From the end of the 14th century (but outside the territory of Bohemia, although one of the manuscripts is today kept in a Prague library) we also know instrumental paraphrases of popular vocal pieces (preserved for example in the codices Faenza 117, "Reina" or the Prague National Library XI E 9), in which the originally sung discant part is richly adorned, while the "accompanying" tenor (and sometimes contratenor
) remains in almost unaltered form.
The convention of placing tenors below contratenors
says much about the way editors interpret the tenor label (by analogy with later functional bass lines); deciding on the basis of the first or last chord reflects other prejudices to do with directions and goals; and the interpretation of cadence points is worth a book in its own right.
The melodic and rhythmic profiles of the tenor and contratenor
are also very similar.
According to the liner notes, the group's study of `alternative' contratenor
and `instrumental' parts, instrumental tablature and division techniques, has enabled the reconstruction of `the mosaic of a brilliant contrapuntal culture and its associated traditions of highly refined improvised polyphony'.
Only one source actually follows this sequence, however, and, ironically, this is the Trent 92 reading which bizarrely and incompatibly combines the superius of the first version with the tenor and contratenor
of the second.
She divides the repertory into two primary subgenres: "motet-style" motets pieces with "two texted voices in the same range above a slower-moving tenor, or tenor-contratenor part" (68) and "cantilena" motets pieces with "three voices, with a single cantus voice above the tenor and contratenor
And there is no surviving copy of the Contratenor
that contains every stop-press or in-house correction.