Rus Articles Journal

Middle Ages music: what it was? Oh, fate, or Getting out of Dark centuries of

Krom of troubadours and trouveres, in the different countries there were options of vagrant poets - musicians. Germany called them minnezinger and shpilmana. Representatives of knightly estate often occurred among them, even emperors did not shun to be “singers of love“ (Henry VI is Friedrich Barbarossa`s son).

The most known of the German minnezinger - Walter von der Fogelwejde. About 200 of its poems and several melodies remained. Also it is necessary to call von Eschenbach`s Tungsten, from it there was a novel “Parzival“ (or “Parsifal“, someone can remember the opera of Wagner of the same name).

Vagant (minstrels, minnezinger and so on) could adopt heritage of ancient Roman actors - gistrion and mimes (their descendants wandered about Europe for a long time), could use also heritage of ancient Celtic bards. The fact remains: these “vagrant people“ played a huge role. New musical instruments, in the different countries - the appeared and became usual. With creativity of vagant secular art arose.

Carmina Burana

was found 1803

B in Germany the collection of verses of vagrant poets - vagant. Part from 315 songs from the collection “Carmina Burana“ nevmam (the musical notation used in ancient Europe, Byzantium, in ancient Russia and Armenia) were supplied. This word - a nevma (from Ancient Greek pneuma - a sigh, I breathe), designated height of sounds earlier. It meant that the verses found in the Benedictine monastery in Bavaria were once songs. Final interpretation of a nevma is not given in.

In this collection of the wandering musicians songs satirical, love, table remained. Texts of these songs not always have decent character. Inconstancy of good luck, carnal pleasures: gluttony, alcoholism and other, - subjects quite actual both 800 - 1000 years ago, and now (parts “In a tavern“, “A love gossip“).

Nakhodka of the ancient collection induced a huge number already modern to us musicians to writing of music on these Latin, Old French and sredneverkhnenemetsky texts. From verses of this collection songs of the Norwegian gothic styles - metal - Theatre of Tragedy and Trist á groups were born; nia, subjects it is possible to hear in music of the French group Era and so on. It confirms huge interest of representatives fate once again - cultures to medieval music. Moreover, these subjects are used in the Japanese role-playing games (Final Fantasy VII), in video - the game Gauntlet Legends.

But the most interesting happened to music of the German composer, classic of the 20th century - Carl Orff`s . Its cantata “ of Carmina Burana “ on texts of this medieval song collection gained such recognition in the world that at least with one melody from there a sign of people, absolutely far from music. It is the subject “O Fortuna!“. Only to ponder: the text in Latin - that is to nobody clear, besides nearly 1000 - summer prescription, and music won all countries - continents.

The fate is a destiny. It as the Moon - changing, decreasing, causing inflow and otliva. It as a wheel - which turns empty. Such is approximately sense of old Latin words. And Carl Orff`s music surprisingly corresponds to these poetic images. In the cantata (especially, in its scenic option) Fortuna`s Wheel turns, at this happiness is wrapped in a grief. Fortuna`s wheel - at the same time and a core of musical composition.

of O Fortuna !“ within 75 years remains the most executed work of classics. Its “rehashes“ in masses - the culture cannot list. Especially it concerns fate - groups, them, has to be, about one hundred. Came and to court - the author at music was.

This music can often be heard in advertizing, before football and boxing matches, during ceremonies at the European universities.

As for use “O Fortuna!“ in movies - here the list even more. I will just list some names: “Ekskalibur“, “Hunting for “Red October“, “The general daughter“, “Capitalism: The love story“, “Odd fellows“, “Wholesale is cheaper“, “The last from Mohicans“ and so on. In a word, when it is necessary to show something well very terrible, terrible and ominous - nothing is better than Orff`s music on verses of the medieval vagrant poet is not present … the Destiny is terrible and empty


already since the birth is started a wheel

of adversities and diseases,

welfare is vain

and does not lead to anything,

destiny follows close

secretly and vigilantly

everyone as plague;

but without reflecting

I turn the unprotected back

to your evil

(text “O Fortuna!“)

A the Swedish director Ingmar Bergman said that “Carmina Burana“ inspired him on the well-known movie “Seventh Press“.

Music gained the development not only in knight`s castles and on streets of the medieval cities. Churches and monasteries remained largest “audio systems“.

the First woman - the composer

Strangely enough, but the first woman - the composer gave the Middle Ages too. She was a nun.

Saint Hildegarda Bingenskaya (1098 - 1179) is known not only as the author of religious compositions and medical treatises, but also as the author of chants, generally - anthems. They were published by the book “Accord of Melodies of Heavenly Revelations“. And about 80 of its songs remained. Melodies of its chants are not similar to the fact that we hear, but also differ from melodies of its time (the Gregorian choral) a little.

“Professional“ polyphony arose. It was huge break. From polyphony chords will be born subsequently. Much (for example, playing the guitar) familiar chords could not appear just like that, from anywhere. Chords appear where there is a ratio of sounds. And the ratio is possible only where there are several voices, several lines, that is the accord. If elements of polyphony could meet and much earlier - in more ancient cultures, then on “a professional basis“ polyphony rose in the Middle Ages.

School Notr - I Will give

Notr - I Will give - it is known for all according to V. Hugo`s novel Notre Dame de Paris. In its walls the first vocational composer school (the 12th century) arose. The new direction in music was connected with a chapel of the Cathedral and the Parisian university. The most famous representatives of this school: Leonin and Perotin . The part from heritage of school Notr - Ladies remained.

Approximately in the same time record of division of sounds “for a while“ appeared - the sound has not only height, but also duration of sounding (Franco Cyolnscy).

Listening to medieval music, you understand as far as it is not similar to what the ear of the modern person got used to. It is not better and it is not worse - it is just another...

It is time to get out of the Middle Ages called Dark centuries. Though the fact that in modern culture “return to a gothic style“, to subjects and images of Dark centuries is obviously observed is very interesting. But it is necessary to be chosen. Unfortunately, to describe completely everything it is musical - the events in these Dark centuries in three articles are not possible. Even “gallop“ on medieval “evropa“ did not possible to gallop. And it is only about Western Europe (and that without England, Scotland and Ireland). So far Byzantium, Eastern Europe, a peculiar and rich musical heritage of various countries of Asia stays “behind scenes“.

They are separate subjects. And to music of the Middle Ages it is necessary to come back anyway periodically. But now it is a high time to pass to Renaissance.

(In comments it is possible to listen to music.)