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Title: Critical and Historical Essays - Lectures delivered at Columbia University
Author: MacDowell, Edward, 1860-1908
Language: English
As this book started as an ASCII text book there are no pictures available.
Copyright Status: Not copyrighted in the United States. If you live elsewhere check the laws of your country before downloading this ebook. See comments about copyright issues at end of book.

*** Start of this Doctrine Publishing Corporation Digital Book "Critical and Historical Essays - Lectures delivered at Columbia University" ***

This book is indexed by ISYS Web Indexing system to allow the reader find any word or number within the document.



TRANSCRIBER'S NOTES


Italic text is represented by _underscores_ around the text.

Footnotes in the original text were all marked with asterisks:
I have renumbered these and represented them as [01] through [15].

All other text enclosed between square brackets represents or
describes the illustrations (for which see the HTML edition):

Pitches: [c, ... c ... a b c' (middle-C) d' e' ... c'' ... c''']

Round brackets: when around a single note these represent a note
in the extract which was bracketed or otherwise highlighted.
When around two or more notes, they represent a slur or beam.

Braces: surround simultaneous notes in a chord {a c' e'}

Accidentals:

[f++] = F double-sharp
[a+]  = A sharp
[c=]  = C natural
[e-]  = E flat
[d--] = D double-flat

In the main text, accidentals are written out in full, as
[natural], A[flat], G[sharp]. One table uses [#] for [sharp].

Accents and marcato: denoted by > and ^ before a note.

Time signatures: [4/4], [6/8], etc.

[C]  or [C/4] = C-shaped [4/4] time.
[C|] or [C/2] = C-shaped [2/2] time.
[O]  = A circle
[O.] = A circle with a dot in the center
[C.] = A broken circle (C-shaped) with a dot in the center

[G:] = Treble clef ([G8:] = Treble clef 8va bassa)
[F:] = Bass clef   ([F8:] = Bass clef 8va bassa)

Rhythms (A trailing . represents a dotted note):

[L]  = Longa
[B]  = Brevis
[S]  = Semibrevis
[1]  = Whole-note     (Semibreve)
[2]  = Half-note      (Minim)
[4]  = Quarter-note   (Crotchet)
[8]  = Eighth-note    (Quaver)
[16] = Sixteenth-note (Semiquaver)

Lyrics and Labels: words aligned with the notes begin [W: ...]

Breves and macrons, used to denote short and long stresses in
poetry are denoted ['] and [-] respectively.

[|] = Bar (Bar line)
[<] = Crescendo hairpin
[x] = small cross
[\] = 45 degree downstroke
[/] = 45 degree upstroke
[/\] = large circumflex shape
[O|] = a circle bisected by a vertical line protruding both ways
[Gamma] = The Greek capital gamma
[mid-dot] = a dot at the height of a hyphen
[over-dot] = a single dot over the following letter
[Over-slur] = a frown-shaped curved line
[Under-slur] = a smile-shaped curved line (breve)
[reverse-apostrophe] = the mirror image of a closing quote
[Upper Mordent] = an upper mordent: /\/\/ with thick downstrokes
[Crenellation] = horizontals, low, high, low, connected by verticals
[Podium] = [Crenellation] with the third horizontal at half-height
[Step] = horizontal, vertical, horizontal, vertical, ascending
[Turn] = a turn (~)

[Figure 01] = extract available as a MIDI file (figure01.mid).
[Illustration] = all other illustrations.

For example, here's a D minor scale set to words:

[G: d'   e'   (f' g') a'    b-'   (c+'' d'')]
[W: One, two, three,  four, five, six.      ]

And a simple rhythmic example:

[3/4: 4 4 8 8 | 8. 16 2] = [- - ' ' - ' -]



CRITICAL AND HISTORICAL ESSAYS

Lectures delivered at Columbia University

BY EDWARD MACDOWELL

EDITED BY W.J. BALTZELL


LONDON

  ELKIN & CO., LTD.,
  8 & 10 BEAK STREET,
  REGENT STREET, W.

  CONSTABLE & CO., LTD.,
  10 ORANGE STREET,
  LEICESTER SQUARE, W.C.

BOSTON, U.S.A., ARTHUR P. SCHMIDT

COPYRIGHT, 1912, BY ARTHUR P. SCHMIDT

A.P.S. 9384

Stanhope Press

F.H. GILSON COMPANY
BOSTON, U.S.A.



PREFACE


The present work places before the public a phase of the
professional activity of Edward MacDowell quite different from
that through which his name became a household word in musical
circles, that is, his work as a composer. In the chapters
that follow we become acquainted with him in the capacity of
a writer on phases of the history and aesthetics of music.

It was in 1896 that the authorities of Columbia University
offered to him the newly created Chair of Music, for which he
had been strongly recommended as one of the leading composers
of America. After much thought he accepted the position, and
entered upon his duties with the hope of accomplishing much for
his art in the favorable environment which he fully expected
to find. The aim of the instruction, as he planned it, was:
"First, to teach music scientifically and technically, with a
view to training musicians who shall be competent to teach and
compose. Second, to treat music historically and aesthetically
as an element of liberal culture." In carrying out his plans he
conducted a course, which, while "outlining the purely technical
side of music," was intended to give a "general idea of music
from its historical and aesthetic side." Supplementing this,
as an advanced course, he also gave one which took up the
development of musical forms, piano music, modern orchestration
and symphonic forms, impressionism, the relationship of music
to the other arts, with much other material necessary to form
an adequate basis for music criticism.

It is a matter for sincere regret that Mr. MacDowell put in
permanent form only a portion of the lectures prepared for
the two courses just mentioned. While some were read from
manuscript, others were given from notes and illustrated with
musical quotations. This was the case, very largely, with
the lectures prepared for the advanced course, which included
extremely valuable and individual treatment of the subject of
the piano, its literature and composers, modern music, etc.

A point of view which the lecturer brought to bear upon his
subject was that of a composer to whom there were no secrets
as to the processes by which music is made. It was possible
for him to enter into the spirit in which the composers both
of the earlier and later periods conceived their works, and
to value the completed compositions according to the way in
which he found that they had followed the canons of the best
and purest art. It is this unique attitude which makes the
lectures so valuable to the musician as well as to the student.

The Editor would also call attention to the intellectual
qualities of Mr. MacDowell, which determined his attitude
toward any subject. He was a poet who chose to express himself
through the medium of music rather than in some other way. For
example, he had great natural facility in the use of the
pencil and the brush, and was strongly advised to take up
painting as a career. The volume of his poetical writings,
issued several years ago, is proof of his power of expression
in verse and lyric forms. Above these and animating them
were what Mr. Lawrence Gilman terms "his uncommon faculties
of vision and imagination." What he thought, what he said,
what he wrote, was determined by the poet's point of view,
and this is evident on nearly every page of these lectures.

He was a wide reader, one who, from natural bent, dipped into
the curious and out-of-the-way corners of literature, as will
be noticed in his references to other works in the course
of the lectures, particularly to Rowbotham's picturesque and
fascinating story of the formative period of music. Withal he
was always in touch with contemporary affairs. With the true
outlook of the poet he was fearless, individual, and even
radical in his views. This spirit, as indicated before, he
carried into his lectures, for he demanded of his pupils that
above all they should be prepared to do their own thinking and
reach their own conclusions. He was accustomed to say that we
need in the United States, a public that shall be independent
in its judgment on art and art products, that shall not be tied
down to verdicts based on tradition and convention, but shall be
prepared to reach conclusions through knowledge and sincerity.

That these lectures may aid in this splendid educational
purpose is the wish of those who are responsible for placing
them before the public.

                                                   W.J. BALTZELL.



CONTENTS


 CHAP.                                                       PAGE

    I. THE ORIGIN OF MUSIC                                      1
   II. ORIGIN OF SONG VS. ORIGIN OF INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC         16
  III. THE MUSIC OF THE HEBREWS AND THE HINDUS                 32
   IV. THE MUSIC OF THE EGYPTIANS, ASSYRIANS AND CHINESE       42
    V. THE MUSIC OF THE CHINESE (continued)                    54
   VI. THE MUSIC OF GREECE                                     69
  VII. THE MUSIC OF THE ROMANS--THE EARLY CHURCH               90
 VIII. FORMATION OF THE SCALE--NOTATION                       106
   IX. THE SYSTEMS OF HUCBALD AND GUIDO
         D'AREZZO--THE BEGINNING OF COUNTERPOINT              122
    X. MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS--THEIR HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT     132
   XI. FOLK-SONG AND ITS RELATION TO NATIONALISM IN MUSIC     141
  XII. THE TROUBADOURS, MINNESINGERS AND MASTERSINGERS        158
 XIII. EARLY INSTRUMENTAL FORMS                               175
  XIV. THE MERGING OF THE SUITE INTO THE SONATA               188
   XV. THE DEVELOPMENT OF PIANOFORTE MUSIC                    199
  XVI. THE MYSTERY AND MIRACLE PLAY                           205
 XVII. OPERA                                                  210
XVIII. OPERA (continued)                                      224
  XIX. ON THE LIVES AND ART PRINCIPLES OF SOME SEVENTEENTH
         AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURY COMPOSERS                     236
   XX. DECLAMATION IN MUSIC                                   254
  XXI. SUGGESTION IN MUSIC                                    261



CRITICAL AND HISTORICAL ESSAYS


I

THE ORIGIN OF MUSIC


Darwin's theory that music had its origin "in the sounds
made by the half-human progenitors of man during the season
of courtship" seems for many reasons to be inadequate and
untenable. A much more plausible explanation, it seems to me, is
to be found in the theory of Theophrastus, in which the origin
of music is attributed to the whole range of human emotion.

When an animal utters a cry of joy or pain it expresses its
emotions in more or less definite tones; and at some remote
period of the earth's history all primeval mankind must have
expressed its emotions in much the same manner. When this
inarticulate speech developed into the use of certain sounds as
symbols for emotions--emotions that otherwise would have been
expressed by the natural sounds occasioned by them--then we have
the beginnings of speech as distinguished from music, which
is still the universal language. In other words, intellectual
development begins with articulate speech, leaving music for
the expression of the emotions.

To symbolize the sounds used to express emotion, if I may so
put it, is to weaken that expression, and it would naturally
be the strongest emotion that would first feel the inadequacy
of the new-found speech. Now what is mankind's strongest
emotion? Even in the nineteenth century Goethe could say, "'Tis
fear that constitutes the god-like in man." Certainly before
the Christian era the soul of mankind had its roots in fear.
In our superstition we were like children beneath a great tree
of which the upper part was as a vague and fascinating mystery,
but the roots holding it firmly to the ground were tangible,
palpable facts. We feared--we knew not what. Love was human,
all the other emotions were human; fear alone was indefinable.

The primeval savage, looking at the world subjectively, was
merely part of it. He might love, hate, threaten, kill, if he
willed; every other creature could do the same. But the wind
was a great spirit to him; lightning and thunder threatened him
as they did the rest of the world; the flood would destroy him
as ruthlessly as it tore the trees asunder. The elements were
animate powers that had nothing in common with him; for what
the intellect cannot explain the imagination magnifies.

Fear, then, was the strongest emotion. Therefore auxiliary aids
to express and cause fear were necessary when the speech symbols
for fear, drifting further and further away from expressing the
actual thing, became words, and words were inadequate to express
and cause fear. In that vague groping for sound symbols which
would cause and express fear far better than mere words, we
have the beginning of what is gradually to develop into music.

We all know that savage nations accompany their dances by
striking one object with another, sometimes by a clanking of
stones, the pounding of wood, or perhaps the clashing of stone
spearheads against wooden shields (a custom which extended until
the time when shields and spears were discarded), meaning thus
to express something that words cannot. This meaning changed
naturally from its original one of being the simple expression
of fear to that of welcoming a chieftain; and, if one wishes
to push the theory to excess, we may still see a shadowy
reminiscence of it in the manner in which the violinists of
an orchestra applaud an honoured guest--perchance some famous
virtuoso--at one of our symphony concerts by striking the
backs of their violins with their bows.

To go back to the savages. While this clashing of one object
against another could not be called the beginning of music, and
while it could not be said to originate a musical instrument,
it did, nevertheless, bring into existence music's greatest
prop, rhythm, an ally without which music would seem to be
impossible. It is hardly necessary to go into this point in
detail. Suffice it to say that the sense of rhythm is highly
developed even among those savage tribes which stand the
lowest in the scale of civilization to-day, for instance,
the Andaman Islanders, of whom I shall speak later; the same
may be said of the Tierra del Fuegians and the now extinct
aborigines of Tasmania; it is the same with the Semangs of
the Malay Peninsula, the Ajitas of the Philippines, and the
savages inhabiting the interior of Borneo.

As I have said, this more or less rhythmic clanking of stones
together, the striking of wooden paddles against the side of
a canoe, or the clashing of stone spearheads against wooden
shields, could not constitute the first musical instrument. But
when some savage first struck a hollow tree and found that
it gave forth a sound peculiar to itself, when he found a
hollow log and filled up the open ends, first with wood,
and then--possibly getting the idea from his hide-covered
shield--stretched skins across the two open ends, then he had
completed the first musical instrument known to man, namely,
the drum. And such as it was then, so is it now, with but
few modifications.

Up to this point it is reasonable to assume that primeval man
looked upon the world purely subjectively. He considered himself
merely a unit in the world, and felt on a plane with the other
creatures inhabiting it. But from the moment he had invented the
first musical instrument, the drum, he had created something
outside of nature, a voice that to himself and to all other
living creatures was intangible, an idol that spoke when it
was touched, something that he could call into life, something
that shared the supernatural in common with the elements. A
God had come to live with man, and thus was unfolded the
first leaf in that noble tree of life which we call religion.
Man now began to feel himself something apart from the world,
and to look at it objectively instead of subjectively.

To treat primitive mankind as a type, to put it under one head,
to make one theorem cover all mankind, as it were, seems almost
an unwarranted boldness. But I think it is warranted when we
consider that, aside from language, music is the very first
sign of the dawn of civilization. There is even the most
convincingly direct testimony in its favour. For instance:

In the Bay of Bengal, about six hundred miles from the Hoogly
mouth of the Ganges, lie the Andaman Islands. The savages
inhabiting these islands have the unenviable reputation
of being, in common with several other tribes, the nearest
approach to primeval man in existence. These islands and their
inhabitants have been known and feared since time immemorial;
our old friend Sinbad the Sailor, of "Arabian Nights" fame,
undoubtedly touched there on one of his voyages. These savages
have no religion whatever, except the vaguest superstition,
in other words, fear, and they have no musical instruments
of any kind. They have reached only the _rhythm_ stage, and
accompany such dances as they have by clapping their hands
or by stamping on the ground. Let us now look to Patagonia,
some thousands of miles distant. The Tierra del Fuegians have
precisely the same characteristics, no religion, and no musical
instruments of any kind. Retracing our steps to the Antipodes
we find among the Weddahs or "wild hunters" of Ceylon exactly
the same state of things. The same description applies without
distinction equally well to the natives in the interior of
Borneo, to the Semangs of the Malay Peninsula, and to the now
extinct aborigines of Tasmania. According to Virchow their
dance is demon worship of a purely anthropomorphic character;
no musical instrument of any kind was known to them. Even
the simple expression of emotions by the voice, which we have
seen is its most primitive medium, has not been replaced to
any extent among these races since their discovery of speech,
for the Tierra del Fuegians, Andamans, and Weddahs have but
one sound to represent emotion, namely, a cry to express joy;
having no other means for the expression of sorrow, they paint
themselves when mourning.

It is granted that all this, in itself, is not conclusive;
but it will be found that no matter in what wilderness one
may hear of a savage beating a drum, there also will be a
well-defined religion.

Proofs of the theory that the drum antedates all other musical
instruments are to be found on every hand. For wherever in the
anthropological history of the world we hear of the trumpet,
horn, flute, or other instrument of the pipe species, it will
be found that the drum and its derivatives were already well
known. The same may be said of the lyre species of instrument,
the forerunner of our guitar (_kithara_), _tebuni_ or Egyptian
harp, and generally all stringed instruments, with this
difference, namely, that wherever the lyre species was known,
both pipe and drum had preceded it. We never find the lyre
without the drum, or the pipe without the drum; neither do we
find the lyre and the drum without the pipe. On the other hand,
we often find the drum alone, or the drum and pipe without
the lyre. This certainly proves the antiquity of the drum and
its derivatives.

I have spoken of the purely rhythmical nature of the pre-drum
period, and pointed out, in contrast, the musical quality of
the drum. This may seem somewhat strange, accustomed as we are
to think of the drum as a purely rhythmical instrument. The
sounds given out by it seem at best vague in tone and more
or less uniform in quality. We forget that all instruments
of percussion, as they are called, are direct descendants of
the drum. The bells that hang in our church towers are but
modifications of the drum; for what is a bell but a metal drum
with one end left open and the drum stick hung inside?

Strange to say, as showing the marvellous potency of primeval
instincts, bells placed in church towers were supposed to
have much of the supernatural power that the savage in his
wilderness ascribed to the drum. We all know something of the
bell legends of the Middle Ages, how the tolling of a bell was
supposed to clear the air of the plague, to calm the storm, and
to shed a blessing on all who heard it. And this superstition
was to a certain extent ratified by the religious ceremonies
attending the casting of church bells and the inscriptions
moulded in them. For instance, the mid-day bell of Strasburg,
taken down during the French Revolution, bore the motto

   "I am the voice of life."

Another one in Strasburg:

   "I ring out the bad, ring in the good."

Others read

   "My voice on high dispels the storm."

   "I am called Ave Maria
    I drive away storms."

   "I who call to thee am the Rose of the World and am called
          Ave Maria."

The Egyptian _sistrum_, which in Roman times played an
important rôle in the worship of Isis, was shaped somewhat
like a tennis racquet, with four wire strings on which rattles
were strung. The sound of it must have been akin to that of our
modern tambourine, and it served much the same purpose as the
primitive drum, namely, to drive away Typhon or Set, the god
of evil. Dead kings were called "Osiris" when placed in their
tombs, and _sistri_ put with them in order to drive away Set.

Beside bells and rattles we must include all instruments of the
tambourine and gong species in the drum category. While there
are many different forms of the same instrument, there are
evidences of their all having at some time served the same
purpose, even down to that strange instrument about which
Du Chaillu tells us in his "Equatorial Africa", a bell of
leopard skin, with a clapper of fur, which was rung by the
wizard doctor when entering a hut where someone was ill or
dying. The leopard skin and fur clapper seem to have been
devised to make no noise, so as not to anger the demon that
was to be cast out. This reminds us strangely of the custom of
ringing a bell as the priest goes to administer the last rites.

It is said that first impressions are the strongest and most
lasting; certain it is that humanity, through all its social and
racial evolutions, has retained remnants of certain primitive
ideas to the present day. The army death reveille, the minute
gun, the tolling of bells for the dead, the tocsin, etc., all
have their roots in the attributes assigned to the primitive
drum; for, as I have already pointed out, the more civilized
a people becomes, the more the word-symbols degenerate. It
is this continual drifting away of the word-symbols from the
natural sounds which are occasioned by emotions that creates
the necessity for auxiliary means of expression, and thus
gives us instrumental music.

Since the advent of the drum a great stride toward civilization
had been made. Mankind no longer lived in caves but built huts
and even temples, and the conditions under which he lived
must have been similar to those of the natives of Central
Africa before travellers opened up the Dark Continent to the
caravan of the European trader. If we look up the subject in
the narratives of Livingstone or Stanley we find that these
people lived in groups of coarsely-thatched huts, the village
being almost invariably surrounded by a kind of stockade. Now
this manner of living is identically the same as that of all
savage tribes which have not passed beyond the drum state
of civilization, namely, a few huts huddled together and
surrounded by a palisade of bamboo or cane. Since the pith
would decompose in a short time, we should probably find that
the wind, whirling across such a palisade of pipes--for that is
what our bamboos would have turned to--would produce musical
sounds, in fact, exactly the sounds that a large set of Pan's
pipes would produce. For after all what we call Pan's pipes
are simply pieces of bamboo or cane of different lengths tied
together and made to sound by blowing across the open tops.

The theory may be objected to on the ground that it scarcely
proves the antiquity of the pipe to be less than that of the
drum; but the objection is hardly of importance when we consider
that the drum was known long before mankind had reached the
"hut" stage of civilization. Under the head of pipe, the
trumpet and all its derivatives must be accepted. On this point
there has been much controversy. But it seems reasonable to
believe that once it was found that sound could be produced
by blowing across the top of a hollow pipe, the most natural
thing to do would be to try the same effect on all hollow
things differing in shape and material from the original
bamboo. This would account for the conch shells of the Amazons
which, according to travellers' tales, were used to proclaim
an attack in war; in Africa the tusks of elephants were used;
in North America the instrument did not rise above the whistle
made from the small bones of a deer or of a turkey's leg.

That the Pan's pipes are the originals of all these species
seems hardly open to doubt. Even among the Greeks and Romans
we see traces of them in the double trumpet and the double
pipe. These trumpets became larger and larger in form, and
the force required to play them was such that the player
had to adopt a kind of leather harness to strengthen his
cheeks. Before this development had been reached, however,
I have no doubt that all wind instruments were of the Pan's
pipes variety; that is to say, the instruments consisted of a
hollow tube shut at one end, the sound being produced by the
breath catching on the open edge of the tube.

Direct blowing into the tube doubtless came later. In
this case the tube was open at both ends, and the sound
was determined by its length and by the force given to the
breath in playing. There is good reason for admitting this new
instrument to be a descendant of the Pan's pipes, for it was
evidently played by the nose at first. This would preclude
its being considered as an originally forcible instrument,
such as the trumpet.

Now that we have traced the history of the pipe and considered
the different types of the instrument, we can see immediately
that it brought no great new truth home to man as did the drum.

The savage who first climbed secretly to the top of the
stockade around his village to investigate the cause of the
mysterious sounds would naturally say that the Great Spirit
had revealed a mystery to him; and he would also claim to be
a wonder worker. But while his pipe would be accepted to a
certain degree, it was nevertheless second in the field and
could hardly replace the drum. Besides, mankind had already
commenced to think on a higher plane, and the pipe was reduced
to filling what gaps it could in the language of the emotions.

The second strongest emotion of the race is love. All over the
world, wherever we find the pipe in its softer, earlier form, we
find it connected with love songs. In time it degenerated into
a synonym for something contemptibly slothful and worthless,
so much so that Plato wished to banish it from his "Republic,"
saying that the Lydian pipe should not have a place in a
decent community.

On the other hand, the trumpet branch of the family developed
into something quite different. At the very beginning it was
used for war, and as its object was to frighten, it became
larger and larger in form, and more formidable in sound. In
this respect it only kept pace with the drum, for we read
of Assyrian and Thibetan trumpets two or three yards long,
and of the Aztec war drum which reached the enormous height
of ten feet, and could be heard for miles.

Now this, the trumpet species of pipe, we find also used as an
auxiliary "spiritual" help to the drum. We are told by M. Huc,
in his "Travels in Thibet," that the llamas of Thibet have
a custom of assembling on the roofs of Lhassa at a stated
period and blowing enormous trumpets, making the most hideous
midnight din imaginable. The reason given for this was that
in former days the city was terrorized by demons who rose from
a deep ravine and crept through all the houses, working evil
everywhere. After the priests had exorcised them by blowing
these trumpets, the town was troubled no more. In Africa the
same demonstration of trumpet blowing occurs at an eclipse
of the moon; and, to draw the theory out to a thin thread,
anyone who has lived in a small German Protestant town will
remember the chorals which are so often played before sunrise
by a band of trumpets, horns, and trombones from the belfry of
some church tower. Almost up to the end of the last century
trombones were intimately connected with the church service;
and if we look back to Zoroaster we find the sacerdotal
character of this species of instrument very plainly indicated.

Now let us turn back to the Pan's pipes and its direct
descendants, the flute, the clarinet, and the oboe. We shall
find that they had no connection whatever with religious
observances. Even in the nineteenth century novel we are
familiar with the kind of hero who played the flute--a very
sentimental gentleman always in love. If he had played the
clarinet he would have been very sorrowful and discouraged; and
if it had been the oboe (which, to the best of my knowledge,
has never been attempted in fiction) he would have needed to
be a very ill man indeed.

Now we never hear of these latter kinds of pipes being
considered fit for anything but the dance, love songs, or love
charms. In the beginning of the seventeenth century Garcilaso
de la Vega, the historian of Peru, tells of the astonishing
power of a love song played on a flute. We find so-called
"courting" flutes in Formosa and Peru, and Catlin tells of the
Winnebago courting flute. The same instrument was known in Java,
as the old Dutch settlers have told us. But we never hear of it
as creating awe, or as being thought a fit instrument to use
with the drum or trumpet in connection with religious rites.
Leonardo da Vinci had a flute player make music while he
painted his picture of Mona Lisa, thinking that it gave her the
expression he wished to catch--that strange smile reproduced
in the Louvre painting. The flute member of the pipe species,
therefore, was more or less an emblem of eroticism, and, as I
have already said, has never been even remotely identified with
religious mysticism, with perhaps the one exception of Indra's
flute, which, however, never seems to have been able to retain a
place among religious symbols. The trumpet, on the other hand,
has retained something of a mystical character even to our
day. The most powerful illustration of this known to me is
in the "Requiem" by Berlioz. The effect of those tremendous
trumpet calls from the four corners of the orchestra is an
overwhelming one, of crushing power and majesty, much of which
is due to the rhythm.

To sum up. We may regard rhythm as the intellectual side
of music, melody as its sensuous side. The pipe is the one
instrument that seems to affect animals--hooded cobras,
lizards, fish, etc. Animals' natures are purely sensuous,
therefore the pipe, or to put it more broadly, melody, affects
them. To rhythm, on the other hand, they are indifferent;
it appeals to the intellect, and therefore only to man.

This theory would certainly account for much of the
potency of what we moderns call music. All that aims to be
dramatic, tragic, supernatural in our modern music, derives
its impressiveness directly from rhythm.[01] What would
that shudder of horror in Weber's "Freischütz" be without
that throb of the basses? Merely a diminished chord of the
seventh. Add the pizzicato in the basses and the chord sinks
into something fearsome; one has a sudden choking sensation,
as if one were listening in fear, or as if the heart had
almost stopped beating. All through Wagner's music dramas
this powerful effect is employed, from "The Flying Dutchman"
to "Parsifal." Every composer from Beethoven to Nicodé has
used the same means to express the same emotions; it is the
medium that pre-historic man first knew; it produced the same
sensation of fear in him that it does in us at the present day.

Rhythm denotes a thought; it is the expression of a
purpose. There is will behind it; its vital part is intention,
power; it is an act. Melody, on the other hand, is an almost
unconscious expression of the senses; it translates feeling
into sound. It is the natural outlet for sensation. In anger
we raise the voice; in sadness we lower it. In talking we
give expression to the emotions in sound. In a sentence in
which fury alternates with sorrow, we have the limits of the
melody of speech. Add to this rhythm, and the very height of
expression is reached; for by it the intellect will dominate
the sensuous.


[01] The strength of the "Fate" motive in Beethoven's fifth
     symphony undoubtedly lies in the succession of the four
     notes at equal intervals of time. Beethoven himself
     marked it _So pocht das Schicksal an die Pforte_.



II

ORIGIN OF SONG vs. ORIGIN OF INSTRUMENTAL MUSIC


Emerson characterized language as "fossil poetry," but "fossil
music" would have described it even better; for as Darwin says,
man _sang_ before he became human.

Gerber, in his "Sprache als Kunst," describing the degeneration
of sound symbols, says "the saving point of language is
that the original material meanings of words have become
forgotten or lost in their acquired ideal meaning." This
applies with special force to the languages of China, Egypt,
and India. Up to the last two centuries our written music
was held in bondage, was "fossil music," so to speak. Only
certain progressions of sounds were allowed, for religion
controlled music. In the Middle Ages folk song was used by
the Church, and a certain amount of control was exercised
over it; even up to the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries
the use of sharps and flats was frowned upon in church music.
But gradually music began to break loose from its old chains,
and in our own century we see Beethoven snap the last thread
of that powerful restraint which had held it so long.

The vital germ of music, as we know it, lay in the fact that
it had always found a home in the hearts of the common people
of all nations. While from time immemorial theory, mostly in
the form of mathematical problems, was being fought over, and
while laws were being laid down by religions and governments
of all nations as to what music must be and what music was
forbidden to be, the vital spark of the divine art was being
kept alive deep beneath the ashes of life in the hearts of the
oppressed common folk. They still sang as they felt; when the
mood was sad the song mirrored the sorrow; if it were gay the
song echoed it, despite the disputes of philosophers and the
commands of governments and religion. Montaigne, in speaking
of language, said with truth, "'Tis folly to attempt to fight
custom with theories." This folk song, to use a Germanism,
we can hardly take into account at the present moment, though
later we shall see that spark fanned into fire by Beethoven,
and carried by Richard Wagner as a flaming torch through the
very home of the gods, "Walhalla."

Let us go back to our dust heap. Words have been called
"decayed sentences," that is to say, every word was once a
small sentence complete in itself. This theory seems true
enough when we remember that mankind has three languages,
each complementing the other. For even now we say many words
in one, when that word is reinforced and completed by our
vocabulary of sounds and expression, which, in turn, has its
shadow, gesture. These shadow languages, which accompany
all our words, give to the latter vitality and raise them
from mere abstract symbols to living representatives of
the idea. Indeed, in certain languages, this auxiliary
expression even overshadows the spoken word. For instance,
in Chinese, the _theng_ or intonation of words is much more
important than the actual words themselves. Thus the third
intonation or _theng_, as it is called in the Pekin dialect,
is an upward inflection of the voice. A word with this upward
inflection would be unintelligible if given the fourth _theng_
or downward inflection. For instance, the word "kwai" with a
downward inflection means "honourable," but give it an upward
inflection "kwai" and it means "devil."

Just as a word was originally a sentence, so was a tone in
music something of a melody. One of the first things that
impresses us in studying examples of savage music is the
monotonic nature of the melodies; indeed some of the music
consists almost entirely of one oft-repeated sound. Those
who have heard this music say that the actual effect is not
one of a steady repetition of a single tone, but rather that
there seems to be an almost imperceptible rising and falling
of the voice. The primitive savage is unable to sing a tone
clearly and cleanly, the pitch invariably wavering. From
this almost imperceptible rising and falling of the voice
above and below one tone we are able to gauge more or less the
state of civilization of the nation to which the song belongs.
This phrase-tone corresponds, therefore, to the sentence-word,
and like it, gradually loses its meaning as a phrase and fades
into a tone which, in turn, will be used in new phrases as
mankind mounts the ladder of civilization.

At last then we have a single tone clearly uttered, and
recognizable as a musical tone. We can even make a plausible
guess as to what that tone was. Gardiner, in his "Music of
Nature," tells of experiments he made in order to determine the
normal pitch of the human voice. By going often to the gallery
of the London Stock Exchange he found that the roar of voices
invariably amalgamated into one long note, which was always
F. If we look over the various examples of monotonic savage
music quoted by Fletcher, Fillmore, Baker, Wilkes, Catlin,
and others, we find additional corroboration of the statement;
song after song, it will be noticed, is composed entirely of
F, G, and even F alone or G alone. Such songs are generally
ancient ones, and have been crystallized and held intact by
religion, in much the same way that the chanting heard in the
Roman Catholic service has been preserved.

Let us assume then that the normal tone of the human voice
in speaking is F or G [F: f g] for men, and for women the
octave higher. This tone does very well for our everyday life;
perhaps a pleasant impression may raise it somewhat, _ennui_ may
depress it slightly; but the average tone of our "commonplace"
talk, if I may call it that, will be about F. But let some
sudden emotion come, and we find monotone speech abandoned for
impassioned speech, as it has been called. Instead of keeping
the voice evenly on one or two notes, we speak much higher or
lower than our normal pitch.

And these sounds may be measured and classified to a certain
extent according to the emotions which cause them, although
it must be borne in mind that we are looking at the matter
collectively; that is to say, without reckoning on individual
idiosyncrasies of expression in speech. Of course we know that
joy is apt to make us raise the voice and sadness to lower
it. For instance, we have all heard gruesome stories, and
have noticed how naturally the voice sinks in the telling. A
ghost story told with an upward inflection might easily
become humourous, so instinctively do we associate the upward
inflection with a non-pessimistic trend of thought. Under stress
of emotion we emphasize words strongly, and with this emphasis
we almost invariably raise the voice a fifth or depress it a
fifth; with yet stronger emotion the interval of change will
be an octave. We raise the voice almost to a scream or drop it
to a whisper. Strangely enough these primitive notes of music
correspond to the first two of those harmonics which are part
and parcel of every musical sound. Generally speaking, we may
say that the ascending inflection carries something of joy
or hope with it, while the downward inflection has something
of the sinister and fearful. To be sure, we raise our voices
in anger and in pain, but even then the inflection is almost
always downward; in other words, we pitch our voices higher and
let them fall slightly. For instance, if we heard a person cry
"Ah/" we might doubt its being a cry of pain, but if it were
"Ah\" we should at once know that it was caused by pain,
either mental or physical.

The declamation at the end of Schubert's "Erlking" would have
been absolutely false if the penultimate note had ascended to
the tonic instead of descending a fifth. "The child lay dead."

How fatally hopeless would be the opening measures of "Tristan
and Isolde" without that upward inflection which comes like a
sunbeam through a rift in the cloud; with a downward inflection
the effect would be that of unrelieved gloom. In the Prelude to
"Lohengrin," Wagner pictures his angels in dazzling white. He
uses the highest vibrating sounds at his command. But for
the dwarfs who live in the gloom of Niebelheim he chooses
deep shades of red, the lowest vibrating colour of the solar
spectrum. For it is in the nature of the spiritual part
of mankind to shrink from the earth, to aspire to something
higher; a bird soaring in the blue above us has something of
the ethereal; we give wings to our angels. On the other hand,
a serpent impresses us as something sinister. Trees, with
their strange fight against all the laws of gravity, striving
upward unceasingly, bring us something of hope and faith; the
sight of them cheers us. A land without trees is depressing and
gloomy. As Ruskin says, "The sea wave, with all its beneficence,
is yet devouring and terrible; but the silent wave of the blue
mountain is lifted towards Heaven in a stillness of perpetual
mercy; and while the one surges unfathomable in its darkness,
the other is unshaken in its faithfulness."

And yet so strange is human nature that that which we
call civilization strives unceasingly to nullify emotion.
The almost childlike faith which made our church spires
point heavenward also gave us Gothic architecture, that
emblem of frail humanity striving towards the ideal. It is
a long leap from that childlike faith to the present day of
skyscrapers. For so is the world constituted. A great truth
too often becomes gradually a truism, then a merely tolerated
and uninteresting theory; gradually it becomes obsolete
and sometimes even degenerates into a symbol of sarcasm or a
servant of utilitarianism. This we are illustrating every day
of our lives. We speak of a person's being "silly," and yet
the word comes from "sælig," old English for "blessed"; to act
"sheepishly" once had reference to divine resignation, "even
as a sheep led to the slaughter," and so on _ad infinitum_.
We build but few great cathedrals now. Our tall buildings
generally point to utilitarianism and the almighty dollar.

But in the new art, music, we have found a new domain in which
impulses have retained their freshness and warmth, in which,
to quote Goethe, "first comes the act, then the word"; first
the expression of emotion, then the theory that classifies it;
a domain in which words cannot lose their original meanings
entirely, as in speech. For in spite of the strange twistings
of ultra modern music, a simple melody still embodies the
same pathos for us that it did for our grandparents. To be
sure the poignancy of harmony in our day has been heightened
to an incredible degree. We deal in gorgeous colouring and
mighty sound masses which would have been amazing in the last
century; but still through it all we find in Händel, Beethoven,
and Schubert, up to Wagner, the same great truths of declamation
that I have tried to explain to you.

Herbert Spencer, in an essay on "The Origin and Functions of
Music," speaks of speech as the parent of music. He says,
"utterance, which when languaged is speech, gave rise to
music." The definition is incomplete, for "languaged utterance,"
as he calls it, which is speech, is a duality, is either an
expression of emotion or a mere symbol of emotion, and as such
has gradually sunk to the level of the commonplace. As Rowbotham
points out, impassioned speech is the parent of music, while
unimpassioned speech has remained the vehicle for the smaller
emotions of life, the everyday expression of everyday emotions.

In studying the music of different nations we are confronted
by one fact which seems to be part and parcel of almost every
nationality, namely, the constant recurrence of what is called
the five tone (pentatonic) scale. We find it in primitive
forms of music all the world over, in China and in Scotland,
among the Burmese, and again in North America. Why it is so
seems almost doomed to remain a mystery. The following theory
may nevertheless be advanced as being at least plausible:

Vocal music, as we understand it, and as I have already
explained, began when the first tone could be given clearly;
that is to say, when the sound sentence had amalgamated into the
single musical tone. The pitch being sometimes F, sometimes G,
sudden emotion gives us the fifth, C or D, and the strongest
emotion the octave, F or G. Thus we have already the following
sounds in our first musical scale.

    [G: f' g' c'' d'' f'']

We know how singers slur from one tone to another. It is a
fault that caused the fathers of harmony to prohibit what
are called hidden fifths in vocal music. The jump from G to
C in the above scale fragment would be slurred, for we must
remember that the intoning of clear individual sounds was
still a novelty to the savage. Now the distance from G to
C is too small to admit two tones such as the savage knew;
consequently, for the sake of uniformity, he would try to
put but one tone between, singing a mixture of A and B[flat],
which sound in time fell definitely to A, leaving the mystery
of the half-tone unsolved. This addition of the third would
thus fall in with the law of harmonics again. First we have the
keynote; next in importance comes the fifth; and last of all
the third. Thus again is the absence of the major seventh in
our primitive scale perfectly logical; we may search in vain
in our list of harmonics for the tone which forms that interval.

Now that we have traced the influence of passionate utterance
on music, it still remains for us to consider the influence
of something very different. The dance played an important
rôle in the shaping of the art of music; for to it music owes
periodicity, form, the shaping of phrases into measures,
even its rests. And in this music is not the only debtor,
for poetry owes its very "feet" to the dance.

Now the dance was, and is, an irresponsible thing. It had no
_raison d'être_ except purely physical enjoyment. This rhythmic
swaying of the body and light tapping of the feet have always
had a mysterious attraction and fascination for mankind,
and music and poetry were caught in its swaying measures
early in the dawn of art. When a man walks, he takes either
long steps or short steps, he walks fast or slow. But when
he takes one long step and one short one, when one step is
slow and the other fast, he no longer walks, he dances. Thus
we may say with reasonable certainty that triple time arose
directly from the dance, for triple time is simply one strong,
long beat followed by a short, light one, viz.: [2 4] or
[- '], the "trochee" in our poetry. [4 2] [' -], Iambic.
The spondee [2 2] or [- -], which is the rhythm of prose,
we already possessed; for when we walk it is in spondees,
namely, in groups of two equal steps. Now imagine dancing
to spondees! At first the steps will be equal, but the body
rests on the first beat; little by little the second beat,
being thus relegated to a position of relative unimportance,
becomes shorter and shorter, and we rest longer on the first
beat. The result is the trochaic rhythm. We can see that this
result is inevitable, even if only the question of physical
fatigue is considered. And, to carry on our theory, this very
question of fatigue still further develops rhythm. The strong
beat always coming on one foot, and the light beat on the other,
would soon tire the dancer; therefore some way must be found
to make the strong beat alternate from one foot to the other.
The simplest, and in fact almost the only way to do this,
is to insert an additional short beat before the light beat.
This gives us [- ' -] or [4. 8 4], the dactyl in poetry.

We have, moreover, here discovered the beginning of form, and
have begun to group our musical tones in measures and phrases;
for our second dactyl is slightly different from the first,
because the right foot begins the first and the left foot the
second. We have two measures [(4. 8 4 | 4. 8 4)]
                             [(-  ' - | -  ' -)]
and one phrase, for after the second measure the right foot
will again have the beat and will begin another phrase of two
measures.

Carry this theory still further, and we shall make new
discoveries. If we dance in the open air, unless we would dance
over the horizon, we must turn somewhere; and if we have but a
small space in which to dance, the turns must come sooner and
oftener. Even if we danced in a circle we should need to reverse
the motion occasionally, in order to avoid giddiness; and this
would measure off our phrases into periods and sections.

Thus we see music dividing into two classes, one purely
emotional, the other sensuous; the one arising from the language
of heroes, the other from the swaying of the body and the patter
of feet. To both of these elements, if we may call them so,
metre and melody brought their power; to declamation, metre
brought its potent vitality; to the dance, melody added its soft
charm and lulling rhyme. The intellectual in music, namely,
rhythm and declamation, thus joined forces, as did the purely
sensuous elements, melody and metre (dance). At the first glance
it would seem as if the dance with its rhythms contradicted the
theory of rhythm as being one of the two vital factors in music;
but when we consider the fact that dance-rhythms are merely
regular pulsations (once commenced they pulsate regularly to
the end, without break or change), and when we consider that
just this unbroken regularity is the very antithesis of what
we mean by rhythm, the purely sensuous nature of the dance is
manifest. Strauss was the first to recognize this defect in
the waltz, and he remedied it, so far as it lay within human
skill, by a marvellous use of counter-rhythms, thus infusing
into the dance a simulation of intellectuality.

The weaving together of these elements into one art-fabric has
been the ideal of all poets from Homer to Wagner. The Greeks
idealized their dances; that is to say, they made their dances
fit their declamation. In the last two centuries, and especially
in the middle of the nineteenth, we have danced our highest
flights of impassioned speech. For what is the symphony, sonata,
etc., but a remnant of the dance form? The choric dances of
Stesichorus and Pindar came strangely near our modern forms,
but it was because the form fitted the poem. In our modern
days, we too often, Procrustes-like, make our ideas to fit the
forms. We put our guest, the poetic thought, that comes to us
like a homing bird from out the mystery of the blue sky--we
put this confiding stranger straightway into that iron bed,
the "sonata form," or perhaps even the third rondo form,
for we have quite an assortment. Should the idea survive
and grow too large for the bed, and if we have learned to
love it too much to cut off its feet and thus _make_ it fit
(as did that old robber of Attica), why we run the risk of
having some critic wise in his theoretical knowledge, say,
as was and is said of Chopin, "He is weak in sonata form!"

There are two ways of looking at music: first, as impassioned
speech, the nearest psychologically-complete utterance of
emotion known to man; second, as the dance, comprising as it
does all that appeals to our nature. And there is much that is
lovely in this idea of nature--for do not the seasons dance,
and is it not in that ancient measure we have already spoken of,
the trochaic? Long Winter comes with heavy foot, and Spring is
the light-footed. Again, Summer is long, and Autumn short and
cheery; and so our phrase begins again and again. We all know
with what periodicity everything in nature dances, and how the
smallest flower is a marvel of recurring rhymes and rhythms,
with perfume for a melody. How Shakespeare's Beatrice charms us
when she says, "There a star danced, and under that was I born."

And yet man is not part of Nature. Even in the depths of the
primeval forest, that poor savage, whom we found listening
fearfully to the sound of his drum, knew better. Mankind lives
in isolation, and Nature is a thing for him to conquer. For
Nature is a thing that exists, while man _thinks_. Nature is
that which passively lives while man actively wills. It is the
strain of Nature in man that gave him the dance, and it is his
godlike fight against Nature that gave him impassioned speech;
beauty of form and motion on one side, all that is divine in man
on the other; on one side materialism, on the other idealism.

We have traced the origin of the drum, pipe, and the voice in
music. It still remains for us to speak of the lyre and the
lute, the ancestors of our modern stringed instruments. The
relative antiquity of the lyre and the lute as compared with
the harp has been much discussed, the main contention against
the lyre being that it is a more artificial instrument than
the harp; the harp was played with the fingers alone, while the
lyre was played with a plectrum (a small piece of metal, wood,
or ivory). Perhaps it would be safer to take the lute as the
earliest form of the stringed instrument, for, from the very
first, we find two species of instruments with strings, one
played with the fingers, the prototype of our modern harps,
banjos, guitars, etc., the other played with the plectrum,
the ancestor of all our modern stringed instruments played by
means of bows and hammers, such as violins, pianos, etc.

