Curiosities of Music - online book

Rare facts about the music traditions of many nations & cultures

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In proceeding to briefly sketch the curious facts of musical history in the dark ages, we shall necessarily confine ourselves to pointing out only what is chiefly remarkable, and shall not enter into the field of dispute regarding systems and notations, for this period of Musical History is a very hazy one. It is but natural to suppose, that when general barbarism spread over Europe, music was not likely to be either much practised or written about. The last writer on the previous systems was Boethius (the last of old Roman writers), who lived at about the same epoch as Gregory (he was put to death by Theodoric, the Goth, A. D. 525).
In his work, he uses the letters of the alphabet, to designate musical notes, but does not repeat the letters at the octave; his nomenclature there­fore does not end at G, but continues on, to 2V", 0, and P.*
Musical progress was at a stand still from tho time of Gregory, until the reign of the Carlovin-gian kings. Charlemagne at the end of the
•These latter letters may howeTer, only refer to the diagrams, and not to musical notes.

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