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There are many Harmony Books, and there will be many more. The Art of Music is in process of continual development and its practical side must be approached from various angles. It is not the function of a Beginner's Book to speculate or to advance new theories, but rather to deal with things as they are.
This work aims to present in a plain and practical manner the groundwork of Harmony, giving sufficient material for the work of the First Year, and affording a thorough preparation for more advanced study according to any of the standard methods.
Acting upon the principle of doing one thing at a time and doing it thoroughly, this work proceeds by easy stages, devoting special attention to Scales and Intervals, and to the handling of Common Chords. The subject matter is presented in such a manner as to develop the reasoning faculty from the very outset. On this account the Harmonizing of Melodies is introduced as early as possible, and the Figured Bass is held back to the point when it will be of real use rather than a matter of mere mechanical imitation. Working Principles, based upon present approved usages, are given to cover the various processes. There are no Rules; hence, there can be no confusing exceptions to worry the beginner. There are no foot-notes or cross references. Everything needed is in the body of the text, in its proper place.
All the Examples and Exercises are made as pleasing as possible from the musical standpoint in order to develop taste and discrimination from the beginning. Suggestions for Ear Training are given throughout. Ample space is provided for writing all of the Exercises directly in the book, thus giving the student a permanent record of the work done. Melody Making is introduced in order to stimulate the imagination and the creative faculty, thus encouraging the student to early efforts in original composition and laying a logical foundation for future study in this direction. Throughout the book continual stress is laid upon the analytical or inductive side.