However this may be, one thing is certain, the possession of
these instruments implies already a considerable measure of
culture, for they were not haphazard things. They were made for
a purpose, were invented to fill a gap in the ever-increasing
needs of expression. In Homer we find a description of the
making of a lyre by Hermes, how this making of a lyre from the
shell of a tortoise that happened to pass before the entrance to
the grotto of his mother, Maïa, was his first exploit; and that
he made it to accompany his song in praise of his father Zeus.
We must accept this explanation of the origin of the lyre,
namely, that it was deliberately invented to accompany the
voice. For the lyre in its primitive state was never a solo
instrument; the tone was weak and its powers of expression
were exceedingly limited. On the other hand, it furnished an
excellent background for the voice and, which was still more
to the point, the singer could accompany himself. The drum
had too vague a pitch, and the flute or pipe necessitated
another performer, besides having too much similarity of tone
to the voice to give sufficient contrast. Granted then that the
lyre was invented to accompany the voice, and without wasting
time with surmises as to whether the first idea of stringed
instruments was received from the twanging of a bowstring
or the finding of a tortoise shell with the half-dessicated
tendons of the animal still stretching across it, let us find
when the instrument was seemingly first used.

That the lyre and lute are of Asiatic origin is generally
conceded, and even in comparatively modern times, Asia seems to
be the home of its descendants. The Tartars have been called
the troubadours of Asia--and of Asia in the widest sense of
the word--penetrating into the heart of the Caucasus on the
west and reaching through the country eastward to the shores of
the Yellow Sea. Marco Polo, the celebrated Venetian traveller,
and M. Huc, a French missionary to China and Thibet, as well
as Spencer, Atkinson, and many others, speak of the wandering
bards of Asia. Marco Polo's account of how Jenghiz Kahn, the
great Mongol conqueror, sent an expedition composed entirely of
minstrels against Mien, a city of 30,000 inhabitants, has often
been quoted to show what an abundance--or perhaps superfluity
would be the better word--of musicians he had at his court.

That the lyre could not be of Greek origin is proved by the fact
that no root has been discovered in the language for _lyra_,
although there are many special names for varieties of the
instrument. Leaving aside the question of the geographical
origin of the instrument, we may say, broadly, that wherever
we find a nation with even the smallest approach to a history,
there we shall find bards singing of the exploits of heroes,
and always to the accompaniment of the lyre or the lute. For at
last, by means of these instruments, impassioned speech was able
to lift itself permanently above the level of everyday life,
and its lofty song could dispense with the soft, sensuous
lull of the flute. And we shall see later how these bards
became seers, and how even our very angels received harps,
so closely did the instrument become associated with what I
have called impassioned speech, which, in other words, is the
highest expression of what we consider godlike in man.



III

THE MUSIC OF THE HEBREWS AND THE HINDUS


The music of the Hebrews presents one of the most interesting
subjects in musical history, although it has an unfortunate
defect in common with so many kindred subjects, namely,
that the most learned dissertation must invariably end with
a question mark. When we read in Josephus that Solomon had
200,000 singers, 40,000 harpers, 40,000 sistrum players, and
200,000 trumpeters, we simply do not believe it. Then too
there is lack of unanimity in the matter of the essential
facts. One authority, describing the _machol_, says it is
a stringed instrument resembling a modern viola; another
describes it as a wind instrument somewhat like a bagpipe;
still another says it is a metal ring with a bell attachment
like an Egyptian sistrum; and finally an equally respected
authority claims that the _machol_ was not an instrument at
all, but a dance. Similarly the _maanim_ has been described
as a trumpet, a kind of rattle box with metal clappers, and
we even have a full account in which it figures as a violin.

The temple songs which we know have evidently been much
changed by surrounding influences, just as in modern synagogues
the architecture has not held fast to ancient Hebrew models
but has been greatly influenced by different countries and
peoples. David may be considered the founder of Hebrew music,
and his reign has been well called an "idyllic episode in the
otherwise rather grim history of Israel."

Of the instruments named in the Scriptures, that called the
harp in our English translation was probably the _kinnor_,
a kind of lyre played by means of a plectrum, which was a
small piece of metal, wood, or bone. The psaltery or _nebel_
(which was of course derived from the Egyptian _nabla_, just
as the _kinnor_ probably was in some mysterious manner derived
from the Chinese _kin_) was a kind of dulcimer or zither, an
oblong box with strings which were struck by small hammers. The
timbrel corresponds to our modern tambourine. The _schofar_
and _keren_ were horns. The former was the well-known ram's horn
which is still blown on the occasion of the Jewish New Year.

In the Talmud mention is made of an organ consisting of ten
pipes which could give one hundred different sounds, each pipe
being able to produce ten tones. This mysterious instrument was
called _magrepha_, and although but one Levite (the Levites were
the professional musicians among the Hebrews) was required to
play it, and although it was only about three feet in length,
its sound was so tremendous that it could be heard ten miles
away. Hieronymus speaks of having heard it on the Mount of
Olives when it was played in the Temple at Jerusalem. To add
to the mystery surrounding this instrument, it has been proved
by several learned authorities that it was merely a large drum;
and, to cap the climax, other equally respected writers have
declared that this instrument was simply a large shovel which,
after being used for the sacrificial fire in the temple, was
thrown to the ground with a great noise, to inform the people
that the sacrifice was consummated.

It is reasonably certain that the seemingly incongruous titles
to the Psalms were merely given to denote the tune to which
they were to be sung, just as in our modern hymns we use the
words _Canterbury_, _Old Hundredth_, _China_, etc.

The word _selah_ has never been satisfactorily explained, some
readings giving as its meaning "forever," "hallelujah," etc.,
while others say that it means repeat, an inflection of the
voice, a modulation to another key, an instrumental interlude,
a rest, and so on without end.

Of one thing we may be certain regarding the ancient Hebrews,
namely, that their religion brought something into the world
that can never again be lost. It fostered idealism, and gave
mankind something pure and noble to live for, a religion
over which Christianity shed the sunshine of divine mercy
and hope. That the change which was to be wrought in life was
sharply defined may be seen by comparing the great songs of the
different nations. For up to that time a song of praise meant
praise of a _King_. He was the sun that warmed men's hearts,
the being from whom all wisdom came, and to whom men looked
for mercy. If we compare the Egyptian hymns with those of the
Hebrews, the difference is very striking. On the walls of the
great temples of Luxor and the Ramesseum at Thebes, as well as
on the wall of the temple of Abydos and in the main hall of the
great rock-hewn temple of Abu-Simbel, in Nubia, is carved the
"Epic of Pentaur," the royal Egyptian scribe of Rameses II:

    My king, his arms are mighty, his heart is firm. He
    bends his bow and none can resist him. Mightier
    than a hundred thousand men he marches forward. His
    counsel is wise and when he wears the royal crown,
    Alef, and declares his will, he is the protector of
    his people. His heart is like a mountain of iron. Such
    is King Rameses.

If we turn to the Hebrew prophets, this is their song:

    The mountains melted from before the Lord and before
    Him went the pestilence; burning coals went forth at
    His feet. Hell is naked before Him and destruction
    hath no covering. He hangeth the earth upon nothing
    and the pillars of heaven tremble and are astonished
    at His reproof. Though He slay me, yet will I trust
    in Him. For I know that my Redeemer liveth, and at
    the last day He shall stand upon the earth.

As with the Hebrews, music among the Hindus was closely
bound to religion. When, 3000 years before the Christian era,
that wonderful, tall, white Aryan race of men descended upon
India from the north, its poets already sang of the gods,
and the Aryan gods were of a different order from those known
to that part of the world; for they were beautiful in shape,
and friendly to man, in great contrast to the gods of the
Davidians, the pre-Aryan race and stock of the Deccan. These
songs formed the _Rig-Veda_, and are the nucleus from which
all Hindu religion and art emanate.

We already know that when the auxiliary speech which we call
music was first discovered, or, to use the language of all
primitive nations, when it was first bestowed on man by the
gods, it retained much of the supernatural potency that its
origin would suggest. In India, music was invested with divine
power, and certain hymns--especially the prayer or chant of
Vashishtha--were, according to the _Rig-Veda_, all powerful in
battle. Such a magic song, or chant, was called a _brahma_,
and he who sang it a _brahmin_. Thus the very foundation of
Brahminism, from which rose Buddhism in the sixth century
B.C., can be traced back to the music of the sacred songs of
the _Rig-Veda_ of India. The priestly or Brahmin caste grew
therefore from the singers of the Vedic hymns. The Brahmins
were not merely the keepers of the sacred books, or Vedas, the
philosophy, science, and laws of the ancient Hindus (for that is
how the power of the caste developed), but they were also the
creators and custodians of its secular literature and art. Two
and a half thousand years later Prince Gautama or Buddha died,
after a life of self-sacrifice and sanctity. On his death five
hundred of his disciples met in a cave near Rajagriha to gather
together his sayings, and chanted the lessons of their great
master. These songs became the bible of Buddhism, just as the
_Vedas_ are the bible of Brahminism, for the Hindu word for
a Buddhist council means literally "a singing together."

Besides the sacred songs of the Brahmins and Buddhists, the
Hindus had many others, some of which partook of the occult
powers of the hymns, occult powers that were as strongly marked
as those of Hebrew music. For while the latter are revealed in
the playing of David before Saul, in the influence of music on
prophecy, the falling of the walls of Jericho at the sound of
the trumpets of Joshua, etc., in India the same supernatural
power was ascribed to certain songs. For instance, there were
songs that could be sung only by the gods, and one of them, so
the legend runs, if sung by a mortal, would envelop the singer
in flames. The last instance of the singing of this song was
during the reign of Akbar, the great Mogul emperor (about 1575
A.D.). At his command the singer sang it standing up to his
neck in the river Djaumna, which, however, did not save him,
for, according to the account, the water around him boiled,
and he was finally consumed by a flame of fire. Another of
Akbar's singers caused the palace to be wrapped in darkness
by means of one of these magic songs, and another averted a
famine by causing rain to fall when the country was threatened
by drought. Animals were also tamed by means of certain songs,
the only relic of which is found in the serpent charmers'
melodies, which, played on a kind of pipe, seem to possess the
power of controlling cobras and the other snakes exhibited by
the Indian fakirs.

Many years before Gautama's time, the brahmas or singers of
sacred songs of ancient India formed themselves into a caste or
priesthood; and the word "Brahma," from meaning a sacred singer,
became the name of the supreme deity; in time, as the nation
grew, other gods were taken into the religion. Thus we find in
pre-Buddha times the trinity of gods: Brahma, Vishnu, and Siva,
with their wives, Sarasvati or learning, Lakshmi or beauty,
and Paravati, who was also called Kali, Durga, and Mahadevi,
and was practically the goddess of evil. Of these gods Brahma's
consort, Sarasvati, the goddess of speech and learning, brought
to earth the art of music, and gave to mankind the _Vina_.

This instrument is still in use and may be called the national
instrument of India. It is composed of a cylindrical pipe,
often bamboo, about three and a half feet long, at each end
of which is fixed a hollow gourd to increase the tone. It is
strung lengthwise with seven metal wires held up by nineteen
wooden bridges, just as the violin strings are supported by a
bridge. The scale of the instrument proceeds in half tones from
[F: a,] to [G: b''] The tones are produced by plucking the
strings with the fingers (which are covered with a kind of
metal thimble), and the instrument is held so that one of
the gourds hangs over the left shoulder, just as one would
hold a very long-necked banjo.

It is to the Krishna incarnation of Vishnu that the Hindu scale
is ascribed. According to the legend, Krishna or Vishnu came to
earth and took the form of a shepherd, and the nymphs sang to
him in many thousand different keys, of which from twenty-four
to thirty-six are known and form the basis of Hindu music. To
be sure these keys, being formed by different successions of
quarter-tones, are practically inexhaustible, and the 16,000
keys of Krishna are quite practicable. The differences in tone,
however, were so very slight that only a few, of them have
been retained to the present time.

The Hindus get their flute from the god Indra, who, from being
originally the all-powerful deity, was relegated by Brahminism
to the chief place among the minor gods--from being the god
of light and air he came to be the god of music. His retinue
consisted of the _gandharvas_, and _apsaras_, or celestial
musicians and nymphs, who sang magic songs. After the rise and
downfall of Buddhism in India the term _raga_ degenerated to
a name for a merely improvised chant to which no occult power
was ascribed.

The principal characteristics in modern Hindu music are a
seemingly instinctive sense of harmony; and although the actual
chords are absent, the melodic formation of the songs plainly
indicates a feeling for modern harmony, and even form. The
actual scale resembles our European scale of twelve semitones
(twenty-two _s'rutis_, quarter-tones), but the modal development
of these sounds has been extraordinary. Now a "mode" is the
manner in which the notes of a scale are arranged. For instance,
in our major mode the scale is arranged as follows: tone,
tone, semitone, tone, tone, tone, semitone. In India there
are at present seventy-two modes in use which are produced by
making seventy-two different arrangements of the scale by means
of sharps and flats, the only rule being that each degree of
the scale must be represented; for instance, one of the modes
_Dehrásan-Karabhárna_ corresponds to our major scale. Our minor
(harmonic) scale figures as _Kyravâni_. _Tânarupi_ corresponds
to the following succession of notes,

    [G: c' d-' e--' f' g' a+' b' c'']

_Gavambódi_, to [G: c' d-' e-' f+' g' a-' b--' c'']

_Máya-Mâlavagaula_, to [G: c' d' e-' f' g-' a' b-' c'']

It can thus easily be seen how the seventy-two modes are
possible and practicable. Observe that the seven degrees of
the scale are all represented in these modes, the difference
between them being in the placing of half-tones by means of
sharps or flats. Not content with the complexity that this modal
system brought into their music, the Hindus have increased it
still more by inventing a number of formulae called _ragas_
(not to be confounded with those rhapsodical songs, the modern
descendant of the magic chants, previously mentioned).

In making a Hindu melody (which of course must be in one of
the seventy-two modes, just as in English we should say that a
melody must be in one of our two modes, either major or minor)
one would have to conform to one of the _ragas_, that is to
say, the melodic outline would have to conform to certain
rules, both in ascending and descending. These rules consist
of omitting notes of the modes, in one manner when the melody
ascends, and in another when it descends. Thus, in the _raga_
called _Mohànna_, in ascending the notes must be arranged in
the following order: 1, 2, 3, 5, 6, 8; in descending it is 8,
7, 5, 4, 2, 1. Thus if we wished to write a melody in the mode
_Tânarupi_--_raga Mohànna_--we could never use the fourth,
F, or the seventh, B, if our melody ascended; if our melody
descended we should have to avoid the sixth, A[sharp], and the
third, E[double-flat]. As one can easily perceive, many strange
melodic effects are produced by these means. For instance,
in the _raga Mohànna_, in which the fourth and seventh degrees
of the scale are avoided in ascending, if it were employed in
the mode _Dehrásin-Karabhárna_, which corresponds to our own
major scale, it would have a pronounced Scotch tinge so long
as the melody ascended; but let it _descend_ and the Scotch
element is deserted for a decided North American Indian,
notably Sioux tinge. The Hindus are an imaginative race, and
invest all these _ragas_ and modes with mysterious attributes,
such as anger, love, fear, and so on. They were even personified
as supernatural beings; each had his or her special name and
history. It was proper to use some of them only at midday,
some in the morning, and some at night. If the mode or _raga_
is changed during a piece, it is expressed in words, by saying,
for instance, that "_Mohànna_" (the new "_raga_") is here
introduced to the family of _Tânarupi_. The melodies formed
from these modes and _ragas_ are divided into four classes,
_Rektah_, _Teranah_, _Tuppah_, and _Ragni_. The _Rektah_ is in
character light and flowing. It falls naturally into regular
periods, and resembles the _Teranah_, with the exception that
the latter is only sung by men. The character of the _Tuppah_
is not very clear, but the _Ragni_ is a direct descendant
of the old magic songs and incantations; in character it is
rhapsodical and spasmodic.



IV

THE MUSIC OF THE EGYPTIANS, ASSYRIANS, AND CHINESE


In speaking of the music of antiquity we are seriously hampered
by the fact that there is practically no actual music in
existence which dates back farther than the eighth or tenth
century of the present era. Even those well-known specimens of
Greek music, as they are claimed to be, the hymns to Apollo,
Nemesis, and Calliope, do not date farther back than the third
or fourth century, and even these are by no means generally
considered authentic. Therefore, so far as actual sounds go,
all music of which we have any practical knowledge dates from
about the twelfth century.

Theoretically, we have the most minute knowledge of the
scientific aspect of music, dating from more than five hundred
years before the Christian era. This knowledge, however, is
worse than valueless, for it is misleading. For instance,
it would be a very difficult thing for posterity to form any
idea as to what our music was like if all the actual music in
the world at the present time were destroyed, and only certain
scientific works such as that of Helmholtz on acoustics and a
few theoretical treatises on harmony, form, counterpoint and
fugue were saved.

From Helmholtz's analysis of sounds one would get the idea
that the so-called tempered scale of our pianos caused thirds
and sixths to sound discordantly.

From the books on harmony one would gather that consecutive
fifths and octaves and a number of other things were never
indulged in by composers, and to cap the climax one would
naturally accept the harmony exercises contained in the books
as being the very acme of what we loved best in music. Thus
we see that any investigation into the music of antiquity must
be more or less conjectural.

Let us begin with the music of the Egyptians. The oldest
existing musical instrument of which we have any knowledge is
an Egyptian lyre to be found in the Berlin Royal Museum. It
is about four thousand years old, dating from the period just
before the expulsion of the Hyksos or "Shepherd" kings.

At that time (the beginning of the eighteenth dynasty, 1500-2000
B.C.) Egypt was just recovering from her five hundred years of
bondage, and music must already have reached a wonderful state
of development. In wall paintings of the eighteenth dynasty
we see flutes, double flutes, and harps of all sizes, from
the small one carried in the hand, to the great harps, almost
seven feet high, with twenty-one strings; the never-failing
sistrum (a kind of rattle); kitharas, the ancestors of our
modern guitars; lutes and lyres, the very first in the line
of instruments culminating in the modern piano.

One hesitates to class the trumpets of the Egyptians in the
same category, for they were war instruments, the tone of
which was probably always forced, for Herodotus says that
they sounded like the braying of a donkey. The fact that the
cheeks of the trumpeter were reinforced with leather straps
would further indicate that the instruments were used only
for loud signalling.

According to the mural paintings and sculptures in the tombs
of the Egyptians, all these instruments were played together,
and accompanied the voice. It has long been maintained that
harmony was unknown to the ancients because of the mathematical
measurement of sounds. This might be plausible for strings,
but pipes could be cut to any size. The positions of the hands
of the executants on the harps and lyres, as well as the use
of short and long pipes, make it appear probable that something
of what we call harmony was known to the Egyptians.

We must also consider that their paintings and sculptures were
eminently symbolic. When one carves an explanation in hard
granite it is apt to be done in shorthand, as it were. Thus, a
tree meant a forest, a prisoner meant a whole army; therefore,
two sculptured harpists or flute players may stand for twenty
or two hundred. Athenaeus, who lived at the end of the second
and beginning of the third century, A.D., speaks of orchestras
of six hundred in Ptolemy Philadelphus's time (300 B.C.),
and says that three hundred of the players were harpers, in
which number he probably includes players on other stringed
instruments, such as lutes and lyres. It is therefore to be
inferred that the other three hundred played wind and percussion
instruments. This is an additional reason for conjecturing
that they used chords in their music; for six hundred players,
not to count the singers, would hardly play entirely in unison
or in octaves. The very nature of the harp is chordal, and
the sculptures always depict the performer playing with both
hands, the fingers being more or less outstretched. That the
music must have been of a deep, sonorous character, we may
gather from the great size of the harps and the thickness of
their strings. As for the flutes, they also are pictured as
being very long; therefore they must have been low in pitch.
The reed pipes, judging from the pictures and sculptures,
were no higher in pitch than our oboes, of which the highest
note is D and E above the treble staff.

It is claimed that so far as the harps were concerned,
the music must have been strictly diatonic in character.
To quote Rowbotham, "the harp, which was the foundation of the
Egyptian orchestra, is an essentially non-chromatic instrument,
and could therefore only play a straight up and down diatonic
scale." Continuing he says, "It is plain therefore that the
Egyptian harmony was purely diatonic; such a thing as modern
modulation was unknown, and every piece from beginning to end
was played in the same key." That this position is utterly
untenable is very evident, for there was nothing to prevent
the Egyptians from tuning their harps in the same order of
tones and half tones as is used for our modern pianos. That
this is even probable may be assumed from the scale of a flute
dating back to the eighteenth or nineteenth century B.C. (1700
or 1600 B.C.), which was found in the royal tombs at Thebes,
and which is now in the Florence Museum.

Its scale was

    [G: (a a+ b c' c+' d') (a' a+' b' c'' c+'' d'') (e'')
        f'' f+'' g'' g+'' (a'' a+'' b'' c''' c+''' d''')]

The only thing about which we may be reasonably certain in
regard to Egyptian music is that, like Egyptian architecture,
it must have been very massive, on account of the preponderance
in the orchestra of the low tones of the stringed instruments.

The sistrum was, properly speaking, not considered a musical
instrument at all. It was used only in religious ceremonies, and
may be considered as the ancestor of the bell that is rung at
the elevation of the Host in Roman Catholic churches. Herodotus
(born 485 B.C.) tells us much about Egyptian music, how the
great festival at Bubastis in honour of the Egyptian Diana
(_Bast_ or _Pascht_), to whom the cat was sacred, was attended
yearly by 700,000 people who came by water, the boats resounding
with the clatter of castanets, the clapping of hands, and the
soft tones of thousands of flutes. Again he tells us of music
played during banquets, and speaks of a mournful song called
_Maneros_. This, the oldest song of the Egyptians (dating back
to the first dynasty), was symbolical of the passing away of
life, and was sung in connection with that gruesome custom
of bringing in, towards the end of a banquet, an effigy of a
corpse to remind the guests that death is the birthright of
all mankind, a custom which was adopted later by the Romans.

Herodotus also gives us a vague but very suggestive glimpse
of what may have been the genesis of Greek tragedy, for he was
permitted to see a kind of nocturnal Egyptian passion play, in
which evidently the tragedy of Osiris was enacted with ghastly
realism. Osiris, who represents the light, is hunted by Set or
Typhon, the god of darkness, and finally torn to pieces by the
followers of Set, and buried beneath the waters of the lake;
Horus, the son of Osiris, avenges his death by subduing Set, and
Osiris appears again as the ruler of the shadowland of death.

This strange tragedy took place at night, on the shore of
the lake behind the great temple at Saïs. Osiris was dressed
royally, in white, and after the horrible pursuit and his
murder by Set and his sinister band, Horus, the rising sun,
dispels the gloom, and a glorious new god of light appears. Set
and his followers are driven back to the gloomy temple where,
perhaps, there was another scene showing the shade of Osiris,
enthroned and ruling the dead. We have no means of knowing the
character of the music which accompanied this mystery play;
but certainly the deep tones of the harps and the flutes,
together with the chanting of men's voices, must have been
appropriate. Add to these the almost silent rattle of the
sistrum, which, for the Egyptians, possessed something of the
supernatural, and we have an orchestral colouring which is
suggestive, to say the least.

With this we will leave Egyptian music, simply calling attention
to the works of Resellini, Lepsius, Wilkinson, and Petri,
which contain copies of mural paintings and temple and tomb
sculptures relating to music. For instance, pages 103, 106, and
111 of Lepsius's third book, "Die Denkmäler aus Aegypten und
Aethiopen," will be found very interesting, particularly page
106, which shows some of the rooms of the palace of Amenotep
IV, of the eighteenth dynasty (about 1500 or 1600 B.C.),
in which dancing and music is being taught. In the same work,
second book, on pages 52 and 53, are pictures taken from a tomb
near Gizeh, showing harp and flute players and singers. The
position of the hands of the singers--they hold them behind
their ears--is a manner of illustrating the act of hearing,
and arises from the hieroglyphic _double_ way of putting things;
for instance, in writing hieroglyphics the word is often first
spelled out, then comes another sign for the pronunciation,
then sometimes even two other signs to emphasize its meaning.

The music of the Assyrians may be summed up very briefly. All
that can be gathered from the bas-relief sculptures is that
shrill tones and acute pitch must have characterized their
music. As Rowbotham says, alluding to the Sardanapalus wall
sculpture now in the British Museum in London, "What can one
think of the musical delicacy of a nation the King of which,
dining alone with his queen, chooses to be regaled with the
sounds of a lyre and a big drum close at his elbow?" The
instruments represented in these bas-reliefs, aside from the
drum, are high-pitched: flutes, pipes, trumpets, cymbals, and
the smaller stringed instruments. These were all portable,
and some, such as drums and dulcimers, were strapped to the
body, all of which points to the eminently warlike character
of the people. Instead of clapping the hands to mark the time
as did the Egyptians, they stamped their feet. The dulcimer
was somewhat like a modern zither, and may be said to contain
the germ of our piano; for it was in the form of a flat case,
strapped to the body and held horizontally in front of the
player. The strings were struck with a kind of plectrum,
held in the right hand, and were touched with the left hand
immediately afterwards to stop the vibration, just as the
dampers in the pianoforte fall on the string the moment the
key is released. There existed among the Chaldeans a science
of music, which, of course, is a very different thing from
practical music, but it was so imbued with astronomical
symbolism that it seems hardly worth while to consider
it here. The art of Babylonia and Assyria culminated in
architecture and bas-relief sculpture, and it is chiefly
valuable as being the germ from which Greek art was developed.

In considering Chinese music one has somewhat the same feeling
as one would have in looking across a flat plain. There are no
mountains in Chinese music, and there is nothing in its history
to make us think that it was ever anything but a more or less
puerile playing with sound; therefore there is no separating
modern Chinese music from that of antiquity. To be sure,
Confucius (about 500 B.C.) said that to be well governed
a nation must possess good music. Pythagoras, Aristotle,
and Plato, in Greece, said the same thing, and their maxims
proved a very important factor in the music of ancient times,
for the simple reason that an art controlled by government can
have nothing very vital about it. Hebrew music was utterly
annihilated by laws, and the poetic imagination thus pent
up found its vent in poetry, the result being some of the
most wonderful works the world has ever known. In Egypt, this
current of inspiration from the very beginning was turned toward
architecture. In Greece, music became a mere stage accessory
or a subject for the dissecting table of mathematics; in China,
we have the dead level of an obstinate adherence to tradition,
thus proving Sir Thomas Browne's saying, "The mortallest enemy
unto knowledge, and that which hath done the greatest execution
upon truth, hath been a peremptory adhesion unto tradition,
and more especially the establishing of our own belief upon
the dictates of antiquity."

The Chinese theory is that there are eight different musical
sounds in nature, namely:

    1. The sound of skin.
    2. The sound of stone.
    3. The sound of metal.
    4. The sound of clay.
    5. The sound of silk.
    6. The sound of wood.
    7. The sound of bamboo.
    8. The sound of gourd.

The sound of skin has a number of varieties, all different
kinds of drums.

The sound of stone is held by the Chinese to be the most
beautiful among sounds, one between that of metal and of
wood. The principal instrument in this category is the _king_,
and in mythology it is the chosen instrument of Kouei, the
Chinese Orpheus. This instrument has a large framework on which
are hung sixteen stones of different sizes, which are struck,
like drums, with a kind of hammer. According to Amiot, only
a certain kind of stone found near the banks of the river
Tee will serve for the making of these instruments, and in
the year 2200 B.C. the Emperor Yu assessed the different
provinces so many stones each for the palace instruments,
in place of tribute.

The sound of metal is embodied in the various kinds of bells,
which are arranged in many different series, sometimes after
the patterns of the _king_, while sometimes they are played
separately.

The sound of clay, or baked earth, is given by a kind of round
egg made of porcelain--for that is what it amounts to--pierced
with five holes and a mouthpiece, upon blowing through which
the sound is produced--an instrument somewhat suggestive of
our ocarina.

The sound of silk is given by two instruments: one a kind of
flat harp with seven strings, called _che_, the other with
twenty-five strings, called _kin_, in size from seven to nine
feet long. The ancient form of this instrument is said to have
had fifty strings.

The sound of wood is a strange element in a Chinese orchestra,
for it is produced in three different ways: first, by an
instrument in the form of a square wooden box with a hole in one
of its sides through which the hand, holding a small mallet,
is inserted, the sound of wood being produced by hammering
with the mallet on the inside walls of the box, just as the
clapper strikes a bell. This box is placed at the northeast
corner of the orchestra, and begins every piece. Second, by a
set of strips of wood strung on a strap or cord, the sound of
which is obtained by beating the palm of the hand with them.
The third is the strangest of all, for the instrument consists
of a life-size wooden tiger. It has a number of teeth or pegs
along the ridge of its back, and it is "played" by stroking
these pegs rapidly with a wooden staff, and then striking the
tiger on the head. This is the prescribed end of every Chinese
orchestral composition, and is supposed to be a symbol of man's
supremacy over brute creation. The tiger has its place in the
northwest corner of the orchestra.

The sound of bamboo is represented in the familiar form of
Pan's pipes, and various forms of flutes which hardly need
further description.

And finally the sound of the gourd. The gourd is a kind of
squash, hollowed out, in which from thirteen to twenty-four
pipes of bamboo or metal are inserted; each one of these
pipes contains a metal reed, the vibration of which causes
the sound. Below the reed are cut small holes in the pipes,
and there is a pipe with a mouthpiece to keep the gourd,
which is practically an air reservoir, full of air. The air
rushing out through the bamboo pipes will naturally escape
through the holes cut below the reeds, making no sound, but
if the finger stops one or more of these holes, the air is
forced up through the reeds, thus giving a musical sound,
the pitch of which will be dependent on the length of the
pipes and the force with which the air passes through the reed.

Other instruments of the Chinese are gongs of all sizes,
trumpets, and several stringed instruments somewhat akin to our
guitars and mandolins. Neither the Chinese nor the Japanese
have ever seemed to consider the voice as partaking of the
nature of music. This is strange, for the language of the
Chinese depends on flexibility of the voice to make it even
intelligible. As a matter of fact, singing, in our sense of
the word, is unknown to them.



V

THE MUSIC OF THE CHINESE (Continued)


Having described the musical instruments in use in China
we still have for consideration the music itself, and the
conditions which led up to it.

Among the Chinese instruments mentioned in the preceding
chapter, the preponderance of instruments of percussion, such
as drums, gongs, bells, etc., has probably been noticed. In
connection with the last named we meet with one of the two cases
in Chinese art in which we see the same undercurrent of feeling,
or rather superstition, as that found among western nations. We
read in the writings of Mencius, the Chinese philosopher (350
B.C.), the following bit of gossip about the king Senen of Tse.

  "The king," said he, "was sitting aloft in the hall, when
  a man appeared, leading an ox past the lower part of it.
  The king saw him, and asked, 'Where is the ox going?'

  "The man replied, 'We are going to consecrate a bell with
  its blood.'

  "The king said, 'Let it go. I cannot bear its frightened
  appearance as if it were an innocent person going to the
  place of death.'

  "The man answered, 'Shall we then omit the consecration
  of the bell?'

  "The king said, 'How can that be omitted? Change the ox
  for a sheep.'"

As stated before, this is one of the few cases in which Chinese
superstition coincides with that of the West; for our own church
bells were once consecrated in very much the same manner, a
survival of that ancient universal custom of sacrifice. With
the exception of this resemblance, which, however, has nothing
to do with actual music, everything in Chinese art is exactly
the opposite of our western ideas on the subject.

The Chinese orchestra is composed of about sixteen different
types of percussion instruments and four kinds of wind and
stringed instruments, whereas in our European orchestras the
ratio is exactly reversed. Their orchestras are placed at
the back of the stage, ours in front of it. The human voice
is not even mentioned in their list of musical sounds (sound
of metal, baked clay, wood, skin, bamboo, etc)., whereas we
consider it the most nearly perfect instrument existing. This
strange perversity once caused much discussion in days when
we knew less of China than we do at present, as to whether
the Chinese organs of hearing were not entirely different from
those of western nations. We now know that this contradiction
runs through all their habits of life. With them white is the
colour indicative of mourning; the place of honour is on the
left hand; the seat of intellect is in the stomach; to take off
one's hat is considered an insolent gesture; the magnetic needle
of the Chinese compass is reckoned as pointing south, instead of
north; even up to the middle of the nineteenth century the chief
weapon in war was the bow and arrow, although they were long
before acquainted with gunpowder--and so on, _ad infinitum_.

We are aware that the drum is the most primitive instrument
known to man. If all our knowledge of the Chinese were included
in a simple list of their orchestral instruments, we should
recognize at once that the possession of the gourd, mouth-organ,
and lute indicates a nation which has reached a high state of
civilization; on the other hand, the great preponderance of
bells, gongs, drums, etc., points unmistakably to the fact
that veneration of the laws and traditions of the past (a
past of savage barbarism), and a blind acquiescence in them,
must constitute the principal factor in that civilization. The
writings of Chinese philosophers are full of wise sayings
about music, but in practice the music itself becomes almost
unbearable. For instance, in the Confucian _Analects_ we read,
"The Master (Confucius)[02] said: 'How to play music may be
known. At the commencement of the piece, all the parts should
sound together. As it proceeds, they should be in harmony,
severally distinct, and flowing without a break, and thus on
to the conclusion.'" The definition is certainly remarkable
when one considers that it was given about five hundred
years before our era. In practice, however, the Chinese do
not distinguish between musical _combinations_ of sound and
_noise_; therefore the above definition must be taken in a very
different sense from that which ordinarily would be the case. By
harmony, Confucius evidently means similarity of noises, and by
"melody flowing without a break" he means absolute monotony of
rhythm. We know this from the hymns to the ancestors which,
with the hymns to the Deity, are the sacred songs of China,
songs which have come down from time immemorial.

According to Amiot one of the great court functions is the
singing of the "Hymn to the Ancestors," which is conducted
by the Emperor. Outside the hall where this ceremony takes
place are stationed a number of bell and gong players who
may not enter, but who, from time to time, according to fixed
laws, join in the music played and sung inside. In the hall
the orchestra is arranged in the order prescribed by law:
the _ou_, or wooden tiger, which ends every piece, is placed
at the northwest end of the orchestra, and the _tschou_, or
wooden box-drum, which begins the music, at the northeast;
in the middle are placed the singers who accompany the hymn
by posturing as well as by chanting. At the back of the hall
are pictures of the ancestors, or merely tablets inscribed
with their names, before which is a kind of altar, bearing
flowers and offerings. The first verse of the hymn consists of
eight lines in praise of the godlike virtues of the ancestors,
whose spirits are supposed to descend from Heaven and enter
the hall during the singing of this verse by the chorus. Then
the Emperor prostrates himself three times before the altar,
touching his head to the earth each time. As he offers the
libations and burns the perfumes on the altar, the chorus
sings the second verse of eight lines, in which the spirits
are thanked for answering the prayer and entreated to accept
the offerings. The Emperor then prostrates himself nine times,
after which he resumes his position before the altar, while
the last verse of eight lines, eulogistic of the ancestors,
is being chanted; during this the spirits are supposed to
ascend again to Heaven. The hymn ends with the scraping of
the tiger's back and striking it on the head.

We can imagine the partial gloom of this species of chapel,
lighted by many burning, smoky joss-sticks, with its glint
of many-coloured silks, and gold embroidery; the whining,
nasal, half-spoken, monotonous drone of the singers with their
writhing figures bespangled with gold and vivid colour; the
incessant stream of shrill tones from the wind instruments;
the wavering, light clatter of the musical stones broken
by the steady crash of gongs and the deep booming of large
drums; while from outside, the most monstrous bell-like noises
vaguely penetrate the smoke-laden atmosphere. The ceremony
must be barbarously impressive; the strange magnificence of it
all, together with the belief in the actual presence of the
spirits, which the vague white wreaths of joss-stick smoke
help to suggest, seem to lend it dignity. From the point of
view of what we call music, the hymn is childish enough; but
we must keep in mind the definition of Confucius. According
to the Chinese, music includes that phase of sound which we
call mere noise, and the harmonizing of this noise is Chinese
art. We must admit, therefore, that from this point of view
their orchestra is well balanced, for what will rhyme better
with noise than more noise? The gong is best answered by the
drum, and the tomtom by the great bell.

China also has its folk song, which seems to be an irrepressible
flower of the field in all countries. This also follows the
precepts of the sages in using only the five-note or pentatonic
scale found among so many other nationalities. It differs,
however, from the official or religious music, inasmuch as
that unrhythmic perfection of monotony, so loved by Confucius,
Mencius, and their followers, is discarded in favour of a style
more naturally in touch with human emotion. These folk songs
have a strong similarity to Scotch and Irish songs, owing to
the absence of the fourth and seventh degrees of the scale.
If they were really sung to the accompaniment of chords, the
resemblance would be very striking. The Chinese singing voice,
however, is not sonorous, the quality commonly used being a
kind of high, nasal whine, very far removed from what we call
music. The accompaniment of the songs is of a character most
discordant to European ears, consisting as it does mainly of
constant drum or gong beats interspersed with the shrill notes
of the _kin_, the principal Chinese stringed instrument. Ambros,
the historian, quotes a number of these melodies, but falls
into a strange mistake, for his version of a folk song called
"_Tsin-fa_" is as follows:

    [Figure 01]

Now this is exactly as if a Chinaman, wishing to give his
countrymen an idea of a Beethoven sonata, were to eliminate
all the harmony and leave only the bare melody accompanied by
indiscriminate beats on the gong and a steady banging on two or
three drums of different sizes. This is certainly the manner
in which the little melody just quoted would be accompanied,
and not by European chords and rhythms.

If we could eliminate from our minds all thoughts of music and
bring ourselves to listen only to the _texture_ of sounds, we
could better understand the Chinese ideal of musical art. For
instance, if in listening to the deep, slow vibrations of a
large gong we ignore completely all thought of pitch, fixing
our attention only upon the roundness and fullness of the sound
and the way it gradually diminishes in volume without losing
any of its pulsating colour, we should then realize what the
Chinese call music. Confucius said, "When the music master Che
first entered on his office, the finish with the _Kwan-Ts'eu_
(Pan's-pipes) was magnificent--how it filled the ears!" And
that is just what Chinese music aims to do, it "fills the ears"
and therefore is "magnificent."[03]

With their views as to what constitutes the beautiful in music
it is not strange that the Chinese find our music detestable. It
goes too fast for them. They ask, "Why play another entirely
different kind of sound until one has already enjoyed to
the full what has gone before?" As they told Père Amiot
many years ago: "Our music penetrates through the ear to the
heart, and from the heart to the soul; that your music cannot
do." Amiot had played on a harpsichord some pieces by Rameau
("_Les Cyclopes_," "_Les Charmes_," etc.) and much flute music,
but they could make nothing of it.

According to their conception of music, sounds must follow one
another slowly, in order to pass through the ears to the heart
and thence to the soul; therefore they went back with renewed
satisfaction to their long, monotonous chant accompanied by
a pulsating fog of clangour.

Some years ago, at the time of that sudden desire of China,
or more particularly of Li Hung Chang, to know more of
occidental civilization, some Chinese students were sent
by their government to Berlin to study music. After about a
month's residence in Berlin these students wrote to the Chinese
government asking to be recalled, as they said it would be
folly to remain in a barbarous country where even the most
elementary principles of music had not yet been grasped.

To go deeply into the more technical side of Chinese music
would be a thankless task, for in the Chinese character
the practical is entirely overshadowed by the speculative.
All kinds of fanciful names are given to the different tones,
and many strange ideas associated with them. Although our modern
chromatic scale (all but the last half-tone) is familiar to
them, they have never risen to a practical use of it even to
this day. The Chinese scale is now, as it always has been,
one of five notes to the octave, that is to say, our modern
major scale with the fourth and seventh omitted.

From a technical point of view, the instruments of bamboo attain
an importance above all other Chinese instruments. According
to the legend, the Pan's-pipes of bamboo regulated the tuning
of all other instruments, and as a matter of fact the pipe
giving the note F, the universal tonic, is the origin of
all measures also. For this pipe, which in China is called
the "musical foot," is at the same time a standard measure,
holding exactly twelve hundred millet seeds, and long enough
for one hundred millet seeds to stand end on end within it.

In concluding this consideration of the music of the
Chinese, I would draw attention to the unceasing repetition
which constitutes a prominent feature in all barbarous or
semi-barbarous music. In the "Hymn of the Ancestors" this
endless play on three or four notes is very marked.

    [Figure 02]

In other songs it is equally apparent.

    [Figure 03] etc.

    [Figure 04]

    [Figure 05] etc.

This characteristic is met with in the music of the American
Indians, also in American street songs, in fact in all music of
a primitive nature, just as our school children draw caricatures
similar to those made by great chiefs and medicine men in the
heart of Africa, and, similarly, the celebrated "graffiti"
of the Roman soldiers were precisely of the same nature as
the beginnings of Egyptian art. In art, the child is always
a barbarian more or less, and all strong emotion acting on
a naturally weak organism or a primitive nature brings the
same result, namely, that of stubborn repetition of one idea.
An example of this is Macbeth, who, in the very height of his
passion, stops to juggle with the word "sleep," and in spite
of the efforts of his wife, who is by far the more civilized
of the two, again and again recurs to it, even though he
is in mortal danger. When Lady Macbeth at last breaks down,
she also shows the same trait in regard to her bloodstained
hands. It is not so far from Scotland to the Polar regions,
and there we find that when Kane captured a young Eskimo and
kept him on his ship, the only sign of life the prisoner gave
was to sing over and over to himself the following:

    [Figure 06]

Coming back again to civilization, we find Tennyson's Elaine, in
her grief, repeating, incessantly the words, "Must I then die."

The music of the Siamese, Burmese, Javanese, and Japanese has
much in common with that of the Chinese, the difference between
the first two and the last named being mainly in the absence
of the _king_, or musical stones, or rather the substitution
of sets of drums in place of it. For instance, the Burmese
drum-organ, as it is called, consists of twenty-one drums
of various sizes hung inside a great hoop. Their gong-organ
consists of fifteen or more gongs of different sizes strung
inside a hoop in the same manner. The player takes his place
in the middle of the hoop and strikes the drums or gongs
with a kind of stick. These instruments are largely used in
processions, being carried by two men, just as a sedan chair is
borne; the player, in order to strike all the gongs and bells,
must often walk backwards, or strike them behind his back.

In Javanese and Burmese music these sets of gongs and drums are
used incessantly, and form a kind of high-pitched, sustained
tone beneath which the music is played or sung.

In Siamese music the wind instruments have a prominent
place. After having heard the Siamese Royal Orchestra a number
of times in London, I came to the conclusion that the players
on the different instruments _improvise_ their parts, the only
rule being the general character of the melodies to be played,
and the finishing together. The effect of the music was that
of a contrapuntal nightmare, hideous to a degree which one who
has not heard it cannot conceive. Berlioz, in his "Soirées de
l'orchestre," well described its effect when he said:

    "After the first sensation of horror which one cannot
    repress, one feels impelled to laugh, and this hilarity
    can only be controlled by leaving the hall. So long
    as these impossible sounds continue, the fact of their
    being gravely produced, and in all sincerity _admired_
    by the players, makes the 'concert' appear inexpressibly
    'comic.'"

The Japanese had the same Buddhistic disregard for euphony,
but they have adopted European ideas in music and are rapidly
becoming occidentalized from a musical point of view. Their
principal instruments are the _koto_ and the _samisen_. The
former is similar to the Chinese _che_, and is a kind of large
zither with thirteen strings, each having a movable bridge by
means of which the pitch of the string may be raised or lowered.
The _samisen_ is a kind of small banjo, and probably originated
in the Chinese _kin_.

