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Article

James W. McKinnon and Robert Anderson

Term, usually appearing in the plural (cymbala) and designating two related musical instruments, a type of ancient cymbals and a medieval set of bells.

Ancient cymbala were a pair of small, plate-shaped or more often cup-shaped bronze cymbals. They were associated in Greco-Roman culture with orgiastic religious rites, where they played ecstasy-inducing music together with the tympanum and the ...

Article

Damon  

Warren Anderson and Thomas J. Mathiesen

(fl late 5th century bce). Greek music theorist. A highly influential figure of the Periclean age. Damon had paramount importance among the pre-Socratics for doctrines of musical ethos. Dance and song ‘necessarily arise when the soul is in some way moved’, he maintained (Diels, 37/B/6), aware that purposive action originates in the soul. He went on to voice the primary tenet of all musical ethics, claiming that ‘liberal [i.e. befitting a free man] and beautiful songs and dances create a similar soul, and the reverse kind creates a reverse kind of soul’ (ibid.). According to a late author, ...

Article

Daphnis  

Geoffrey Chew

Mythical Sicilian shepherd and singer. According to the ancient sources, he was the son or favourite of Hermes. Found by shepherds and educated by nymphs, he was taught to play the syrinx by Pan; this and his singing won him the favour of Artemis, with whom he hunted, and either he or the shepherds who sang about him invented bucolic poetry. But he broke a vow of fidelity to the nymph Echenais and was blinded; after his death he was raised to Olympus. (The early myths are transmitted in Aelian, ...

Article

A term used in a musical sense for a singer of epic. See Homer, §1.

Article

Geoffrey Chew

(b Cliftbog, Aberdeenshire, ? Aug 23, 1579; d Bologna, Sep 6, 1625). Scottish antiquarian and historian. According to his colourful but highly unreliable autobiography (1627, pp.672ff), he was a child prodigy from a Catholic noble family, educated variously in Aberdeenshire and at Cambridge, Paris, Leuven, Rome and Douai, and later holding academic posts at Paris, Toulouse, Nîmes, Pisa and Bologna; he was very quarrelsome and was imprisoned several times. Towards the end of his life two of his books were placed on the ...

Article

John A. Emerson, Jane Bellingham and David Hiley

In 

See Plainchant

Article

Didymus  

Lukas Richter

(fl ?2nd half of 1st century Bce). Greek music theorist. Fragments of his work survive in quotation by Porphyry and Ptolemy. Most musicological studies have hitherto tacitly assumed him to be identical with the Alexandrian grammarian and lexicographer Didymus, nicknamed ‘Chalkenteros’ (or ‘Chalcenterus’; ...

Article

Michel Huglo

(b Volpiano, Lombardy; d 1031). Italian monk, monastic reformer and composer, active in France. He was at St Bénigne, Dijon, where he was abbot from 990. His monastic reforms, initiated at Dijon, spread to Italy (they are reflected in a customary of Fruttuaria), and, with the aid of his nephew Jean de Fécamp, to Normandy (Fécamp, Jumièges and Troarn); after the Norman conquest they also spread to England (Winchcomb and Gloucester). These reforms lasted for several centuries: the flyleaves of the Montpellier manuscript (...

Article

Warren Anderson and Thomas J. Mathiesen

Ancient Greek god. He chiefly represents the unreasoning, irresistible life-force. His worship probably came into Greece from both Thrace and Phrygia. Among Homer’s Olympians he is a newcomer, seldom mentioned; only one passage in the Iliad (vi.132–6) has any substance. During the 6th century bce...

Article

Maurice J.E. Brown and Denise Davidson Greaves

Name for Dionysus and hence primarily a song in his honour (cf Paean). Though probably older, the term first appears in a text of Archilochus (fl early 7th century bce), where it is suggested that one of a group of revellers or celebrants leads the rest in singing a dithyramb (West, frag.120). With ...

