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IMC 2018: Sessions

Session 1312: Music, Manuscripts, and Practice in the 14th and 15th Centuries

Wednesday 4 July 2018, 16.30-18.00

Moderator/Chair:William T. Flynn, Institute for Medieval Studies, University of Leeds
Paper 1312-aA Discussion of the Function of Music Notation in Secular Manuscripts, c. 1300
(Language: English)
Frieda van der Heijden, Department of Music, Royal Holloway, University of London
Index terms: Manuscripts and Palaeography, Music
Paper 1312-bReconstructing Philippe de Vitry's Ars nova
(Language: English)
John Douglas Gray, Independent Scholar, Boulder, Colorado
Index terms: Language and Literature - Latin, Manuscripts and Palaeography, Music
Paper 1312-cMarchetto's Lucidarium in arte musice plane and Possible Philological Relations of the Italian Concept of Mode in the 14th and 15th Centuries
(Language: English)
Carlos Iafelice, Departamento de Música, Universidade Estadual Paulista, São Paulo
Index terms: Archives and Sources, Music

Paper -a:
Many owners of chansonniers cannot be assumed to have been able to read music notation. With this in mind, we should wonder what the function of notation was in such manuscripts. We need to examine them: who were the intended owners, how familiar were they with the songs, were these performed, by whom, and were they performed from the book? I will address these questions in light of four case studies: Paris Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 12615, a fully notated chansonnier; Paris Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 12786 a manuscript containing a song collection that never received the intended notation; Oxford Bodleian Douce 308, one of many examples of songbooks without any notation or intention for notation, which might suggest that a contemporary audience did not need notation in order to remember the songs; and Paris, Bibliothèque Nationale, fonds français 2193, in which fake music notation was added by a later user.

Paper -b:
'Memory', the theme for the 2018 Leeds IMC has particular relevance to the topic of early 14th-century medieval music theory, as I wish to demonstrate in 'Reconstructing Philippe de Vitry's Ars nova'. In earlier presentations of my research at Leeds IMC, I advocated a critical edition collating the extant Ars nova manuscript fragments according to Lachmanian principles; I no longer believe that this endeavour would do justice to its extraordinarily open recension - one fragment being a possible aide-memoire. I now argue that textual concordances of the Latin fragments (English translations on facing pages) would better serve this philological undertaking.

Paper -c:
In the last years, theoretical development of Italian Trecento have been developed and discussed. Scholars such as Nino Pirrota claim that the theories elaborated by Marchetto da Padova are, in fact, just theoretical formulation of the already existing music practice.

Although such aspects promulgated by Marchetto in Lucidarium can be understood as a 'theoretical synthesis', these aspects like the sonic simultaneity and the organization of the modes have deep resonances throughout the 14th and 15th centuries, influencing also on the practice of the so-called 'Florentine Ars Nova'. This paper aims to track possible philological relations between Marchetto’s theories and other Italian treatises, setting theoretical conjunctions in one of the periods where the practice of Italian polyphony was overshadowed, mostly by the splendor of its French counterpart.