From Buddhism to sun worship, from China to Peru and Mexico,
is a marked change, but we find strange resemblances in the
music of these peoples, seeming almost to corroborate the
theory that the southern American races may be traced back to
the extreme Orient. We remember that in the Chinese sacred
chants--"official" music as one may call it--all the notes
were of exactly the same length. Now Garcilaso de la Vega
(1550), in his "Commentarios Reales," tells us that unequal
time was unknown in Peru, that all the notes in a song were
of exactly the same length. He further tells us that in his
time the voice was but seldom heard in singing, and that
all the songs were played on the flute, the words being so
well known that the melody of the flute immediately suggested
them. The Peruvians were essentially a pipe race, while, on the
other hand, the instruments of the Mexicans were of the other
extreme, all kinds of drums, copper gongs, rattles, musical
stones, cymbals, bells, etc., thus completing the resemblance
to Chinese art. In Prescott's "Conquest of Peru" we may read
of the beautiful festival of Raymi, or adoration of the sun,
held at the period of the summer solstice. It describes how the
Inca and his court, followed by the whole population of the
city, assembled at early dawn in the great square of Cuzco,
and how, at the appearance of the first rays of the sun,
a great shout would go up, and thousands of wind instruments
would break forth into a majestic song of adoration. That the
Peruvians were a gentler nation than the Mexicans can be seen
from their principal instrument, the pipe.

While it has been strenuously denied that on such occasions
human sacrifices were offered in Peru, the Mexicans, that race
whose principal instruments were drums and brass trumpets,
not only held such sacrifices, but, strange to say, held
them in honour of a kind of god of music, Tezcatlipoca. This
festival was the most important in Mexico, and took place
at the temple or "teocalli," a gigantic, pyramid-like mass
of stone, rising in terraces to a height of eighty-six feet
above the city, and culminating in a small summit platform
upon which the long procession of priests and victims could
be seen from all parts of the city. Once a year the sacrifice
was given additional importance, for then the most beautiful
youth in Mexico was chosen to represent the god himself. For
a year before the sacrifice he was dressed as Tezcatlipoca,
in royal robes and white linen, with a helmet-like crown of
sea shells with white cocks' plumes, and with an anklet hung
with twenty gold bells as a symbol of his power, and he was
married to the most beautiful maiden in Mexico. The priests
taught him to play the flute, and whenever the people heard
the sound of it they fell down and worshipped him.

The account may be found in Bancroft's great work on the
"Native Races of the Pacific," also Sahagun's "Nueva España
and Bernal Diaz," but perhaps the most dramatic description
is that by Rowbotham:

    And when the morning of the day of sacrifice arrived,
    he was taken by water to the Pyramid Temple where he
    was to be sacrificed, and crowds lined the banks of the
    river to see him in the barge, sitting in the midst of
    his beautiful companions. When the barge touched the
    shore, he was taken away from those companions of his
    forever, and was delivered over to a band of priests,
    exchanging the company of beautiful women for men
    clothed in black mantles, with long hair matted with
    blood--their ears also were mangled. These conducted
    him to the steps of the pyramid, and he was driven
    up amidst a crowd of priests, with drums beating and
    trumpets blowing. As he went up he broke an earthen
    flute on every step to show that his love, and his
    delights were over. And when he reached the top, he was
    sacrificed on an altar of jasper, and the signal that
    the sacrifice was completed was given to the multitudes
    below by the rolling of the great sacrificial drum.[04]


[02] _Kong_. His disciples called him _Fu Tsee_, or "the
     master"; Jesuit missionaries Latinized this to Confucius.

[03] The Chinese theatre has been called an unconscious
     parody of our old-fashioned Italian opera, and there
     are certainly many resemblances. In a Chinese play,
     when the situation becomes tragic, or when one of the
     characters is seized with some strong emotion, it finds
     vent in a kind of aria. The dialogue is generally given
     in the most monotonous manner possible--using only
     high throat and head tones, occasionally lowering or
     raising the voice on a word, to express emotion. This
     monotonous, and to European ears, strangely nonchalant,
     nasal recitative, is being continually interrupted by
     gong pounding and the shrill, high sound of discordant
     reed instruments. When one or more of the characters
     commits suicide (which as we know is an honoured custom
     in China) he sings--or rather whines--a long chant before
     he dies, just as his western operatic colleagues do, as,
     for instance, Edgar in "Lucia di Lammermoor" and even,
     to come nearer home, Siegfried in "Götterdämmerung."

[04] This drum was made of serpents' skins, and the sound of
     it was so loud that it could be heard eight miles away.



VI

THE MUSIC OF GREECE


The first name of significance in Greek music is that of
Homer. The hexameters of "The Iliad" and "The Odyssey" were
quite probably chanted, but the four-stringed lyre which we
associate with the ancient Greek singers was only used for
a few preluding notes--possibly to pitch the voice of the
bard--and not during the chant itself. For whatever melody
this chant possessed, it depended entirely upon the raising
and lowering of the voice according to the accent of the words
and the dramatic feeling of the narrative. For its rhythm
it depended upon that of the hexameter, which consists of
a line of six dactyls and spondees, the line always ending
with a spondee. Really the line should end with a dactyl
([- ' ']) and a spondee ([- -]). If a line ends with two
spondees it is a spondaic hexameter.

From this it would seem that while the pitch of the chant would
be very difficult to gauge, owing to the diversity of opinion as
to how to measure in actual sounds the effect of emotions upon
the human voice, at least the _rhythm_ of the chants would be
well defined, owing to the hexameter in which the latter were
written. Here again, however, we are cast adrift by theory,
for in practice nothing could be more misleading than such a
deduction. For instance, the following lines from Longfellow's
"Evangeline" are both in this metre, although the rhythm of
one differs greatly from that of the other.

    Wearing her Norman cap, and her kirtle of blue, and the earrings

and

    Shielding the house from storms, on the north were the barns
          and the farm-yard.

Now if we think that these lines can be sung to the same
musical rhythm we are very far from the truth, although both
are hexameters, namely,

    [- ' ' - ' - ' ' - ' ' - ' ' - -]

    [- ' ' - ' - ' ' - ' ' - ' ' - -]

dactyls, ending with spondee.

Thus we see that metre in verse and rhythm in music are two
different things, although of course they both had the same
origin.

After all has been said, it is perhaps best to admit that, so
far as Greek music is concerned, its better part certainly lay
in poetry. In ancient times all poetry was sung or chanted; it
was what I have called impassioned speech. The declamation of
"The Iliad" and "The Odyssey" constituted what was really the
"vocal" music of the poems. With the Greeks the word "music"
(_mousiké_) included all the aesthetic culture that formed part
of the education of youth; in the same general way a poet was
called a singer, and even in Roman times we find Terence, in
his "Phormio," alluding to poets as musicians. That Aeschylus
and Sophocles were not musicians, as we understand the term,
is very evident in spite of the controversies on the subject.

Impassioned speech, then, was all that existed of vocal music,
and as such was in every way merely the audible expression of
poetry. I have no doubt that this is the explanation of the
statement that Aeschylus and Sophocles wrote what has been
termed the _music_ to their tragedies. What they really did
was to teach the chorus the proper declamation and stage
action. It is well known that at the Dionysian Festival
it was to the poet as "chorus master" that the prize was
awarded, so entirely were the arts identified one with the
other. That declamation may often reach the power of music,
it is hardly necessary to say. Among modern poets, let any
one, for instance, look at Tennyson's "Passing of Arthur" for
an example of this kind of music; the mere sound of the words
completes the picture. For instance, when Arthur is dying and
gives his sword, Excalibur, to Sir Bedivere with the command
to throw it into the mere, the latter twice fails to do so,
and returns to Arthur telling him that all he saw was

   "The water lapping on the crag
    And the long ripple washing in the reeds."

But when at last he throws it, the magic sword

   "Made lightnings in the splendour of the moon
    And flashing round and round, and whirl'd in an arch
    Shot like a streamer of the northern morn.
    So flashed and fell the brand Excalibur."

Again, when Sir Bedivere, carrying the dying king, stumbles
up over the icy rocks to the shore, his armour clashing
and clanking, the verse uses all the clangour of cr--ck, the
slipping s's too, and the vowel _a_ is used in all its changes;
when the shore is finally reached, the verse suddenly turns
into smoothness, the long _o_'s giving the same feeling of
breadth and calm that modern music would attempt if it treated
the same subject.

Here are the lines:

    Dry clash'd his harness in the icy caves
    And barren chasms, and all to left and right
    The bare, black cliff clang'd round him as he based
    His feet on juts of slippery crag that rang
    Sharp-smitten with the dint of arméd heels.
    And on a sudden, lo! the level lake
    And the long glories of the winter moon.

When we think of the earlier Greek plays, we must imagine
the music of the words themselves, the cadenced voices of
the protagonist or solitary performer, and the chorus, the
latter keeping up a rhythmic motion with the words. This,
I am convinced, was the extent of Greek music, so far as that
which was ascribed to the older poets is concerned.

Instrumental music was another thing, and although we possess
no authentic examples of it, we know what its scales consisted
of and what instruments were in use. It would be interesting
to pass in review the tragedies of Aeschylus and Sophocles,
the odes of Sappho and Pindar, those of the latter having a
novel periodicity of form which gives force to the suggestion
that these choric dances were the forerunners of our modern
instrumental forms.

Such matters, however, take us from our actual subject, and we
will therefore turn to Pythagoras, at Crotona, in Italy (about
500 B.C.), whom we find already laying down the rules forming
a mathematical and scientific basis for the Greek musical scale.

More than three centuries had passed since Homer had chanted
his "Iliad" and "Odyssey," and in the course of the succeeding
fifty years some of the master spirits of the world were to
appear. When we think of Pythagoras, Gautama, Buddha, Confucius,
Aeschylus, Sophocles, Sappho, Pindar, Phidias, and Herodotus as
contemporaries--and this list might be vastly extended--it seems
as if some strange wave of ideality had poured over mankind.
In Greece, however, Pythagoras's theory of metempsychosis
(doctrine of the supposed transmigration of the soul from
one body to another) was not strong enough to make permanent
headway, and his scientific theories unhappily turned music
from its natural course into the workshop of science, from
which Aristoxenus in vain attempted to rescue it.

At that time Homer's hexameter had begun to experience many
changes, and from the art of rhythm developed that of rhyme and
form. The old lyre, from having four strings, was developed by
Terpander, victor in the first musical contest at the feast
of Apollo Carneius, into an instrument of seven strings, to
which Pythagoras[05] added an eighth, Theophrastus a ninth,
and so on until the number of eighteen was reached.

Flute and lyre playing had attained a high state of excellence,
for we hear that Lasus, the teacher of the poet Pindar
(himself the son of a Theban flute player), introduced into
lyre playing the runs and light passages which, until that time,
it had been thought possible to produce only on the flute.

The dance also had undergone a wonderful development
rhythmically; for even in Homer's time we read in "The Odyssey"
of the court of Alcinoüs at Phocaea, how two princes danced
before Ulysses and played with a scarlet ball, one throwing
it high in the air, the other always catching it with his
feet off the ground; and then changing, they flung the ball
from one to the other with such rapidity that it made the
onlookers dizzy. During the play, Demidocus chanted a song,
and accompanied the dance with his lyre, the players never
losing a step. As Aristides (died 468 B.C.), speaking of
Greek music many centuries later said: "Metre is not a thing
which concerns the ear alone, for in the dance it is to be
_seen_." Even a statue was said to have silent rhythm, and
pictures were spoken of as being musical or unmusical.

Already in Homer's time, the Cretans had six varieties of
[5/4] time to which they danced:

  [4 8 4 | 4 8 8 8 | 8 4 8 8 | 8 8 4 8 | 8 8 8 4 | 8 8 8 8 8]
  [- ' - | - ' ' ' | ' - ' ' | ' ' - ' | ' ' ' - | ' ' ' ' ']

The first was known as the Cretic foot, being in a way the model
or type from which the others were made; but the others were
called paeons. The "Hymn to Apollo" was called a paeon or paean,
for the singers danced in Cretic rhythms as they chanted it.

There were many other dances in Greece, each having its
characteristic rhythm. For instance, the Molossian dance
consisted of three long steps, [- - -] ([3/2]); that of the
Laconians was the dactyl, [- ' '] ([4/4]), which was sometimes
reversed [' ' -] ([4/4]). In the latter form it was also the
chief dance of the Locrians, the step being called anapaest.
From Ionia came the two long and two short steps, [- - ' '],
([3/4: 4 4 8 8]), or [' ' - -] ([3/4: 8 8 4 4]), which were
called Ionic feet. The Doric steps consisted primarily of a
trochee and a spondee, [- ' - -] or [7/8] time. These values,
however, were arranged in three other different orders, namely,
[' - - - | - - ' - | - - - '] and were called the first,
second, third, or fourth epitrite, according to the positions
of the short step. The second epitrite was considered the most
distinctly Doric.

The advent of the Dionysian[06] festivals in Greece threatened
to destroy art, for those wild Bacchic dances, which are to
be traced back to that frenzied worship of Bel and Astarte
in Babylon, wild dances amenable only to the impulse of the
moment, seemed to carry everything before them. Instead of that,
however, the hymns to Bacchus, who was called in Phoenicia
the flute god, from which the characteristics of his worship
are indicated, were the germs from which tragedy and comedy
developed, and the mad bacchanalian dances were tamed into
dithyrambs. For the Corybantes, priests of the goddess Cybele,
brought from Phrygia, in Asia Minor, the darker form of this
worship; they mourned for the death of Bacchus, who was supposed
to die in winter and to come to life again in the spring. When
these mournful hymns were sung, a goat was sacrificed on the
altar; thus the origin of the word "tragedy" or "goat song"
(_tragos_, goat, and _odos_, singer). As the rite developed,
the leader of the chorus would chant the praises of Dionysus,
and sing of his adventures, to which the chorus would make
response. In time it became the custom for the leader,
or coryphaeus, to be answered by one single member of the
chorus, the latter being thus used merely for the chanting
of commentaries on the narrative. The answerer was called
"hypocrite," afterward the term for actor.

This was the material from which Aeschylus created the
first tragedy, as we understand the term. Sophocles (495-406
B.C.) followed, increasing the number of actors, as did also
Euripides (480-406 B.C.).

Comedy (_komos_, revel, and _odos_, singer) arose from the
spring and summer worship of Bacchus, when everything was a
jest and Nature smiled again.

The dithyramb (_dithyrambos_ or Bacchic step, [- ' ' -])
brought a new step to the dance and therefore a new element
into poetry, for all dances were choric, that is to say they
were sung as well as danced.

Arion was the first to attempt to bring the dithyramb into
poetry, by teaching the dancers to use a slower movement and to
observe greater regularity in their various steps. The Lydian
flute, as may be supposed, was the instrument which accompanied
the dithyramb, associated with all kinds of harsh, clashing
instruments, such as cymbals, tambourines, castanets. These
Arion tried to replace by the more dignified Grecian lyre;
but it was long before this mad dance sobered down to regular
rhythm and form. From Corinth, where Arion first laboured,
we pass to Sicyon, where the taming of the dithyramb into an
art form was accomplished by Praxilla, a poetess who added a
new charm to the lilt of this Bacchic metre, namely, rhyme.

And this newly acquired poetic wealth was in keeping with
the increasing luxury and magnificence of the cities, for
we read in Athenaeus and Diodorus that Agrigentum sent to
the Olympic games three hundred chariots, drawn by white
horses. The citizens wore garments of cloth of gold, and even
their household ornaments were of gold and silver; in their
houses they had wine cellars which contained three hundred
vats, each holding a hundred hogsheads of wine. In Sybaris
this luxury reached its height, for the Sybarites would not
allow any trade which caused a disagreeable sound, such as
that of the blacksmith, carpenter, or mason, to be carried on
in their city limits. They dressed in garments of deep purple,
tied their hair in gold threads, and the city was famed for
its incessant banqueting and merrymaking. It was such luxury
as this that Pindar found at the court of Hiero, at Syracuse,
whither Aeschylus had retired after his defeat by Sophocles
at the Dionysian Festival at Athens.

The worship of Bacchus being at its height at that time, it may
be imagined that wine formed the principal element of their
feasts. And even as the dithyramb had been pressed into the
service of poetry, so was drinking made rhythmic by music. For
even the wine was mixed with water according to musical ratios;
for instance, the paeonic or 3 to 2, [' ' ' -] = [8 8 8 4];
the iambic or 2 to 1, [- '] = [4 8]; dactylic or 2 to 2,
[- ' '] = [4. 8 8]. The master of the feast decided the ratio,
and a flute girl played a prescribed melody while the toast
to good fortune, which commenced every banquet, was being
drunk. By the time the last note had sounded, the great cup
should have gone round the table and been returned to the
master. And then they had the game of the cottabos, which
consisted of throwing the contents of a wine cup high in the
air in such a manner that the wine would fall in a solid mass
into a metal basin. The winner was the one who produced the
clearest musical sound from the basin.

We see from all this that music was considered rather
a beautiful plaything or a mere colour. By itself it was
considered effeminate; therefore the early Greeks always had the
flute player accompanied by a singer, and the voice was always
used with the lyre to prevent the latter appealing directly
to the senses. The dance was corrected in the same manner;
for when we speak of Greek dances, we always mean _choric_
dances. Perhaps the nearest approach to the effect of what
we call music was made by Aeschylus, in the last scene of his
"Persians," when Xerxes and the chorus end the play with one
continued wail of sorrow. In this instance the words take
second place, and the actual sound is depended upon for the
dramatic effect.

The rise and fall of actual instrumental music in Greece may
be placed between 500 and 400 B.C. After the close of the
Peloponnesian War (404 B.C.), when Sparta supplanted Athens as
the leader of Greece, art declined rapidly, and at the time
of Philip of Macedon (328 B.C.) may be said to have been
practically extinct. Then, in place of the dead ashes of art,
the cold fire of science arose; for we have such men as Euclid
(300 B.C.) and his school applying mathematics to musical
sounds, and a system of cold calculation to an art that had
needed all the warmth of emotional enthusiasm to keep it alive.
Thus music became a science. Had it not been for the little
weeds of folk song which managed with difficulty to survive at
the foot of this arid dust heap, and which were destined to be
transformed and finally to bloom into such lovely flowers in
our times, we might yet have been using the art to illustrate
mathematical calculations.

The teaching of Pythagoras was the first step in this
classification of sounds; and he went further than this, for
he also classified the _emotions_ affected by music. It was
therefore a natural consequence that in his teaching he should
forbid music of an emotional character as injurious. When he
came to Crotona, it was to a city that vied with Agrigentum,
Sybaris, and Tarentum in luxury; its chief magistrate wore
purple garments, a golden crown upon his head, and white
shoes on his feet. It was said of Pythagoras that he had
studied twelve years with the Magi in the temples of Babylon;
had lived among the Druids of Gaul and the Indian Brahmins; had
gone among the priests of Egypt and witnessed their most secret
temple rites. So free from care or passion was his face that
he was thought by the people to be Apollo; he was of majestic
presence, and the most beautiful man they had ever seen. So
the people accepted him as a superior being, and his influence
became supreme over science and art, as well as manners.

He gave the Greeks their first scientific analysis of sound.
The legend runs that, passing a blacksmith's shop and
hearing the different sounds of the hammering, he conceived
the idea that sounds could be measured by some such means
as weight is measured by scales, or distance by the foot
rule. By weighing the different hammers, so the story goes,
he obtained the knowledge of harmonics or overtones, namely,
the fundamental, octave, fifth, third, etc. This legend, which
is stated seriously in many histories of music, is absurd, for,
as we know, the hammers would not have vibrated. The anvils
would have given the sound, but in order to produce the octave,
fifth, etc., they would have had to be of enormous proportions.
On the other hand, the monochord, with which students in physics
are familiar, was his invention; and the first mathematical
demonstrations of the effect on musical pitch of length of
cord and tension, as well as the length of pipes and force of
breath, were his.

These mathematical divisions of the monochord, however,
eventually did more to stifle music for a full thousand years
than can easily be imagined. This division of the string
made what we call harmony impossible; for by it the major
third became a larger interval than our modern one, and the
minor third smaller. Thus thirds did not sound well together,
in fact were dissonances, the only intervals which _did_
harmonize being the fourth, fifth, and octave. This system
of mathematically dividing tones into equal parts held good
up to the middle of the sixteenth century, when Zarlino, who
died in 1590, invented the system in use at the present time,
called the _tempered scale_, which, however, did not come into
general use until one hundred years later.

Aristoxenus, a pupil of Aristotle, who lived more than a
century after Pythagoras, rejected the monochord as a means for
gauging musical sounds, believing that the ear, not mathematical
calculation, should be the judge as to which interval sounds
"perfect." But he was unable to formulate a system that
would bring the third (and naturally its inversion the sixth)
among the harmonizing intervals or consonants. Didymus (about
30 B.C.) first discovered that two different-sized whole
tones were necessary in order to make the third consonant;
and Ptolemy (120 A.D.) improved on this system somewhat. But
the new theory remained without any practical effect until
nearly the seventeenth century, when the long respected theory
of the perfection of mathematical calculation on the basis of
natural phenomena was overthrown in favour of actual effect. If
Aristoxenus had had followers able to combat the crushing
influence of Euclid and his school, music might have grown up
with the other arts. As it is, music is still in its infancy,
and has hardly left its experimental stage.

Thus Pythagoras brought order into the music as well as
into the lives of people. But whereas it ennobled the
people, it killed the music, the one vent in life through
which unbounded utterance is possible; its essence is so
interwoven with spirituality that to tear it away and fetter
it with human mathematics is to lower it to the level of mere
utilitarianism. And so it was with Greek music, which was held
subordinate to metre, to poetry, to acting, and finally became
a term of contempt. Pythagoras wished to banish the flute,
as Plato also did later, and the name of flute player was used
as a reproach. I fancy this was because the flute, on account
of its construction, could ignore the mathematical divisions
prescribed for the stringed instruments, and therefore could
indulge in purely emotional music. Besides, the flute was
the chosen instrument of the orgiastic Bacchic cult, and its
associations were those of unbridled license. To be sure, the
voice was held by no mathematical restrictions as to pitch;
but its music was held in check by the words, and its metre
by dancing feet.

Having measured the musical intervals, there still remained
the task of classifying the different manners of singing which
existed in Greece, and using all their different notes to form
a general system. For just as in different parts of Greece
there existed different dances, the steps of which were known
as Lydian, Ionian, Locrian, and Dorian feet, and so on, so the
melodies to which they were danced were known as being in the
Lydian, Ionian, Locrian, or Dorian scale or mode. In speaking
of Hindu music, I explained that what we call a mode consists
of a scale, and that one mode differs from another _only_ in
the position of the semitones in this scale. Now in ancient
Greece there were in use over fifteen different modes, each one
common to the part of the country in which it originated. At the
time of Pythagoras there were seven in general use: the Dorian,
Lydian, Aeolian or Locrian, Hypo- (or low) Lydian, Phrygian,
Hypo- (or low) Phrygian, and Mixolydian or mixed Lydian. The
invention of the latter is attributed to Sappho by Plutarch,
quoting Aristoxenus.

These modes were all invested with individual characters
by the Greeks, just as in the present day we say our major
mode is happy, the minor sad. The Dorian mode was considered
the greatest, and, according to Plato, the only one worthy of
men. It was supposed to have a dignified, martial character. The
Lydian, on the other hand, was all softness, and love songs
were written in it. The Phrygian was of a violent, ecstatic
nature, and was considered as being especially appropriate for
dithyrambs, the metre for the wild bacchanalian dances. For
instance, Aristotle tells how Philoxenus attempted to set
dithyrambic verse to the Dorian mode, and, failing, had to
return to the Phrygian. The Mixolydian, which was Sappho's mode,
was the mode for sentiment and passion. The Dorian, Phrygian,
and Lydian were the oldest modes.

Each mode or scale was composed of two sets of four notes,
called tetrachords, probably derived from the ancient form
of the lyre, which in Homer's time is known to have had four
strings.

Leaving the matter of actual pitch out of the question (for
these modes might be pitched high or low, just as our major
or minor scale may be pitched in different keys), these three
modes were constructed as follows:

  Greek      Dorian    (E F) G A   (B C) D E,
                         that is, semitone, tone, tone.

           /
          |  Phrygian  D (E F) G   A (B C) D,
          |              or F[#] (G[#] A) B   C[#] (D[#] E) F[#],
  Asiatic |              that is, tone, semitone, tone.
          |
          |  Lydian    C D (E F)   G A (B C),
           \              that is, tone, tone, semitone.

Thus we see that a tetrachord commencing with a half-tone and
followed by two whole tones was called a Dorian tetrachord;
one commencing with a tone, followed by a half-tone, and again
a tone, constituted a Phrygian tetrachord. The other modes
were as follows: In the Aeolian or Locrian the semitones occur
between the second and third notes, and the fifth and sixth:
[F: b, (c+ d) e (f+ g) a b]
Theraclides Ponticus identifies the Hypodorian with the Aeolian,
but says that the name "hypo-" merely denoted a likeness to
Doric, not to pitch. Aristoxenus denies the identity, and
says that the Hypodorian was a semitone below the Dorian or
Hypolydian. In the Hypophrygian, the semitones occur between
the third and fourth, and sixth and seventh degrees:
[F: c+ d+ (e+ f+) g+ (a+ b) c+']
In the Hypolydian, the semitones occur between the fourth and
fifth, and seventh and eighth: [F: e- f g (a b-) c' (d' e-')]
The Dorian (E), Phrygian (commencing on F[sharp] with the fourth
sharped), and the Lydian (A[flat] major scale) modes we have
already explained. In the Mixolydian, the semitones occur
between the first and second, and fourth and fifth degrees:
[G: (a b-) c' (d' e-') f' g' a']

According to the best evidence (in the works of Ptolemy,
"Harmonics," second book, and Aristides), these were
approximately the actual pitch of the modes as compared one
to another.

And now the difficulty was to weld all these modes together
into one scale, so that all should be represented and yet not
be complicated by what we should call accidentals. This was
accomplished in the following manner, by simple mathematical
means:

We remember that the Dorian, which was the most greatly
favoured mode in Greece, was divided into two tetrachords of
exactly the same proportions, namely, semitone, tone, tone. By
taking the lowest note of the Mixolydian, B, and forming a
Dorian tetrachord on it, B C D E were acquired. Adding to this
another Dorian tetrachord, E F G A (commencing on the last note
of the first), and repeating the same series of tetrachords
an octave higher, we have in all four Dorian tetrachords,
two of which overlap the others. The two middle tetrachords,
constituting the original Dorian mode, were called _disjunct_,
the two outer ones which overlap the middle ones were called
_conjunct_ or _synemmenon_ tetrachords.

If we consider this new scale from octave to octave, commencing
with the lowest note, that is to say from B to B, we find that
it coincides exactly with the Mixolydian mode; therefore this
was called the Mixolydian octave. The octave in this scale
from the second note, C to C, coincides exactly with the Lydian
mode, and was called the Lydian octave; from the third note, D,
up to its octave gives the Phrygian; from the fourth note, E,
the Dorian; from the fifth, F, the Hypolydian; from the sixth,
G, the Hypophrygian; and from the seventh, A, the Aeolian
or Hypodorian octave. Add one note to the lower end of this
universal Greek scale, as it was called, and we see that the
whole tonal system was included within two octaves. To each of
the notes comprising it was given a name partly derived from
its position in the tetrachords, and partly from the fingering
employed in lyre playing, as shown in the diagram on page 87.

The fifteen strings of the _kithara_ were tuned according to
this scale, and the A, recurring three times in it, acquired
something of the importance of a tonic or key note. As yet,
however, this scale allowed of no transposition of a mode to
another pitch; in order to accomplish this the second tetrachord
was used as the first of another similar system. Thus,
considering the second tetrachord, E F G A, as first of the
new scale, it would be followed by A B[flat] C D, and the
two disjunct tetrachords would be formed. Followed by the two
upper conjunct tetrachords, and the _proslambanómenos_ added,
our system on a new pitch would be complete. This procedure
has come down almost unchanged to our times; for we have but
two modes, major and minor, which are used on every pitch,
constituting various keys. These Greek modes are the basis
on which all our modern ideas of tonality rest; for our major
mode is simply the Greek Lydian, and our minor mode the Aeolian.


LIST OF NOTES IN THE GREEK SCALE

                                                        disjunct
Aeolian.  [G: a']       +- A. Nete, or highest.           ---+
Hypophrygian.         +-|  G. Páranete, next highest.        |
Hypolydian.         +-| |  F. Trite, third.                  |
Dorian.           +-| | |  E. Néte, highest.              ---+ conjunct
Phrygian.       +-| | | |  D. Páranéte, next highest.     ---+   ---+
Lydian.       +-| | | | |  C. Trite, third.                  |      |
Mixolydian. +-| | | | | |  B. Paramese, next to central tone |      |
            | | | | | | +- A. Mese, central tone.         ---+   ===+
            | | | | | +--- G. Líchanos, index finger.               |
            | | | | +----- F. Parhýpate, next to lowest.            |
            | | | +------- E. Hýpate, lowest.                    ===+
            | | +--------- D. Líchanos, index.                      |
            | +----------- C. Parhýpate, next to lowest.            |
            +------------- B. Hýpate, lowest.                    ---+
         [F: a,]           A. Proslambanómenos, added tone.

To go into detailed explanation of the Greek enharmonic
and chromatic pitch will scarcely be worth while, and I will
therefore merely add that the instruments were sometimes tuned
differently, either to relieve the inevitable monotony of this
purely diatonic scale or for purposes of modulation. A Dorian
tetrachord is composed of semitone, tone, tone; to make it
chromatic, it was changed as follows: [G: e' f' g-' a'] the
_líchanos_, or index finger string, being lowered a semitone.

The enharmonic pitch consisted of tuning the _líchanos_ down
still further, almost a quarter-tone below the second string,
or _parhýpate_, thus making the tetrachord run quarter-tone,
quarter-tone, two tones. Besides this, even in the diatonic,
the Greeks used what they called soft intervals; for example,
when the tetrachord, instead of proceeding by semitone, tone,
tone (which system was called the hard diatonic), was tuned
to semitone, three-quarter-tone, and tone and a quarter. The
chromatic pitch also had several forms, necessitating the use
of small fractional tones as well as semitones.

Our knowledge of the musical notation of the Greeks rests
entirely on the authority of Alypius, and dates from about the
fourth century A.D. That we could not be absolutely sure of
the readings of ancient Greek melodies, even if we possessed
any, is evident from the fact that these note characters,
which at first were derived from the signs of the zodiac,
and later from the letters of the alphabet, indicate only the
relative pitch of the sounds; the rhythm is left entirely to
the metrical value of the words in the lines to be sung. Two
sets of signs were used for musical notation, the vocal system
consisting of writing the letters of the alphabet in different
positions, upside down, sideways, etc.

Of the instrumental system but little is known, and that
not trustworthy.


[05] The fundamental doctrine of the Pythagorean philosophy
     was that the essence of all things rests upon musical
     relations, that numbers are the principle of all that
     exists, and that the world subsists by the rhythmical
     order of its elements. The doctrine of the "Harmony of
     the spheres" was based on the idea that the celestial
     spheres were separated from each other by intervals
     corresponding with the relative length of strings
     arranged so as to produce harmonious tones.

[06] Dionysus, the same as the Roman Bacchus.



VII

THE MUSIC OF THE ROMANS--THE EARLY CHURCH


The art history of the world makes it clear to us that when
the art of a country turns to over-elaboration of detail
and mechanical dexterity, when there is a general tendency
toward vividness of _impression_ rather than poignancy and
vitality of _expression_, then we have the invariable sign
of that decadence which inevitably drifts into revolution
of one kind or another. Lasus (500 B.C.), who, as previously
mentioned, was a great flute and lyre player as well as poet,
betrays this tendency, which reached its culmination under the
Romans. Lasus was more of a virtuoso than a poet; he introduced
into Greece a new and florid style of lyre and harp playing;
and it was he who, disliking the guttural Dorian pronunciation
of the letter S, wrote many of his choric poems without using
this letter once in them. Pindar, his pupil, followed in his
footsteps. In many of his odes we find intricate metrical
devices; for instance, the first line of most of the odes
is so arranged metrically that the same order of accents is
maintained whether the line be read backward or forward, the
short and long syllables falling into exactly the same places in
either case. The line "Hercules, the patron deity of Thebes,"
may be taken as an example, [(- ' ' ' - )'( - ' ' ' -)]. Such
devices occur all through his poems. We find in them also that
magnificence of diction which is the forerunner of "virtuosity";
for he speaks of his song as "a temple with pillars of gold,
gold that glitters like blazing fire in the night time."

In the hands of Aristophanes (450-380 B.C.), the technique
of poetry continued to advance. In "The Frogs," "The
Wasps," and "The Birds" are to be found marvels of skill in
onomatopoetic[07] verse. His comedies called for many more
actors than the tragedies had required, and the chorus was
increased from fifteen to twenty-four. Purple skins were
spread across the stage, and the _parabasis_ (or topical song)
and satire vied with the noble lines of Aeschylus and Sophocles
for favour with the public.

Meanwhile, as might have been expected, instrumental music
became more and more independent, and musicians, especially
the flute players, prospered; for we read in Suidas that they
were much more proficient and sought after than the lyre and
kithara players. When they played, they stood in a conspicuous
place in the centre of the audience. Dressed in long, feminine,
saffron-coloured robes, with veiled faces, and straps round
their cheeks to support the muscles of the mouth, they exhibited
the most startling feats of technical skill. Even women became
flute players, although this was considered disgraceful.
The Athenians even went so far that they built a temple to the
flute player Lamia, and worshipped her as Venus. The prices
paid to these flute players surpassed even those given to
virtuosi in modern times, sometimes amounting to more than
one thousand dollars a day, and the luxury in which they lived
became proverbial.

During this period, Aristophanes of Alexandria (350 B.C.),
called "the grammarian," devised a means for indicating the
inflection of the voice in speaking, by which the cadences
which orators found necessary in impassioned speech could be
classified, at least to some extent. When the voice was to fall,
a downward stroke [\] was placed above the syllable; when the
voice was to be raised, an upward stroke [/] indicated it;
and when the voice was to rise and fall, the sign was [/\],
which has become our accent in music. These three signs are
found in the French language, in the accent _aigu_, or high
accent, as in _passé_; the accent _grave_, or low accent,
as in _sincère_; or _circonflexe_, as in _Phâon_. The use of
dots[08] for punctuation is also ascribed to Aristophanes;
and our dots in musical notation, as well as the use of commas
to indicate breathings, may be traced to this system.

As I have said, all this tended toward technical skill and
analysis; what was lacking in inventive power it was sought
to cover by wonderful execution. The mania for flute playing,
for instance, seemed to spread all over the world; later we
even hear that the king of Egypt, Ptolemy Auletes (80-51 B.C.),
Cleopatra's father, was nicknamed "the flute player."

In Rome, this lack of poetic vitality seemed evident from the
beginning; for while Greece was represented by the tragedy
and comedy, the Romans' preference was for mere pantomime,
a species of farce of which they possessed three kinds:
(1) The simple pantomime without chorus, in which the actors
made the plot clear to the audience by means of gestures and
dancing. (2) Another which called for a band of instrumental
musicians on the stage to furnish an accompaniment to the
acting of the pantomimist. (3) The chorus pantomime, in
which the chorus and the orchestra were placed on the stage,
supplementing the gestures of the actors by singing a narrative
of the plot of the pantomime, and playing on their instruments.
The latter also were expressive of the non-ideal character of
the pantomime, as is indicated by the fact that the orchestra
was composed of cymbals, gongs, castanets, foot castanets,
rattles, flutes, bagpipes, gigantic lyres, and a kind of shell
or crockery cymbals, which were clashed together.

The Roman theatre itself was not a place connected with the
worship of the gods, as it was with the Greeks. The altar
to Dionysus had disappeared from the centre of the orchestra,
and the chorus, or rather the band, was placed upon the stage
with the actors. The bagpipe now appears for the first time in
musical history, although there is some question as to whether
it was not known to the Assyrians. It represents, perhaps, the
only remnant of Roman music that has survived, for the modern
Italian peasants probably play in much the same way as did their
forefathers. The Roman pipes were bound with brass, and had
about the same power of tone as was obtained from the trumpet.

It is easy to see that an orchestra thus constituted would
be better adapted for making a great noise than for music,
while the pantomime itself was of such a brutal nature that
the degradation of art may be said to have been complete. As
the decay of art in Egypt culminated under Ptolemy Auletes,
so in Rome it culminated in the time of Caligula (12-41 A.D.),
and Nero (37-68 A.D.).

The latter, as we learn from Suetonius, competed for prizes
in the public musical contests, and was never without a slave
at his elbow to warn him against straining his voice. In
his love of magnificence he resembled a Greek flute player,
with unbounded means to gratify it. His palace, the "Golden
House," had triple porticos a mile in length, and enclosed
a lake surrounded by buildings which had the appearance of a
city. Within its area were corn fields, vineyards, pastures,
and woods containing many animals, both wild and tame. In
other parts it was entirely overlaid with gold, and adorned
with jewels and mother-of-pearl. The porch was so high that
a colossal statue of himself, one hundred and twenty feet
in height, stood in it. The supper rooms were vaulted, and
compartments of the ceiling, inlaid with ivory, were made to
revolve and scatter flowers; they also contained pipes which
shed perfumes upon the guests.

When the revolt under Vindex broke out (68 A.D.), a new
instrument had just been brought to Rome. Tertullian, Suetonius,
and Vitruvius agree in calling it an organ. This instrument,
which was the invention of Ctesibus of Alexandria, consisted
of a set of pipes through which the air was made to vibrate
by means of a kind of water pump operated by iron keys. It
was undoubtedly the direct ancestor of our modern organ. Nero
intended to introduce these instruments into the Roman theatre.
In planning for his expedition against Vindex, his first
care was to provide carriages for his musical instruments;
for his intention was to sing songs of triumph after having
quelled the revolt. He publicly vowed that if his power in the
state were reestablished, he would include a performance upon
organs as well as upon flutes and bagpipes, in the exhibitions
he intended to institute in honour of his success.

From a musical point of view, Suetonius's biography of Nero
is interesting chiefly on account of its giving us glimpses
of the life of a professional musician of those days. We read,
together with many other details, that it was the custom for a
singer to lie on his back, with a sheet of lead upon his breast,
to correct unsteadiness in breathing, and to abstain from food
for two days together to clear his voice, often denying himself
fruit and sweet pastry. The degraded state of the theatre may
well be imagined from the fact that under Nero the custom of
hiring professional applause was instituted. After his death,
which is so dramatically told by Suetonius, music never revived
in Rome.

In the meanwhile, however, a new kind of music had begun;
in the catacombs and underground vaults, the early Christians
were chanting their first hymns. Like all that we call "new,"
this music had its roots in the old. The hymns sung by the
Christians were mainly Hebrew temple songs, strangely changed
into an uncouth imitation of the ancient Greek drama or worship
of Dionysus; for example, Philo of Alexandria, as well as Pliny
the Younger, speaks of the Christians as accompanying their
songs with gestures, and with steps forward and backward. This
Greek influence is still further implied by the order of one
of the earliest of the Church fathers, Clement of Alexandria
(about 300 A.D.), who forbade the use of the chromatic style in
the hymns, as tending too much toward paganism. Some writers
even go so far as to identify many of the Christian myths and
symbols with those of Greece. For instance, they see, in the
story of Daniel in the lions' den, another form of the legend of
Orpheus taming the wild beasts; in Jonah, they recognize Arion
and the dolphin; and the symbol of the Good Shepherd, carrying
home the stray lamb on his shoulders, is considered another
form of the familiar Greek figure of Hermes carrying the goat.

Be this as it may, it is certain that this crude beginning
of Christian music arose from a vital necessity, and was
accompanied by an indomitable faith. If we look back, we note
that until now music had either been the servant of ignoble
masters, looked upon as a mathematical problem to be solved
scientifically, or used according to methods prescribed by
the state. It had been dragged down to the lowest depths of
sensuality by the dance, and its divine origin forgotten in
lilting rhythms and soft, lulling rhymes.

On the other hand, the mathematicians, in their cold
calculation, reduced music to the utilitarianism of algebra,
and even viewed it as a kind of medicine for the nerves and
mind. When we think of the music of Pythagoras and his school,
we seem to be in a kind of laboratory in which all the tones
are labelled and have their special directions for use. For
the legend runs that he composed melodies in the diatonic,
chromatic, and enharmonic styles as antidotes for moods such
as anger, fear, sorrow, etc., and invented new rhythms which
he used to steady and strengthen the mind, and to produce
simplicity of character in his disciples. He recommended that
every morning, after rising, they should play on the lyre and
sing, in order to clear the mind. It was inevitable that this
half mathematical, half psychologically medicinal manner of
treating music would, in falling into the hands of Euclid
(300 B.C.) and his school, degenerate into a mere peg on
which to hang mathematical theorems. On the other hand, when
we think of Greek dances, we seem to pass into the bright,
warm sunshine. We see graceful figures holding one another by
the wrist, dancing in a circle around some altar to Dionysus,
and singing to the strange lilt of those unequal measures. We
can imagine the scheme of colour to be white and gold, framed
by the deep-blue arch of the sky, the amethyst sea flecked
with glittering silver foam, and the dark, sombre rocks of the
Cretan coast bringing a suggestion of fate into this dancing,
soulless vision. Turning now to Rome, we see that this same
music has fallen to a wretched slave's estate, cowering in some
corner until the screams of Nero's living torches need to be
drowned; and then, with brazen clangour and unabashed rhythms,
this brutal music flaunts forth with swarms of dancing slaves,
shrilling out the praises of Nero; and the time for successful
revolution is at hand.

The first steps toward actually defining the new music took
place in the second century, when the Christians were free to
worship more openly, and, having wealthy converts among them,
held their meetings in public places and basilicas which were
used by magistrates and other officials during the day. These
basilicas or public halls had a raised platform at one end, on
which the magistrate sat when in office. There were steps up to
it, and on these steps the clergy stood. The rest of the hall
was called the "nave" (ship), for the simile of "storm-tossed
mariners" was always dear to the early Christian church. In the
centre of the nave stood the reader of the Scriptures, and on
each side of him, ranged along the wall, were the singers. The
Psalms were sung antiphonally, that is, first one side would
sing and the other side would answer. The congregations
were sometimes immense, for according to St. Jerome (340-420
A.D.) and St. Ambrose (340-397 A.D.) "the roofs reechoed with
their cries of 'Alleluia,' which in sound were like the great
waves of the surging sea."

Nevertheless this was, as yet, only sound, and not music. Not
until many centuries later did music become distinct from
chanting, which is merely intoned _speech_. The disputes
of the Arians and the Athanasians also affected the music of
the church, for as early as 306 A.D., Arius introduced many
secular melodies, and had them sung by women.

Passing over this, we find that the first actual arrangement
of Christian music into a regular system was attempted by Pope
Sylvester, in 314 A.D., when he instituted singing schools,
and when the heresy of Arius was formally condemned.

Now this chanting or singing of hymns was more or less a
declamation, thus following the Greek tradition of using one
central note, somewhat in the nature of a keynote.

Rhythm, distinct melody, and even metre were avoided as
retaining something of the unclean, brutal heathenism against
which the Christians had revolted. It was the effort to keep
the music of the church pure and undefiled that caused the
Council of Laodicea (367 A.D.) to exclude from the church all
singing not authorized from the pulpit.

A few years later (about 370 A.D.) Ambrose, the Archbishop
of Milan, strove to define this music more clearly, by fixing
upon the modes that were to be allowed for these chants; for
we must remember that all music was still based upon the Greek
modes, the modern major and minor being as yet unknown. In the
course of time the ancient modes had become corrupted, and the
modes that Ambrose took for his hymns were therefore different
from those known in Greece under the same names. His Dorian
is what the ancients called Phrygian, [G: d' d''] dominant,
A; his Phrygian was the ancient Dorian, [G: e' e''] dominant,
C; his Lydian corresponded to the old Hypolydian, [G: f' f'']
dominant, C; and his Mixolydian to the old Hypophrygian,
[G: g' g''] dominant, D. These modes were accepted by the
church and were called the Authentic modes.

Almost two centuries later, Gregory the Great added four
more modes, which were called Plagal or side modes (from
_plagios_--oblique). These were as follows:

                          (Keynote)

    Hypodorian,      [G: a  (d')  a' ] dominant, F.
    Hypophrygian,    [G: c  (e')  b' ] dominant, A.
    Hypolydian,      [G: c' (f')  c''] dominant, A.
    Hypo-mixolydian, [G: d' (g')  d''] dominant, C.

