chapter  9
24 Pages

The Harmonic Structure of Late Medieval Music as a Foundation of Major-Minor Tonality

EDITOR'S PREFACE: The study translated here is possibly the most interesting one in this book. In many respects, however, it is also the most speculative, since it attempts a comprehensive interpretation of harmonic developments over a period stretching from the thirteenth through the seventeenth century. Obviously, the success of these ideas depends to a great degree on the validity of generalized concepts advanced by the author but not necessarily substantiated. Until these hypotheses are thoroughly reevaluated, we are probably not in a position to assess the author's conclusions fully. Even so, the interpretation advanced here will likely prove more tenable than Besseler's hypothesis of the genesis of "dominant tonality." In the translation, the musical examples have been numbered consecutively throughout the text. It should also be noted that in the original article, Example 6B was printed upside down.