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Hildegard of Bingen

All the ends of the earth (Videruni omnes) Style: monophonic Gregorian chant.

Pope Gregory the great

Role in establishing chants and specific church days of the year.


Music for one line

Gregorian chant

Style, use of latin text for the mass and the eight monastic hours of prayer, composed over the course of fifteen centuries, lack of a snese of meter or regular rhythm.

Melisematic singing

Many notes sung to just one syllable.

Syllabic Singing

Only one or two notes per syllable.

Music notation

Evolved at the year 1000, placement of note heads on lines and spaces


Early polyphony of the western church


The central and most important service of the Roman catholic Church.


Composed first polyphonic setting of the mass ordinary, THe mass of our lady, best known work in the entire medieval repertoire: most important composer of the fourteenth century: comparison with Geoffrey Chaucer.

Arganum in Paris

Rhytmic Difficulty, use of trained singers

Secular musicians of the middle ages

Minnesinger, troubadour, trouvere, troubairitz

Dufay and burgundian court

This month of may - use as a dance piece.

Major medieval composers

Hildegard of Bingen, Leoninus, Machaut, Dufay

Medieval Music Style

Monophonic music sung in notes of equal value without clearly marked rhythms; mainly vocal music - few instrumental compositions survived; Melodies move by step within a narrow range and rarely use the chromatic tones.


belief that people are something more than a mere conduit for gifts descending from heaven, that they have the capacity to create many things good and beautiful- indeed, the ability to shape their own world.


A procedure whereby one or more voices in turn the notes of a melody.


A composition for choir setting a religious, devotional, or solemn text, often sung "a cappella"; Josquin's ave maria is an example of a renaissance motet.

Josquin Des Prez

born in northern Europe, spent most of his career in italy and excelled in writing motets. Temperament and ego, equal to Michelangelo, earned high twice as much money as his peers. Musical style was later copied by Bach and Mozart.


The reform movement that promoted a more conservative, austere (strict) approach to art. The musician who embodied this was Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina.

Council of Trent

a two decade long conference at which leading cardinals and bishops undertook a reform of the roman catholic church.


A method of voice to sing in a higher range.


Spent most of his creative life in rome serving the major churches. Influence on the Counter-reformation music style.

Point of imitation

Passage in a polyphonic work in which two or more parts enter in imitation.

Genres of composition in the renaissance

Mass/motet/instrumental dance/madrigal

Major composers of the renaissance

Josquin, Palestrina, Lasso, Weelkes.

Word painting

The depicting of text by means of a descriptive musical gesture, whether subtly or jokingly as a musical pun.

Madrigal/Renaissance Madrigal

A piece for several solo voices, usually 4 or 5, that sets a vernacular poem, most often about love, to music. Emerged in Italy @ 1350.

Leonin and Perotin

composers of maguns liber organi

Proper mass

Chants whose text changed to suit, or "be proper for", the feast day in question.

Ordinary mass

Chants with unvarying texts that were sung virtually every day.

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