It is easy to see that these so-called new modes are simply
new versions of the first four; although they are lowered a
fourth beneath the authentic modes (hence the _hypo_), the
_keynote remains the same_ in each instance. Still later two
more modes were added to this list, the Ionic, [G: c' c'']
dominant, G, which corresponded to the ancient Greek Lydian;
and the Aeolian, [G: a' a''] dominant, E, which, strange to say,
was the only one of these newer modes which corresponded to
its Greek namesake. Naturally these two newly admitted modes
were also accompanied by their lower pitched attendant modes,
the Hypoionic, [G: g (c') g'] dominant, E, and the Hypoaeolian,
[G: e' (a') e''] dominant, C.


SUMMARY

    Mode.            Key.  Dominant.

    Dorian.           D        A
    Hypodorian.       D        F
    Phrygian.         E        C
    Hypophrygian.     E        A
    Lydian.           F        C
    Hypolydian.       F        A
    Mixolydian.       G        D
    Hypo-mixolydian.  G        C
    Aeolian.          A        E
    Hypoaeolian.      A        C
    Ionian.           C        G
    Hypoionian.       C        E


    Dominants

    [G: a' f' c' {a (a')} c' a d' c' e' c' g' e']

Now all these lower, or derived modes, Hypodorian, Hypophrygian,
Hypolydian, etc., received the name Plagal modes, because
there was but one tonic or keynote in the scale; consequently
a melody starting on any degree of the scale would invariably
return to the same tonic or keynote. They differed from the
authentic modes, inasmuch as in the latter a melody might end
either on the upper or lower tonic or keynote. Thus the melody
itself was said to be either authentic or plagal, according
to whether it had one or two tonics. The theme of Schumann's
"Etudes symphoniques" is authentic, and the first variation
is plagal.

Between the sixth and tenth centuries there was much confusion
as to the placing of these modes, but they finally stood as
given above. The Greek names were definitely accepted in the
eleventh century, or thereabouts; previously, they were known
also as the first, second, third, etc., up to the twelfth,
church tones or Gregorian modes.

At this point it is necessary to refer again to Ambrose.
Apart from having brought the first four authentic modes
into church music, he composed many hymns which had this
peculiarity, namely, that they were modelled more on the actual
declamation of the words to be sung than had hitherto been
the case. We are told that his chants--to use the phrase of
his contemporary, Francis of Cologne--were "all for sweetness
and melodious sound"; and St. Augustine (354-430 A.D.),
speaks of them with ecstasy. The words in these hymns were
used in connection with small groups of notes; consequently
they could be understood as they were sung, thus returning
in a measure to the character of the music of the ancients,
in which the word and declamation were of greater importance
than the actual sounds which accompanied them. But now a
strange thing was to happen that was to give us a new art.
Now, at last, music was to be separated from language and dance
rhythms, and stand alone for the first time in the history of
civilization as _pure music_.

To appreciate the change made by Gregory (540-604 A.D.), it is
necessary to bear in mind the state of the church just before
his time. As the Ambrosian chant had brought something of the
old declamation and sweetness back into the church ceremonial,
so also in the church itself there was a tendency to sink
back into the golden shimmer that had surrounded the ancient
pagan rites. Already Paul of Samosata, Bishop of Antioch (260
A.D.), had striven to bring a certain Oriental magnificence
into the church ceremonials. He had a canopied throne erected
for himself, from which he would address his congregation;
he introduced applause into the church, after the fashion of
the Roman theatres; he also had a chorus of women singers, who,
as Eusebius tells us, sang not the Christian hymns, but pagan
tunes. Later, in Constantinople, even this luxury and pomp
increased; the churches had domes of burnished gold, and had
become gigantic palaces, lit by thousands of lamps. The choir,
dressed in glittering robes, was placed in the middle of the
church, and these singers began to show the same fatal sign
of decadence that we saw before in Rome and Greece. According
to St. Chrysostom (347-407 A.D.), they used unguents on their
throats in order to make the voice flexible, for by this time
the singing had become a mere vehicle for virtuosity; when
they sang their _tours de force_, the people applauded and
waved their handkerchiefs, as they did also when the preaching
pleased them. The pagans pointed the finger of scorn at the
Christians, as being mere renegades from the old religion,
and said, plausibly enough, that their worship was merely
another form of the Dionysus tragedy. There was the same altar,
the same chorus, the priest who sang and was answered by the
chorus; and the resemblance had grown to such an extent that
St. Chrysostom (350 A.D.) complained that the church chorus
accompanied its singing with theatrical gestures, which,
as we know, is simply the first step towards the dance.

This was the state of things when Gregory became Pope in
590 A.D. His additions to the modes already in use have been
explained. His great reform lay in severing the connection
between the music of the church and that of the pagan world
before it. Casting aside the declamation and rhythm, which
up to now had always dominated pure sound, he abolished the
style of church singing in vogue, and substituted for it a
system of chanting in which every tie between the words and
music was severed.

The music was certainly primitive enough, for it consisted
merely of a rising and falling of the voice for the space of
many notes on one single syllable, as, for instance,

    [F: (f g f g a a) a (a a a g a g g f a)]
    [W: Gloria]

The difference between this and the Ambrosian chant is evident
if we look at the following; and we must also bear in mind
that the Ambrosian chants were very simple in comparison with
the florid _tours de force_ of the Byzantine church:

    [F: d  (d f) (d e) f | (g f) (g a) a | (a g) a  c' d']
    [W: Al me    pater   | Ambrosi,      | nostras, preces,]
    [F: (a b) a | a    g   a f e d]
    [W: audi    | Christe, exaudinos]

Now this reform could not be carried out at once; it was
only through the medium of Charlemagne (742-814 A.D.),
a hundred years later, that the Gregorian chant was firmly
established. Authorized by a synod of bishops, called together
from all parts of Europe by Pope Adrian I, Charlemagne, in
774, caused all the chant and hymn books of the Ambrosian
system throughout Italy to be burned. So completely was
this accomplished that only one Ambrosian missal was found
(by St. Eugenius at Milan), and from this work alone can we
form any idea as to the character of the music used by the
followers of Ambrose, who were much retarded by the lack of
a musical notation, which was the next factor needed to bring
music to an equality with the other arts.


[07] Imitating the sound of the thing signified. Poe's
     "Raven" has much of this character.

[08] [over-dot]c, perfect pause;  c[mid-dot], short;  c., shortest;
     breathings: [reverse-apostrophe] hard;  ' soft.



VIII

FORMATION OF THE SCALE--NOTATION


In comparing the Ambrosian chant with that of Gregory, it
may be said that we have touched upon the vital principle of
modern music. The novelty in the Gregorian chant consisted in
its absolute emancipation from the tyranny of actual words
and declamation; while the idea, the poetic principle, or
religious ecstasy still remained the ideal to be expressed in
the music. Before this, as already explained, music was either
a mathematical problem, a rhythm to mark the time in dancing,
or a vehicle serving for the display of clever _tours de force_,
the music of the tragedies being merely a kind of melodious
declamation. To quote Goethe, "having recognized the fact,
it still remains for us to see how it developed." Let us now
consider this point.

Three things were necessary before these Gregorian chants
could develop at all: (1) A simple, clean-cut musical scale
or systematized table of musical sounds. (2) Some definite
manner of symbolizing sounds, so that they could be accurately
expressed in writing. (3) A cultivation of the sense of
hearing, in order that mankind might learn to distinguish
between sounds that are discordant and those that sound well
together; in other words, harmony.

We will begin with the scale, and review what we know of the
Greek modes in order to show how they were amalgamated into
our present octave system of scales.

  [Tetrachords         /------|-----\    /-------|--------\ ]
  [                 F: b, c d e f g a G: b c' d' e' f' g' a']
  [Mixolydian          \--+-+-+-+-+-+----/ |  |  |  |  |  | ]
  [Lydian                 \-+-+-+-+-+------/  |  |  |  |  | ]
  [Phrygian                 \-+-+-+-+---------/  |  |  |  | ]
  [Dorian                     \-+-+-+------------/  |  |  | ]
  [Hypolydian                   \-+-+---------------/  |  | ]
  [Hypophrygian                   \-+------------------/  | ]
  [Aeolian or Locrian or Hypodorian \---------------------/ ]
  [Notes labelled from highest to lowest: Nete, Páranete, Trite,
   Nete, Páranete, Trite, Paramese, Mese, Líchanos, Parhýpate,
   Hýpate, Líchanos, Parhýpate, Hýpate, [F: a,] Proslambanómenos.]

Under Ambrose and Pope Gregory, these modes had taken a
different form. The chromatic and enharmonic styles had been
abandoned in theory, the portamento which the singers introduced
into their chants being the only principle retained. The new
system was as follows:

    [F8: g, a, b,  G8: c d e f g a b c' d' e' f' g' a']
    [First nine notes labelled:
     Hypoion., Hypodor., Hypophryg., Hypolyd./Ionian,
     Hypo-mixolyd./Dorian, Hypoaeol./Phryg., Lyd., Mixolyd., Aeol.]

In order to complete the story of the evolution of scales and
clefs, we must add that the Flemish monk, Hucbald (900 A.D.),
divided this scale into regular tetrachords, beginning at
G, with the succession, tone, semitone, tone, forming four
disjunct tetrachords,

    [F: (g, a, b-, c) (d e f g) (a b c' d') G: (e' f+' g' a')]

This division remained without influence on the development
of the scale.

The first change in the _tetrachord_ system of reckoning
tones and dividing the scale was made by Guido d'Arezzo (first
half of eleventh century), who divided it into hexachords or
groups of six notes each. Up to that time, each note of the
scale had had a letter of the alphabet for its symbol. It was
Guido who conceived the idea of using syllables for these
notes. The story of how it occurred to him is well known:
On one occasion, hearing his brethren in the monastery choir
of Arezzo, in Tuscany, sing a hymn to St. John the Baptist, he
noticed that the first syllable of each line came on regularly
ascending notes of the scale, the first syllable coming on C,
the first of the next line on D, the first of the third on E,
etc., up to A on the sixth line. As all these syllables happened
to differ one from the other, and, moreover, were very easy
to sing, he hit upon the idea of using them to distinguish
the notes on which they fell in the hymn.

    [F:  c   d  f   (d e) d |  d  d c d  e  e   ]
    [W: _Ut_ queant laxis   | _Re_sonare fibris ]
    [F: (e f g) e (d e) c d |  f  g a  (g f) d d]
    [W: _Mi_ra    gestorum  | _Fa_muli tuorum   ]
    [F: (g a g) e f  g d  |  a  g a f (g a) a | (g f) d c e d  ]
    [W: _Sol_ve   polluti | _La_bii reatum    | Sancte  Joannes]

Furthermore, as there were six of these syllables, he arranged
the musical scale in groups of six notes instead of four,
hexachords instead of tetrachords. Commencing with G, which
was the lowest note of the system in Hucbald's time, the first
hexachord was formed of G A B C D E; the second, following the
example of the Greeks, he made to overlap the first, namely,
C D E F G A; the third, likewise overlapping the second,
commenced on F. In order to make this hexachord identical
in structure with, the first and second, he flatted the B,
thus making the succession of notes, F G A B[flat] C D. The
next three hexachords were repetitions of the first three,
namely, G A B C D E, C D E F G A, F G A B[flat] C D; the last
was again a repetition of the first, G A B C D E.


THE GAMUT.

[F:  g,     a, b, c  d   e    c  d  e  f  g   a    f  g  a  b- c'  d' ]
[W: [Gamma] A  B  C  D   E    C  D  E  F  G   a    F  G  a  b  c   d  ]
[W: (Ut     re mi fa sol la) (Ut re mi fa sol la) (Ut re mi fa sol la)]
[Hexachords:      (Hard Low)        (Natural Low)           (Soft Low)]

[G:  g  a  b= c' d'  e'   c' d' e' f' g'  a' ]
[W:  G  a  b  c  d   e    c  d  e  f  g   aa ]
[W: (Ut re mi fa sol la) (Ut re mi fa sol la)]
[Hexachords: (Hard High)       (Natural High)]

[G:  f' g' a' b-' c'' d''  g' a' b=' c'' d'' e'']
[W:  f  g  aa bb  cc  dd   g  aa bb  cc  dd  ee ]
[W: (Ut re mi fa  sol la) (Ut re mi  fa  sol la)]
[Hexachords:  (Soft High)     (Hard Super Acute)]

To the lowest note of this scale, which was foreign to the
Greek system, he gave a special name, _gamma_, after the
Greek letter G. From this we get our word for the scale,
the gamut. The other notes remained the same as before, only
that for the lowest octave capital letters were used; in the
next octave, the notes were designated by small letters, and
in the last octave by double letters, aa, bb, etc., as in the
following example.

  [F: g,  g     G: a  g'         | a'  g''                     ]
  [W: Capitals.  : Small letters | Double or very small letters]


PRESENT SCALE.

    [F: c,,    | c,    | c    G: c'  | c'' | c''' | c'''']
    [W: C_     | C     | c     : c'  | c'' | c''' | c'''']
    [W: Contra | Great | Small : 1st | 2nd | 3rd  | 4th  ]

Following out his system, he applied the newly acquired
syllables to each of the hexachords--for instance, the lowest
hexachord, G A B C D E, which was called hard, became _ut re
mi fa sol la_; the second, which was called natural, C D E F
G A, also became _ut re mi fa sol la_; and the third, which
was called soft, F G A B[flat] C D, became likewise _ut re mi
fa sol la_. The next three hexachords were treated in the same
manner; the last or seventh hexachord was merely a repetition
of the first and the fourth.

Now in the hymns, and also in the sequences, as they were called
(which were simply a series of notes forming a little melody
sung to two or three words), the voice was rarely called upon
to progress more than the interval of a sixth, and so this
solmization, as the new system was called, was very valuable;
for one had only to give the pitch, and _ut_ always meant the
keynote, _re_ the second, _mi_ the third, etc., etc. In time
_ut_ was found to be a difficult syllable to sing, and _do_
was substituted. This change, however, was made after the scale
was divided into a system of octaves instead of hexachords. The
improvement in singing soon made the limits of the hexachords
too small to be practical; therefore another syllable was added
to the hexachordal system, _si_, and with this seventh note
we have our modern scale. From this we see that the scale in
present use is composed of octaves, just as the older scales
were composed of hexachords, and before that tetrachords. Just
as in mediaeval times each hexachord commenced with _ut_,
so now every octave of our tonal system commences with _do_.

Before leaving the hexachordal system, it may be as well to
explain the mode of procedure when the voice had to go beyond
the interval of the sixth. We know that the first of every set
of six notes was called _ut_, the second, _re_, the third,
_mi_, etc. When the voice had to go beyond _la_, the sixth
note, to B[natural], that sixth note was always called _re_,
and was considered the second note of a new hexachord. If,
on the other hand, the voice had to go beyond _a_, to B[flat],
the fifth note was called _re_, since the syllables _mi fa_
must always come on the half-tone.

In a study of our system of writing music, it may be as well to
begin with the derivation of our sharps and flats. Observing
the third hexachord on our list we see that in order to make
it identical in structure with the first and second, the B had
to be lowered a semitone. Now the third hexachord was called
soft. The B[flat] in it was accordingly called a soft B or
B _molle_, which is still the name in France for a flat, and
_moll_ in German still means minor, or "soft" or "lowered." For
the fourth hexachord, which was called hard, this B was again
raised a semitone. But the flatted B was already indicated
by the letter _b_ or round _b_, as it was called; hence this
B natural was given a _square_ shape and called B _carré_,
[illustration]. The present French word for natural (when it
is specially marked) is _bécarré_; the German word for major
also comes indirectly from this, for _dur_ means "hard."

An explanation of the modern German names for notes will be
easily understood in this connection. In the German nomenclature
the letters of the alphabet stand for the notes of the scale
as in the English, with the exception of B. This B, or "round"
B, in the German system stands for B[flat], which is more
logical than our English usage, since our flat is merely a
slightly modified form of _b_. The German B natural is our
letter _h_, which is merely a corruption of the square _b_,
[illustration], which by the addition of a line in time
became our [natural]. The Germans have carried the flatting
and sharping of tones to a logical conclusion in their present
nomenclature, for by "sharping" the sound of a single letter it
is raised a semitone from its normal diapason, thus F becomes
_Fis_, G _Gis_. On the other hand, in order to lower a tone,
the letter representing it is "flatted," and F is called _Fes_,
G _Ges_, the only exception to these rules being the B which
we have already considered.

In France the Guidonian system was adhered to closely, and
to this day the _bécarré_ is used only as an accidental, to
indicate that the note to which it refers has been flatted
before. The _naturel_ (which has the same shape) is used
to designate a note that is natural to the key; thus the
distinction is made between an accidental and a note that is
common to the key. In F major, for instance, B[natural] is
_si bécarré_, A[natural] would be _la naturel_. Our modern
sharp is merely another form of the natural or square B
([natural]) which gradually came to be used before _any_ note,
signifying that it was raised or sharped a half-tone; the flat
lowered it a semitone, and after a while the natural received
its present place between the sharp and flat. The first instance
we have of the sharp being used is in the thirteenth century,
when (in the Rondels of Adam de la Hale) it takes the form
of a cross [x] (the German word for the sharp still remains
_kreuz_). The French word _diese_ (sharp) comes from the Greek
_diesis_, a term used to indicate the raising of the voice in
the chromatic scale.

And now we have to speak of notation and its development.
Thus far we have found only two ways in which musical sounds
were indicated by the ancients. First, we remember the invention
of Aristophanes of Alexandria, his accents, high, low, and
circumflex. Then we know from Ptolemy, Boethius, and Alypius
that letters were used to designate the different tones; but as
there is no music extant in this notation to prove the theory,
we need not trouble ourselves with it.

The system of Aristophanes, however, was destined to become the
nucleus from which our modern notation sprang. We know that
an elementary idea, clearly expressed, has more chances of
living than has a more complicated system, however ingenious
the latter may be. Now this system is so plain that we will
find it is common to many aboriginal peoples, for instance
the American Indians have a system very similar.

In the period now under consideration (from the third to the
tenth century), music was noted in this way: an upstroke of
the pen meant a raising of the voice, a downstroke lowered it,
a flat stroke meant a repetition of the same note, thus [/ \ -]
[G: c' g' c' c']. Gradually it became necessary to indicate
the contour of the melodies with more accuracy; therefore the
circumflex was added [Over-slur] [G: g' c'' g'] and reversed
[Under-slur] [G: g' e' g']. Still later a sign for two steps was
invented [Step] [G: e' g' b'] and when the progression was to
be diatonically stepwise the strokes were thicker [Thick Step]
[G: g' a' b']. So this notation developed, and by combining
the many signs together, simple non-rhythmic melodies could be
indicated with comparative clearness and simplicity. The flat
stroke for a single note [-], indicating [G: b'], eventually
became smaller and thicker, thus [Thick -]. By combining these
different signs, a skip of a third and back came to be noted
[Crenellation], and if the note came down on a second instead
of the original note it became [Podium] [G: g' b' a']. The
_quilisma_ ([Upper Mordent]) indicated a repetition of two
notes, one above the other, and we still use much the same
sign for our trill. Also the two forms of the circumflex,
[Over-slur] [Under-slur], were joined ([Turn]) and thus we
have the modern turn, so much used by Wagner.

Now while this notation was ingenious, it still left much
to be desired as to pitch. To remedy this a red line was
drawn before writing these signs or _neumes_, as they were
called. This line represented a given pitch, generally E;
above and below it were then written the signs for the notes,
their pitch being determined by the relative position they held
in regard to the _line_. Thus [Podium, Turn, Upper Mordent] was
the equivalent of [G: c' e'  d' e' d' c' d'  e' d' e' d' e' d'],
considering the line as being middle C pitch, a fourth higher F.
This was the condition of musical notation in 1000 A.D.

To Guido d'Arezzo is ascribed its development up to some
semblance of our present system, although the claim has often
been denied. It is certain, however, that the innovations
were made at this period. In the first place Guido made the
red line _always_ stand for the pitch of F, and at a little
distance above it he added another line, this time yellow,
which was to indicate the pitch of C. Thus the signs began to
take very definite meaning as regards pitch; for, given a sign
extending from one line to the other, the reader could see
at a glance that the music progressed a fifth, from F to C,
or _vice-versa_. And now the copyists, seeing the value of
these lines in determining the pitch of the different signs,
of their own account added two more in black ink, one of which
they drew between the F and the C line, and the other above
the C line, thus [illustration]. By doing this they accurately
decided the pitch of every note, for the lowest line, being F,
the line between that and the C line must stand for A, and the
two spaces for G and B; the top line would stand for E, and the
space between it and the yellow line for D. Little by little
these copyists grew careless about making the lines in yellow,
red, and black, and sometimes drew them all in black or red,
thereby losing the distinguishing mark of the F and C lines. In
order to remedy this, Guido placed the letters F and C before
the lines representing these notes, thus [illustration]. In
this way our modern _clefs_ (_clavis_ or key) originated, for
the C clef, as it is called, gradually changed its shape to
[illustration] and [illustration], and the F clef changed to
[illustration], which is our bass clef in a rudimentary form.

Later, still another line was added to the set, thus giving
us our modern staff, and another clef, [illustration], was
added on the next to the lowest line. This, in turn, became
our present treble clef, [G:]. In the course of time the signs
themselves underwent many changes, until at last from [Podium],
etc., they became our modern signs.

Before this, however, a grave defect in the notation had to
be remedied. There was as yet no way of designating the length
of time a note was to be sustained; something definite in the
way of noting _rhythm_ was necessary. This was accomplished
by Franco of Cologne, in the beginning of the thirteenth
century. By disconnecting the parts of the sign [Podium] one
from another, the following individual signs were acquired
[illustration of Podium broken into three pieces]. In order
to have two distinct values of length, these signs were
called longs and shorts, _longa_ [illustration], and _brevis_
[illustration], to which was added the _brevis_ in another
position [illustration], called _semibrevis_. The _longa_
was twice the value of the _brevis_, and the _semibrevis_
was half the length of the _brevis_ ([L = B B   B = S S]).
When notes of equal length were slurred, they were written
[illustration]. When two or more notes were to be sung to
one syllable in quicker time, the _brevi_ were joined one to
the other [illustration], as for instance in the songs of the
thirteenth century,


    DIRGE FOR KING RICHARD'S DEATH

    GAUCELM FAIDIT.

    [Illustration]
    [W: Fortz chose est que tot le maur major dam]


    ROI THIBAUT DE NAVARRE (1250).

    [Illustration]
    [W: Si li dis sans de laies | Belle diex vous doint bon jour]

or, in modern style,

    [G: g' a' b' c'' (d'' c'') (b' a' g') |
        a' b' (c'' b') (b' a' g') (a' b') g']

In this example we find the first indication of the measuring
off of phrases into bars. As we see, it consisted of a little
stroke, which served to show the beginning of a new line,
and was not restricted to regularity of any kind except that
necessitated by the verse.

The use of the _semibrevis_ is shown in the following chanson
of Raoul de Coucy (1192):

    [Illustration]
    [W: Quant li rossignol jolis | chante
        Seur la flor d'este | que n'est la rose et le lis]

    [G: d'' (c'' a') b-' (a' (g' f')) g' (a' b-' a' f') f' | f' g'
        a' (b-' a') (c'' d'' c'' b-') (a' g') a' |
        d'' (c'' a') b-' a' (g' f') g' (a' (b-' a') f') f']

The French troubadours and the German minnesingers of the
thirteenth century used these forms of notes only, and even
then restricted themselves to two kinds, either the _longa_
and _brevis_, or _brevis_ and _semibrevis_.

The necessity for rests very soon manifested itself, and the
following signs were invented to correspond to the _longa_,
_brevis_, and _semibrevis_ [illustration]. Also the number of
note symbols was increased by the _maxima_ or double _longa_
[illustration], and the _minima_ [illustration], which
represented half the value of the _semibrevis_.

Now that music began taking a more definite rhythmic form
than before, a more regular dividing off of the phrases
became necessary. This was accomplished by the use of a
dot, and another form, the perpendicular line, which we
have noticed in the song of the King of Navarre (1250). At
first a means to indicate triple time was invented, and the
measure corresponding to our [9/8] was indicated by placing
the sign [O.] at the beginning of the line. This was called
perfect. Then, for plain triple time the dot was omitted [O];
for [6/8] time the sign [C.] was adopted, and for ordinary
common time [C] was taken. Consequently, when these signs
were placed at the beginning of the line they changed the
value of the notes to correspond to the time marked. Thus in
[O.] (_tempus perfectum_, _prolatio major_) or [9/8], the
_brevis_ was reckoned worth three _semibrevi_ [B = S S S]
([1. = 4. 4. 4.]); the _semibrevis_ three _minimi_ [S = M M M]
([4. = 8 8 8]). In [O] or [3/4] time [B = S S S] ([2. = 4 4 4]);
but the _semibrevis_ was only as long as two _minimi_ [S = M M]
([4 = 8 8]). In [C.] or [6/8] time [B = S S] ([2. = 4. 4.]),
but [S = M M M] ([4. = 8 8 8]). In [C] or [2/2] time [B = S S]
([1 = 2 2]), and [S = M M] ([2 = 4 4]).

In the beginning of the fifteenth century the notes began to
be written in an open form

    [Illustration] _Maxima_.
    [Illustration] _Longa_.
    [Illustration] _Brevis_.
    [Illustration] _Semibrevis_.
    [Illustration] _Minima_.
    [Illustration] _Semiminima_, which was added later.

As still smaller units of value were added, the _semiminima_
was replaced by [filled minima], and the half _semiminima_
thus became [minima with tail], and the next smaller values,
[two tails] and [three tails]. The rest to correspond to
the _semiminima_ was [illustration]; for the _semibrevis_
[illustration], and _minima_ [illustration].

Thus we have the following values and their corresponding rests:

    _Maxima_                   [Illustration]
    _Longa_                    [Illustration]
    _Brevis_                   [Illustration]
    _Semibrevis_               [Illustration]
    _Minima_                   [Illustration]
    _Semiminima_ or _crocheta_ [Illustration]
    _Fusa_ or _crocheta_       [Illustration]
    _Semifusa_                 [Illustration]

The rests for the _fusa_ and _semifusa_ were turned to the left
in order to avoid the confusion that would ensue if the rest
[illustration] stood for [fusa]. Besides, the sign would have
easily become confused with the C clef [illustration].

Signs for the changes of _tempo_, that is to say changes
from quick to slow, etc., were introduced in the fifteenth
century. The oldest of them consists of drawing a line through
the _tempus_ sign [O|]. This meant that the notes were to be
played or sung twice as rapidly as would usually be the case,
without, however, affecting the relative value of the notes
to one another. Now we remember that the sign [C] stood for
our modern [4/4] time; when a line was drawn through it,
[C|] it indicated that two _brevi_ were counted as one, and
the movement was said to be _alla breve_. This is the one
instance of time signatures that has come down to us unaltered.



IX

THE SYSTEMS OF HUCBALD AND GUIDO D'AREZZO--THE BEGINNING
OF COUNTERPOINT


We have seen that by order of Charlemagne, Ambrosian chant was
superseded by that of Gregory, and from any history of music
we may learn how he caused the Gregorian chant to be taught
to the exclusion of all other music. Although Notker, in the
monastery of St. Gall, in Switzerland, and others developed the
Gregorian chant, until the time of Hucbald this music remained
mere wandering melody, without harmonic support of any kind.

Hucbald (840-930) was a monk of the monastery of St. Armand in
Flanders. As we know from our studies in notation, he was the
first to improve the notation by introducing a system of lines
and spaces, of which, however, the spaces only were utilized
for indicating the notes, viz.:

    [Illustration]

His attempt to reconstruct the musical scale was afterwards
overshadowed by the system invented by Guido d'Arezzo, and it
is therefore unnecessary to describe it in detail. His great
contribution to progress was the discovery that more than one
sound could be played or sung simultaneously, thus creating a
composite sound, the effect which we call a chord. However,
in deciding which sounds should be allowed to be played or
sung together, he was influenced partly by the mysticism of
his age, and partly by a blind adherence to the remnants of
musical theory which had been handed down from the Greeks. As
Franco of Cologne, later (1200), in systematizing rhythm into
measure, was influenced by the idea of the Trinity in making
his [3/8] or [9/8] time _tempus perfectum_, and adopting for
its symbol the Pythagorean circle [O.] or [O], so Hucbald,
in choosing his series of concords or sounds that harmonize
well together, took the first three notes of the overtones of
every sonorous fundamental, or, to express it differently, of
the series of natural harmonics, that is to say, he admitted
the octave and fifth: [F: g, d g]. But from the fifth to the
octave gives the interval of the fourth, therefore he permitted
this combination also.

From the works of Boethius (_circa_ 400) and others, he had
derived and accepted the Pythagorean division of the scale,
making thirds and sixths dissonant intervals; and so his perfect
chord (from which our later triad gets its name of _perfect_)
was composed of a root, fifth or fourth, and octave.

Hucbald, as I have already explained, changed the Greek tone
system somewhat by arranging it in four regular disjunct
tetrachords, namely:

    [F: (g, a, b-, c) (d e f g) G: (a b c' d') (e' f+' g' a')]

This system permitted the addition of a fifth to each note
indiscriminately, and the fifths would always be _perfect_; but
in regard to the octaves it was faulty, for obvious reasons. As
his system of notation consisted of merely writing T for tone
and S for semitone between the lines of his staff, it was only
necessary to change the order of these letters for the octave
at the beginning of each line. With the fourth, however,
this device was impossible, and therefore he laid down the
rule that when the voices proceeded in fourths, and a discord
(or augmented fourth) was unavoidable, the lower voice was to
remain on the same note until it could jump to another fourth
forming a perfect interval:

  [F: {g b} {g b} {g a} {g b} {d a} {d g} {c f} {c e} {a, d} {g, c}]

This at least brought into the harmony an occasional third,
which gradually became a recognized factor in music.

We probably know that the year 1000 was generally accepted
as the time when the world was to come to an end. In the
_Bibliothèque Nationale_ in Paris there is a manuscript
containing the prophecy which had been handed down for many
centuries; also the signs for the notes to which it was to be
sung, viz.:

    [Figure 07]

The text is:

    The Judge will speak and the earth shall tremble
    with awe. The stars shall be destroyed and the glory
    of the moon shall die, the mountains shall be crushed
    and the world with all in it shall utterly perish.

With the opening of the eleventh century, such was the relief
from this fear which had been oppressing Christendom, that even
the church reflected it in such strange rites as the _Feast
of Asses_ (January 14th), which was a burlesque of the Mass.

In this travesty of the Mass a young girl, dressed to
represent the Virgin, riding on an ass and carrying a child
in her arms, was conducted to the church door. Upon being
admitted and riding up the aisle to the altar, the girl
tethered the ass to the railing and sat on the steps until
the service was finished. The _Credo_, _Gloria_, etc., all
ended with a "hee-haw," and at the conclusion of the service
the officiating priest brayed three times, and was answered by
the congregation. The mixing of the vernacular with Latin in
this service is the first instance of the use of any language
but Latin in church music.

This quasi-symbolical pantomime gave rise in time to the
mediaeval Passion Plays, or Mysteries, as they were called. That
these travesties of the Mass took different forms in various
countries is very evident when we remember the description
of the "Abbot of Unreason," in Scott's "Abbot." In England,
among other absurdities such as the "Pope of Fools," the "Ball
Dance," etc., they also had the festival of the "Boy Bishop,"
in which, between the sixth and twenty-eighth of December,
a boy was made to perform all the functions of a bishop.

It would seem that all this has but little bearing upon
the development of music. As a matter of fact it was a most
potent factor in it, for music was essentially and exclusively
a church property. By permitting the people to secularize
the church rites at certain seasons, it was inevitable that
church music would also become common property for a time,
with this difference, however, that the common people could
carry the tunes away with them, and the music would be the only
thing remaining as a recollection of the carnival. Indeed, the
prevalence of popular songs soon became such that writers of
church music began to use them instead of their being derived
from church music, as was originally the case. This continued to
such an extent that almost up to 1550 a mass was known by the
name of the popular song it was based upon, as, for instance,
the mass of the "Man in Armour," by Josquin dés Pres, and those
entitled "_Je prends conge_" and "_Je veult cent mille ecus_."

Now we know that the _tempus perfectum_ was _par excellence_
[9/8] and [3/4] time. It was natural therefore that these first
church tunes should have been changed to dances in the hands
of the common people. Even in these dances it is interesting to
note that the same symbolic significance appears to be present,
for the earliest form of these dances was the "round song,"
or roundelay, and it was danced in a circle.

Duple time did not come into general use until the beginning of
the fourteenth century. About the same time, the organum (as it
was called) or system of harmonization of Hucbald was discarded,
and Johannes de Muris and Philippe de Vitry championed the
consonant quality of the third and sixth, both major and minor.
The fifth was retained as a consonant, but the fourth was
passed over in silence by the French school of writers, or
classed with the dissonants. Successive fifths were prohibited
as being too harshly dissonant, but successive fourths were
necessarily permitted, as it would be an impossibility to do
without them. Nevertheless, the fourth was still considered
a dissonance, and was permitted only between the upper parts
of the music. Thus the harsh consecutive passages in fifths
and fourths of the organum of Hucbald disappeared in favour
of the softer progressions of thirds and sixths.

In order to make clear how the new science of counterpoint
came into existence, I must again revert to Hucbald.[09]

Before his time, all "recognized" music was a more or less
melodious succession of tones, generally of the same length,
one syllable being sometimes used for many notes. He discovered
that a melody might be sung by several singers, each commencing
at a different pitch instead of all singing the same notes at
the same time. He also laid down rules as to how this was to
be done to produce the best effect. We remember why he chose
the fourth, fifth, and octave in preference to the third and
sixth. He called his system an "organum" or "diaphony," and
to sing according to his rules was called to "organize" or
"organate." We must remember that at that time fourths and
fifths were not always indicated in the written music; only
the melody, which was called the principal or subject. By
studying the rules prescribed for the organum, the singers
could add the proper intervals to the melody. We must keep
in mind, however, that later fourths were preferred to fifths
(being considered less harsh), and that the musical scale of
the period compelled the different voices to vary slightly,
that is to say, two voices could not sing exactly the same
melody at the interval of a fourth without the use of sharps
or flats; therefore one voice continued on the same note until
the awkward place was passed, and then proceeded in fourths
again with the other voice as before:

    [G: {e' a'} {d' g'} {d' f+'} {d' e'}]

On account of the augmented fourth that would occur by a strict
adherence to the melodic structure of the subject, the following
would have been impossible: [G: {e' a'} {d' g'} ({c' f+'})]
Thus we find the first instance of the use of thirds, and also
of oblique motion as opposed to the earlier inevitable parallel
motion of the voices. This necessary freedom in singing the
organum or diaphony led to the attempt to sing two _different_
melodies, one against the other--"note against note," or
"point counter point,"[10] point or _punct_ being the name
for the written note. There being now two distinct melodies,
both had to be _noted_ instead of leaving it to the singers
to add their parts extemporaneously, according to the rules of
the organum, as they had done previously. Already earlier than
this (in 1100), owing to the tendency to discard consecutive
fourths and fifths, the intermovement of the voices, from
being parallel and oblique, became _contrary_, thus avoiding
the parallel succession of intervals. The name "organum" was
dropped and the new system became known as tenor and descant,
the tenor being the principal or foundation melody, and the
descant or descants (for there could be as many as there
were parts or voices to the music) taking the place of the
organum. The difference between _discantus_ and _diaphony_
was that the latter consisted of several parts or voices,
which, however, were more or less exact reproductions, at
different pitch, of the principal or given melody, while the
former was composed of entirely different melodic and rhythmic
material. This gave rise to the science of counterpoint, which,
as I have said, consists of the trick of making a number
of voices sing different melodies at the same time without
violating certain given rules. The given melody or "principal"
soon acquired the name of _cantus firmus_, and the other parts
were each called _contrapunctus_,[11] as before they had been
called tenor and descant. These names were first used by Gerson,
Chancellor of Notre Dame, Paris, about 1400.

In the meantime (about 1300-1375), the occasional use of thirds
and sixths in the diaphonies previously explained led to an
entirely different kind of singing, called _falso bordone_
or _faux bourdon_ (_bordonizare_, "to drone," comes from a
kind of pedal in organum that first brought the third into
use). This system, contrary to the old organum, consisted of
using only thirds and sixths together, excluding the fourth
and fifth entirely, except in the first and last bars. This
innovation has been ascribed to the Flemish singers attached
to the Papal Choir (about 1377), when Pope Gregory XI returned
from Avignon to Rome. In the British Museum, however, there
are manuscripts dating from the previous century, showing
that the _faux bourdon_ had already commenced to make its way
against the old systems of Hucbald and Guido. The combination
of the _faux bourdon_ and the remnant of the organum gives us
the foundation for our modern tone system. The old rules,
making plagal motion of the different voices preferable to
parallel motion, and contrary motion preferable to either,
still hold good in our works on theory; so also in regard to
the rules forbidding consecutive fifths and octaves, leaving
the question of the fourth in doubt.

To sum up, we may say, therefore, that up to the sixteenth
century, all music was composed of the slender material of
thirds, sixths, fifths, and octaves, fourths being permitted
only _between_ the voices; consecutive successions of fourths,
however, were permitted, a license not allowed in the use of
fifths or octaves. This leads us directly to a consideration
of the laws of counterpoint and fugue, laws that have remained
practically unchanged up to the present, with the one difference
that, instead of being restricted to the meagre material of
the so-called consonants, the growing use of what were once
called dissonant chords, such as the dominant seventh, ninth,
diminished seventh, and latterly the so-called altered chords,
has brought new riches to the art.

Instead of going at once into a consideration of the laws
of counterpoint, it will be well to take up the development
of the instrumental resources of the time. There were three
distinct types of music: the ecclesiastical type (which of
course predominated) found its expression in melodies sung
by church choirs, four or more melodies being sometimes sung
simultaneously, in accordance with certain fixed rules,
as I have already explained. These melodies or chants
were often accompanied by the organ, of which we will speak
later. The second type was purely instrumental, and served as
an accompaniment for the dance, or consisted of _fanfares_
(ceremonial horn signals), or hunting signals. The third
type was that of the so-called _trouvères_ or _troubadours_,
with their _jongleurs_, and the minnesingers, and, later, the
mastersingers. All these "minstrels," as we may call them,
accompanied their singing by some instrument, generally one
of the lute type or the psaltery.


[09] There is much question as to Hucbald's organum. That
     actually these dissonances were used even up to 1500 is
     proved by Franco Gafurius of Milan, who mentions a Litany
     for the Dead (_De Profundis_) much used at that time:

     [G: {f' g'} {f' g'} {g' a'} {g' a'} {g' c''} {e' a'} {f' g'}]
     [W: De profundis, etc.]

[10] Counterpoint is first mentioned by Muris (1300).

[11] Only principal (tenor or cantus firmus) was sung to words.



X

MUSICAL INSTRUMENTS--THEIR HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT


In church music, the organ is perhaps the first instrument to
be considered. In 951, Elfeg, the Bishop of Winchester had
built in his cathedral a great organ which had four hundred
pipes and twenty-six pairs of bellows, to manage which seventy
strong men were necessary. Wolstan, in his life of St. Swithin,
the Benedictine monk, gives an account of the exhausting work
required to keep the bellows in action.

Two performers were necessary to play this organ, just as
nowadays we play four-hand music on the piano. The keys went
down with such difficulty that the players had to use their
elbows or fists on each key; therefore it is easy to see that,
at the most, only four keys could be pressed down at the same
time. On the other hand, each key when pressed down or pushed
back (for in the early organs the keyboard was perpendicular)
gave the wind from the bellows access to ten pipes each, which
were probably tuned in octaves or, possibly, according to the
organum of Hucbald, in fifths or fourths. This particular organ
had two sets of keys (called manuals), one for each player;
there were twenty keys to each manual, and every key caused
ten pipes to sound. The compass of this organ was restricted
to ten notes, repeated at the distance of an octave, and,
there being four hundred pipes, forty pipes were available for
each note. On each key was inscribed the name of the note. As
may be imagined, the tone of this instrument was such that it
could be heard at a great distance.

There were many smaller organs, as, for instance, the one in the
monastery of Ramsey, which had copper pipes. Pictures of others
from the twelfth century show that even where there were only
ten pipes, the organ had two manuals, needed two players, and at
least four men for the bellows. The great exertion required to
play these instruments led to the invention of what is called
"mixtures." From the moment fifths and fourths were considered
to sound better together than the simple notes, the pipes were
so arranged that the player did not need to press two of the
ponderous organ keys for this combination of sounds. One key
was made to open the valves of the two sets of pipes, so that
each key, instead of sounding one note, would, at will, sound
the open fifth, fourth, or octave. With the addition of the
third, thus constituting a perfect major triad, this barbarous
habit has come down to our present day almost unchanged, for by
using what is called the "mixture stop" of our modern organs,
each key of the manual gives not only the original note,
but also its perfect major triad, several octaves higher.

Originally the organ was used only to give the right intonation
for the chanting of the priests. From the twelfth century, small
portable organs of limited compass were much used; although the
tone of these instruments was necessarily slight, and, owing to
the shortness of the pipes, high in pitch, the principle of the
mechanism was similar to that of the larger instruments. They
were hung by means of a strap passed over the shoulders;
one hand pressed the keys in front of the pipes (which were
arranged perpendicularly), and the other hand operated the
small bellows behind the pipes. These small instruments rarely
had more than eight pipes, consequently they possessed only
the compass of an octave. With slight variations, they were
quite universally used up to the seventeenth century. Organ
pedals were invented in Germany about 1325. Bernhard, organist
of St. Mark's, Venice (1445-1459), has been credited with the
invention of organ pedals, but it is probable that he merely
introduced them into Italy.

As the Greek modes formed the basis for the musical system of
the church, so the Greek monochord is the type from which the
monks evolved what they called the clavichord. The monochord
has a movable bridge, therefore some time is lost in adjusting
it in order to get the different tones. To obviate this
inconvenience, a number of strings were placed side by side,
and a mechanism inserted which, by pressing a key (_clavis_),
would move the bridge to the point at which the string must
divide to give the note indicated by the key. This made it
possible to use one string for several different notes, and
explains why the clavichord or clavicembalo needed comparatively
few strings. This instrument became obsolete toward the end
of the eighteenth century.

The other species of instrument, the harpsichord, which was
invented about 1400, and which may be considered as having
sprung from the clavichord, consisted of a separate string for
each sound; the key, instead of setting in action a device
for striking and at the same time _dividing_ the strings,
caused the strings to be plucked by quills. Thus, in these
instruments, not only was an entirely different quality of tone
produced, but the pitch of a string remained unaltered. These
instruments were called _bundfrei_, "unbound," in opposition to
the _clavicembalo_, which was called _gebunden_, or "bound." The
harpsichord was much more complicated than the clavichord,
in that the latter ceased to sound when the key which moved
the bridge was released, whereas the harpsichord required what
is called a "damper" to stop the sound when the key came up;
once the string was touched by the quill, all command of the
tone by the key was lost. To regulate this, a device was added
to the instrument by means of which a damper fell on the string
when the key was released, thereby stopping the sound.

We have now to consider the instrumental development of the
Middle Ages.

An instrument of the harpsichord family which has significance
in the development of the instruments of the Middle Ages is
the spinet (from _spina_, "thorn"; it had leather points up
to 1500), first made by Johannes Spinctus, Venice, 1500. It
was a harpsichord with a _square_ case, the strings running
diagonally instead of lengthwise. When the spinet was of
very small dimensions it was called a virginal; when it was
in the shape of our modern grand piano, it was, of course,
a harpsichord; and when the strings and sounding board
were arranged perpendicularly, the instrument was called
a clavicitherium. As early as 1500, then, four different
instruments were in general use, the larger ones having a
compass of about four octaves. The connecting link between the
harpsichord, the clavichord, and the piano, was the dulcimer or
hackbrett, which was a tavern instrument. Pantaleon Hebenstreit,
a dancing master and inventor of Leipzig, in 1705 added an
improved hammer action, which was first applied to keyboard
instruments by Cristofori, an instrument maker at Florence
(1711). His instrument was called _forte-piano_ or _pianoforte_,
because it would strike loud or soft.

