Medieval Europe 814-1450: Music - Research Article from Arts and Humanities Through the Eras

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Guido of Arezzo

990–1040

Monk
Music teacher
Music theorist

Inventing Ways of Writing Music.

Guido of Arezzo (c. 990–1040), a Benedictine monk living in a monastery in Arezzo (northeastern Italy), devised novel ways of teaching music. In order to teach young monks new chants much more quickly, Guido first invented a set of syllables for names of the steps of the scale: do, re, mi, etc. (the system, known as solfège, is still in use). Then he assigned the scale steps to the knuckles of his hand, so that by pointing from one knuckle to the next the boys would know what note to sing, a teaching device that lasted well into the seventeenth century and is known as The Guidonian Hand. His next invention was to write musical notes (neumes) on a graph consisting of two parallel lines with space between them, which...

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This section contains 245 words
(approx. 1 page at 300 words per page)
Buy the Medieval Europe 814-1450: Music Encyclopedia Article
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Medieval Europe 814-1450: Music from Gale. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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