Curiosities of Music - online book

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So powerful. At that time, (676b. c.) he probably sang chiefly the poems of Homer. We say sang, but it is not even sure that they had, what we should call a tune, attached to them; they were possibly recited in a musical pitch of voice, which could not be called even a chant.
There was at this time, little music among the Spartans, and that of rather martial, or else of religious character; as for example we learn that the Spartans marched into battle to the sound of many kitharas, as did also the Cretans, and it was supposed to have been in honor of the Gods, thai they did so; though Thucydides, more practically, says that it was only that they might move forward regularly and in time. On Terpander's second visit to Sparta, he changed the entire mode of Spartan music, and enlarged it. The return happened in this wise: —
At the beginning of the second Messenian war Sparta was in great perplexity. Messenia bj alliances with other tribes threatened destruction from without. "Withinall was dissension; agricul­ture prostrate, antagonism between those whc had lost their lands through the wars and those who possessed them, a demand for a new distribu­tion of land, and prospective anarchy. At this juncture, the Oracle of Delphi was consulted, and gave reply that " discord would be quelled in Sparta when the sound of Terpander's harp was heard there," and told the Spartans, also to call the counsellor from Athens. So Terpander was sent for, and also the counsellor Tyrtaeus from Athens.

E-Book - An Annotated Compendium of Old Time American Songs by James Alverson III