These instruments all descended from the ancient lyre, the
only difference being that instead of causing the strings to
vibrate by means of a plectrum held in the hand, the plectrum
was set in motion by the mechanism of the _claves_ or keys. The
system of fingering employed in playing the harpsichord, up to
1700, did not make use of the thumb. J.S. Bach, F. Couperin,
and J.P. Rameau were the pioneers in this matter. The first
published work on piano technique and fingering was that by
C.P.E. Bach (1753).

With the advent of bowed instruments the foundation was laid for
the modern orchestra, of which they are the natural basis. The
question of the antiquity of the bowed instrument has often been
discussed, with the result that the latter has been definitely
classed as essentially modern, for the reason that it did not
become known in Europe until about the tenth to the twelfth
centuries. As a matter of fact, the instrument is doubtless
of Person or Hindu origin, and was brought to the West by
the Arabs, who were in Spain from the eighth to the fifteenth
centuries; in fact, most of our stringed instruments, both the
bowed and those of the lyre type, we owe to the Arabs--the very
name of the lute, _el oud_ ("shell" in Arabic) became _liuto_ in
Italian, in German _laute_, and in English lute. There were many
varieties of these bowed instruments, and it is thought that the
principle arose from rubbing one instrument with another. The
only other known examples of bowed instruments of primitive
type are (1) the _ravanastron_, an instrument of the monochord
type, native to India, made to vibrate by a kind of bow with
a string stretched from end to end; (2) the Welsh _chrotta_
(609 A.D.), a primitive lyre-shaped instrument, with which,
however, the use of the bow seems to have been a much later
invention. Mention should also be made of the marine trumpet,
much in vogue from the fourteenth to the sixteenth centuries;
it consisted of a long, narrow, resonant box, composed of
three boards, over which was stretched a single string;
other unchangeable strings, struck with the bow, served as
drones. Only the harmonics were played on the marine trumpet.

The principle of procuring the vibrations in stringed
instruments by means of a bow was, of course, applied to the
monochord class of keyed instruments, and was thus the origin
of the hurdy-gurdy, which consisted of a wheel covered with
resined leather and turned by a crank.

The bowed instruments were originally of two types, the first
in the form of the lute or mandolin; the second probably
derived from the Welsh _crwth_, consisting of a flat, long box
strung with strings (called fidel from _fides_, "string"). The
combination of these types, which were subjected to the most
fantastic changes of shape, led eventually to the modern
violin family.

We know that the highest plane of perfection in the violin
was reached in Italy about 1600. The Cremona makers, Amati,
Guarnerius, and Stradivarius, made their most celebrated
instruments between 1600 and 1750.

The violin bow, in its earliest form, was nothing more than an
ordinary bow with a stretched string; Corelli and Tartini used a
bow of the kind. The present shape of the bow is due to Tourte,
a Paris maker, who experimented in conjunction with Viotti,
the celebrated violinist.

By looking at the original lute and the Arabian _rebeck_
or Welsh _crwth_ (originally Latin _chorus_), we can see how
the modern violin received its generally rounded shape from
the lute, its flatness from the _rebeck_, the sides of the
instrument being cut out in order to give the bow free access
to the side strings. The name too, _fidula_ or _vidula_,
from mediaeval Latin _fides_, "string," became fiddle and
viola, the smaller viola being called violino, the larger,
violoncello and viola da gamba.

In the Middle Ages, the different species of bowed instrument
numbered from fifteen to twenty, and it was not until between
1600 and 1700 that the modern forms of these instruments
obtained the ascendancy.

Of the wind instruments it was naturally the flute that
retained its antique form; the only difference between the
modern instrument and the ancient one being that the former
is blown crosswise, instead of perpendicularly. Quantz,
the celebrated court flute player to Frederick the Great
of Prussia, was the first to publish, in 1750, a so-called
"method" of playing the traversal (crosswise) flute.

With the reed instruments the change in modern times is more
striking. The original form of the reed instruments was of the
double-reed variety. The oldest known mention of them dates from
650 A.D., when the name applied is _calamus_ (reed); later the
names _shalmei_ (_chalumeau_, "straw," from German _halm_) and
_shawm_ were used. These instruments were played by means of a
bell-shaped mouthpiece, the double reed being fixed inside the
tube. It was not until toward the end of the sixteenth century
that the bell-shaped mouthpiece was dispensed with and the reed
brought directly to the lips, thus giving the player greater
power of expression. The oboe is a representative type of the
higher pitched double-reed instruments. In its present shape it
is about two hundred years old. As the deeper toned instruments
were necessarily very long, six to eight and even ten feet,
an assistant had to walk before the performer, holding the
tube on his shoulder. This inconvenience led to bending the
tube back on itself, making it look somewhat like a bundle of
sticks, hence the word _faggot_; although it is commonly known
in this country by the French name, _bassoon_. This manner of
arranging the instrument dates from about the year 1550. The
clarinet is an essentially modern instrument, the single
beating reed and cylindrical tube coming into use about 1700,
the invention of a German named Denner, who lived at Nuremberg.

All the brass instruments of the Middle Ages seem to have
been very short, therefore high in pitch. We remember that
the Romans had trumpets (chiefly used in signalling) called
_buccina_, and we may assume that the whole modern family of
brass instruments has descended from this primitive type. As
late as 1500, the hunting horn consisted of but one loop which
passed over the shoulder and around the body of the player.
A horn of from six to seven feet in length was first used
about 1650; and we know that, owing to the smallness of the
instruments and their consequent high pitch in those days, many
of Bach's scores contain parts absolutely impracticable for our
modern brass instruments. The division of these instruments
into classes, such as trumpets, horns, trombones, etc., is
due to the differences in shape, which in turn produce tones
of different quality. The large bore of the trombone gives
great volume to the tone, the small bore of the trumpet great
brilliancy, the medium bore of the horn veils the brilliancy
on one hand and lightens the thickness of tone on the other.

The horn, called _cor de chasse_, was first used in the
orchestra in 1664, in one of Lully's operas, but its technique
(stopped tones and crooks) was only properly understood about
1750; the present-day valve horn did not come into general
use until within the last half century. Fifty years before
the principle had been applied to the horn the trumpet had
crooks and slides, a mechanism which, in the trumpet, is still
retained in England, pointing to the fact that the trombone is,
after all, nothing but a very large kind of trumpet.



XI

FOLK SONG AND ITS RELATION TO NATIONALISM IN MUSIC


In order to understand as well as to feel music, we must reduce
it to its primary elements, and these are to be found in folk
song, or, to go further back, in its predecessor, the chant
of the savages.

Folk music may be likened to a twig which has fallen into a
salt mine, to borrow an expression from Taine; every year adds
fresh jewels to the crystals that form on it until at last the
only resemblance to the original is in the general contour. We
know that the nucleus of melody lies in one note, just as the
origin of language is to be sought for in the word. Therefore
folk music proper must be separated from what may be called
barbaric music, the most primitive type of the latter being
the "one-note" strain from which spring the melodies of the
people. This one-note form passes through many rhythmical
changes before song becomes developed to the extent of adding
several notes to its means of expression. The next development
of savage chanting (which is the precursor of folk song) may
be traced back to its two elements, one of which was a mere
savage howl, and the other, that raising of the voice under
stress of strong emotion which still constitutes one of our
principal means of expression.

Thus, in this barbaric music we invariably find three
principles: 1, rhythm; 2, the howl or descending scale of
undefined intervals; and 3, the emotional raising of the
voice. The rhythm, which characterizes the most primitive
form of song or chant, consists of the incessant repetition
of a very small group of rhythmic sounds. This incessant
recurrence of one idea is characteristic of primitive, weak,
or insane natures. The second principle, which invariably
includes the first (pointing to a slightly more advanced state
of development), is met with in many folk songs of even modern
times. The third principle is one which indicates the transition
stage from primitive or barbaric music to folk music.

To the primitive savage mind, the smallest rhythmic phrase is a
wonderful invention, therefore it is repeated incessantly. Add
to that a certain joy in mere sound, and we have the howl,
which certainly follows the sequence of nature, for a thunder
clap, or the phenomenon of echo, is its prototype, being a loud
explosion followed by a more or less regular sequence of minor
reverberations. When the accent of passion is added to these
two principles--will and nature--we have laid the aesthetic
foundation for all that we call music.[12] The example of a
loud tone with gradually ascending inflections has only been
found in the most perverted types of humanity; for instance, an
English writer quaintly alludes to the songs of the Polynesian
cannibals as consisting of "gruesomely suggestive passages
of rising quarter-tones sung gloatingly before their living
captives who are soon to be devoured."

Now traces of these three elements are to be found in every
folk song known, and we may even trace their influence in
modern music, the lowest or most primitive being, as I have
said, the "one-note" type, the next what I have called the
"howl" type, the third the highest or "emotional" type.

Specimens of the first type, chants such as these [Figure 08],
are to be heard in every part of the globe, the rhythmic figure
being necessarily short and repeated incessantly.

The next step was a tremendous advance, and we find its
influence permeating all music. The most primitive specimens of
this type we find among the Jute Indians [Figure 09], a mixture
of one and two. The same is to be found in Australia, slightly
modified: [Figure 10] The Caribs have the same song
[G: g'' \ Chromatic g']. We find it again in Hungary, although
in a still more modified form, thus:

    [Figure 11]

And last of all we meet with it in its primitive state in the
folk song used by Bizet in "Carmen." We can even see traces of
it in the quasi-folk song of the present century:

    [Figure 12] etc.

The third element of folk song shows again a great advance,
for instead of the mere howl of pleasure or pain, we have a
more or less exactly graded expression of feeling. In speaking
of impassioned speech I explained the relative values of the
inflections of the voice, how the upward skip of the fourth,
fifth, and octave indicates the intensity of the emotion
causing the cry. When this element is brought into music, it
gives a vitality not before possessed, for by this it becomes
speech. When in such music this inflection rhymes with the
words, that is to say, when the speech finds its emotional
reflection in the music, we have reached the highest development
of folk song. In its best state, this is immeasurably superior
to much of our "made" music, only too often false in rhythm,
feeling, and declamation.

Among the different nations, these three characteristics often
become obscured by national idiosyncracies. Much of the Chinese
music, the "Hymn to the Ancestors," for instance, seemingly
covers a number of notes, whereas, in fact, it belongs to the
one-note type. We find that their melodies almost invariably
return to the same note, the intervening sounds being more
or less merely variations above and below the pitch of the
principal sound. For example:

    [Figure 13]

Hungarian folk music has been much distorted by the oriental
element, as represented by the _zingari_ or gypsies.
The Hungarian type of folk music is one of the highest, and
is extremely severe in its contours, as shown in the following:

    [Figure 14]

The gypsy element as copied by Liszt has obscured the folk
melodies by innumerable arabesques and ornaments of all sorts,
often covering even a "one-note" type of melody until it seems
like a complicated design.

This elaboration of detail and the addition of passing and
ornamental notes to every melody is distinctly an oriental
trait, which finds vent not only in music but also in
architecture, designing, carving, etc. It is considered by many
an element of weakness, seeking to cover a poverty of thought
by rich vestments. And yet, to my mind, nothing can be more
misleading. In spite of Sir Hubert Parry and other writers,
I cannot think that the Moors in Spain, for instance, covered
poverty of thought beneath superficial ingenuity of design. The
Alhambra outdoes in "passage work," in virtuoso arabesques,
all that an army of Liszts could do in piano literature;
and yet the Arabs were the saviours of science, and promoted
the greatest learning and depth of thought known in Europe in
their time. As for Liszt, there is such an astounding wealth
of poetry and deep feeling beneath the somewhat "flashy,"
bombastic trick of speech he inherited, that the true lover
of music can no more allow his feelings to be led astray by
such externals than one would judge a man's mind by the cut
of his coat or the hat he wears.

Thus we see the essence of folk song is comprised in the three
elements mentioned, and its aesthetic value may be determined
by the manner in which these elements are combined and their
relative preponderance.

One point must be very distinctly understood, namely, that what
we call harmonization of a melody cannot be admitted as forming
any part of folk song. Folk melodies are, without exception,
homophonous. This being the case, perhaps my statement that the
vital principle of folk music in its best state has nothing in
common with nationalism (considered in the usual sense of the
word), will be better understood. And this will be the proof
that nationalism, so-called, is merely an extraneous thing
that has no part in pure art. For if we take any melody, even
of the most pronounced national type, and merely eliminate the
characteristic turns, affectations, or mannerisms, the theme
becomes simply music, and retains no touch of nationality. We
may even go further; for if we retain the characteristic
mannerisms of dress, we may harmonize a folk song in such a
manner that it will belie its origin; and by means of this
powerful factor (an essentially modern invention) we may even
transform a Scotch song, with all its "snap" and character,
into a Chinese song, or give it an Arabian flavour. This,
to be sure, is possible only to a limited degree; enough,
however, to prove to us the power of harmony; and harmony,
as I have said, has no part in folk song.

To define the _rôle_ of harmony in music is no easy matter.
Just as speech has its shadow languages, gesture and expression;
just as man is a duality of idealism and materialism; just as
music itself is a union of the emotional and the intellectual,
so harmony is the shadow language of melody; and just as in
speech this shadow language overwhelms the spoken word, so
in music harmony controls the melody. For example: Imagine
the words "I will kill you" being said in a jesting tone of
voice and with a pleasant expression of the face; the import
of the words would be lost in their expression; the mere words
would mean nothing to us in comparison with the expression
that accompanied them.

Take away the harmonic structure upon which Wagner built his
operas and it would be difficult to form a conception of the
marvellous potency of his music. Melody, therefore, may be
classed as the gift of folk song to music; and harmony is its
shadow language. When these two powers, melody and harmony,
supplement each other, when one completes the thought of the
other, then, provided the thought be a noble one, the effect
will be overwhelmingly convincing, and we have great music. The
contrary results when one contradicts the other, and that
is only too often the case; for we hear the mildest waltzes
dressed up in tragic and dramatic chords, which, like Bottom,
"roar as gently as any sucking dove."

In discussing the origin of speech, mention was made of those
shadow languages which accompany all our spoken words, namely,
the languages of expression and gesture. These were surely
the very first auxiliaries of uttered speech, and in the same
way we find that they constitute the first sign of advance
in primitive melody. Savages utter the same thought over and
over again, evidently groping after that semblance of Nirvana
(or perhaps it may be better described as "hypnotic exaltation")
which the incessant repetition of that one thought, accompanied
by its vibrating shadow, sound, would naturally occasion.

It was also stated that the relative antiquity or primitivity
of a melody is invariably to be discovered by its degree
of relationship to the original type, one note, one rhythm,
the emotional, the savage howl, or, in other words, the high
note followed by a gradual descent. To confirm this theory of
the origin of folk song, we need only look at the aboriginal
chants of widely separated peoples to find that the oldest
songs all resemble one another, despite the fact that they
originated in widely separated localities.

Now the difference between this primitive music and that
which we call folk song is that the latter is characterized
by a feeling for design, in the broadest sense of the word,
entirely lacking in the former. For we find that although
folk song is composed of the same material as savage music,
the material is arranged coherently into sentences instead of
remaining the mere exclamation of passion or a nerve exciting
reiteration of unchanging rhythms and vibrations, as is the
case in the music of the savage.

Before proceeding further, I wish to draw the line which
separates savage from folk music very plainly.

We know that the first stage in savage music is that of one
note. Gradually a tone above the original is added on account
of the savage being unable to intone correctly; through
stress of emotion the fifth and octave come into the chant;
the sixth, being the note above the fifth, is added later,
as is the third, the note above the second. Thus is formed
the pentatonic scale as it is found all over the world, and
it is clear, therefore, that the development of the scale is
due to emotional influences.

The development of rhythm may be traced to the words sung
or declaimed, and the development of design or form to the
dance. In the following, from Brazil, we find a savage chant
in almost its primitive state:

    [Figure 15] etc.

The next example, also from Brazil, is somewhat better, but
still formless and unemotional.

    [Figure 16] etc.

Let this be danced to, however, and the change is very marked,
for immediately form, regularity, and design are noticeable:

    [Figure 17] etc.

On the other hand, the emotional element marks another very
decided change, namely, by placing more sounds at the command
of the singer, and also by introducing words, which necessarily
invest the song with the rhythm of language.

Thus the emotional and declamatory elements heighten the
powers of expression by the greater range given to the voice,
and add the poignancy and rhythm of speech to song. On the
other hand, the dance gives regularity to the rhythmic and
emotional sequences.

In the following examples we can see more clearly the elements
of folk song as they exist in savage music:

  Three or four note (simple)

    South America [Figure 18]
    Nubia [Figure 19]

  Emotional (simple)

    Samoa [Figure 20]

  Emotional and Composite

    Hudson's Bay [Figure 21]
    Soudan [Figure 22]

  Howl and Emotion

    [Figure 23]

    Dance. Brazil
    [Figure 24]
    Simple [Figure 25] or
    Dance [Figure 26]

The fact that so many nations have the pentatonic or five-note
scale (the Chinese, Basque, Scotch, Hindu, etc.), would seem to
point to a necessary similarity of their music. This, however,
is not the case. In tracing the differences we shall find
that true folk song has but few marked national traits, it is
something which comes from the heart; whereas nationalism in
music is an outward garment which is a result of certain habits
of thought, a _mannerism_ of language so to speak. If we look at
the music of different nations we find certain characteristics;
divest the music of these same characteristics and we find
that the figure upon which this garment of nationalism has
been placed is much the same the world over, and that its
relationship to the universal language of savage music is very
marked. Carmen's song, divested of the mixture of triplets
and dual rhythms (Spanish or Moorish) is akin to the "howl."

Nationalism may be divided into six different classes:

First we have what may be broadly termed "orientalism,"
which includes the Hindu, Moorish, Siamese, and Gypsy, the
latter embracing most of southeastern European (Roumania,
etc.) types. Liszt's "Second Rhapsody," opening section,
divested of orientalism or gypsy characteristics, is merely
of the savage three-note type.

Our second division may be termed the style of reiteration,
and is to be found in Russia and northern Europe.

The third consists of the mannerism known as the "Scotch snap,"
and is a rhythmic device which probably originated in that
trick of jumping from one register of the voice to another,
which has always had a fascination for people of simple
natures. The Swiss _jodel_ is the best illustration of this
in a very exaggerated form.

The fourth consists of a seemingly capricious intermixture
of dual and triple rhythm, and is especially noticeable in
Spanish and Portuguese music as well as in that of their South
American descendants. This distinction, however, may be traced
directly back to the Moors. For in their wonderful designs we
continually see the curved line woven in with the straight, the
circle with the square, the _tempus perfectum_ with the spondee.
This would bring this characteristic directly under the head
of orientalism or ornamental development. Yet the peculiarity
is so marked that it seems to call for separate consideration.

The fifth type, like the fourth, is open to the objection that
it is merely a phase of the oriental type. It consists of the
incessant use of the augmented second and diminished third,
a distinctively Arabian characteristic, and is to be found
in Egypt, also, strange to say, occasionally among our own
North American Indians. This, however, is not to be wondered
at, considering that we know nothing of their ancestry. Only
now and then on that broad sea of mystery do we see a half
submerged rock, which gives rise to all sorts of conjectures;
for example, the custom of the Jutes to wear green robes and
use fans in certain dances, the finding in the heart of America
of such an Arab tune as this:

    [Figure 27]

or such a Russian tune as this:

    [Figure 28]

The last type of nationalism in folk song is almost a negative
quality, its distinguishing mark being mere simplicity,
a simplicity which is affected, or possibly assimilated, by
the writer of such a song; for German folk song proper is a
made thing, springing not from the people, but from the many
composers, both ancient and modern, who have tried their hands
in that direction.

While this of course takes nationalism out of the composition
of German folk song so-called, the latter has undoubtedly gained
immensely by it; for by thus divesting music of all its national
mannerisms, it has left the thought itself untroubled by quirks
and turns and a restricted musical scale; it has allowed this
thought to shine out in all its own essential beauty, and thus,
in this so-called German folk song, the greatest effects of
poignancy are often reached through absolute simplicity and
directness.

Now let us take six folk songs and trace first their national
characteristics, and after that their scheme of design, for
it is by the latter that the vital principle, so to speak, of
a melody is to be recognized, all else being merely external,
costumes of the different countries in which they were born. And
we shall see that a melody or thought born among one people
will change its costume when it migrates to another country.

  Arab Song

    [Figure 29]

    Scheme [Figure 29a]

  Russia--Reiteration

    [Figure 30]

    [Figure 31]

  Red Sarafan

    [Figure 32]

  Scotch

    [Figure 33]

    [Figure 34]

  Irish--Emotional in character, with greater perfection in design

    [Figure 35]

  Spanish

    [Figure 36]

  Egyptian

    [Figure 37] (Note augmented intervals)

The characteristics of German and English folk songs may be
observed in the familiar airs of these nations.

The epitome of folk song, divested of nationalism, is shown
in the following:

    [Figure 38]


[12] The antiquity of any melody (or its primitiveness) may
     be established according to its rhythmic and melodic
     or human attributes.



XII

THE TROUBADOURS, MINNESINGERS AND MASTERSINGERS


Although wandering minstrels or bards have existed since the
world began, and although the poetry they have left is often
suggestive, the music to which the words were sung is but
little known.

About 700-800 A.D., when all Europe was in a state of dense
ignorance and mental degradation, the Arabs were the embodiment
of culture and science, and the Arab empire extended at that
time over India, Persia, Arabia, Egypt (including Algeria and
Barbary), Portugal, and the Spanish caliphates, Andalusia,
Granada, etc. The descriptions of the splendour at the courts
of the Eastern caliphs at Bagdad seem almost incredible.

For instance, the Caliph Mahdi is said to have expended
six millions of dinars of gold in a single pilgrimage to
Mecca. His grandson, Almamon, gave in alms, on one single
occasion, two and a half millions of gold pieces, and the
rooms in his palace at Bagdad were hung with thirty-eight
thousand pieces of tapestry, over twelve thousand of which
were of silk embroidered with gold. The floor carpets were
more than twenty thousand in number, and the Greek ambassador
was shown a hundred lions, each with his keeper, as a sign
of the king's royalty, as well as a wonderful tree of gold
and silver, spreading into eighteen large, leafy branches,
on which were many birds made of the same precious metals. By
some mechanical means, the birds sang and the leaves trembled.
Naturally such a court, particularly under the reign of
Haroun-al Raschid (the Just), who succeeded Almamon, would
attract the most celebrated of those Arabian minstrels, such as
Zobeir, Ibrahim of Mossoul, and many others who figure in the
"Arabian Nights," real persons and celebrated singers of their
times. We read of one of them, Serjab, who, by court jealousy
and intrigues, was forced to leave Bagdad, and found his way
to the Western caliphates, finally reaching Cordova in Spain,
where the Caliph Abdalrahman's court vied with that of Bagdad
in luxury. Concerning this we read in Gibbon that in his palace
of Zehra the audience hall was incrusted with gold and pearls,
and that the caliph was attended by twelve thousand horsemen
whose belts and scimiters were studded with gold.

We know that the Arabian influence on the European arts came
to us by the way of Spain, and although we can see traces of
it very plainly in the Spanish music of to-day, the interim of
a thousand years has softened its characteristics very much. On
the other hand, the much more pronounced Arabian characteristics
of Hungarian music are better understood when we recall that the
Saracens were at the gates of Budapesth as late as 1400. That
the European troubadours should have adopted the Moorish _el
oud_ and called it "lute" is therefore but natural. And in
all the earlier songs of the troubadours we shall find many
traces of the same influence; for their _albas_ or _aubades_
(morning songs) came from the Arabic, as did their _serenas_ or
serenades (evening songs), _planhs_ (complaints), and _coblas_
(couplets). The troubadours themselves were so called from
_trobar_, meaning to invent.

In the works of Fauriel and St. Polaye, and many others, may
be found accounts of the origin of the Provençal literature,
including, of course, a description of the troubadours.
It is generally admitted that Provençal poetry has no
connection with Latin, the origin of this new poetry being very
plausibly ascribed to a gypsy-like class of people mentioned
by the Latin chroniclers of the Middle Ages as _joculares_
or _joculatores_. They were called _joglars_ in Provençal,
_jouglers_ or _jougleors_ in French, and our word "juggler"
comes from the same source. What that source originally was
may be inferred from the fact that they brought many of the
Arab forms of dance and poetry into Christian Europe. For
instance, two forms of Provençal poetry are the counterpart
of the Arabian _cosidas_ or long poem, all on one rhyme; and
the _maouchahs_ or short poem, also rhymed. The _saraband_,
or Saracen dance, and later the morris dance (_Moresco_
or _Fandango_) or Moorish dance, seem to point to the same
origin. In order to make it clearer I will quote an Arabian
song from a manuscript in the British Museum, and place beside
it one by the troubadour Capdeuil.

    Arabian Melody [Figure 39]

    Pons de Capdeuil [Figure 40]

The troubadours must not be confounded with the _jougleurs_
(more commonly written _jongleurs_). The latter, wandering,
mendicant musicians, ready to play the lute, sing, dance, or
"juggle," were welcomed as merry-makers at all rich houses,
and it soon became a custom for rich nobles to have a number
of them at their courts. The troubadour was a very different
person, generally a noble who wrote poems, set them to music,
and employed _jongleurs_ to sing and play them. In the South
these songs were generally of an amorous nature, while in the
North they took the form of _chansons de geste_, long poems
recounting the feats in the life and battles of some hero,
such as Roland (whose song was chanted by the troops of William
the Conqueror), or Charles Martel.

And so the foundations for many forms of modern music were
laid by the troubadours, for the _chanson_ or song was always
a narrative. If it were an evening song it was a _sera_ or
serenade, or if it were a night song, _nocturne_; a dance,
a _ballada_; a round dance, a _rounde_ or _rondo_; a country
love song, a _pastorella_. Even the words descant and treble
go back to their time; for the _jongleurs_, singing their
masters' songs, would not all follow the same melody; one
of them would seek to embellish it and sing something quite
different that still would fit well with the original melody,
just as nowadays, in small amateur bands we often hear a
flute player adding embellishing notes to his part. Soon,
more than one singer added to his part, and the new voice was
called the triple, third, or treble voice. This extemporizing
on the part of the _jongleurs_ soon had to be regulated, and
the actual notes written down to avoid confusion. Thus this
habit of singing merged into _faux bourdon_, which has been
discussed in a former chapter. Apart from these forms of song,
there were some called _sirventes_--that is "songs of service,"
which were very partisan, and were accompanied by drums, bells,
and pipes, and sometimes by trumpets. The more warlike of these
songs were sung at tournaments by the _jongleurs_ outside the
lists, while their masters, the troubadours, were doing battle,
of which custom a good description is to be found in Hagen's
book on the minnesingers.

In France the Provençal poetry lasted only until the middle
of the fourteenth century, after the troubadours had received
a crushing blow at the time the Albigenses were extirpated in
the thirteenth century.

In one city alone (that of Beziers), between 30,000 and 40,000
people were killed for heresy against the Pope. The motto
of the Pope's representatives was "God will know His Own,"
and Catholics as well as Albigenses (as the sect was called)
were massacred indiscriminately. That this heresy against
the Pope was vastly aided by the troubadours, is hardly open
to doubt. Such was their power that the rebellious, antipapal
_sirventes_ of the troubadours (which were sung by their troops
of _jongleurs_ in every market place) could be suppressed only
after the cities of Provence were almost entirely annihilated
and the population destroyed by the massacre, burning alive,
and the Inquisition.

A review of the poems of Bertran de Born, Bernart de Ventadour,
Thibaut, or others is hardly in place here. Therefore we
will pass to Germany, where the spirit of the troubadours was
assimilated in a peculiarly Germanic fashion by the minnesingers
and the mastersingers.

In Germany, the troubadours became minnesingers, or singers of
love songs, and as early as the middle of the twelfth century
the minnesingers were already a powerful factor in the life
of the epoch, counting among their number many great nobles
and kings. The German minnesingers differed from the French
troubadours in that they themselves accompanied their songs on
the viol, instead of employing _jongleurs_. Their poems, written
in the Swabian dialect, then the court language of Germany,
were characterized by greater pathos and purity than those of
the troubadours, and their longer poems, corresponding to the
_chansons de geste_ of the north of France, were also superior
to the latter in point of dignity and strength. From the French
we have the "Song of Roland" (which William the Conqueror's
troops sang in their invasion of England); from the Germans the
"Nibelungen Song," besides Wolfram von Eschenbach's "Parzival"
and Gottfried von Strasburg's "Tristan." In contradistinction
to the poetry of the troubadours, that of the minnesingers
was characterized by an undercurrent of sadness which seems
to be peculiar to the Germanic race. The songs are full of
nature and the eternal strife between Winter and Summer and
their prototypes Death and Life (recalling the ancient myths
of Maneros, Bacchus, Astoreth, Bel, etc.).

After the death of Konrad IV, the last Swabian emperor of the
House of Hohenstaufen, minnesinging in Germany declined, and
was succeeded by the movement represented by the _meister_ or
mastersingers. During the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries,
when Germany was broken up into countless small duchies and
kingdoms, many of the German nobles became mere robbers and took
part in the innumerable little wars which kept the nation in
a state of ferment. Thus they had neither time nor inclination
to occupy themselves with such pursuits as poetry or music. In
the meanwhile, however, the incessant warfare and brigandage
that prevailed in the country tended to drive the population
to the cities for protection. The latter grew in size, and
little by little the tradespeople began to take up the arts
of poetry and music which had been discarded by the nobles.

Following their custom in respect to their trades, they formed
the art companies into guilds, the rules for admittance to which
were very strict. The rank of each member was determined by
his skill in applying the rules of the "Tabulatur," as it was
called. There were five grades of membership: the lowest was
that of mere admittance to the guild; the next carried with
it the title of scholar; the third the friend of the school;
after that came the singer, the poet; and last of all the
mastersinger, to attain which distinction the aspirant must
have invented a new style of melody or rhyme. The details of
the contest we all know from Wagner's comedy; in a number of
cases Wagner even made use of the sentences and words found
in the rules of the mastersingers. Although the mastersingers
retained their guild privileges in different parts of Germany
almost up to the middle of the present century, the movement
was strongest in Bavaria, with Nuremberg as its centre.

Thus we see that the mastersingers and the minnesingers were
two very different classes of men. The mastersingers are
mainly valuable for having given Wagner a pretext for his
wonderful music. Hans Sachs was perhaps the only one of the
mastersingers whose melodies show anything but the flattest
mediocrity. The minnesingers and their immediate predecessors
and successors, on the other hand, furnished thought for a great
part of our modern art. To put it in a broad manner, it may be
said that much of our modern poetry owes more than is generally
conceded to the German mediaeval romance as represented in the
works of Wolfram von Eschenbach, Gottfried of Strasburg, and
the unknown compilers of the "Nibelungenlied" and "Gutrune."
Music owes more to the troubadours, for, from what we know
of the melodies of the minnesingers, they cannot compare in
expressiveness with those of their French _confrères_.

In closing this consideration of the minnesingers, I will quote
some of their verses and melodies, giving short accounts of
the authors.

The best known of the minnesingers were Walther von der
Vogelweide, Heinrich Frauenlob, Tannhäuser, Nithart, Toggenburg,
etc. We first hear of Walther von der Vogelweide in 1200,
as a poet attached to the court of Philip of Hohenstaufen,
the German Kaiser, and shortly after to that of his successors
Otto and Friedrich. He accompanied Kaiser Friedrich to the
Crusade of 1228, and saw him crowned in Jerusalem. He died
in Würzburg, Bavaria. In accordance with his dying request,
food and drink for the birds were placed on his tomb every day;
the four holes carved for that purpose being still visible. The
pictures in Hagen's work on the mastersingers were collected in
the fifteenth century by Manasses of Zorich, and have served
as the basis for all subsequent works on the subject. The
picture of Von der Vogelweide (page 21) shows him sitting in
an attitude of meditation, on a green hillock, beside him his
sword and his coat of arms (a caged bird on one side and his
helmet on the other), and in his hand a roll of manuscript.
One of his shorter poems begins:

    Neath the lindens
    In the meadow
    Seek I flowers sweet;
    Clover fragrant,
    Tender grasses,
    Bend beneath my feet.

    See, the gloaming,
    Softly sinking,
    Covers hill and dale.
    Hush! my lover--
    Tandaradei!
    Sweet sings the nightingale.

We all are familiar with Tannhäuser (plate 35), through Wagner's
opera; therefore it is unnecessary to say more than that he was
a real person, a minnesinger, and that the singing tournament
at the Wartburg (the castle of the Thüringen family) really took
place in 1206-07. This tournament, which Wagner introduces into
his "Tannhäuser," was a trial of knightly strength, poetry,
and music, between the courts of Babenhausen and Thüringen,
and was held in Erfurt. Among the knights who competed were
Klingsor of Hungary, a descendant of the Klingsor who figures
in the "Parzival" legend, Tannhäuser, Walther von Eschenbach,
Walther von der Vogelweide, and many others. Tannhäuser was
a follower, or perhaps better, the successor of Walther von
der Vogelweide, like him, a crusader, and lived in the first
half of the thirteenth century. Toggenburg and Frauenlob were
both celebrated minnesingers, the former (plate 7) being the
subject of many strange legends. The simplicity and melodious
charm of his verses seem to contradict the savage brutality
ascribed to him in the stories of his life.

Frauenlob (plate 44), as Heinrich von Meissen was
called, represents the minnesingers at the height of their
development. He died about 1320, and his works, as his nickname
suggests, were imbued with _das ewig weibliche_ in its best
sense. He was called the Magister of the seven free arts, and
was given the position of Canon of the Cathedral of Mayence,
with the title of Doctor of Divinity. He also wrote a paraphrase
on the "Song of Solomon," turning it into a rhapsodical eulogy
of the Virgin Mary, carrying versification to what seemed then
its utmost limits. The picture shows him playing and singing
to some prince, the carpet on which he stands being lifted
by the attendants. It makes plain the difference between the
minnesingers and the troubadours. In this picture the singer
is seen to be accompanying himself before the king, whereas in
plate 28 we see two troubadours in the lists, their _jongleurs_
playing or singing the songs of their masters, while the latter
engage each other in battle. In order to give one more example
we will take the pictures of Conrad, the son of Conrad IV,
and the last of the Hohenstaufens (plate 11). He was born
about 1250, and was beheaded in the market place at Naples in
1268. The story of Konradin, as he was called, is familiar;
how he lived with his mother at the castle of her brother,
Ludwig of Bavaria, how he was induced to join in a rebellion
of the two Sicilies (to the crown of which he was heir) against
France, his defeat and execution by the Duke of Anjou, himself
a well-known troubadour. The text accompanying his picture
in Hagen's work describes him as having black eyes and blonde
hair, and wearing a long green dress with a golden collar.
His gray hunting horse is covered with a crimson mantle, has a
golden saddle and bit, and scarlet reins. Konradin wears white
hunting gloves and a three-cornered king's crown. Above the
picture are the arms of the kingdom of Jerusalem (a golden
crown in silver ground), to which he was heir through his
grandmother, Iolanthe. One of his songs runs as follows, and
it may be accepted as a fair specimen of the style of lyric
written by the minnesingers:

    The lovely flowers and verdure sweet
    That gentle May doth slip
    Have been imprisoned cruelly
    In Winter's iron grip;
    But May smiles o'er the green clad fields
    That seemed anon so sad,
    And all the world is glad.

    No joy to me the Summer brings
    With all its bright long days.
    My thoughts are of a maiden fair
    Who mocks my pleading gaze;
    She passes me in haughty mood,
    Denies me aught but scorn,
    And makes my life forlorn.

    Yet should I turn my love from her,
    For aye my love were gone.
    I'd gladly die could I forget
    The love that haunts my song.
    So, lonely, joyless, live I on,
    For love my prayer denies,
    And, childlike, mocks my sighs.

The music of these minnesingers existing in manuscript has been
but little heeded, and only lately has an attempt been made to
classify and translate it into modern notation. The result so
far attained has been unsatisfactory, for the rhythms are all
given as spondaic. This seems a very improbable solution of
the mystery that must inevitably enshroud the musical notation
of the eleventh, twelfth, and thirteenth centuries.

Nithart (plate 36), by whom a number of melodies or "tones"
are given in Hagen's book (page 845), has been dubbed the
second "Till Eulenspiegel." He was a Bavarian, and lived about
1230, at the court of Frederick of Austria. He was eminently
the poet and singer of the peasants, with whom, after the
manner of Eulenspiegel, he had many quarrels, one of which is
evidently the subject of the picture. His music, or melodies,
and the verses which went with them, form the most complete
authentic collection of mediaeval music known. In considering
the _minnelieder_ of the Germans it is very interesting to
compare them with the songs of the troubadours, and to note
how in the latter the Arab influence has increased the number
of curved lines, or arabesques, whereas the German songs may
be likened to straight lines, a characteristic which we know
is a peculiarity of their folk song.

  PASTORELLA BY THIBAUT II, KING OF NAVARRE, 1254.

    [Figure 41]
    [W: L'Autrier par la matinée Entre sen bos et un Vergier
        Une pastore ai trouneé chantant pour soi en voisier.]

  Example from NITHART

    [Figure 42]

In speaking of the straight lines of the melodies of
the minnesingers and in comparing them with the tinge of
orientalism to be found in those of the troubadours, it was
said that music owes more to the latter than to the former,
and this is true. If we admit that the straight line of Grecian
architecture is perfect, so must we also admit that mankind is
imperfect. We are living beings, and as such are swayed to a
great extent by our emotions. To the straight line of purity
in art the tinge of orientalism, the curved line of emotion,
brings the flush of life, and the result is something which we
can _feel_ as well as worship from afar. Music is a language,
and to mankind it serves as a medium for saying something which
cannot be put into mere words. Therefore, it must contain the
human element of mere sensuousness in order to be intelligible.
This is why the music of the troubadours, although not so pure
in style as that of the minnesingers, has been of the greatest
value in the development of our art. This orientalism, however,
must not mask the straight line; it must be the means of lending
more force, tenderness, or what not, to the figure. It must
be what the poem is to the picture, the perfume to the flower;
it must help to illustrate the thing itself. The moment we find
this orientalism (and I am using the word in its broadest sense)
covering, and thus distorting the straight line of pure music,
then we have national music so-called, a music which derives
its name and fame from the clothes it wears and not from that
strange language of the soul, the "why" of which no man has
ever discovered.



XIII

EARLY INSTRUMENTAL FORMS


Referring to some newspaper reports which he knew to be
without foundation, Bismarck once said, "Newspapers are simply
a union of printer's ink and paper." Omitting the implied slur
we might say the same of printed music and printed criticism;
therefore, in considering printed music we must, first of all,
remember that it is the letter of the law which kills. We must
look deeper, and be able to translate sounds back into the
emotions which caused them. There is no right or wrong way
to give utterance to music. There is but _one_ way, namely,
through the living, vital expression of the content of the
music; all else is not music but mere pleasure for the ear,
a thing of the senses. For the time being we must see through
the composer's eyes and hear through his ears. In other words,
we must think in his language. The process of creating music is
often, to a great extent, beyond the control of the composer,
just as is the case with the novelist and his characters. The
language through which musical thought is expressed, however, is
a different thing, and it is this process of developing musical
speech until it has become capable of saying for us that which,
in our spoken language, must ever remain unsaid, that I shall
try to make clear in our consideration of form in music.

Until the very end of the fifteenth century, music, so far
as we know, had no language of its own, that is to say,
it was not recognized as a medium for expressing thought or
emotion. Josquin des Prés (born at Conde in the north of France
in 1450, died 1521) was the first to attempt the expression
of thought in sound. Luther, in rebelling against Rome, also
overturned the music of the church in Germany. He incorporated
many folk songs into the music of the Protestant church and
discarded the old Gregorian chant (which was vague in rhythm,
or, rather, wholly without rhythm), calling it asinine braying.

While Luther was paving the way for Bach by encouraging
church music to be something more than merely the singing
of certain melodies according to prescribed rules, in Italy
(at the time of his death in 1546) the Council of Trent was
already trying to decide upon a style of music proper for the
church. The matter was definitely settled in 1562 or 1563 by
the adoption of Palestrina's style.[13] Thus, while in Germany
ecclesiastical music was being broadened and an opening offered
for the development of the dramatic and emotional side of music,
in Italy, on the contrary, the emotional style of music was
being neglected and an absolutely serene style of what may be
called "impersonal" music encouraged. Italy, however, soon had
opera on which to fall back, and thus music in both countries
developed rapidly, although on different lines.

In England, the budding school of English art, as exemplified
by Purcell, was soon overwhelmed by the influence of Händel
and the all-pervading school of Italian opera, which he brought
with him.

In France, up to 1655, when Cardinal Mazarin sent to Italy for
an opera troupe with the purpose of entertaining Anne of Austria
(the widow of Louis XIII), there was practically no recognized
music except that imported from other countries. Under Louis
XI (d. 1483) Ockeghem, the Netherland contrapuntist, was the
chief musician of the land.

The French pantomimes or masques, as they were sometimes called,
can hardly be said to have represented a valuable gain to art,
although their prevalence in France points directly to their
having been the direct descendants of the old pantomime on
one hand, and on the other, the direct ancestor of the French
opera. For we read that already in 1581 (twenty years before
Caccini's "Euridice" at Florence), a ballet entitled "Circe" was
given on the occasion of the marriage of Margaret of Lorraine,
the stepsister of Henry III. The music to it was written by
Beaulieu and Salmon, two court musicians. There were ten bands
of music in the cupola of the ballroom where the ballet was
given. These bands included hautbois, cornets, trombones, violas
de gamba, flutes, harps, lutes, flageolets. Besides all this,
ten violin players in costume entered the scene in the first
act, five from each side. Then a troupe of Tritons came swimming
in, playing lutes, harps, flutes, one even having a kind of
'cello. When Jupiter makes his appearance, he is accompanied by
forty musicians. The festivities on this occasion are said to
have cost over five million francs. Musically, the ballet was no
advance towards expressiveness in art. An air which accompanied
"Circe's" entrance, may be cited as being the original of the
well-known "Amaryllis," which is generally called _Air Louis
XV_. Baltazarini calls it _un son fort gai, nomme la clochette_.

Music remained inert in France until 1650, when the Italians
gained an ascendancy, which they retained until 1732,
when Rameau's first opera "Hyppolyte et Aricie" was given in
Paris. Rameau had already commenced his career by gaining great
success as a harpsichord player and instrumental composer,
mostly for the harpsichord. By his time, however, music,
that is to say, secular music, was already becoming a new art,
and the French merely improved upon what already existed.

Now this new art was first particularly evident in the dances of
these different peoples. These dances gave the music _form_, and
held it down to certain prescribed rhythms and duration. Little
by little the emotions, the natural expression of which is
music, could no longer be restricted to these dance forms
and rhythms; and gradually the latter were modified by each
daring innovator in turn. This "daring" of human beings, in
breaking through the trammels of the dance in order to express
what lay within their souls in the language that properly
belonged to it, would seem almost ludicrous to us, were we
not even to-day trying to get up courage to do the same thing.
The modifications of dance forms led up to our sonata, symphony,
and symphonic poem, as I hope to show. Opera was a thing apart,
and, being untrammelled either by dance rhythms or church laws,
developed gradually and normally. It cannot, however, be said to
have developed side by side with purely instrumental music, for
the latter is only just beginning to emancipate itself from its
dance clothes and to come forth as a language for the expression
of all that is divine in man. First we will consider the forms
and rhythms of these dances, then the awakening of the idea of
design in music, and its effect in modifying these forms and
laying the foundation for the sonata of the nineteenth century.

The following shows the structure of the different dance forms
up to about 1750.


OLD DANCE FORMS (1650-1750).

