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

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Motets and Canons

The Motet: a New Favorite Form.

The motet, which originated in the early thirteenth century, quickly grew to be one of the most important of the new polyphonic inventions. Through the final three centuries of the Middle Ages it became the form of choice for composers who were looking to experiment with techniques, to extend the boundaries of form, harmony, and interrelationship among the parts, and to try new ideas in notation. From its inception it was intended to mark a particular occasion, and this emphasis continued to grow, as did the size of the compositions themselves. The technique of motet writing itself came about as a natural extension of the substitute clausula practice. When composing a new upper part for the chant section, instead of duplicating the text of the lower voice part, the composer would add a new text for the new...

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This section contains 1,370 words
(approx. 5 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Medieval Europe 814-1450: Music Encyclopedia Article
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Arts and Humanities Through the Eras
Medieval Europe 814-1450: Music from Arts and Humanities Through the Eras. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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