400s’ music is in a transitional era. Although not everyone agrees, 1400 is a good starting point since it marks the beginning of the Renaissance in Italy (although not necessarily in music, which would not happen until about 1450). The acceptance of the third as consonant (rather than dissonant) as music developed from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance is perhaps the most distinguishing feature. Throughout the 14th century, polyphony became increasingly popular, as voices became more autonomous.