  [   :Motive-|-Motive--|-Motive-----|--|-Motive---|--|-Motive----|---]
  [2/4: 4 8 8 | 8. 16 4 | 8 8 8 8 | 4 4 | 4 8 8 | 4 4 | 8. 16 8 8 | 2 ]
  [   :------Phrase-----|----Phrase-----|---Phrase----|----Phrase-----]
  [A phrase may be three or four measures, and sections may be unequal]
  [   :-------------Section-------------|-----------Section-----------]
  [   :------------------------------Period---------------------------]

  This period might be repeated or extended to sixteen measures
  and still remain a period.


  1. |--I P.-|--II P.-|       (II is generally longer than I)
  2. |---I---|---II---|--I--|
  3. |---I---|---II---|-III-| (generally III resembles I)
  4. |---I---|---II---|-III-|--I--|--II-| or |--I--|--II--|-III-|--I--|
  5. |---I---|---II---|-III-|--IV-|
  6. |---I---|---II---|-III-|--IV-|--I--|--II-|
  7. |---I---|---II---|--I--|-III-|--IV-|-III-|--I--|--II--|--I--|

In all these forms each period may be repeated.


Often the first, third, and fourth periods are repeated,
leaving the second period as it is. This happens especially
when the second period is longer than the first. In Nos. 2,
4, 6, 7, a few bars are often added at _Fine_ as a coda.


ANALYSIS OF OLD DANCES

1. SARABANDE.--[3/2] [3/4] lento. Rhythm [3/2: 2 ^2. 4 | 2 2].
Form 1, sometimes Form 2. This is of Spanish origin (_Saracen_
dance), and is generally accompanied by variations called
_partita_ or doubles.

2. MUSETTE (_cornemusa_ or bagpipe).--[3/4] [2/4] allegretto.
Form 1. Always written over or under a pedal note, which is
generally sustained to the end. It generally forms the second
part (not period) to the gavotte.

3. GAVOTTE.--[4/4] allegro moderato.
Rhythm [4/4: 4 4 | 4 8 8 4 4] or [4 8 8 | 4 4 4 4].
Always commences on the third beat. Form 3 or 5.
When accompanied by a musette, the gavotte is always repeated.

4. BOURREE.--[C/2] allegro. Rhythm [C/2: 8 8 | 4 4 4 8 8].
Form 3 or 5. Generally faster than the gavotte, and commences
on the fourth beat.

5. RIGAUDON.--Similar to the bourrée, but slower.

6. LOURE.--Similar to the bourrée, but slower. (In French
the verb _lourer_ means "to hold," which may have been a
characteristic of the _loure_ bass).

7. TAMBOURIN.--[C/2] allegro. In form and rhythm like the
gavotte, but faster. Usually founded on a rhythmic pedal
note imitating a tambourine.

8. CORRENTE, COURANTE.--[3/4] allegretto.
Rhythm [3/4: 8 8 8 | 8 8 8 8 8 8] or [3/4: 8 | 8 8 8 8 8 8]
(does not usually commence on the beat). Form 1, sometimes
Form 2. The rhythm is usually uniform, a kind of perpetual
motion, though not in one voice.

9. MINUET.--[3/4] generally a little slower than moderato,
although in later minuets the tempo became allegretto.
Rhythm, generally, [3/4: >(4 | 4) 4 4 | 4 8 8 8 8] etc.
Old minuets often began on the first beat. Form 4; the third
and fourth periods being generally in a different mode from
the first and second periods, and called Trio or Minuet 2.
Minuets exist also without the Trio, and are in Form 1 or 2.

10. CHACONNE.--[3/4] moderato. Form undecided; has sometimes
even only one period, sometimes three or two. It is generally
accompanied by doubles or variations, and is invariably
written on a ground bass or _basso ostinato_. The rhythm is
often syncopated.

PASSACAILLE, [3/4], resembles a chaconne but is more stately.

11. WALTZ (old German).--[3/4] andante moderato. Generally
Form 6. Rhythm [3/4: 4. 8 8. 16 | 8 8 4 8 8] approximately.

12. MARCH.--[4/4] allegro moderato.
Rhythm [4/4: 8. 16 | 4 . 16 4 4 | 2. 3(8 8 8)] etc., or
[4 | 4 8. 16 4 4] etc. Form 6. Generally all the periods
are repeated and consist of eight measures each; third and
fourth periods change the key and rhythm.

13. ALLEMANDE.--[4/4] moderato. Rhythm generally uniform
sixteenth notes. Form 1.

14. PASSEPIED.--Quick minuet.

15. PAVANE, PADVANA, or PAVO (peacock).--[4/4] andante
moderato. Rhythm [4/4: 4 8. 16 4. 8 | 8 8 8 8 2]. Form 2 or 6.
Sometimes [2/4]; third and fourth periods in different keys.

16. GIGUE.--[2/4] [6/8] [3/4] [3/8] [9/8] [12/8] presto.
Rhythm generally uniform eighth notes. Forms 1 and 2.

17. POLONAISE.--[3/4]. Rhythm [3/4: 8 16 16 8 16 16 4] or
[16 16 8 16 16 8 4] allegro. Form 1, generally with short coda.


MODERN FORMS (1800).

1. MAZURKA.--[3/4] allegretto. Form 6.
Rhythm [3/4: 4 | 8. 16 4 4].

2. POLONAISE (also POLACCA).--[3/4] allegro maestoso.
Rhythm [3/4: 8. 16 8. 16 16 16 16 16] or [8 4 16 16 8 8].
The bass is generally [8 16 16 8 8 8 8]. Form 7.

3. BOLERO (CACHUCHA) (Spanish).--Like the polonaise but
livelier, and generally containing counter-rhythms in triplets.

4. HABANERA.--[2/4].
Rhythm [2/4: 8 8 16 8 16 | 8 8 16 8 16 | 8 8 3(8 8 8) | 8 8 4].
The characteristic element is the mixture of triplets and eighth
notes. Time, andante. Form undecided, generally No. 1. Very often
repeated with slight changes.

5. CZARDAS (Hungarian).--First part [C/2] (_lassan_, _lento_);
second part [2/4] (_friska_, _presto_ and _prestissimo_).
For form and rhythm see Liszt's rhapsodies, Nos. 2, 4, and 6.

6. TARANTELLA.--Rhythm [6/8: 8 8 8 8 8 8 | 8 8 8 8 8 8] or
[8 8 8 8 8 8 | 4 8 4 8]. Time, molto allegro to prestissimo.
Forms 4 and 6, sometimes 7. In the Trio the movement is often
quieter although not necessarily slower. It almost invariably
has a Coda. The Finale is usually prestissimo.

7. SALTARELLO.--Similar to the tarantella, with the exception
of having more jumps (_salti_).

8. POLKA (about 1840).--[2/4] allegretto.
Rhythm [2/4: 8 8 4 | 8 16 16 4]. Form 6. Accent is on the
second beat. Cuban dances (sometimes called habaneros) are
often in polka form and rhythm, with the one exception of
the triplets peculiar to almost all Spanish music
[2/4: 8 8 >4 | 8 8 >4 | 16 8 16 >8 8 | 16 8 16 3(16 16 16) 8]

9. WALTZ.--[3/4]. Rhythm (bass) [3/4: >4 4 4 | >4 4 4].
Faster than the old waltz. Form 2 with a coda. Modern waltzes are
often written in sets, or many different waltzes joined together
by short modulations or codas, preceded by an introduction,
generally in one period, _lento_, and ending with a brilliant
coda containing reminiscences of the principal themes.

10. GALOP.--[2/4]. Rhythm [2/4: 16 16 16 16 8 8 | 8 8 8 8] or
[16 16 8 8 8 | 16 16 8 16 16 8]. Form 6. Time, presto.

11. MARCH.--Same as the old march, but modified in character
and movement according to its title--funeral march, military
march, cortege, festival march, etc. In funeral marches,
the third and fourth periods are generally in major.

The modernizing of dance forms has been undertaken by
almost every writer from Scarlatti (d. 1757) down to our
day. Scarlatti joined sections together with isolated measures,
repeated sections and phrases before completing the period,
and added short codas to periods indiscriminately. Since his
time, everyone has added to or curtailed the accepted forms
by putting two forms together; hence the fantaisie-mazurka,
etc. Wagner represents the culminating point of the modern
tendency to disregard forms which were interpreted differently
by every composer, and which had their origin in dances.

The attempt to emancipate music from the dance commenced very
early; in fact, most of the earliest secular music we know
already shows the tendency towards programme music, for,
from an emotional standpoint, secular music began at the
very bottom of the ladder. It was made to express _things_
at first, just as in learning any new language we naturally
first acquire a vocabulary of nouns to express things we see,
such as table, chair, etc., in the same way that in _written_
language the symbols first take the shape of animals or other
things they are meant to represent. This same characteristic
naturally showed itself in music before the words for _emotion_
came, the common, everyday nouns were sought for in this new
language. The madrigals of Weelkes and their word painting show
this, and the same occur in instrumental music, as in Byrd's
"Carman's Whistle," one of the earliest English instrumental
works contemporaneous to the madrigals of Morley and others.
In France, many of the earliest clavichord pieces were of
the programme type, and even in Germany, where instrumental
music ran practically in the same groove with church music,
the same tendency showed itself.

I have given the forms of most of the old dances, and also the
elements of melodic structure (motive, phrase, etc.). I must,
however, add the caution that this material is to be accepted
in a general way, and as representing the rhythms and forms
most frequently used. A French courante differed from the
Italian, and certain dances were taken at different _tempi_ in
different countries. Poor, or at least careless construction,
is often the cause of much confusion. Scarlatti, for instance,
is especially loose in melodic structure.

It was only with Beethoven that the art of musical design showed
anything like complete comprehension by the composer. Until
then, with occasional almost haphazard successes, the art
of pushing a thought to its logical conclusion was seemingly
unknown. An emotional passage now and then would often betray
deep feeling, but the thought would almost invariably be lost in
the telling, for the simple reason that the musical sentences
were put together almost at random, mere stress of momentary
emotion being seemingly the only guiding influence. Bach stands
alone; his sense of design was inherent, but, owing to the
contrapuntal tendency of his time, his feeling for _melodic_
design is often overshadowed, and even rendered impossible
by the complex web of his music. With a number of melodies
sounding together, their individual emotional development
becomes necessarily difficult to emphasize.

Bach's art has something akin to that of Palestrina. They both
stand alone in the history of the world, but the latter belongs
to the Middle Ages. He is the direct descendant of Ambrose,
Gregory, Notker, Tutilo, etc., the crowning monument of the
Roman Church in music, and represents what may be termed
unemotional music. His art was untouched by the strange,
suggestive colours of modern harmony; it was pure, unemotional,
and serene. One instinctively thinks of Bach, on the other
hand, as a kind of musical reflection of Protestantism. His
was not a secluded art which lifted its head high above the
multitude; it was rather the palpable outpouring of a great
heart. Bach also represents all the pent-up feeling which
until then had longed in vain for utterance, and had there
been any canvas for him to paint on (to use a poor simile),
the result would have been still more marvellous. As it was,
the material at his disposal was a poor set of dance forms,
with the one exception of the fugue, the involved utterance
of which precluded spontaneity and confined emotional design
to very restricted limits. It is exactly as if Wagner had
been obliged to put his thoughts in quadrille form with the
possible alternative of some mathematical device of musical
double bookkeeping. As it is, Bach's innovations were very
considerable. In the first place, owing to the lack of the
system of equal temperament, composers had been limited to
the use of only two or three sharps and flats; in all the
harpsichord music of the pre-Bach period we rarely find
compositions in sharp keys beyond G, or flat keys beyond
A[flat]. To be sure, Rameau, in France, began at the same time
to see the necessity for equal temperament, but it was Bach
who, by his forty-eight "Preludes and Fugues," written in all
the keys, first settled the matter definitely.

In the fugue form itself, he made many innovations consisting
mainly of the casting aside of formalism. With Bach a fugue
consists of what is called the "exposition," that is to say,
the enunciation of the theme (subject), its answer by another
voice or part, recurrence of the subject in another part which,
in turn, is again answered, and so on according to the number
of voices or parts. After the exposition the fugue consists
of a kind of free contrapuntal fantasy on the subject and its
answer. By throwing aside the restraint of form Bach often
gave his fugues an emotional significance in spite of the
complexity of the material he worked with.


[13] Pier Luigi, born in Palestrina, near Rome.



XIV

THE MERGING OF THE SUITE INTO THE SONATA


In the previous chapter it was stated that the various dances,
such as the minuet, sarabande, allemande, etc., led up to
our modern sonata form, or, perhaps, to put it more clearly,
they led up to what we call sonata form. As a matter of fact,
already in the seventeenth century, we find the word _sonata_
applied to musical compositions; generally to pieces for the
violin, but rarely for the harpsichord. The word sonata
was derived originally from the Italian word _suonare_,
"to sound," and the term was used to distinguish instrumental
from vocal music. The latter was sung (_cantata_), the former
was sounded (_suonata_) by instruments. Thus many pieces were
called _suonatas_; the distinguishing point being that they were
_played_ and not sung. Organ sonatas existed as far back as 1600
and even earlier, but the earliest application of the word seems
to have been made in connection with pieces for the violin.

Dances were often grouped together, especially when they had
some slight intrinsic musical value. Probably the term _sonata_
first designated a composition in one of these dance forms
not intended for dancing. Gradually groups of dances were
called _suites_; then, little by little, the dance titles of
the separate numbers were dropped, and the _suite_ was called
_sonata_. These different numbers, however, retained their
dance characteristics, as we shall see later. The arrangement
of the pieces composing the _suites_ differed in various
countries. There were French, Italian, German, and English
suites, generally, however, retaining the same grouping of
the different movements. The first movement consisted of an
_allemande_; then came a _courante_; then a _minuet_; then
a _sarabande_; and last of all a _gigue_; all in the same
key. Sometimes the _minuet_ and _sarabande_ changed places,
just as in modern times do the _andante_ and _scherzo_.

Already in 1685, when Corelli's sonatas for strings appeared,
the custom of decreasing the number of movements to three began
to obtain, and a century later this custom was universal. The
_allemande_, _overture_, or _preludio_ formed the first
movement; the second consisted of the _sarabande_, the ancestor
of our _adagio_; and the last part was generally a _gigue_. Even
when the dance titles were no more used (the music having long
outgrown its original purpose), the distinctive characteristics
of these different movements were retained; the _sarabande_
rhythm was still adhered to for the _adagio_ (even by Haydn)
and the triple time and rhythm of the _gigue_ were given to
the last part. In addition to this, these three movements
were often kept in one key. In his first sonatas Beethoven
added a movement, generally a _minuet_, to this scheme; but
returned to the three-movement structure later. His Op. 111
has only two movements, in a way returning to a still earlier
general form of the sonata. Now, as has already been said,
some of the earliest examples of instrumental music were
mainly descriptive in character, that is to say, consisting
of imitations of _things_, thus marking the most elementary
stage of programme music. Little by little composers became
more ambitious and began to attempt to give expression to
the emotions by means of music; and at last, with Beethoven,
"programme music" may be said, in one sense, to have reached
its climax. For although it is not generally realized, he
wrote every one of his sonatas with definite subjects, and,
at one time, was on the point of publishing mottoes to them,
in order to give the public a hint of what was in his mind
when he wrote them.

Analysis may be considered as the reducing of a musical
composition to its various elements--harmony, rhythm,
melody--and power of expression. Just as melody may be analyzed
down to the motives and phrases of which it consists, so may
the expressiveness of music be analyzed; and this latter study
is most valuable, for it brings us to a closer understanding
of the power of music as a language.

For the sake of clearness we will group music as follows:

    1. Dance forms.
    2. Programme music. (Things. Feelings.)
    3. The gathering together of dances in suites.
    4. The beginnings of design.
    5. The merging of the suite into the sonata.

The dance tunes I need hardly quote; they consist of a mere play
of sound to keep the dancers in step, for which purpose any more
or less agreeable rhythmical succession of sounds will serve.

If we take the next step in advance of instrumental music
we come to the giving of meanings to these dances, and, as I
have explained, these meanings will at first have reference
to things; for instance, Couperin imitates an alarm clock;
Rameau tries to make the music sound as if three hands were
playing instead of two (_Les trois mains_); he imitates sighing
(_Les soupirs_); the scolding voice; he even tries to express a
mood musically (_L'indifferente_). In Germany, these attempts
to make instrumental music expressive of something beyond
rhythmic time-keeping continued, and we find Carl Philip
Emanuel Bach attempting to express light-hearted amiability (_La
complaisance_) and even languor (_Les tendres langueurs_). The
suite, while it combined several dances in one general form,
shows only a trace of _design_. There was more design in one
of the small programme pieces already quoted than in most of
the suites of this period (see, for example, Loeilly's "Suite").

Bach possessed instinctively the feeling for musical speech
which seemed denied to his contemporaries whenever they had no
actual story to guide their expression; and even in his dance
music we find coherent musical sentences as, for instance,
in the _Courante_ in A.

In art our opinions must, in all cases, rest directly on the
thing under consideration and not on what is written about
it. In my beliefs I am no respecter of the written word,
that is to say, the mere fact that a statement is made by
a well-known man, is printed in a well-known work, or is
endorsed by many prominent names, means nothing to me if the
thing itself is available for examination. Without a thorough
knowledge of music, including its history and development,
and, above all, musical "sympathy," individual criticism is,
of course, valueless; at the same time the acquirement of this
knowledge and sympathy is not difficult, and I hope that we may
yet have a public in America that shall be capable of forming
its own ideas, and not be influenced by tradition, criticism,
or fashion.

We need to open our eyes and see for ourselves instead
of trusting the direction of our steps to the guidance of
others. Even an opinion based on ignorance, frankly given,
is of more value to art than a platitude gathered from some
outside source. If it is not a platitude but the echo of some
fine thought, it only makes it worse, for it is not sincere,
unless of course it is quoted understandingly. We need
freshness and sincerity in forming our judgments in art, for
it is upon these that art lives. All over the world we find
audiences listening suavely to long concerts, and yet we do
not see one person with the frankness of the little boy in
Andersen's story of the "New Clothes of the Emperor." It is
the same with the other arts. I have never heard anyone say
that part of the foreground of Millet's "Angelus" is "muddy"
or that the Fornarina's mysterious smile is anything but
"hauntingly beautiful." People do not dare admire the London
Law Courts; all things must be measured by the straight lines
of Grecian architecture. Frankness! Let us have frankness,
and if we have no feelings on a subject, let us remain silent
rather than echo that drone in the hive of modern thought,
the "_authority_ in art."

Every person with even the very smallest love and sympathy for
art possesses ideas which are valuable to that art. From the
tiniest seeds sometimes the greatest trees are grown. Why,
therefore, allow these tender germs of individualism to
be smothered by that flourishing, arrogant bay tree of
tradition--fashion, authority, convention, etc.

My reason for insisting on the importance of all lovers of
art being able to form their own opinions is obvious, when we
consider that our musical public is obliged to take everything
on trust. For instance, if we read on one page of some history
(every history of music has such a page) that Mozart's sonatas
are sublime, that they do not contain one note of mere filigree
work, and that they far transcend anything written for the
harpsichord or clavichord by Haydn or his contemporaries, we
echo the saying, and, if necessary, quote the "authorities." Now
if one had occasion to read over some of the clavichord music
of the period, possibly it might seem strange that Mozart's
sonatas did not impress with their magnificence. One might
even harbour a lurking doubt as to the value of the many
seemingly bare runs and unmeaning passages. Then one would
probably turn back to the authorities for an explanation and
find perhaps the following: "The inexpressible charm of Mozart's
music leads us to forget the marvellous learning bestowed upon
its construction. Later composers have sought to conceal the
constructional points of the sonata which Mozart never cared to
disguise, so that incautious students have sometimes failed to
discern in them the veritable 'pillars of the house,' and have
accused Mozart of poverty of style because he left them boldly
exposed to view, as a great architect delights to expose the
piers upon which the tower of his cathedral depends for its
support." (Rockstro, "History of Music," p. 269.) Now this
is all very fine, but it is nonsense, for Mozart's sonatas
are anything but cathedrals. It is time to cast aside this
shibboleth of printer's ink and paper and look the thing itself
straight in the face. It is a fact that Mozart's sonatas are
compositions entirely unworthy of the author of the "Magic
Flute," or of any composer with pretensions to anything beyond
mediocrity. They are written in a style of flashy harpsichord
virtuosity such as Liszt never descended to, even in those of
his works at which so many persons are accustomed to sneer.

Such a statement as I have just made may be cried down as
rank heresy, first by the book readers and then by the general
public; but I doubt if anyone among that public would or could
actually turn to the music itself and analyze it intelligently,
from both an aesthetic and technical standpoint, in order to
verify or disprove the assertion.

Once a statement is made it seems to be exceedingly difficult
to keep it from obtaining the universal acceptance which it
gains by unthinking reiteration in other works. One of the
strangest cases of this repetition of a careless statement may
be found in the majority of histories of music, where we are
told that musical expression (that is to say, the increasing
and diminishing of a tone, crescendo and diminuendo) was
first _discovered_ at Mannheim, in Germany, about 1760. This
statement may be found in the works of Burney, Schubart,
Reichardt, Sittard, Wasielewski, and even in Jahn's celebrated
"Life of Mozart." The story is that Jommelli, an Italian,
first "invented" the crescendo and diminuendo, and that when
they were first used, the people in the audience gradually
rose from their seats at the crescendo, and as the music
"diminuendoed" they sat down again. The story is absurd,
for the simple reason that even in 1705, Sperling, in his
"Principae Musicae," describes crescendos from _ppp_ to _fff_,
and we read in Plutarch of the same thing.

Shedlock, in his work "The Pianoforte Sonata," quotes as the
first sonatas for the clavier those of Kuhnau, and cites
especially the six _Bible_ sonatas. Now Kuhnau, although
he was Bach's predecessor at St. Thomas' Church in Leipzig,
was certainly a composer of the very lowest rank. The _Bible_
sonatas, which Shedlock paints to us in such glowing colours,
are the merest trash, and not to be compared with the works of
his contemporaries. I do not think that they have any place
whatsoever in the history or development either of music or
of that form called the sonata.

The development of the suite from dance forms has already
been shown, and we will now trace the development of the
sonata from the suite in Italy, Germany, and France. As an
example of this development in Italy, a so-called sonata by
G.B. Pescetti will serve (the sonatas by Domenico Scarlatti
were not originally so named, and the sonatas before that were
simply short pieces, so designated to distinguish them from
dance music). This sonata was published about 1730, and was one
of nine. The first movement is practically of the _allemande_
type, and its first period ends in the dominant key. There
is but the slightest trace of a second theme in the first
part; yet the improvement in contrapuntal design over the
suites is evident. The second movement is in the same key,
and retains the characteristic rhythm of the _sarabande_;
at the end, the improvement, so far as design is concerned,
is very noticeable. The last movement, still in the same key,
is a _gigue_, thus keeping well in the shadow of the suite.

A sonata by the German Rolle (1718-1785) is valuable in that
it shows a very decided second theme in the first period,
thus tending toward the development of the original simple
dance form into the more complex sonata form. The _adagio_,
however, still has the _sarabande_ characteristics, and
foreshadows many things. It contains many _words_ that later
were shaped into great poems by others. "The Erlking" of
Schubert is especially hinted at, just as the first movement
was prophetic of Beethoven. In the last movement we have the
_gigue_ rhythm again.

In France, music had become merely a court appendage, as was
the case with the other arts, and had long served as a means
for showing the divine grace with which Louis XIV or XV could
turn out his toes in the minuet. In addition to this, the
arranging of a scientific system of harmonization by Rameau
(1683-1764) (which, by the way, is the basis of most of the
treatises of harmony of the present century), caused the few
French composers who could make headway against the prevailing
Italian opera after Lully to turn their attention away from
polyphonic writing; and having, after all, but little to
express in other than the long-accustomed dance rhythms and
tunes, their music cannot be said to have made any mark in
the world. In order to show the poverty of this style, let
us take a sonata by Méhul (1763-1817). The first movement
has already a well-defined second theme, but otherwise is
a mere collection of more or less commonplace progressions.
The second part is a dance tune, pure and simple; indeed the
first part had all the characteristics of the _farandole_
(see Bizet's "l'Arlesienne"). The last part is entitled rondo,
"a round dance," and is evidently one in the literal sense of
the word. In all these sonatas the increasing use of what is
called the Alberti bass is noticeable.

To show the last link between the suite and the sonata,
reference may be made to the well-known sonata in D major by
Haydn. In this, as in those analyzed above, all the movements
are in the same key. The adagio is a _sarabande_, and the
last movement has the characteristics of the _gigue_. This,
however, is only the starting point with Haydn; later we will
consider the development of this form into what is practically
our modern sonata, which, of course, includes the symphony,
quartet, quintet, concerto, etc.

Our path of study in tracing the development of the sonata from
the suite leads us through a sterile tract of seemingly bare
desert. The compositions referred to are full of fragments,
sometimes fine in themselves, but lying wherever they happened
to fall, their sculptors having no perception of their value
one with another. Disconnected phrases, ideas never completed;
to quote Hamlet, "Words, words!" Later we find Beethoven
and Schubert constructing wonderful temples out of these
same fragments, and shaping these same words into marvellous
tone poems.

The music of the period we have been considering is well
described by Browning in "A Toccata of Galuppi's":

    Yes you, like a ghostly cricket,
      Creaking where a house was burned:
    Dust and ashes, dead and done with,
      Venice spent what Venice earned.



XV

THE DEVELOPMENT OF PIANOFORTE MUSIC


Up to the time of Beethoven, music for the pianoforte consisted
mainly of programme music of the purely descriptive order, that
is to say, it was generally imitative of natural or artificial
externals. To be sure, if we go back to the old clavecinists,
and examine the sonatas of Kuhnau, sundry pieces by Couperin,
Rameau, and the Germans, Froberger, C.P.E. Bach and others,
we find the beginnings of that higher order of programme music
which deals directly with the emotions; and not only that,
but which aims at causing the hearer to go beyond the actual
sounds heard, in pursuance of a train of thought primarily
suggested by this music.

To find this art of programme music, as we may call it, brought
to a full flower, we must seek in the mystic utterances
of Robert Schumann. It is wise to keep in mind, however,
that although Schumann's piano music certainly answers to
our definition of the higher programme music, it also marks
the dividing line between emotional programme music without a
well-defined object and that dramatically emotional art which
we have every reason to believe was aimed at by Beethoven in
many of his sonatas, and which, in its logical development
and broadened out by orchestral colours and other resources,
is championed by Richard Strauss at the present day.

We have already learned that C.P.E. Bach had entirely broken
with the contrapuntal style of his father and his age in
order to gain freer utterance, and that the word "colour"
began to be used in his time in connection with music for
even one instrument. It is, perhaps, needless to say that the
vastly enlarged possibilities, both technical and tonal, of
the newly invented _forte-piano_ were largely the outcome of
this seeking for colour in music. In addition to this, the new
art of harmonic dissonances was already beginning to stretch
out in the direction of new and strange tonal combinations,
thus giving to the music written for the instrument many new
possibilities in the way of causing and depicting emotions. That
the first experiments were puerile, we know, as, for example,
Haydn's attempts, in one of his pianoforte sonatas, to suggest
the conversion of an obdurate sinner.

When we consider Mozart, it is impossible to forget the
fact that in his piano works he was first and foremost
a piano virtuoso, a child prodigy, of whom filigree work
was expected by the public for which he wrote his sonatas.
(We cannot call this orientalism, for it was more or less of
German pattern, traced from the fioriture of the Italian opera
singer.) Therefore, emotional utterance or even new or poetic
colouring was not to be expected of him.

As has been said before, it remained for Beethoven to
weld these new words and strange colours into poems, which,
notwithstanding the many barnacles hanging to them (remnants of
a past of timid adhesion to forms and fashions), are, in truth,
the first lofty and dignified musical utterances with an object
which we possess. I mean by this statement that his art was the
first to cast aside the iron fetters of what then formed the
canons of art. The latter may be described (even in reference
to modern days) as constituting the shadow of a great man. And,
although this is a digression, I may add that all students of
piano music no doubt realize the weighty shadow that Beethoven
cast over the first half of the nineteenth century, just as
Wagner is doing at the present time.

Our purists are unable to realize that the shadows are the
least vital part of the great men who cast them. We remember
that the only wish expressed by Diogenes when Alexander came
to see him was that the king should stand aside so that he
could enjoy the light of the sun.

To return: We find that Beethoven was the first exponent of
our modern art. Every revolution is bound to bring with it a
reaction which seeks to consolidate and put in safe keeping,
as it were, results attained by it. Certainly Beethoven alone
can hardly be said to have furthered this end; for his revolt
led him into still more remote and involved trains of thought,
as in his later sonatas and quartets. Even the Ninth Symphony,
hampered as it is by actual words for which declamation and a
more or less well-defined form of musical speech are necessary,
suffers from the same involved utterance that characterizes
his last period.

Schubert, in his instrumental work, was too ardent a seeker
and lover of the purely beautiful to build upon the forms of
past generations, and thus his piano music, neither restrained
nor supported by poetic declamation, was never held within
the bounds of formalism.

It was Mendelssohn who first invested old and seemingly worn-out
forms of instrumental music (especially for the pianoforte)
with the new poetic license of speech, which was essentially
the spirit of the age of revolution in which he lived.

In holding up Mendelssohn as a formalist against Beethoven,
and at the same time presenting him as the composer directly
responsible for our modern symphonic poem, there is a
seeming contradiction, which, however, is more apparent than
real. While Beethoven never hesitated to overturn form (harmonic
or otherwise) to suit the exigencies of his inspiration,
Mendelssohn cast all his pictures into well-defined and orthodox
forms. Thus his symphonic poems, for example, the overtures to
"The Lovely Melusina," "Fingal's Cave," "Ruy Blas," etc., are
really overtures in form; whereas, the so-called "Moonlight"
sonata of Beethoven, as well as many others, are sonatas only
in name. The emotional and problematic significance given by
Mendelssohn to many of his shorter piano pieces, including even
such works as preludes and fugues, is familiar to us all. These
works, however, but rarely departed from the orthodox forms
represented by their names. His "Songs without Words" have
been so often quoted as constituting a new art form that it
is well to remember that they are practically all cast in
the same mould, that of the most simple song form, with one,
and sometimes two more or less similar verses, preceded by a
short introduction and ending with a coda.

We may say then, broadly, that Beethoven invested instrumental
music with a wonderful poignancy and power of expression,
elevating it to the point of being the medium of expressing
some of the greatest thoughts we possess. In so doing, however,
he shattered many of the great idols of formalism by the sheer
violence of his expression.

Schubert, let me say again, seemed indifferent to symmetry, or
never thought of it in his piano music. Mendelssohn, possibly
influenced by his early severe training with Zelter, accepted
symmetry of form as the cornerstone of his musical edifice;
although he was one of the first in the realms of avowed
programme music, he never carried it beyond the boundary of
good form. And, as in speaking a moment ago of the so-called
canons of musical art, we compared them with the shadows that
great men have cast upon their times, it may be as well to
remember that just this formalism of Mendelssohn overshadowed
and still overshadows England to the present day. On the other
hand, Beethoven's last style still shows itself in Brahms,
and even in Richard Strauss. Schumann was different from
these three. His music is not avowed programme music; neither
is it, as is much of Schubert's, pure delight in beautiful
melodies and sounds. It did not break through formalism by
sheer violence of emotion, as did Beethoven's; least of all
has it Mendelssohn's orthodox dress. It represents, as well as
I can put it, the rhapsodical reverie of a great poet to whom
nothing seems strange, and who has the faculty of relating
his visions, never attempting to give them coherence, until,
perhaps, when awakened from his dream, he naïvely wonders what
they may have meant. It will be remembered that Schumann added
titles to his music after it was composed.

To all of this new, strange music, Liszt and Chopin added the
wonderful tracery of orientalism. As I have said before, the
difference between these two is that with Chopin this tracery
enveloped poetic thought as with a thin gauze; whereas with
Liszt, the embellishment itself made the starting point for
almost a new art in tonal combination, the effects of which are
seen on every hand to-day. To realize its influence, one need
only compare the graceful arabesques of the most simple piano
piece of to-day with the awkward and gargoyle-like figuration
of Beethoven and his predecessors. We may justly attribute this
to Liszt rather than to Chopin, whose nocturne embellishments
are but first cousins to those of the Englishman, John Field,
though naturally Chopin's Polish temperament gave his work that
grace and profusion of design which we have called orientalism.



XVI

THE MYSTERY AND MIRACLE PLAY


It is interesting to recall the origin of our words "treble"
and "discant." The latter was derived from the first attempts to
break away from the monotony of several persons singing the same
melody in unison, octaves, fifths, or fourths. In such cases
the original melody was called _cantus firmus_ (a term still
generally used in counterpoint to designate the given melody
of an exercise to which the student is to write other parts),
the new melody that was sung with it was called the _discant_,
and when a third part was added, it received the name _triplum_
or _treble_. As Ambros remarks, this forcible welding together
of different melodies, often well-known old tunes, secular
or derived from the church chants, was on a direct line with
the contemporary condition of the other arts. For instance,
on the portal to the left of the Cathedral of Saint Mark,
at Venice, is a relief, representing some Biblical scene,
which is entirely made up of fragments of some older sculptured
figures, placed together without regard to anatomy in much the
same brutal fashion that the melodies of the time were sung
together. The traces of this clumsy music-making extended down
to Palestrina's time, and became the germ of counterpoint,
canon, and fugue, constituting (apart from the folk song)
the only music known at that time.

This music, however, very soon developed into two styles, one
adopted by the church, the other, a secular style, furnishing
the musical texture both of opera and other secular music. The
opera, or rather the art form we know under that name (for the
name itself conveys nothing, for which reason Wagner coined the
term "music drama") broke away from the church in the guise of
Mysteries, as they were called in mediaeval times. A Mystery
(of which our modern oratorio is the direct descendant) was
a kind of drama illustrating some sacred subject, and the
earliest specimens laid the foundation for the Greek tragedy
and comedy. We still see a relic of this primitive art form
in the Oberammergau Passion Play.

We read of the efforts made, as early as the fifth century,
to hold the people to the church; among other devices employed
was that of illustrating the subjects of the services by the
priests performing the offices being dressed in an appropriate
costume. Little by little the popular songs of the people
crept into the church service among the regular ecclesiastical
chants, thus foreshadowing the beginnings of modern opera;
for after a while, special Latin texts were substituted for
the regular service, the mimetic part of which degenerated
into the most extraordinary license as, for instance, in the
"Feast of Asses" (January 14) which may be called a burlesque
of the mass, and which has been described in a former chapter.

With this mixture of the vernacular and the official Latin,[14]
these Miracle and Passion Plays, as well as the Mysteries and
Moralities (as different forms of this ecclesiastical mumming
were called) began to be given in other places besides the
churches.

In addition to this combination of singing and acting, the
_tenson_ or poetic debate (which was one form of the troubadour
songs, and one very often _acted_ by the jongleurs) probably
also did its part towards giving stability to this new art
form. The earliest specimen of it, in its purely secular aspect,
is a small work entitled "Robin et Marian," by Adam de la Hale,
a well-known troubadour (called "the humpback," born at Arras
in the south of France in 1240), who followed in the train of
that ferocious Duke Charles of Anjou, who beheaded Konradin,
the last of the Hohenstaufens, in 1268, and Manfred, both of
them minnesingers.

As the Mystery was the direct ancestor of our oratorio, so was
the little pastoral of Adam de la Hale the germ of the modern
French vaudeville. One of its melodies is said to be sung to
this day in some parts of southern France.

The entire object in this little play being that both words and
action should be perfectly understood, it is obvious that as
little as possible should be going on during the singing. Thus,
such melodies as we find in these old pastoral plays would be
accompanied by short notes, serving merely to give the pitch
and tonality, which would gradually develop into chords,
thus laying the foundation for harmony.

If, on the other hand, we look at the "church play" of the
same period, the Mystery, and remember that it was sung by
men accustomed to singing the _organum_ of Hucbald, we have
a clue as to what it was and what it led up to. For while
one part or voice of the music would give a melody (copied
from or at any rate resembling the Gregorian chant or the
sequences of Notker of Tubilo), the other voices would sing
songs in the vernacular, and, strangest of all, one voice
would repeat some Latin word, or even a "nonsense word"
(to use Edward Lear's term) but much more slowly than the
other voices. Thus the needs of the Mystery were as well met
by incipient counterpoint on the one hand, as, on the other,
the secular song-play engendered the sense of harmony.

That the early secular forerunner of opera, as represented by
"Robin et Marian," was still, to a certain degree, controlled
by the church is clear if we remember that at that time the
only methods of noting music were entirely in the hands of the
clergy. The notation for the lute, for instance, was invented
about 1460 to 1500. Thus, we can say that the recording of
secular music was not free from church influence until some
time after the sixteenth century.

This primitive "opera" music was thus fettered by difficulty of
notation and the influence of the ecclesiastical rules until
perhaps about 1600, when the first real opera began to find a
place in Italy. Jacopo Peri and Caccini were among the first
workers in the comparatively new form, and they both took
the same subject, _Eurydice_. Of the former the following
two short excerpts will suffice; the first is where Orpheus
bewails his fate; in the second he expresses his joy at bringing
Eurydice back to earth. Caccini's opera was perhaps the first
to introduce the many useless ornaments that, up to the middle
of this century, were characteristic of Italian opera.


    EURYDICE--PERI.

    Orpheus bewailing his fate.

    [Figure 43]
    [W: I weep not, I am not sighing, tho' thou art from me taken.
        What use to sigh]


    Orpheus' joy in bringing back Eurydice.

    [Figure 44]
    [W: Gioi-te al canto mio serve frondo di che in su l'au rora]


[14] It is interesting to note as to the prevalence of Latin,
     that Dante's "Divina Commedia" was the first important
     poem in Italian. Latin was used on the stage in Italy
     up to the sixteenth century; the stationary chorus
     stationed on the stage remained until the seventeenth
     century and was not entirely discontinued until the
     first half of the eighteenth century.



XVII

OPERA


No art form is so fleeting and so subject to the dictates of
fashion as opera. It has always been the plaything of fashion,
and suffers from its changes. To-day the stilted figures of
Hasse, Pergolesi, Rameau, and even Gluck, seem as grotesque
to us as the wigs and buckles of their contemporaries. To
Palestrina's masses and madrigals, Rameau's and Couperin's
claveçin pieces, and all of Bach, we can still listen without
this sense of incongruity. On the other hand, operas of
Alessandro Scarlatti, Matheson, and Porpora would bore us
unmitigatedly. They have gone out of fashion. Even the modern
successors of these men, Bellini, Donizetti, and Verdi, in his
earlier years, have become dead letters musically, although only
as late as 1845, Donizetti was at the very zenith of his fame.

Of all the operas of the past century, our present public has
not seen or even heard of one, with the exception of "The Magic
Flute," and less probably "Don Juan." This is bad enough;
but if we look at works belonging to the first part of the
nineteenth century, we find the same state of affairs. The
operas of Spontini, Rossini, most of Meyerbeer's, even Weber's
"Freischütz," have passed away, seemingly never to return. Even
"Cavalleria Rusticana," of recent creation, is falling rapidly
into oblivion. Thus the opéra comique early disappeared in
favour of the romantic opera and the operetta. The former has
already nearly ended its career, and the latter has descended
to the level of mere farce. In the course of time, these opera
forms become more and more evanescent; for the one-act opera of
miniature tragedy, which is practically only a few years old,
is already almost extinct.

And yet this art form has vastly more hold on the public than
other music destined to outlive it. The fact is, that music
which is tied down to the conventionalities and moods of its
time and place can never appeal but to the particular time and
mood which gave it birth. (Incidentally, I may say the same of
music having its roots in the other peculiarities of folk song.)

Now the writers of these operas were great men who put their
best into their work; the cause of the failure of these operas
was not on account of the music, but the ideas and thoughts
with which this music was saddled. What were the books which
people read and loved in those days (1750-1800), that is,
books upon which operas might be built? In England we find "The
Castle of Otranto," "The Mysterious Mother," etc., by Horace
Walpole. Now Macaulay says that Horace Walpole's works rank
as high among the delicacies of intellectual epicures as the
Strasburg pie among the dishes described in the _Almanach des
Gourmands_. None but an unhealthy and disorganized mind could
have produced such literary luxuries as the works of Walpole.

France had not yet recovered from the empty formalism of
the preceding century, Bernardin de St. Pierre was a kind
of colonial Mlle. Scudery, and Jean Jacques Rousseau, one
of the sparks which were to ignite the French Revolution,
writes his popular opera to the silly story of "The Village
Soothsayer." Had not Gluck written to the classics he would
have had to write "à la Watteau."

In Germany, conditions were better; for the so-called Romantic
school had just begun to make headway. In opera, however, this
school of Romanticism only commenced to make itself felt later,
when we have a crop of operas on Fouque's "Undine" as well as
"Hofmann's Tales."

It is as though opera had to dress according to the prevailing
fashion of the day. The very large sleeves of one year look
strange to us a little later. Just so is it with opera; for
those old operas by Méhul, Spontini, Salieri, and others all
wear enormous crinolines, while the contemporary instrumental
works of the same period, unfettered by fashion, still possess
all the freedom which their limited speech permitted them to
have. Thus we see that opera is necessarily a child of the times
in which it is written, in contrast to other music which echoes
but the thought of the composer, thought that is not necessarily
bound down to any time, place, or peculiarity of diction.

In Germany, Italian opera was never accepted by the people as
it was in France. In the latter country, opera had to be in the
vernacular and practically to become _French_. Lully's operas
were written to libretti by Quinault and Corneille; and while,
as early as 1645, Paris imported its opera from Italy, this
art form was rapidly modified to suit the public for which
it was secured. Even with Piccini and Gluck, and down to
Rossini and Meyerbeer, this nationalism was infused into the
foreign product. In Germany the case was entirely different,
for up to the very last, Italian opera was a thing apart.
Although German composers, such as Mozart and Paër, wrote
Italian opera, the "Singspiel" (a kind of opéra comique),
found its culminating point in Weber's "Freischütz," which
fought against Rossini's operas for supremacy in Germany.

Gluck's victory over the Piccinists gave to the French form
of Italian opera an impetus that caused Cherubini to proceed
on almost the same lines in his operas, the "Water Carrier,"
etc. Cherubini was a pupil of Andreas Sarti, a celebrated
contrapuntist and a disciple of the last of the Italian church
composers who looked back to Palestrina for inspiration. Thus
the infusion of a certain soberness of diction, which we call
German, fitted in with the man's training and predilections.

The first names we meet with in French opera after Cherubini
are those of Grétry, Méhul, and Spontini. The former was a
Frenchman whose works are now obsolete, although Macfarren, in
the "Encyclopedia Brittanica," says that he is the only French
composer of symphonies that are known and enjoy popularity
in France.

Grétry was born in Liége, about 1740. He walked to Italy,
studied in Rome, and returned to France about 1770. None of
his works have come down to us, but his name is interesting
by reason of a certain contradiction in his operas. This
contradiction consists in his being one of the first to revive
the idea of the hidden orchestra; it is interesting also to
note that in his "Richard Coeur de Lion," he anticipated
Wagner's use of the _leitmotiv_. His words on the hidden
orchestra sound strangely modern:

    PLAN FOR A NEW THEATRE.--I should like the auditorium
    of my theatre to be small, holding at the most one
    thousand persons and consisting of a sort of open
    space, without boxes, small or great; for these nooks
    only encourage talking and scandal. I would like
    the orchestra to be concealed, so that neither the
    musicians nor the lights on their music stands could
    be visible to the spectators.

Méhul was born about 1763 in the south of France, and is
celebrated, among other things, as being a pupil of Gluck,
in Paris. He was also noted for having, at the request of
Napoleon, brought out an opera based on Macpherson's "Ossian,"
in which no violins were used in the orchestra. "Joseph,"
another opera of his, is occasionally given in small German
towns. Méhul died in 1817.