Article

Kenneth Levy and Christian Troelsgård

The Eucharist in the Eastern Christian rites, corresponding to the Mass of the Roman rite. In the strict sense the term ‘liturgy’ is confined to the anaphora, or consecration prayers, followed by the communion and dismissal rites. The Greek rite, unlike the Roman, has three liturgies in normal use; other Eastern rites, especially the Syriac, use dozens of early anaphoras. Of the three Byzantine liturgies, two are regularly used and contain anaphoral prayers attributed to St Basil and St John Chrysostom respectively; the St Basil liturgy was predominant until about ...

Article

Ruth Steiner and Keith Falconer

A series of worship services performed in the course of each day and night in the Roman Catholic Church. After discussion of the Office’s early origins, this article describes the Divine Office as it is presented in manuscripts of the Middle Ages; for information on its structure and content after the reform of the breviary called for by the Council of Trent and completed in ...

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In a Byzantine choir, the precentor who intoned the Ēchēma.

Article

Mary Berry

The Order of Friars Preachers, or Dominicans, also known in England as Blackfriars from the colour of their cloaks, was founded by St Dominic in the first decade of the 13th century. The founder’s original purpose was to form a group of itinerant preachers to combat the heresy of the Albigenses in the south of France. From a loosely associated handful of men was to grow one of the foremost centrally organized orders of the modern world. Approved by Foulques of Toulouse, then by Innocent III, and confirmed by Honorius III, the new Order of Preachers adopted the Rule of St Augustine together with a set of Constitutions proper to itself. Recognized at first as an order of canons regular, the Dominicans later became one of the first Mendicant Orders. As an international preaching body they laid claim to extensive privileges, including exemption from episcopal jurisdiction....

Article

Edward Foley and Joseph Dyer

Liturgical formula of praise, usually occurring at the close of a prayer. Of Semitic origin, doxologies appear in the Old Testament texts. Each of the first four books of the Psalter ends with a doxology (xli.13, lxxii.18–19, lxxxix.52, cvi.48) and Psalms cxlvi–cl could be considered an extended doxology, concluding both the fifth book and the whole of the Psalter. The New Testament is filled with doxologies, many of them with no Christological reference (e.g. ...

Article

Alastair Dick

The most ancient known drum name of India, found in Sanskrit texts from the late 2nd millennium bce to about the 13th century ce. Its type has not been identified with certainty, but references throughout the period indicate a loud drum connected especially but not exclusively with war. The name is doubtless onomatopoeic....

Article

Dimitri Conomos

A melodic intonation formula in Byzantine chant, sung to nonsense words. It is intoned by the domestikos (precentor) in order to introduce the ēchos (mode) of the hymn (see Ēchos, §2). The formulae for the modes of the Oktōēchos are: ananeanes (ēchos protos...

Article

Ēchos  

Miloš Velimirović

A technical term in Byzantine chant, usually translated ‘mode’ or ‘modality’.

There is considerable difference between the Eastern and Western European understanding of modality. In the West, the term ‘mode’ most often means a scale or ‘octave species’; but an ēchos depends rather on a ‘mood’, which is in turn dependent on the types of melody found in that ...

Article

Nicholas Temperley

In 

See Loder family

Article

Egeria  

James W. McKinnon

(fl late 4th century ce). Pilgrim nun of Spain or Gaul. Her diary, containing a detailed description of ancient Jerusalem liturgy, survives in a single 11th-century manuscript copy, which was discovered at Arezzo by G.F. Gamurrini in 1884. He attributed the work to one St Silvia, sister of the Roman prefect, Rufinus – hence its earlier title ‘Peregrinatio Silviae’ – but it is now thought to be by a Spanish or Gallican nun, Egeria (the preferred spelling), mentioned by the 7th-century abbot Valerius. From references in the text to contemporary persons and events, liturgical historians have come to date the time of Egeria's pilgrimage to between 381 and 384....