Neumes


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Related to Neumes: Gregorian chant, Guido d'Arezzo

Neumes

 

symbols of musical notation that were used in European music at the beginning of the Middle Ages, mainly in the music of the Roman Catholic Church (Gregorian chant).

Neumes consisted of hyphens, dots, commas, and other signs. They designated individual sounds, groups of sounds, and the upward and downward movement of the voice. They did not indicate the exact pitch of the sounds, and thus could only remind a singer of a melody he already knew. There were numerous local varieties of the neumatic notation.

Beginning in the ninth century, attempts were made to perfect neumatic notation by supplementing it with signs for the pitch of sounds, at first in letters and then with the help of staffs on which the neumes were placed. Thus, there arose the system of square notation, or choral notation, from which the modern system of notation subsequently developed.

References in periodicals archive ?
The entire collection rests upon Levy's argument that the fundamental musical uniformity of the Gregorian melodies recorded in neumes in so many regions of Europe in the tenth and eleventh centuries could not survive a century of oral transmission.
Palomares's copy is remarkable for its nearly exact representation of both the text and the neumes of the medieval model at a time when few were studying liturgical books in Spain, much less their musical notation.
But will these Byzantine neumes always be included above the Western transcriptions in publications in order to provide a more accurate interpretation especially for those who are not students of the field?
In a broad comparative way the author discusses the Latin neumes as well.
Yet the carefully drawn neumes and the presence of a proper Office for Thomas Becket points to Esztergom, which had a distinctive notation from the twelfth century onwards (see page 43 of the commentary for a description of these characteristic features), and comparison of this manuscript's liturgical content with other relevant sources from Esztergom definitively establish the breviary's origin (it is among the indexed sources in Dobszay's Corpus antiphonalium officii).
Zapke lists the unique features of the notation in Santa Cruz de la Seros that are recognized as "later Aquitanian": the small distance between the neume elements of punctum and virga; the more rounded and often ligated neumes; the presence of later liquescences; the unique shape of the custos; and the consistency and precision of the neume forms.
As Arlt points out in his examination of the neumes in MSS 484 and 381, many scholars have studied St.
Nelson examines the sources in exhaustive detail, pursuant to her objectives, and presents narrative analyses and tables of neumes that identify the calligraphic variations and help define relationships among the fragments.
In a valuable contribution to the debate on the origin of neumes, Charles Atkinson argues for a revision of the "accent theory.
e] siecle) graduel beneventain [Tournai, 1931-36]), was accompanied by a massive commentary; the staffless neumes in PM 14 were supplemented by a twelfth-century gradual on lined staff in PM 15 (Le Codex VI.
The hymnody is presented in its original setting with neumes above the texts.