Spontini, the next representative of opera in France, was an
Italian, born in 1774. He went to Paris in 1803, where, through
the influence of the Empress Josephine, he was enabled to have
several small operas performed; finally in 1807 his "Vestal,"
written to a French text, was given with great success. In this,
his greatest work, he followed Gluck's footsteps, not only in
the music, but also in the choice of a classic subject. In 1809,
he branched out into a more romantic vein with the opera of
"Fernando Cortez." His other works never attained popularity.
After the Restoration in France, he was named director of the
court music in Berlin by the King of Prussia, at an annual
salary of ten thousand thalers (about $7,500), a position he
held from 1820 to 1840. He died in Italy in 1851. Spontini may
be said to have been the last representative of the Gluck opera;
but he also brought into it all the magnificence in scenery,
etc., that would naturally be expected by the fashion of the
First Empire. He made no innovations, and merely served to
keep alive the traditions of Grand Opera in France.

The next powerful influence in France, and indeed in all
Europe, was that of Rossini. He may be said to have built on
Gluck's ideas in many ways. Born in 1792, at Pesaro, in Italy,
he wrote many operas of the flimsy Italian style while still
a boy. At twenty-one he had already written his "Tancredi"
and the opera buffa, "The Italians in Algiers." His best work
(besides "William Tell") was "The Barber of Seville." Other
works are "Cinderella" (_La Cenerentola_), "The Thieving
Blackbird" (_La Gazza Ladra_), "Moses," and "The Lady of the
Lake." These operas were mostly made up of parts of others
that were failures, à la Hasse. An engagement being offered
him in London, he went there with his wife, and in one season
they earned about two hundred thousand francs, which laid the
foundation for his future prosperity.

The next year he went to Paris, where, after a few unimportant
works, he, produced "William Tell" with tremendous success
(1829). Although he lived until 1868, he never wrote for
the operatic stage again, his other works being mainly the
well-known "Stabat Mater" and some choruses. He was essentially
a writer of light opera, although "William Tell" has many
elevated moments. His style was so entirely warped by his love
for show and the virtuoso side of singing that the many real
beauties of his music are hardly recognizable. His music is
so overladen with _fioriture_ that often its very considerable
value is obscured. He had absolutely no influence upon German
music, for the Germans, from Beethoven down, despised the
flimsy style and aims of this man, who, by appealing to the
most unmusical side of the fashionable audiences of Europe,
did so much to discourage the production of operas with a
lofty aim. In France, however, his influence was unchallenged,
and we may almost say that, with few exceptions, the overture
to "William Tell" served as a model for all other operatic
overtures which have been written there up to the present
day. We have only to look at the many overtures by Hérold,
Boieldieu, Auber, and others, to see the influence exerted by
this style of overture, which consisted of a slow introduction,
followed by a more or less sentimental melody, followed in
turn by a galop as a coda.

So fashionable had this kind of thing become that even Weber was
slightly touched by it. In the meanwhile, the French composers
were producing operas of a smaller kind, but, in many ways, of
a better character than the larger works of Rossini, Spontini,
and their followers. Had this flimsy Italian influence been
lacking, doubtless French opera to-day would be a different
thing from what it actually is. For these smaller operas by
Hérold, Auber, and Boieldieu had many points in common with
the German _Singspiel_, which may be said to have saved German
musical art for Wagner.

What might have developed under better conditions is shown
in a work by Halévy entitled, "La juive," in which is to be
found promise of a great school of opera, a promise unhappily
stifled by the advent of an eclectic, the German Meyerbeer,
who blinded the public with unheard of magnificence of staging,
just as Rossini before him had blinded it by novel technical
feats. Meyerbeer thus drew the art into a new channel, and,
unluckily, this new tendency was not so much in the direction
of elevation of style as in sensationalism.

To return to the French composers. Hérold was born in 1791,
in Paris, and his principal works were "Zampa" and the "Pré
aux clercs." The first was produced in 1831, the latter in
1832. He died in 1833. Boieldieu was born in 1775, in Rouen;
died 1834. His principal works were "La dame blanche" and
"Jean de Paris."

Halévy (Levy) was born in 1799, in Paris, and died in 1862;
his father was a Bavarian and his mother from Lorraine. He
wrote innumerable operas. His most famous work, "La juive,"
written in 1835, was killed by Meyerbeer's "Huguenots," and
produced a year later. He was professor of counterpoint at
the Conservatoire from 1831, among his pupils being Gounod,
Massé, Bazin, and Bizet.

Auber was born in 1782, and died in May, 1871. He was
practically the last of the essentially French composers.
His operas may be summed up as being the perfect translation
into music of the witty plays of Scribe, with whom he was
associated all his life. To read a comedy by Scribe is to
imagine Auber's music to it. No one has excelled Auber in
the expression of all the finesse of wit and lightness of
touch. What the union between the two men was may be inferred
from the fact that Scribe wrote many of his librettos to
Auber's music, the latter being written first, Scribe then
adding the words. His principal works are "Masaniello" or
"The Mute," and "Fra Diavolo." He was appointed director of
the Paris Conservatoire, in 1842, in succession to Cherubini.

In speaking of Grétry, I quoted his opinion (given in one of
his essays on music) as to what opera should be and cited his
use of the _leitmotiv_ in his "Richard Coeur de Lion" (which
contains the air, _une fièvre brûlante_). If with this we
quote his reasons for writing opéra comique rather than grand
opera, we have one of the reasons why French opera has, as yet,
never developed beyond Massenet's "Roi de Lahore" on one side,
and Delibes' "Lakmé" on the other.

Grétry writes that he introduced lyric comedy on the stage
because the public was tired of tragedy, and because he had
heard so many lovers of dancing complain that their favourite
art played only a subordinate rôle in grand opera. Also the
public loved to hear short songs; therefore he introduced many
such into his operas.

Even nowadays, this seeming contradiction between theory and
practice is to be found, I think, in the French successors of
Meyerbeer. The public needed dancing, and all theories must
bend to that wish. Even Wagner succumbed to this influence in
Paris; and when Weber's "Freischütz" was first given at the
grand opera, Berlioz was commissioned to arrange ballet music
from Weber's piano works to supply the deficiency.

In France, even to-day, everything gives way to the public,
a public whose intelligence from a poetic standpoint is, in
my opinion, lower than that of any other country. The French
composer is dependent on his country (Paris) as is no musician
of other nationality. Berlioz' life was embittered by the want
of recognition in Paris. Although he had been acclaimed as
a great musician all over Europe, yet he returned again and
again to Paris, preferring (as he admits) the approbation of
its musically worthless public to his otherwise world-wide fame.

We remember that Auber never stirred out of Paris throughout
his long life. It was an article in the _Gazette Musicale_ of
Paris which was instrumental in calling Gounod back into the
world from his intended priestly vocation. And this influence
of the admittedly ignorant and superficial French public is
the more remarkable when one considers the fact that it was
always the last to admit the value of the best work of its
composers. Thus Berlioz' fame was gained in Russia and Germany
while he was still derided and comparatively unknown in Paris.

The failure of Bizet's "Carmen" is said to have hastened the
composer's death, which took place within three months after
the first performance of the opera. As Saint-Saëns wrote at
the time, in his disgust at the French public: "The fat, ugly
bourgeois ruminates in his padded stall, regretting separation
from his kind. He half opens a glassy eye, munches a bonbon,
then sleeps again, thinking that the orchestra is a-tuning." And
yet, even Saint-Saëns, whose name became known chiefly through
Liszt's help, and whose operas and symphonies were given
in Germany before they were known in France, even he is one
of the most ardent adherents to the "anti-foreigner" cry in
France. In my opinion, this respect for and attempt to please
this grossly ignorant French public is and has been one of the
great devitalizing influences which hamper the French composer.

Charles Gounod was born in 1818, in Paris. His father was
an engraver and died when Gounod was very young. The boy
received his first music lessons from his mother. He was
admitted to the Conservatoire at sixteen, and studied with
Halévy and Lesueur. In 1839 he gained _the Prix de Rome_,
and spent three years in Rome, studying ecclesiastical
music. In 1846 he contemplated becoming a priest, and wrote
a number of religious vocal works, published under the name
Abbé C. Gounod. In 1851 the article I referred to appeared,
and such was its effect on Gounod, that within four months his
first opera "Sapho" was given (April, 1851). A year later this
was followed by some music for a tragedy (Poussard's "Ulysse"
at the Comédie Française), and in 1854 by the five-act opera "La
nonne sanglante." These were only very moderately successful;
and so Gounod turned to the opéra comique, and wrote music to
an adaptation of Molière's "Medecin malgré lui." This became
very popular, and paved the way for his "Faust," which was
produced at the Opéra Comique in 1859. In the opéra comique,
as we know, the singing was always interspersed with spoken
dialogue. Thus, this opera, as we know it, dates from its
preparation for the Grand Opera ten years later, 1869. Ten
months after "Faust" was given he used a fable of Lafontaine
for a short light opera, "Philemon and Baucis."

In the meantime, "Faust" began to bring him encouragement,
and his next opera was on the subject of the "Queen of Sheba"
(1862). This being unsuccessful, he wrote two more light operas,
"Mireille" and "La colombe" (1866). The next was "Romeo et
Juliette" (1867). This was very successful, and marks the
culmination of Gounod's success as an opera composer. In
1870 he went to London, where he made his home for a number
of years. His later operas, "Cinq-Mars" (1877), "Polyeucte"
(1878), and "Le tribut de Zamora" (1881), met with small
success, and have rarely been given.

In his later years, as we know, he showed his early predilection
for religious music; and his oratorios "The Redemption,"
"Mors et Vita," and several masses have been given with
varying success. Perhaps one of the greatest points ever made
in Gounod's favour by a critic was that by Pougin, who asks what
other composer could have written two such operas as "Faust" and
"Romeo et Juliette" and still have them essentially different
musically. The "Garden Scene" in the one and the "Balcony Scene"
in the other are identical, so far as the feeling of the play
is concerned; also the duel of Faust and Valentine and Romeo
and Tybalt.

Ambroise Thomas's better works, "Mignon" and "Hamlet," may
be said to be more or less echoes of Gounod; and while his
"Francesca da Rimini," which was brought out in 1882, was by
far his most ambitious work, it never became known outside of
Paris. Ambroise Thomas was born in 1811, and died within a year
of Gounod. His chief merit was in his successful direction
of the Conservatoire, to which he succeeded Auber in 1871.

Georges Bizet (his name was Alexander César Leopold) was born in
1838, in Paris. His father was a poor singing teacher, and his
mother a sister-in-law of Delsarte; she was a first-prize piano
pupil of the Conservatoire. As a boy, Bizet was very precocious,
and entered the Conservatoire as a pupil of Marmontel when he
was ten. He took successively the first prizes for solfége,
piano, organ, and fugue, and finally the _Prix de Rome_ in
1857, when he was nineteen years old. The latter kept him
in Rome until 1861, when he returned to Paris and gave piano
and harmony lessons and arranged dance music for brass bands,
a _métier_ not unknown to either Wagner or Raff.

Until 1872, Bizet wrote but small and unimportant works, such
as "The Pearl Fisher," "The Fair Maid of Perth," and several
vaudeville operettas, some of which he wrote to order and
anonymously. He married a daughter of Halévy, the composer,
and in 1871-72 served in the National Guard. His first
important work was the incidental music to Alphonse Daudet's
"L'Arlesienne" and finally his "Carmen" was given (but without
success), at the Opéra Comique, in March, 1875. He died June 3,
1875.

Camille Saint-Saëns was born in Paris, in 1835; he commenced
studying piano when only three years old. I believe it is
mostly through his piano concertos and his symphonic poems
that his name will live; for his operas have never attained
popularity, with perhaps the one exception of "Samson and
Delilah." His other operas are: "The Yellow Princess,"
"Proserpina," "Etienne Marcel," "Henry VIII," "Ascanio."

Jules Massenet was born in 1842, and at the age of twelve
became a pupil of Bezit at the Conservatoire, was rejected by
Bezit for want of talent, and afterward studied with Reber and
Thomas, and won the _Prix de Rome_ in 1863. Upon his return,
in 1866, he wrote a number of small orchestral works, including
two suites and several sacred dramas, "Marie Magdalen" and
"Eve and the Virgin," in which the general Meyerbeerian style
militated against any suggestion of religious feeling. His
first grand opera, "Le roi de Lahore," was given in 1881.
The second was "Herodiade," which was followed by "Manon,"
"The Cid," "Esclarmonde," "Le mage."



XVIII

OPERA (Continued)


One of the most disputed questions in modern music is that of
opera. Although we have many controversies as to what purely
instrumental or vocal music may do, the operatic art, if we
may call it so, always remains the same. In creating the music
drama, Wagner put forth a composite art, something which many
declare impossible, and as many others advocate as being the
most complete art form yet conceived. We are still in the
midst of the discussion, and a final verdict is therefore
as yet impossible. On one hand we have Wagner, and against
him we have the absolutists such as Brahms, the orthodox
thinkers represented by Anton Rubinstein and many others,
the new Russian school represented by Cui, Rimsky-Korsakov,
Tchaikovsky, and the successors of the French school of
Meyerbeer, namely, Saint-Saëns, Massenet, etc.

In order to get a clear idea of the present state of the
matter we must review the question from the beginning of the
eighteenth century. For many reasons this is not an easy task,
first of all because very little of the music of the operas
of this period actually exists. We know the names of Hasse,
Pergolesi, Matheson, Graun, Alessandro Scarlatti (who was a much
greater man than his son the harpsichord player and composer,
Domenico), to name only a few. To be sure, a number of the
French operas of the period are preserved, owing to the custom
in France of engraving music. In Germany and Italy, however,
such operas were never printed, and one may safely say that
it was almost the rule for only one manuscript copy to be
available. Naturally this copy belonged to the composer, who
generally led the opera himself, improvising much of it on the
harpsichord, as we shall see later. As an instance of the danger
which operas, under such conditions, ran of being destroyed
and thus lost to the world, we may cite the total destruction
of over sixty of Hasse's operas in his extreme old age.

The second point which makes it difficult for us to get an
absolutely clear insight into the conditions of opera at the
beginning of the eighteenth century lies in the fact that
contemporary historians never brought their histories up
to their own times. Thus Marpurg, in his history, divides
music into four periods; first, that of Adam and Eve to
the flood; second, from the flood to the Argonauts; third,
to the beginning of the Olympiads; fourth, from thence to
Pythagoras. The same may be said of the celebrated histories
of Gerbert and Padre Martini.

On the other hand, we are certain that much of the modern
speculation was anticipated by these men. For instance, Matheson
calls pantomime "dumb music," freed from melodic and harmonic
forms. The idea was advanced that music owes its rhythmic
regularity and form to dancing, and architecture was called
frozen music, a metaphor which, in later days, was considered
such an original conception of Goethe and Schlegel. This same
inability of historians to bring their accounts up to the
contemporary times may be noticed in the later works of Forkel
(d. 1818) and Ambros (d. 1876).

Yet a third reason remains which tends to confuse the student
as to what really constituted opera. This is owing to the fact
that there existed the very important element of improvisation,
of which I shall speak later.

In order to see what Gluck, Weber, and Wagner had to break away
from, let us look at the condition of opera at the beginning
of the eighteenth century. We remember that opera, having
become emancipated from the Church long before any other music,
developed apace, while instrumental (secular) music was still in
its infancy. In Germany, even the drama was neglected for its
kindred form of opera; therefore, in studying its development,
we may well understand why the dramatic stage considered the
opera its deadly enemy.

The life of the German dramatist and actor of the first half
of the eighteenth century was one of the direst hardship and
poverty. Eckhof, one of the greatest actors of his time, made
his entry into Brunswick in a kind of miserable hay cart, in
which, accompanied by his sick wife and several dogs, he had
travelled over the rough roads. To keep warm they had filled
part of the wagon with straw. The German actor and dramatist
of that time often died in the hospital, despised by the richer
classes; even the village priests and ministers refused to allow
them to eat at their tables. Their scenery rarely consisted
of more than three rough pieces: a landscape, a large room,
and a peasant's hut interior. Many even had only two large
cloths which were hung about the stage, one green, which was
to be used when the scene was in the open air, and the other
yellow, which was used to represent an interior. Shakespeare's
"Poor Players" were certainly a stern reality in Germany. In
order to attract the public the plays had to consist for the
most part of the grossest subjects imaginable, it being barely
possible to smuggle some small portion of serious drama into
the entertainment.

With opera, however, it was vastly different; opera troupes
were met at the city gates by the royal or ducal carriages,
and the singers were fêted everywhere. The prices paid them
can only be compared with the salaries paid nowadays. They
were often ennobled, and the different courts quarrelled for
the honour of their presence. The accounts of the cost of
the scenery used are incredible, amounting to many thousands
of dollars for a single performance.

One of the earliest German kapellmeisters and opera composers
was Johann Adolf Hasse, who was born in Dresden about 1700. To
show the foundation upon which Gluck built, we will look at
opera as it existed in Hasse's time. In 1727 Hasse married at
Venice, Faustina Bordoni, the foremost singer of the time. He
wrote over one hundred operas for her, and had a salary of
thirty-six thousand marks, or nine thousand dollars, yearly. Now
these operas were very different from those we know. The arias
in them (and, of course, the whole opera was practically but a
succession of arias) were only sketched in an extremely vague
manner. Much was left to the singer, and the accompaniment
was sparsely indicated by figures written above a bass. The
recitative which separated one aria from another was improvised
by the singer, and was accompanied on the harpsichord by the
kapellmeister, who was naturally obliged to improvise his
part on the spur of the moment, following the caprice of the
singer. There was no creating an atmosphere for a tragic or
dramatic situation by means of the accompaniment; as soon as
the situation arrived, an aria was sung explaining it. Now,
as the singer was given much latitude in regard to the melody,
and _absolute_ liberty in regard to the recitative, it is easy
to see that, with the astounding technical perfection possessed
by the singers of the time, this latitude would be used to
astonish the hearers by wonderful vocal feats intermingled
with more or less passionate declamation.

The composer was merely the excuse for the opera; but he
needed to be a consummate musician to conduct and accompany
this improvised music, of which his written score was but the
nucleus. The wretched acting of opera singers in general has
been rather humourously traced back to this epoch. Nowadays,
in an opera, when, by way of example, a murder is to be
committed, the orchestra paints the situation, and the act is
accomplished without delay. In those olden days a singer would
have indignantly refused to submit to such a usurpation of
his rights; he would have raised his dagger, and then, before
striking, would have sung an aria in the regular three parts,
after which he would have stabbed his man. The necessity for
doing something during this interim is said to be responsible
for those idiotic gestures which used to be such a seemingly
necessary part of the equipment of the opera singer.

In the ordinary opera of the time there was the custom of
usually having about from twenty to thirty such arias (Hasse's
one hundred operas contain about three thousand arias). Now
these arias, although they were intended to paint a situation,
rapidly became simply a means to display the singer's skill. The
second part was a melody with plenty of vocal effects, and
the third part a bravura piece, pure and simple. So there
only remained the recitative in which true dramatic art could
find place. As this, however, was invariably improvised by the
singer, one can see that the composer of music had his cross
as well as his brother the dramatist. The music having no vital
connection with the text, it is easy to see how one opera could
be set to several texts or _vice-versa_, as was often done.

Another factor also contributed to retard the artistic
development of opera. All these arias had to be constructed
and sung according to certain customs. Thus, the fiery, minor
aria was always sung by the villain, the so-called colorature
arias by the tall, majestic heroine, etc.

All this seems childish to us, but it was certainly a powerful
factor in making fame for a composer. For, as has been said,
while a modern composer writes two or three different operas,
Hasse wrote one hundred versions of one. This also had its
effect on instrumental music, and, in a way, is also the direct
cause of that monstrosity known as "variations" (Händel wrote
sixty-six on one theme.) In our days we often hear the bitter
complaint that opera singers are no longer what they used
to be, and that the great art of singing has been lost. If
we look back to the period under consideration, we cannot
but admit that there is much truth in the contention. In the
first place, an opera singer of those days was necessarily
an actor of great resource, a thorough musician, a composer,
and a marvellous technician. In addition to this, operas were
always written for individuals. Thus, all of Hasse's were
designed for Faustina's voice; and by examining the music,
we can tell exactly what the good and bad points of her voice
were, such was the care with which it was written.

Before we leave the subject of Hasse and his operas, I wish
to refer briefly to a statement found in all histories and
books on music. We find it stated that all this music was sung
and played either loud or soft; with no gradual transitions
from one to the other. The existence of that gradual swelling
or diminishing of the tone in music which we call crescendo
and diminuendo, is invariably denied, and its first use is
attributed to Jommelli, director of the opera at Mannheim, in
1760. Thus we are asked to believe that Faustina sang either
_piano_ or _forte_, and still was an intensely dramatic singer.

This seems to me to require no comment; especially as, already
in 1676, Matthew Locke, an English writer, uses the [<] sign
for the gradual transition from soft to loud. For obvious
reasons there could be no such transition in harpsichord music,
and this is why, when the same instrument was provided with
hammers instead of quills, the name was changed to _pianoforte_,
to indicate its power to modify the tone from soft to loud.

Naturally Händel, who was a man of despotic tendencies,
could not long submit to the caprices of opera singers.
After innumerable conflicts with them, we find him turning
back to one of the older forms of opera, the oratorio.

Bach never troubled himself about an art from which he was so
widely separated both by training and inclination. Thus the
reformation of opera (I mean the old opera of which I have been
speaking) devolved upon Gluck. His early operas were entirely
on the lines of those of Hasse and Porpora. He wrote operas for
archduchesses ("Il Parnasso" was played by four archduchesses
and accompanied on harpsichord by the Archduke Leopold), and
was music master to Marie Antoinette at Vienna. It was owing
to these powerful influences that his art principles had an
opportunity to be so widely exploited. For these principles
were not new; they formed the basis of Peri's first attempt
at opera in 1600, and had been recalled in vain by Marcello in
1720. They were so simple that it seems almost childish to quote
them. They demanded merely that the music should always assist,
but never interfere with either the declamation or dramatic
action of the story. Thus by Gluck's powerful influence with
what may be termed the fashion of his day, he did much to
relegate to a place of minor importance the singer, who until
then had held undisputed sway. This being the case, the great
art of singing, which had allowed the artist the full control
and responsibility of opera, thus centering all upon the one
individuality, degenerated into the more subordinate rôle of
following the composer's directions.

It now became the duty of the composer to foresee every
contingency of his work, and it lay with him to give directions
for every detail of it. As a result, the singers, having
no longer absolute control but still anxious to display
their technical acquirements, gradually changed into that
now almost obsolete abomination, the "Italian opera singer,"
an artist, who, shirking all responsibility for the music and
dramatic action, neglected the composer so far as possible,
and introduced vocal pyrotechnics wherever he or she dared--and
their daring was great.

In the meantime, as Gluck was bringing in his reforms, songs
were gradually introduced into the _Schauspiel_ or drama, the
ill-fated brother of opera in Germany; and just as the grand
opera reached its highest point with Gluck, so this species of
melodrama grew apace, until we see its culmination in Weber's
"Freischütz."

The good results of Gluck's innovations and also, to a certain
degree, its discrepancies, may be plainly seen in Mozart's
operas; for only too often in his operas Mozart was obliged to
introduce _fioriture_ of the poorest possible description in
situations where they were utterly out of place. This, however,
may not be entirely laid at the door of the exacting singer, for
we find these same _fioriture_ throughout his harpsichord music.

We may almost say that the union of drama and music was first
definitely given status by Mozart; for a number of his operas,
such as the "Schauspieldirektor," etc., were merely a form of
the German _Singspiel_, which, as I have said, culminated in
"Freischütz."

Thus, at the beginning of our century we find two art forms:
First, grand opera of a strange nationality, and second, the
small but rapidly developing form of comedy or drama with music.

In order to show how Wagner evolved his art theories from
this material, we must consider to some degree the general
conditions of this period.

As late as 1853, Riehl wrote that Mendelssohn was the only
composer who had the German public, whereas others had only
a small section of it. For example, Schumann, whose music he
did not like, was accepted as a new Messiah in the Elbe River
district; "but who," he asks, "knows anything about him in the
south or west of Germany?" And as for Richard Wagner, who, he
says, is a man of extravagant ideas and a kind of phenomenon
of no consequence artistically, he asks, "who really knows
anything about him outside of the little party of fanatics
who profess to like his music (so-called)?" Its only chance of
becoming known, he says, is in the public's curiosity to hear
works which are rarely given. This curiosity, he continues,
will be a much more potent factor in his chance of becoming
known than all his newspaper articles and the propaganda of
his friend, Franz Liszt.

For the German opera there were half a dozen
_Boersenplätze_--Berlin for the northwest, Hamburg for
the northeast, Frankfort for the southwest, Munich for the
southeast. As Riehl says, a success in Frankfort meant a
success in all the Frankfort clay deposit and sandstone systems,
but in the chalk formation of Munich it stood no chance. Thus
Germany had no musical centre. But after Meyerbeer found such
a centre in Paris, all other Germans, including Wagner, looked
to Paris for fame.

At the end of the eighteenth century, Vienna was the art centre;
nevertheless Gluck had to go to Paris for recognition.

Mendelssohn only succeeded by his _Salonfähigkeit_. Always
respectable in his forms, no one else could have made music
popular among the cultured classes as could Mendelssohn. This
also had its danger; for if Mendelssohn had written an opera
(the lack of which was so bewailed by the Philistines),
it would have taken root all over Germany, and put Wagner
back many years. At the death of Mendelssohn, the Philistines
heralded the coming of a new German national school, founded on
his principles (formalism), one that would clarify the artistic
atmosphere of the turgid and anarchistic excesses of Wagner and
Berlioz and their followers. These critics found already that
Beethoven's melodies were too long and his instrumentation too
involved. They declared that the further music departed from
its natural simplicity the more involved its utterance became,
the less clear, and consequently the poorer it was. Music was
compared to architecture, and thus the more Greek it was, the
better; forgetting that architecture was tied to utilitarianism
and poetry to word-symbols, and that painting is primarily an
art of externals.

Riehl says that art is always in danger of ruin when its simple
foundation forms are too much elaborated, overlooking the fact
that music is not an art, but psychological utterance.

It needed all Wagner's gigantic personality to rise above this
wave of formalism that looked to the past for its salvation,
a past which was one of childish experimenting rather than of
aesthetic accomplishment. The tendency was to return to the
dark cave where tangible walls were to be touched by the hands,
rather than to emerge into a sunlight that seemed blinding.



XIX

ON THE LIVES AND ART PRINCIPLES OF SOME SEVENTEENTH AND
EIGHTEENTH CENTURY COMPOSERS


There is much of value to the student to be derived from a
study of the lives and art principles of the composers of the
seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. To go back to an earlier
period would hardly be worth while, as the music composed in
those days is too much obscured by the uncertainty of tradition
and the inevitable awkwardness of expression that goes with
all primitiveness in art.

The first whom I would mention are Don Carlo Gesualdo, Prince
of Venosa, and Ludovico Viadana.

The former was a nephew of the Archbishop of Naples, was born
in 1550, and died in 1613. His name is important from the fact
that he went boldly beyond Monteverde, his contemporary, in the
use of the new dissonant chords (sevenths and ninths) which
were just beginning to be employed, and adopted a chromatic
style of writing which strangely foreshadowed the chromatic
polyphonic style of the present century. He wrote innumerable
madrigals for a number of voices, but his innovations remained
sterile so far as the development of music is concerned, for
the reason that while his music often acquired a wonderful
poignancy for his time by the use of chromatics, just as often
it led him into the merest bramble bush of sound, real music
being entirely absent.

Viadana (1566-1645) has been placed by many historians of
music in the same category as Guido d'Arezzo (who is credited
with having invented solmization, musical notation, etc.),
Palestrina, Monteverde and Peri, who are famed, the one for
having discovered the dominant ninth chord, and the other
for the invention of opera. Viadana is said to have been the
first to use what is called a _basso continuo_, and even the
figured bass. The former was the uninterrupted repetition of
a short melody or phrase in the bass through the entire course
of a piece of music. This was done very often to give a sense
of unity that nowadays would be obtained by a repetition of
the first thought at certain intervals through the piece. The
figured (or better, ciphered) bass was an entirely different
thing. This device, which is still employed, consisted of
the use of figures to indicate the different chords in music.
These figures or ciphers were written over or under the bass
note on which the chord represented by the figures was to be
played or sung. A 5 over or under a bass note meant that with
that note a perfect major triad was to be sounded, considering
the note written as the root of the chord; a 3 was taken to
stand for a perfect minor triad; a 6 for the chord of the sixth
(first inversion of a triad), and 6/4 for the second inversion;
a line through a 5 or 7 meant that the triad was a diminished
fifth or a diminished seventh chord; a cross indicated a leading
tone; a 4 stood for the third inversion of the dominant seventh
chord. This system of shorthand, as it may be called, was and
is still of tremendous value to composers. In the olden days,
particularly, when many of the composers engraved their own
music for publication, it saved a great deal of labour. It is
probably not generally known that the engraving of music by
the composer was so common; but such was the case with Bach,
Rameau, and Couperin.

And this reminds me that the embellishments, as they were
called, which are so common in all harpsichord and clavichord
music, were also noted in a kind of shorthand, and for precisely
the same reason. The embellishments themselves originated
from the necessity for sustaining in some way the tone of
the instrument, which gave out little, dry, clicklike sounds;
if the melody were played in simple notes, these sounds would
mingle with the accompaniment and be lost in it. Therefore,
the embellishments served to sustain the tones of the melody,
and thus cause them to stand out from the accompaniment. Their
notation by means of symbols copied from the primitive _neumes_
vastly facilitated the work of engraving. Much confusion arose
in the notation of embellishments, owing to the fact that each
composer had his own system of symbols.

Alessandro Scarlatti and his son Domenico, both celebrated in
their day, are the next to demand attention. The former was
born about 1650 and died about 1725. He wrote many operas of
which we know practically nothing. His son was born about 1685
and died in 1757. He was the most celebrated harpsichord player
of his time; and although his style, which was essentially one
of virtuosity, was not productive of direct results, it did
nevertheless foreshadow the wonderful technical achievements
of Liszt in our own times. It is indeed a great pity that
Domenico Scarlatti's work did not bear more direct fruit in his
day, for it would have turned Mozart, as well as many others,
from the loose, clumsy mannerisms of the later virtuoso style,
which ran to the Alberti bass and other degrading platitudes,
paralleled in our comparatively modern days by the Thalberg
arpeggios, repeating notes, Döhler trill, etc.

Two masters in music, Händel and J.S. Bach, were born the
same year, 1685; their great French contemporary, Rameau,
was born two years earlier and died in 1764; while Händel
died in 1759, and Bach in 1750. Bach was destined to give
to the world its first glimpse of the tremendous power of
music, while Rameau organized the elements of music into a
scientific harmonic structure, laying the foundation for our
modern harmony. Händel's great achievement (besides being a
fine composer) was to crush all life out of the then promising
school of English music, the foundation for which had been so
well laid by Purcell, Byrd, Morley, etc.

Jean Philippe Rameau was born in Dijon, and after travels in
Italy and a short period of service as organist at Clermont,
in Auvergne, went to Paris. There he wrote a number of small
vaudevilles or musical comedies, which were successful; and
his music for the harpsichord, consisting almost exclusively
of small pieces with descriptive titles, soon began to be
widely played in France. Much later in life he succeeded
in obtaining a hearing for his operas, the first of which,
"Hippolyte et Aricie," was given in 1732, when he was fifty
years old. For thirty-two years his operas continued to hold
the French stage against those of all foreigners.

His style marked a great advance over that of Lully, the
Italian, of the century before. Rameau aimed at clearness
of diction and was one of the first to attempt to give
individuality to the different orchestral instruments. By
some strange coincidence, his first opera had much the same
dramatic situation that all the early operas seemed to have,
namely, a scene in the infernal regions. Rameau's operas
never became the foundation for a distinctly French opera,
for at the time of his death (1764), Italian opera troupes had
already introduced a kind of comedy with music, which rapidly
developed into opéra comique; it was reserved for Gluck,
the German, to revive grand opera in France.

As a theoretician, Rameau exerted tremendous influence upon
music. He discovered that the chord which we call the perfect
major triad was not merely the result of an artificial training
of the ear to like certain combinations of sounds, but that
this chord was inherent in every musical sound, constituting,
as it does, the first four harmonics or overtones. All chords,
therefore, that were not composed of thirds placed one above
the other, were inversions of fundamental chords. This theory
holds good in the general harmonic system of to-day. But
although the major triad and even the dominant seventh chord
could be traced back to the harmonics, the minor triad proved
a different matter; after many experiments Rameau gave it up,
leaving it unaccounted for.

Rameau was also largely instrumental in gaining recognition for
the desirability of dividing the octave into twelve equal parts,
making all the so-called half-tones recur at mathematically
equal distances from each other in the chromatic scale. In
1737 his work on the generation of chords through overtones
caused the equal temperament system of tuning to be generally
accepted, and the old modes, with the exception of the Ionian
and Aeolian, to be dropped out of use. The former became known
as major and the latter as minor, from the third, which was
large in the Ionian and small in the Aeolian.

Händel, as before stated, was born in 1685 (February 23), in
Halle, in the same year as J.S. Bach, who was a month younger
(born March 21). His father was a barber, who, as was common
in those days, combined the trade of surgery, cupping, etc.,
with that of hairdressing. He naturally opposed his son's
bent toward music, but with no effect. At fifteen years of
age, Händel was beginning to be well known as a clavichord
and organ player, in the latter capacity becoming specially
celebrated for his wonderful improvisations. In spite of an
attempt to make a lawyer of him, he persisted in taking music
as his vocation, after the death of his father.

In Hamburg, whither he went in 1703, he obtained a place among
the second violins in the opera orchestra.[15] Realizing that
in Germany opera was but a reflection of Italian art, he left
Hamburg in 1707 and went to Italy, where he soon began to make
a name for himself, both as performer and composer. One of his
operas, "Agrippa," was performed at Venice during the Carnival
season of 1710.

The Hanoverian kapellmeister, Staffani, was present and invited
him to Hanover, whither he went, becoming Staffani's successor
in the service of the Elector of Hanover. Several trips to
England, where he was warmly welcomed, resulted in his accepting
from Queen Anne, in 1713, a salary of two hundred pounds yearly,
thus entering her service, notwithstanding his contract with
the Elector. In 1714 the Queen died, and the Elector of
Hanover was called to the English throne under the title of
George I. Händel, in order to escape the impending disgrace
occasioned by having broken faith with his former employer,
wrote some music intended to be particularly persuasive, and
had it played on a barge that followed a royal procession up
the Thames. This "Water Music," as it was called, procured
for him the King's pardon.

From this time he lived in England, practically monopolizing
all that was done in music. In 1720 a company for the giving
of Italian opera was formed, and Händel placed at its head. In
1727, on the occasion of the accession of George II, Händel
wrote four anthems, one of which "Zadok the Priest," ends
with the words "God save the King," from which it has been
erroneously stated that he wrote the English national hymn.

In 1737 Händel gave up the writing of operas, after sinking
most of his own savings in the undertaking, and began to write
oratorios, the germs of which are found in the old Mysteries and
Passion plays performed on a platform erected in the chapel or
oratory of a church. Much has been written about Händel's habit
of taking themes from other composers, and he was even dubbed
the "grand old robber." It must not be overlooked, however,
that although he made use of ideas from other composers, he
turned them to the best account. By 1742 Händel was again in
prosperous circumstances, his "Messiah" having been a tremendous
success. From that time until his death he held undisputed sway,
although his last years were clouded by a trouble with his eyes,
which were operated upon unsuccessfully by an English oculist,
named Taylor, who had also operated on Bach's eyes with the
same disastrous result. Händel became completely blind in
1752. Up to the last year of his life he continued to give
oratorio concerts and played organ concertos, of which only
the _tutti_ were noted, he improvising his part.

Händel's strength lay in his great ability to produce
overwhelming effects by comparatively simple means. This is
especially the case in his great choruses which are massive
in effect and yet simple to the verge of barrenness. This,
of course, has no reference to the absurd _fioriture_ and
long passage work given to the voices,--an Italian fashion of
the times,--but to the contrapuntal texture of the work. Of
his oratorios, "The Messiah" is the best known. Two of his
"Concerti Grossi," the third and sixth, are sometimes played
by string orchestras. Of his harpsichord music we have the
eight "Suites" of 1720 (among which the one in E is known as
having the variations called "The Harmonious Blacksmith"),
and a number of "Harpsichord Lessons," among which are six
fugues. All these may be said to have little value.

J.S. Bach differed in almost every respect from Händel,
except that he was born in the same year and was killed by
the same doctor. While Händel left no pupils, with perhaps
the exception of his assistant organist, Bach aided and taught
his own celebrated sons, Krebs, Agricola, Kittel, Kirnberger,
Marpurg, and many other distinguished musicians. Bach twice made
an effort to see Händel at Halle, but without success. On the
other hand, there are reasons for believing that Händel never
took the trouble to examine any of Bach's clavichord music. He
lived like a conqueror in a foreign land, writing operas,
oratorios, and concertos to order, and stealing ideas right and
left without compunction; whereas Bach wrote from conviction,
and no charge of plagiarism was ever laid at his door. Händel
left a great fortune of twenty thousand pounds. Bach's small
salary at the St. Thomas Church in Leipzig made it necessary
for him to do much of his own engraving; and at his death,
though he had helped many young struggling artists, his
widow was left so poor that she had to be supported by public
benevolence. Bach's works were neglected by his contemporaries,
and it was only in the nineteenth century that he began to be
appreciated in a way commensurate with his worth.

Bach was born in Eisenach, in Thuringia, and it is of
interest to know that as far back as his great grandfather,
Veit Bach (born about 1550), music had been the profession
of the family. Bach's parents died when he was a boy of ten,
and his education was continued by his elder brother, Johann
Christoph, at a town near Gotha, where he held a position as
organist. The boy soon outstripped his brother in learning,
and continued his studies wholly by himself.

After filling a position as organist at Weimar, in 1703 he
accepted one at a small town, Arnstadt, at a salary of about
fifty-seven dollars yearly. He had already begun to compose,
and possibly in imitation of Kuhnau, whose so-called "Bible"
sonatas were at the time being talked about, he wrote an
elaborate clavichord piece to illustrate the departure of his
brother, Johann Jakob, who had entered the service of Charles
XII of Sweden as oboist. This composition is divided into five
parts, each bearing an appropriate superscription and ending
with an elaborate fugue to illustrate the postillion's horn. I
believe this is the only instance of his having written actual
programme music. After leaving Arnstadt he filled positions as
organist at Mühlhausen, Weimar, Coethen, etc. It was before
1720 that he paid his two visits to Halle in the hope of
seeing Händel. At this time he had already written the first
part of the "Wohltemperierte Clavier," the violin sonatas,
and many other great works. Ten years later, when Händel again
came to Germany, Bach was too ill to go to see him personally,
but sent his eldest son to invite Händel to come and see him,
although without success.

In 1723 he obtained the position of Cantor at the St.
Thomas School, in Leipzig, left vacant by the death of Kuhnau;
here he remained until his death. In 1749 the English oculist,
Taylor, happened to be in Leipzig. On the advice of friends,
Bach submitted to an operation on his eyes, which had always
troubled him. The failure of this operation rendered him
totally blind and the accompanying medical treatment completely
broke him down. On the eighteenth of July, 1750, he suddenly
regained his sight, but it was accompanied by a stroke of
paralysis from which he died ten days later.

So far as his church music is concerned, Bach may be considered
as the Protestant compeer of the Roman Catholic, Palestrina,
with the difference that his music was based on the tonalities
of major and minor and that his harmonic structure was founded
on a scientific basis. What is mere wandering in Palestrina,
with Bach is moving steadily forward with a well-defined object
in view. With Bach, music is cast in the definite mould of
tonality, while with Palestrina the vagueness of the modes lends
to his music something of mystery and a certain supernatural
freedom from _human will_, so prominent a characteristic
of Bach's compositions. In considering Bach's music we must
forget the technique, which was merely the outside dress of
his compositions. His style was the one of the period, just as
he wore a wig, and buckles on his shoes. His music must not be
confounded with the contrapuntal style of his utterance, and
although he has never been surpassed as a scientific writer
of counterpoint, it would be unjust to look there for his
chief glory. As a matter of fact, when his scientific speech
threatened to clash with the musical idea in his composition,
he never hesitated to sacrifice the former to the latter. Thus
Bach may be considered the greatest musical scientist of his
time as well as the greatest breaker of mere rules.

Of his sons, Carl Philipp Emanuel is the most celebrated,
and did much to prepare the way for Haydn in the development
of the sonata. J.S. Bach wrote many sonatas, but none for the
clavichord; his sonatas were for the violin and the 'cello
alone, a great innovation. The violin sonatas bring into
play all the resources of the instrument; indeed it is barely
possible to do them justice from the technical standpoint. His
"Wohltemperierte Clavier" naturally was a tremendous help to
clavichord technique, and even now the "Chromatic Fantaisie"
and other works require fine pianists to perform them properly.

In considering the development of music, it must always be
remembered that Haydn, Mozart, and their contemporaries knew
little or nothing of Bach's works, thus accounting for what
otherwise would seem a retrograde movement in art. C.P.E. Bach
(born 1714) was much better known than his father; even Mozart
said of him, "He is the father, and we are mere children." He
was renowned as a harpsichord player, and wrote many sonatas
which form the connecting link between the suite and the
sonata. He threw aside the polyphonic style of his father
and strove to give his music new colour and warmth by means
of harmony and modulation. He died in 1788 in Hamburg, where
he was conductor of the opera. It should be mentioned that he
wrote a method of clavichord playing on which, in later days,
Czerny said that Beethoven based his piano teaching.

Up to the period now under consideration, music for the
orchestra occupied a very small part in the composer's work. To
be sure, J.S. Bach wrote some suites, and separate movements
were written in the different dance forms for violins, with
sometimes the addition of a few reed instruments, and possibly
flutes and small horns or trumpets. It is in the works of
C.P.E. Bach, however, that we find the germ of symphonic
orchestral writing that was to be developed by Haydn, Mozart,
and Beethoven. The so-called "symphonies" by Emanuel Bach are
merely rudimentary sonatas written for strings, with flutes,
oboes, bassoons, trumpets, etc., and have practically no
artistic significance except as showing the inevitable trend of
musical thought toward greater power of expression. In Germany
(and indeed everywhere else) the Italian element had full sway
over opera, and non-Italian musicians were forced into writing
for the concert room instead of the stage. Even Beethoven had
many disappointments in connection with his one opera "Fidelio,"
and so strong was the Italian influence, that here in America
we are only just now (1897) recovering from the effects of it.

Franz Joseph Haydn was born near Vienna, in 1732, of humble
parents, his mother a cook in a count's family, and his father
a wheelwright and sexton of the parish church. When a young boy
Haydn had a fine voice, on account of which he was admitted as a
member of the choir at St. Stephen's Cathedral in Vienna. This
entitled him to admission to St. Stephen's School, connected
with the cathedral, in which the city paid for the board and
lodging as well as the instruction of the singers. When the
boys' voices changed or "broke," however, they were turned
adrift. On leaving the cathedral, Haydn suffered the direst
poverty, engaging himself at one time as valet to the Italian
singing teacher, Porpora, in order to secure some lessons.

He gradually managed to make himself known, and was engaged
by Count Morzin, a rich nobleman, to organize an orchestra of
about eighteen, which the count retained in his service with
Haydn as leader. Here he wrote his first symphony (for strings,
two oboes and two horns, in three movements) and a number of
smaller works. When he was twenty-nine, Count Morzin gave up
his establishment and Haydn entered the service of Prince Paul
Esterhazy, in Eisenstadt, Hungary, in the same capacity. Here
he had an orchestra of sixteen, composed of good musicians, whom
he could call up at any hour of the night to play if he wished,
and over whom he had complete control. Although the contract
by which he was engaged names the most degrading conditions,
and places Haydn on a par with all the other servants, the pay,
though small (two hundred dollars yearly), was certain and
regular. From this time Haydn was free from the hardships of
poverty. His salary was soon increased to five hundred dollars,
and he made as much more from his compositions. He wrote over
one hundred and twenty-five symphonies, sixty-eight trios,
seventy-seven quartets, fifty-seven concertos, fifty-seven
sonatas, eight oratorios and cantatas, and nineteen operas,
besides innumerable smaller things, for instance, between five
hundred and six hundred vocal pieces. His operas, of course,
are mere trifles compared with our more modern ones.

His friendship for Mozart is well known. As for his relations
with Beethoven, it is probable that their disagreement was
merely the effect of pride, and perhaps a certain amount
of laziness on one side and youthful bumptiousness on the
other. Haydn was returning to Vienna _via_ Bonn, from England,
where he had been welcomed by the wildest enthusiasm, when
Beethoven called on him to ask for his opinion as to his talent
as a composer. It resulted in Beethoven's going to Vienna.
After taking a few lessons of Haydn he went to another teacher
and made all manner of contemptuous remarks about Haydn,
declaring he had not learned anything from him.

After two highly successful visits to England, in 1792 and 1794,
Haydn returned to Vienna and wrote his two celebrated cantatas,
"The Creation" and "The Seasons." His last appearance in public
was when he attended a performance of "The Creation" in 1808,
at the age of seventy-six. He was received with a fanfare of
trumpets and cheers from the audience. After the first part he
was obliged to leave, and as he was being carried out by his
friends, he turned at the door and lifted his hands towards the
orchestra, as if in benediction; Beethoven kissed his hand,
and everyone paid him homage. He died during the bombardment
of Vienna by the French, May 31, 1809.

Haydn's later symphonies have been very cleverly compared
with those of Beethoven by the statement that the latter wrote
tragedies and great dramas, whereas Haydn wrote comedies and
charming farces. As a matter of fact, Haydn is the bridge
between the idealized dance and independent music. Although
Beethoven still retained the form of the dance, he wrote great
poems, whereas the music of Haydn always preserves a tinge of
the actual dance. With Haydn, music was still an art consisting
of the weaving together of pretty sounds, and although _design_,
that is to say, the development of the emotional character
of a musical thought, was by no means unknown to him, that
development was never permitted to transcend the limits of a
certain graceful euphony which was a marked characteristic
of his style. His use of orchestral instruments represents
a marked advance on that of C.P.E. Bach, and certainly very
materially helped Mozart.

Of Mozart we probably all know something. Born at Salzburg,
in 1756, his was a short life, for he died in 1791. We know
of his great precocity; his first compositions were published
when he was six years old, at which age he was already playing
in concerts with his eleven-year old sister, and was made much
of by the titled people before whom he played. The rest of
his life is one continual chronicle of concerts given all over
Europe, interrupted at intervals by scarlet fever, smallpox,
and other illnesses, until the last one, typhoid fever, caused
his death. During his stay in Italy he wrote many operas in
the flowery Italian style which, luckily, have never been
revived to tarnish his name.

His first works worthy of mention are the clavier concertos and
several symphonies and quartets, which date from about 1777. His
first important opera is "Idomeneo, King of Crete," written for
the Munich opera. In this he adopts the principles of Gluck,
thus breaking away from the wretched style of the Italian
opera of the period, although the work itself was written in
Italian. His next opera was in German, "Die Entführung aus
dem Serail," and was given with great success at Vienna, in
1782. It was followed by "The Marriage of Figaro," "Don Juan,"
and the "Magic Flute."

The story of his death is well known. A stranger, who turned
out to be the steward of Count Walsegg, came to him and
ordered a requiem, which was played in 1793 as Walsegg's own
composition. Mozart thought the man a messenger from the other
world. He died before he completed the work. So great was his
poverty that it was difficult to get a priest to attend him,
and a physician who was summoned would come only after the play
he was attending was ended. He had a "third class" funeral,
and as a fierce storm was raging, no one accompanied the body
to the grave. His widow gave a concert, and with the help of the
Emperor money enough was raised to pay the outstanding debts.

It is difficult to give an adequate idea of Mozart's works. He
possessed a certain simple charm of expression which,
in its directness, has an element of pathos lacking in the
comparatively jolly light-heartedness of Haydn. German opera
profited much from his practically adopting the art principles
of Gluck, although it must be confessed that this change in
style may have been simply a phase of his own individual art
development. His later symphonies and operas show us the man
at his best. His piano works and early operas show the effect
of the "virtuoso" style, with all its empty concessions to
technical display and commonplace, ear-catching melody.


[15] At that time the harpsichord player was a very important
     member of an orchestra, as he accompanied the recitative
     from figured bass and was practically the conductor. On
     one occasion when the harpsichordist was absent Händel
     took his place with so much success that it paved the
     way for a hearing of his operas.



XX

DECLAMATION IN MUSIC


There is one side of music which I am convinced has never
been fully studied, namely, the relation between it and
declamation. As we know, music is a language which may delineate
actual occurrences by means of onomatopoetic sounds. By the
use of more or less suggestive sounds, it may bring before
our minds a quasi-visual image of things which we more or less
definitely feel.

Now to do all this, there must be rules; or, to put it more
broadly, there must be some innate quality that enables
this art of sounds to move in sympathy with our feelings.
I have no wish to go into detailed analysis of the subject;
but a superficial survey of it may clear up certain points with
regard to the potency of music that we are too often willing
to refer back to the mere pleasing physical sensations of sound.

Some consideration of this subject may enable us to understand
the much discussed question of programme music. It may also help
us to recognize the astonishing advance we have made in the art;
an advance, which, strange to say, consists in successively
throwing off all the trammels and conventionalities of what is
generally considered artificial, and the striking development
of an art which, with all its astounding wealth of exterior
means, aims at the expression of elemental sensations.

Music may be divided into four classes, each class marking
an advance in receptive power on the part of the listener and
poetic subtlety on that of the composer. We may liken the first
stage to that of the savage Indians who depict their exploits
in war and peace on the rocks, fragments of bone, etc. If the
painter has in mind, say, an elephant, he carves it so that its
principal characteristics are vastly exaggerated. A god in such
delineation is twice the size of the ordinary man, and so it is
in descriptive music. For instance, in Beethoven's "Pastoral"
symphony, the cuckoo is not a bird which mysteriously hides
itself far away in a thicket, the sound of whose voice comes to
one like a strange, abrupt call from the darkness of the forest;
no, it is unmistakably a cuckoo, reminding one strangely of
those equally advanced and extremely cheap art products of
Nuremberg, made of pine wood, and furnished with a movable tail.

The next stage is still a question of delineation; but
of delineation that leads us into strange countries, and
the sounds we hear are but the small door through which we
pass. This music _suggests_; by way of example, the opening of
the last movement of the "Pastoral" symphony, the march from
Tchaïkovsky's "Symphonie Pathétique," the opening of Raff's
"Im Walde," and Goldmark's "Sakuntala." Such music hints,
and there is a certain potency in its suggestion which makes
us see things. These two divisions of music have been termed
"programme" or "objective" music.

The other two classes of music have been termed subjective.
The first is declamation, pure and simple; the singer may be
telling a lie, or his sentiment may be insincere or false; what
these sounds stand for, we know from the words, their grade of
passion, etc. The last phase of our art is much more subtle,
and is not amenable to such accurate analysis. If we may liken
music to painting, we may, I think, compare the latter to the
first three stages of this new language of music; but it can
go no further. For that art must touch its audience through
a palpable delineation of something more or less material;
whereas music is of the stuff dreams are made of. It is hardly
necessary to say, however, that our dreams are often much more
poignant than the actual sensations caused by real occurrences
would be. And it is because of this strange quality, I think,
that dreams and music affect us in much the same manner.

The vital principle of Wagner's art was that he not only made
startlingly vivid pictures in his music, but that he made the
people in these pictures actually walk out of the frame and
directly address the audience. In other words, his orchestra
forms a kind of pictorial and psychological background from
which his characters detach themselves and actually speak. If
they speak falsely, the ever present orchestra, forming as it
were a halo, unmercifully tears away the mask, like the mirror
in old fairy tales.

In Wagner's operas, however, the intrusion of gross palpable
machinery of the stage, as well as that of the actor's art,
too often clouds the perfect working of this wonderful art
conception. It is just this intrusion of materialism in Wagner's
music dramas which constitutes their only weakness.

At this point I wish to insist upon the fact that in music it
is always through declamation that the public is addressed most
directly; not only that, but declamation is not necessarily tied
by any of the fetters of the spoken word; nor is it subservient
to any of the laws of articulate speech as we meet with them in
language. This being admitted, I have no hesitation in giving
my opinion that opera, or rather the music drama, is not the
highest or the most perfect form of our art. The music drama
as represented by Wagner (and he alone represents it) is the
most perfect union of painting, poetry, and music imaginable to
our nineteenth-century minds. But as regards representing the
highest development of music, I find it too much hampered by
the externals of art, necessary materialism in the production
of palpable acts, and its enforced subjection to the laws that
govern the spoken word.

Music is universal; Wagner's operas, by the inherent necessities
of speech, are necessarily and irrevocably Germanic. "Les
Maitres Chanteurs," "The Dwarfs of Niebelheim," "Elizabeta,"
are impossibilities, whereas, for instance, Beethoven's "Eroica"
labours under no such disadvantage. "Goodbye, My Dearest Swan,"
invests part of "Lohengrin" with a certain grotesque colour
that no one would ever dream of if there were no necessity for
the singer to be tied down to the exigencies of palpable and
certainly most materialistic language. The thought in itself
is beautiful, but the necessity for the words drags it into
the mud.

This certainly shows the difference between the language of
music and what is called articulate speech, the purely symbolic
and artificial character of the latter, and the direct,
unhampered utterance of the former. Music can invariably
heighten the poignancy of mere spoken words (which mean
nothing in themselves), but words can but rarely, in fact I
doubt whether they can ever, heighten the effect of musical
declamation. To my mind, listening to Wagner's operas may be
likened to watching a circus with three rings. That containing
the music should have our closest attention, for it offers
the most wonderful sounds ever imagined by any man. At the
same time it is impossible for any human being not to have his
attention often lured away to the other rings, in one of which
Fricke's rams vie with the bird and the dragon; or where the
phantom ship seems as firmly fixed as the practical rainbow,
which so closely betrays the carpenter. In the other ring you
can actually hear the dull jokes of Mimi and the Wanderer,
or hear Walther explain that he has passed a comfortable night
and slept well.

The music to these remarkable scenes, however, does not deign
to stoop so low, but soars in wonderful poetry by itself, thus
rejecting a union which, to speak in the jargon of our day, is
one of the convincing symptoms of decadence; in other words,
it springs from the same impulse as that which has produced
the circus with three rings.

Summing up, I wish to state what I consider the four elements
of music, namely, music that paints, music that suggests, music
that actually speaks, and music that almost defies analysis,
and is composed of the other three elements.

When we were considering the early works for harpsichord, I said
that music could define certain things with quite reasonable
exactitude. Just as in the Egyptian hieroglyphics a wavy line
stands for water, so it can in music, with the latitude that
it can mean anything in nature that we might consider of the
same genre. Thus, the figure in Wagner's "Waldweben" means in
that instance waves of air, and we know it by the context.
His swaying figure of the "Prelude to Rheingold" is as
plainly water as is the same figure used by Mendelssohn in his
"Lovely Melusina." Not that Wagner plagiarized, but that he and
Mendelssohn recognized the definiteness of musical suggestions;
which is more than proved by their adopting the same musical
ideas to indicate the same things.

More indefinite is the analysis of our second type or element
of music. The successful recognition of this depends not only
upon the susceptibility of the hearer to delicate shades of
sensation, but also upon the receptivity of the hearer and his
power to accept freely and unrestrictedly the mood shadowed
forth by the composer. Such music cannot be looked upon
objectively. To those who would analyze it in such a manner it
must remain an unknown language; its potency depends entirely
upon a state of willing subjectivity on the part of the hearer.

The third element, as we know, consists of the spoken word or
phrase; in other words, declamation. In this, however, the
composer cuts loose entirely from what we call language. It
is the medium of expression of emotion of every kind. It is
not restricted to the voice or to any instrument, or even to
our sharps, flats, and naturals. Through stress of emotion the
sharps become sharper, with depression the flats become flatter,
thus adding poignancy to the declamation. Being unfettered by
words, this emotion has free rein. The last element, as I have
said, is extremely difficult to define. It is declamation that
suggests and paints at the same time. We find hardly a bar
of Wagner's music in which this complex form of music is not
present. Thus, the music dramas of Wagner, shorn of the fetters
of the actual spoken word, emancipated from the materialism
of acting, painting, and furniture, may be considered as the
greatest achievement in our art, an art that does not include
the spoken word called poetry, or painting, or sculpture,
and most decidedly not architecture (form), but the essence
of all these. What these aim to do through passive exterior
influences, music accomplishes by actual living vibration.



XXI

SUGGESTION IN MUSIC


In speaking of the power of suggestion in music I wish at
the outset to make certain reservations. In the first place
I speak for myself, and what I have to present is merely an
expression of my personal opinion; if in any way these should
incite to further investigation or discussion, my object will
in part have been attained.

In the second place, in speaking of this art, one is
seriously hampered by a certain difficulty in making oneself
understood. To hear and to enjoy music seems sufficient to
many persons, and an investigation as to the causes of this
enjoyment seems to them superfluous. And yet, unless the
public comes into closer touch with the tone poet than that
objective state Which accepts with the ears what is intended
for the spirit, which hears the sounds and is deaf to their
import, unless the public can separate the physical pleasure
of music from its ideal significance, our art, in my opinion,
cannot stand on a sound basis.

The first step toward an appreciation of music should be
taken in our preparatory schools. Were young people taught
to distinguish between tones as between colours, to recognize
rhythmic values, and were they taught so to use their voices as
to temper the nasal tones of speech, in after life they would
be better able to appreciate and cherish an art of which mere
pleasure-giving sounds are but a very small part.

Much of the lack of independence of opinion about music arises
from want of familiarity with its material. Thus, after dinner,
our forefathers were accustomed to sing catches which were
entirely destitute of anything approaching music.

Music contains certain elements which affect the nerves of
the mind and body, and thus possesses the power of direct
appeal to the public,--a power to a great extent denied to the
other arts. This sensuous influence over the hearer is often
mistaken for the aim and end of all music. With this in mind,
one may forgive the rather puzzling remarks so often met with;
for instance, those of a certain English bishop that "Music
did not affect him either intellectually or emotionally,
only pleasurably," adding, "Every art should keep within
its own realm; and that of music was concerned with pleasing
combinations of sound." In declaring that the sensation of
hearing music was pleasant to him, and that to produce that
sensation was the entire mission of music, the Bishop placed
our art on a level with good things to eat and drink. Many
colleges and universities of this land consider music as a
kind of _boutonnière_.

This estimate of music is, I believe, unfortunately a very
general one, and yet, low as it is, there is a possibility
of building on such a foundation. Could such persons be made
to recognize the existence of decidedly unpleasant music,
it would be the first step toward a proper appreciation of
the art and its various phases.

Mere beauty of sound is, in itself, purely sensuous. It is
the Chinese conception of music that the texture of a sound
is to be valued; the long, trembling tone-tint of a bronze
gong, or the high, thin streams of sound from the pipes are
enjoyed for their ear-filling qualities. In the _Analects_ of
Confucius and the writings of Mencius there is much mention
of music, and "harmony of sound that shall fill the ears"
is insisted upon. The Master said, "When the music maker Che
first entered on his office, the finish with the Kwan Ts'eu
was magnificent. How it filled the ears!" Père Amiot says,
"Music must fill the ears to penetrate the soul." Referring to
the playing of some pieces by Couperin on a spinet, he says that
Chinese hearers thought these pieces barbarous; the movement
was too rapid, and did not allow sufficient time for them to
enjoy each tone by itself. Now this is colour without form,
or sound without music. For it to become music, it must possess
some quality which will remove it from the purely sensuous. To
my mind, it is in the power of suggestion that the vital spark
of music lies.

Before speaking of this, however, I wish to touch upon two
things: first, on what is called the science of music; and
secondly, on one of the sensuous elements of music which enters
into and encroaches upon all suggestion.

If one were called upon to define what is called the
intellectual side of music, he would probably speak of "form,"
contrapuntal design, and the like. Let us take up the matter
of form. If by the word "form" our theorists meant the most
poignant expression of poetic thought in music, if they meant
by this word the art of arranging musical sounds into the most
telling presentation of a musical idea, I should have nothing
to say: for if this were admitted instead of the recognized
forms of modern theorists for the proper utterance, we should
possess a study of the power of musical sounds which might
truly justify the title of musical intellectuality. As it is,
the word "form" stands for what have been called "stoutly
built periods," "subsidiary themes," and the like, a happy
combination of which in certain prescribed keys was supposed
to constitute good form. Such a device, originally based upon
the necessities and fashions of the dance, and changing from
time to time, is surely not worthy of the strange worship
it has received. A form of so doubtful an identity that the
first movement of a certain Beethoven sonata can be dubbed by
one authority "sonata-form," and by another "free fantasia,"
certainly cannot lay claim to serious intellectual value.

Form should be a synonym for _coherence_. No idea, whether
great or small, can find utterance without form, but that form
will be inherent to the idea, and there will be as many forms
as there are adequately expressed ideas. In the musical idea,
_per se_, analysis will reveal form.

The term "contrapuntal development" is to most tone poets of the
present day a synonym for the device of giving expression to
a musically poetic idea. _Per se_, counterpoint is a puerile
juggling with themes, which may be likened to high-school
mathematics. Certainly the entire web and woof of this
"science," as it is called, never sprang from the necessities of
poetic musical utterance. The entire pre-Palestrina literature
of music is a conclusive testimony as to the non-poetic and
even uneuphonious character of the invention.

In my opinion, Johann Sebastian Bach, one of the world's
mightiest tone poets, accomplished his mission, not by means
of the contrapuntal fashion of his age, but in spite of it. The
laws of canon and fugue are based upon as prosaic a foundation
as those of the rondo and sonata form; I find it impossible to
imagine their ever having been a spur, or an incentive to poetic
musical speech. Neither, pure tonal beauty, so-called "form,"
nor what is termed the intellectual side of music (the art
of counterpoint, canon, and fugue), constitutes a really vital
factor in music. This narrows our analysis down to two things,
namely, the physical effect of musical sound, and suggestion.

The simplest manifestations of the purely sensuous effect of
sound are to be found in the savage's delight in noise. In
the more civilized state, this becomes the sensation of mere
pleasure in hearing pleasing sounds. It enters into folk song
in the form of the "Scotch snap," which is first cousin to the
Swiss _jodel_, and is undoubtedly the origin of the skips of
the augmented and (to a lesser degree) diminished intervals to
be found in the music of many nations. It consists of the trick
of alternating chest tones with falsetto. It is a kind of quirk
in the voice which pleases children and primitive folk alike,
a simple thing which has puzzled folklorists the world over.

The other sensuous influence of sound is one of the most
powerful elements of music, and all musical utterance
is involved with and inseparable from it. It consists of
repetition, recurrence, periodicity.

Now this repetition may be one of rhythm, tone tint, texture,
or colour, a repetition of figure or of pitch. We know that
savages, in their incantation ceremonies, keep up a continuous
drum beating or chant which, gradually increasing in violence,
drives the hearers into such a state of frenzy that physical
pain seems no longer to exist for them.

The value of the recurring rhythms and phrases of the march is
well recognized in the army. A body of men will instinctively
move in cadence with such music. The ever recurring lilt of a
waltz rhythm will set the feet moving unconsciously, and as the
energy of the repetition increases and decreases, so will the
involuntary accompanying physical sympathy increase or decrease.

Berlioz jokingly tells a story of a ballet dancer who objected
to the high pitch in which the orchestra played, and insisted
that the music be transposed to a lower key. Cradle songs are
fashioned on the same principle.

This sensuous sympathy with recurring sounds, rhythm, and pitch
has something in common with hypnotism, and leads up to what
I have called suggestion in music.

This same element in a modified form is made use of in poetry,
for instance, in Poe's "Raven,"

    Quoth the raven, nevermore,

and the repetition of colour in the same author's "Scarlet
Death." It is the mainspring (I will not call it the vital
spark) of many so-called popular songs, the recipe for which
is exceedingly simple. A strongly marked rhythmic figure is
selected, and incessantly repeated until the hearer's body
beats time to it. The well-known tunes "There'll Be a Hot
Time," etc., and "Ta-ra-ra, Boom-de-ay" are good examples of
this kind of music.

There are two kinds of suggestion in music: one has been called
tone-painting, the other almost evades analysis.

The term tone-painting is somewhat unsatisfactory, and reminds
one of the French critic who spoke of a poem as "beautiful
painted music." I believe that music can suggest forcibly
certain things and ideas as well as vague emotions encased in
the so-called "form" and "science" of music.

If we wish to begin with the most primitive form of suggestion
in music, we shall find it in the direct imitation of sounds
in nature. We remember that Helmholtz, Hanslick, and their
followers denied to music the power to suggest things in
nature; but it was somewhat grudgingly admitted that music
might express the emotions caused by them. In the face of this,
to quote a well-known instance, we have the "Pastoral" symphony
of Beethoven, with the thrush, cuckoo, and thunderstorm. The
birds and the storm are very plainly indicated; but it is not
possible for the music to be an expression of the emotions
caused by them, for the very simple reason that no emotions
are caused by the cuckoo and thrush, and those caused by
thunderstorms range all the way from depression and fear to
exhilaration, according to the personality of individuals.

That music may imitate any rhythmic sounds or melodic figure
occurring in nature, hardly needs affirmation. Such devices may
be accepted almost as quotations, and not be further considered
here. The songs of birds, the sound made by galloping horses'
feet, the moaning of the wind, etc., are all things which
are part and parcel of the musical vocabulary, intelligible
alike to people of every nationality. I need hardly say that
increasing intensity of sound will suggest vehemence, approach,
and its visual synonym, growth, as well as that decreasing
intensity will suggest withdrawal, dwindling, and placidity.

The suggestion brought about by pattern is very familiar.
It was one of the first signs of the breaking away from
the conventional trammels of the contrapuntal style of the
sixteenth and seventeenth centuries. The first madrigal of
Thomas Weelkes (1590) begins with the words, "Sit down," and
the musical pattern falls a fifth. The suggestion was crude,
but it was caused by the same impulse as that which supplied
the material for Wagner's "Waldweben," Mendelssohn's "Lovely
Melusina," and a host of other works.

The fact that the pattern of a musical phrase can suggest kinds
of motion may seem strange; but could we, for example, imagine
a spinning song with broken arpeggios? Should we see a spear
thrown or an arrow shot on the stage and hear the orchestra
playing a phrase of an undulating pattern, we should at once
realize the contradiction. Mendelssohn, Schumann, Wagner,
Liszt, and practically everyone who has written a spinning
song, has used the same pattern to suggest the turning of a
wheel. That such widely different men as Wagner and Mendelssohn
should both have adopted the same pattern to suggest undulating
waves is not a mere chance, but clearly shows the potency of
the suggestion.

The suggestion conveyed by means of pitch is one of the
strongest in music. Vibrations increasing beyond two hundred
and fifty trillions a second become luminous. It is a curious
coincidence that our highest vibrating musical sounds bring
with them a well-defined suggestion of light, and that as
the pitch is lowered we get the impression of ever increasing
obscurity. To illustrate this, I have but to refer you to the
Prelude to "Lohengrin." Had we no inkling as to its meaning,
we should still receive the suggestion of glittering shapes
in the blue ether.

Let us take the opening of the "Im Walde" symphony by Raff as
an example; deep shadow is unmistakably suggested. Herbert
Spencer's theory of the influence of emotion on pitch is well
known and needs no confirmation. This properly comes under
the subject of musical speech, a matter not to be considered
here. Suffice it to say that the upward tendency of a musical
phrase can suggest exaltation, and that a downward trend may
suggest depression, the intensity of which will depend upon
the intervals used. As an instance we may quote the "Faust"
overture of Wagner, in which the pitch is used emotionally
as well as descriptively. If the meaning I have found in this
phrase seems to you far-fetched, we have but to give a higher
pitch to the motive to render the idea absolutely impossible.

The suggestion offered by movement is very obvious, for music
admittedly may be stately, deliberate, hasty, or furious,
it may march or dance, it may be grave or flippant.

Last of all I wish to speak of the suggestion conveyed by
means of tone-tint, the blending of timbre and pitch. It is
essentially a modern element in music, and in our delight in
this marvellous and potent aid to expression we have carried
it to a point of development at which it threatens to dethrone
what has hitherto been our musical speech, melody, in favour
of what corresponds to the shadow languages of speech, namely,
gesture and facial expression. Just as these shadow languages
of speech may distort or even absolutely reverse the meaning
of the spoken word, so can tone colour and harmony change the
meaning of a musical phrase. This is at once the glory and
the danger of our modern music. Overwhelmed by the new-found
powers of suggestion in tonal tint and the riot of hitherto
undreamed of orchestral combinations, we are forgetting that
permanence in music depends upon melodic speech.

In my opinion, it is the line, not the colour, that will last.
That harmony is a potent factor in suggestion may be seen
from the fact that Cornelius was able to write an entire song
pitched upon one tone, the accompaniment being so varied in
its harmonies that the listener is deceived into attributing
to that one tone many shades of emotion.

In all modern music this element is one of the most important.
If we refer again to the "Faust" overture of Wagner, we will
perceive that although the melodic trend and the pitch of
the phrase carry their suggestion, the roll of the drum which
accompanies it throws a sinister veil over the phrase, making
it impressive in the extreme.

The seed from which our modern wealth of harmony and tone
colour sprang was the perfect major triad. The _raison d'être_
and development of this combination of tones belong to the
history of music. Suffice it to say, that for some psychological
reason this chord (with also its minor form) has still the same
significance that it had for the monks of the Middle Ages. It is
perfect. Every complete phrase, must end with it. The attempts
made to emancipate music from the tyranny of this combination
of sounds have been in vain, showing that the suggestion of
finality and repose contained in it is irrefutable.

Now if we depart from this chord a sensation of unrest is
occasioned which can only subside by a progression to another
triad or a return to the first. With the development of our
modern system of tonality we have come to think tonally; and a
chord lying outside of the key in which a musical thought is
conceived will carry with it a sense of confusion or mystery
that our modern art of harmony and tone colour has made its
own. Thus, while any simple low chords accompanying the first
notes of Raff's "Im Walde" symphony, given by the horns and
violins, would suggest gloom pierced by the gleams of light,
the remoteness of the chords to the tonality of C major gives
a suggestion of mystery; but as the harmony approaches the
triad the mystery dissolves, letting in the gleam of sunlight
suggested by the horn.

Goldmark's overture to "Sakuntala" owes its subtle suggestion to
much the same cause. Weber made use of it in his "Freischütz,"
Wagner in his "Tarnhelm" motive, Mendelssohn in his "Midsummer
Night's Dream," Tchaïkovsky in the opening of one of his
symphonies.

In becoming common property, so to speak, this important
element of musical utterance has been dragged through the mud;
and modern composers, in their efforts to raise it above the
commonplace, have gone to the very edge of what is physically
bearable in the use of tone colour and combination. While this
is but natural, owing to the appropriation of some of the most
poetic and suggestive tone colours for ignoble dance tunes and
doggerel, it is to my mind a pity, for it is elevating what
should be a means of adding power and intensity to musical
speech to the importance of musical speech itself. Possibly
Strauss's "Thus Spake Zarathustra" may be considered the
apotheosis of this power of suggestion in tonal colour, and
in it I believe we can see the tendency I allude to. This
work stuns by its glorious magnificence of tonal texture; the
suggestion, in the opening measures, of the rising sun is a
mighty example of the overwhelming power of tone colour. The
upward sweep of the music to the highest regions of light has
much of splendour about it; and yet I remember once hearing
in London, sung in the street at night, a song that seemed to
me to contain a truer germ of music.

For want of a better word I will call it ideal suggestion.
It has to do with actual musical speech, and is difficult to
define. The possession of it makes a man a poet. If we look
for analogy, I may quote from Browning and Shakespeare.

    Dearest, three months ago
    When the mesmerizer, Snow,
    With his hand's first sweep
    Put the earth to sleep.

                            BROWNING, _A Lovers' Quarrel_.


                                      Daffodils,
    That come before the swallow dares, and takes
    The winds of March with beauty; Violets dim,
    But sweeter than the lids of Juno's eyes.

                            SHAKESPEARE, _Winter's Tale_.

For me this defies analysis, and so it is with some things
in music, the charm of which cannot be ascribed to physical
or mental suggestion, and certainly not to any device of
counterpoint or form, in the musical acceptance of the word.



INDEX


A.

  Accents, 92.
  Adagio, 189.
  Aeolian mode, 83.
  Aeschylus, 70, 76.
  Alberti bass, 197.
  Allemande, 182, 189, 195.
  Amati, 138.
  Ambros, 205.
  Ambrose, 98, 99, 102, 104.
  Amiot, 50, 57, 61, 263.
  Anapaest, 75.
  Andaman Islanders, 3, 5, 6.
  Animals, 13.
  Arabian, 152, 158.
  Architecture, 192, 225.
  Arion, 76.
  Aristides, 74, 84.
  Aristophanes, 91, 92.
  Aristotle, 49.
  Aristoxenus, 73, 81.
  Assyrian, 48.
  Auber, 216, 217, 219.


B.

  Bach, C.P.E., 191, 199, 200, 247, 248, 251.
  Bach, J.S., 136, 185, 186, 187, 191, 231, 239, 241, 244, 247,
      248, 265.
  Bagpipe, 32, 93.
  Ballet, 177.
  Bamboo, 52.
  Banjo, 29.
  Basso continuo, 237.
  Bassoon, 139.
  Bazin, 217.
  Beethoven, 14, 16, 17, 22, 185, 189, 190, 196, 197, 199, 200,
      201, 202, 203, 234, 247, 250, 267.
  Bell, 7, 8, 46.
  Bellini, 210.
  Berlioz, 14, 65, 219, 266.
  Bizet, 144, 151, 197, 217, 219, 222.
  Boieldieu, 216, 217.
  Bolero, 182.
  Borneo, 3, 5.
  Bourrée, 179.
  Brahma, 36, 37.
  Brahminism, 36, 39.
  Brahms, 203, 224.
  Brevis, 118, 120.
  Browning, 198, 272.
  Buddha, 36.
  Burmah, 23, 64, 65.
  Burney, 194.
  Byrd, 184.


C.

  Caccini, 177, 209.
  Cachucha, 182.
  Canon, 205.
  Cantata, 188.
  Cantus firmus, 130, 205.
  Ceylon, 5.
  Chaconne, 181.
  Chaldeans, 49.
  Charlemagne, 105.
  Che, 50, 66.
  Cherubini, 213.
  China, 16, 18, 23, 49.
  Chinese folksong, 59.
  Chinese music, 144, 147, 263.
  Chinese orchestra, 55.
  Chinese scale, 62.
  Chinese theatre, 61.
  Chopin, 27, 204.
  Christianity, 34.
  Christians (Early), 96.
  Chrotta (Crwth), 137.
  Church music, 206.
  Clarinet, 13, 139.
  Clavichord, 134.
  Clavicitherium, 136.
  Clef, 116.
  Colour in music, 200, 263, 270.
  Comedy, 76.
  Confucius, 49, 56, 60, 263.
  Conjunct tetrachord, 86.
  Constantinople, 103.
  Corelli, 138, 189.
  Cornet, 177.
  Corrente (Courante), 181, 185, 189.
  Coucy, Raoul de, 118.
  Council of Laodicaea, 99.
  Council of Trent, 176.
  Counterpoint, 129, 205, 208, 264.
  Couperin, 136, 191, 200, 210.
  Cristofori, 136.
  Czardas, 183.


D.

  Dactyl, 25, 26, 69, 75.
  Dance, 24, 27, 28, 78, 97, 126, 149, 178.
  Dance forms, modern, 182.
  Dance forms, old, 179, 180.
  Dante, 207.
  Darwin, 1, 16.
  Declamation, 26, 27, 254.
  Delibes, 218.
  Descant (discant), 129, 205.
  Diaphony, 128, 129.
  Diatonic, 45.
  Didymus, 81.
  Dionysian, 75.
  Disjunct tetrachord, 86.
  Dithyramb, 76.
  Donizetti, 210.
  Dorian, 75, 83.
  Drum, 4, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 25, 30, 33.
  Drum organ, 65.
  Dulcimer, 33, 49, 136.


E.

  Egypt, 16, 34, 43, 152.
  Emerson, 16.
  Embellishments, 238.
  Enharmonic (Greek), 88.
  Epitrite, 75.
  Equal temperament, 187, 241.
  Euclid, 79.


F.

  Fantaisie-mazurka, 184.
  Faux bourdon, 130, 163.
  Fear, 2.
  Feast of asses, 125, 206.
  Field, 204.
  Figured bass, 237.
  Flageolet, 177.
  Flats, 16, 39, 112.
  Flute, 6, 13, 30, 31, 43, 44, 45, 67, 82, 138, 177.
  Flute players, 91.
  Folk song, 16, 17, 141.
  Folk song (Chinese), 59.
  Folk song (German), 152.
  Form, 24, 25, 263, 264.
  Fourth (augmented), 128.
  Franco of Cologne, 117, 123.
  Frauenlob, Heinrich, 167, 168.
  Froberger, 199.
  Fugue, 187, 206.
  Fusa, 120.


G.

  Galop, 183.
  Galuppi, 198.
  Gamut, 109.
  Gardiner, 19.
  Gavotte, 180.
  Gerbert, 16, 225.
  Gesture, 17.
  Gesualdo, 236.
  Gigue, 182, 189, 197.
  Gluck, 210, 212, 213, 214, 215, 231, 252.
  Goethe, 1, 22.
  Goldmark, 271.
  Gong, 8, 53.
  Gothic architecture, 21.
  Gottfried von Strasburg, 165.
  Gounod, 217, 219, 220.
  Greek idea of music, 70.
  Greek modes, 83.
  Greeks, 27, 30, 42.
  Gregorian chants, 104, 106, 208.
  Gregorian modes, 100.
  Gregory (Pope), 100, 102, 104.
  Grétry, 213, 218.
  Guarnerius, 138.
  Guido d'Arezzo, 108, 115.
  Guitar, 6, 29.
  Gypsy music, 145.


H.

  Habanera, 182.
  Hale, Adam de la, 207.
  Halévy, 217.
  Hamlet, 197.
  Händel, 22, 177, 231, 239, 241.
  Harmonics, 20, 80.
  Harmony, 23, 39, 44, 147, 190, 208, 270.
  Harp, 6, 29, 33, 43, 44, 45, 48, 177.
  Harpsichord, 134.
  Hasse, 210, 227, 229, 230.
  Haydn, 193, 197, 200, 247, 248, 252.
  Hebrews, 32, 33, 34.
  Helmholtz, 42.
  Herodotus, 43, 46, 47.
  Hérold, 216, 217.
  Hexachord, 110.
  Hexameter, 69.
  Hindus, 35.
  Homer, 27, 29, 69.
  Horn, 6, 7, 140.
  Hucbald, 107, 122, 127, 208.
  Hungarian, 143, 145, 159.
  Hurdy-gurdy, 137.
  Hypodorian mode, 84.
  Hypolydian mode, 83.
  Hypophrygian mode, 83.


I.

  Iambus, 25.
  Impassioned speech, 19, 28.
  India, 16.
  Indians, 143, 152.
  Ionic, 75.
  Isis, 8.


J.

  Jahn, 194.
  Japanese, 53, 64.
  Javanese, 13, 64, 65.
  Jenghiz Khan, 30.
  Jommelli, 195, 230.
  Jongleurs, 131, 160, 162, 207.
  Josquin des Prés, 176.


K.

  Keren, 33.
  Kin, 33, 50, 59.
  King, 50.
  Kinnor, 33.
  Kithara, 43, 86.
  Koto, 66.
  Kuhnau, 195, 199, 245.


L.

  Lasus, 73, 90.
  Leitmotiv, 214.
  Lepsius, 48.
  Levites, 33.
  Liszt, 145, 146, 151, 194, 204, 220, 233.
  Locke, 230.
  Loeilly, 191.
  London Stock Exchange, 19.
  Longa, 118, 120.
  Longfellow, 69.
  Loure, 180.
  Lully, 196, 212, 240.
  Lute, 28, 29, 30, 31, 43, 44, 131, 137, 177, 208.
  Luther, 176.
  Lydian mode, 83.
  Lyre, 6, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 43, 69, 136.


M.

  Maanim, 32.
  Macaulay, 211.
  Macbeth, 64.
  Macfarren, 213.
  Machol, 32.
  Magrepha, 33.
  Mandolin, 137.
  Maneros, 46.
  March, 181, 183.
  Marine trumpet, 137.
  Marpurg, 225.
  Masque, 177.
  Massé, 217.
  Massenet, 218, 223, 224.
  Mastersingers, 131, 165.
  Matheson, 210, 225.
  Maxima, 119, 120.
  Mazurka, 182.
  Méhul, 197, 212, 213, 214.
  Melody, 14, 15, 18, 26, 28, 148, 190.
  Mencius, 54, 263.
  Mendelssohn, 202, 203, 233, 234, 259, 268, 271.
  Metre, 26, 74.
  Mexico, 66, 67.
  Meyerbeer, 210, 213, 217, 218, 224, 233.
  Millet, 192.
  Minima, 119, 120.
  Minnesingers, 118, 131, 164, 166, 170, 173.
  Minuet, 181, 189.
  Miracle plays, 207.
  Mixolydian mode, 83.
  Mixtures (organ), 133.
  Mode, 39, 83.
  Mona Lisa, 13.
  Monochord, 80, 134.
  Monteverde, 236.
  Moors, 152.
  Moralities, 207.
  Morley, 185.
  Morris dance, 160.
  Motive, 179, 190.
  Mozart, 193, 200, 232, 239, 247, 251.
  Musette, 180.
  Mysteries, 125, 206, 207, 208.


N.

  Nationalism, 151, 153.
  Nebel, 33.
  Nero, 94.
  Neumes, 115.
  Notation, 114, 208.
  Notation (Greek system), 88.
  Nithart, 167, 171.


O.

  Oboe, 13, 44, 139, 177.
  Ockeghem, 177.
  Octave (Greek system), 86.
  Opera, 178, 206, 208, 210.
  Organ, 33, 94, 132.
  Organ pedals, 134.
  Organs (portable), 134.
  Organum, 128.
  Orientalism, 151, 173, 204.
  Osiris, 8, 47.
  Overture, 189, 216.


P.

  Paean, 75.
  Palestrina, 176, 186, 205, 210, 246.
  Pan's Pipe, 9, 10, 11, 12, 62.
  Pantomime, 93, 177.
  Passecaille, 181.
  Passepied, 182.
  Passion plays, 125, 206.
  Pavane, 182.
  Pentatonic, 149, 151.
  Pergolesi, 210.
  Peri, 209, 231.
  Period, 179.
  Periodicity, 24, 28, 265.
  Peru, 66, 67.
  Pescetti, 195.
  Phrase, 179, 190.
  Phrygian mode, 76, 83.
  Piano, 29, 230.
  Piccini, 213.
  Pindar, 27, 72, 90.
  Pipe, 6, 10, 11, 13, 14, 28, 30, 37, 44.
  Pitch, 269.
  Plato, 11, 49.
  Plutarch, 195.
  Poe, 266.
  Poetry, 24.
  Polacca, 182.
  Polka, 183.
  Polonaise, 182.
  Porpora, 210.
  Portuguese, 152.
  Prelude, 189.
  Prescott, 66.
  Procrustes, 27.
  Programme music, 190, 199, 203, 255.
  Psalms, 34.
  Psaltery, 33, 131.
  Ptolemy, 85.
  Purcell, 176.
  Pythagoras, 49, 72, 79, 82, 97.


Q.

  Quarter-tones, 38, 39.


R.

  Raff, 269, 271.
  Raga, 39, 40.
  Rameau, 136, 178, 186, 191, 196, 199, 210, 239, 240.
  Ravanastron, 137.
  Rebec, 138.
  Reed, 45.
  Reichardt, 194.
  Repetition, 266.
  Rhythm, 14, 15, 25, 26, 27, 74, 117, 142, 190.
  Rigaudon, 180.
  Rig-Veda, 35.
  Rimsky-Korsakoff, 224.
  Robin et Marian, 207, 208.
  Rockstro, 194.
  Rolle, 196.
  Romans, 46.
  Romanticism, 212.
  Rosseau, 212.
  Rossini, 210, 215, 217.
  Rowbotham, 23, 68.
  Rubinstein, 224.
  Ruskin, 21.
  Russia, 152.


S.

  Sachs, Hans, 166.
  Saint-Mark's Cathedral, 205.
  St. Pierre, Bernardin de, 211.
  Saint-Saëns, 219, 222, 224.
  Saltarello, 183.
  Samisen, 66.
  Sappho, 72, 83.
  Sarabande, 160, 180, 189, 197.
  Sarti, 213.
  Scale, 39, 107.
  Scale (Chinese), 62.
  Scarlatti, A., 238.
  Scarlatti, D., 184, 185, 195, 210, 238.
  Schauspiel, 232.
  Scherzo, 189.
  Schofar, 33.
  Schubart, 194.
  Schubert, 20, 23, 196, 197, 201, 203.
  Schumann, 101, 199, 203, 204, 233.
  Scotch, 41, 147, 152, 265.
  Scotland, 23.
  Scribe, 218.
  Section, 179.
  Selah, 34.
  Semangs, 3, 5.
  Semibrevis, 118, 120.
  Semifusa, 120.
  Sentences, decayed, 17.
  Sequences, 111.
  Set, 8, 47.
  Shakespeare, 28, 272.
  Sharps, 16, 39, 112.
  Shedlock, 195.
  Siamese, 64, 65.
  Singspiel, 213, 217.
  Sistrum, 8, 32, 43, 46, 47.
  Sittard, 194.
  Solmisation, 108, 111.
  Sonata, 27, 178, 189, 190.
  Sonata form, 27, 188.
  Sophocles, 70, 76.
  Spanish, 152, 159.
  Spencer, Herbert, 22, 269.
  Sperling, 195.
  Spinet, 135.
  Spondee, 23, 69, 75.
  Spontini, 210, 212, 213, 214.
  Stesichorus, 7.
  Stradivarius, 138.
  Strauss, J., 27.
  Strauss, R., 200, 203, 272.
  Suggestion, 255, 260, 261.
  Suite, 188, 190.
  Sylvester (Pope), 99.
  Symphonic poem, 178.
  Symphony, 27, 178, 248.


T.

  Talmud, 33.
  Tambourin (dance), 180.
  Tambourine, 7, 33.
  Tannhäuser, 167, 168.
  Tarantella, 183.
  Tartini, 138.
  Tasmania, 3, 5.
  Tchaïkovsky, 224, 271.
  Tennyson, 71.
  Terpander, 73.
  Tetrachord, 83, 124.
  Theophrastus, 1, 74.
  Thibaut of Navarre, 118.
  Thibet, 12.
  Thirds, 124.
  Thomas, A., 221.
  Tierra del Fuegians, 3, 4, 6.
  Timbrel, 33.
  Time signs, 119, 120.
  Tone tint, 270.
  Tourte, 138.
  Tragedy, 76.
  Treble, 163, 205.
  Trochee, 25, 28, 75.
  Trombone, 140, 177.
  Troubadours, 118, 131, 160, 165, 166, 171, 173, 207.
  Trumpet, 6, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 32, 43, 140.
  Typhon, 8.


V.

  Vaudeville, 207.
  Vedas, 36, 39.
  Vega, Garcilaso de la, 13, 66.
  Verdi, 210.
  Viadana, 236, 237.
  Vina, 38.
  Vinci, Leonardo da, 13.
  Viola, 32.
  Viola da gamba, 177.
  Violin, 29, 32, 138.
  Violoncello, 177.
  Viotti, 138.
  Virginal, 135.
  Vishnu, 38.
  Vocal music, 23.


W.

  Wagner, 14, 15, 17, 21, 22, 27, 147, 166, 168, 186, 201, 206,
      214, 217, 218, 224, 233, 234, 256, 257, 258, 259, 260, 268,
      269, 271.
  Walpole, 211.
  Wasielewski, 194.
  Walter von der Vogelweide, 167.
  Waltz, 27, 181, 183.
  Weber, 14, 210, 213, 216, 218, 219, 271.
  Weddahs, 5, 6.
  Weelkes, 184, 268.
  Wolfram von Eschenbach, 165.


Z.

  Zarlino, 81.
  Zither, 33.
  Zoroaster, 12.





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