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Article

[Petrus Abailardus]

(b Le Pallet, nr Nantes, 1079; d Saint-Marcel, nr Chalon-sur-Saône, April 21, 1142). French philosopher, poet and musician of Breton origin. After studying philosophy in Paris, he taught dialectic at the cathedral school. His love affair with Heloise, the young niece of Canon Fulbert, brought him fame as a musician. However, after they had secretly married in 1118 Fulbert had Abelard castrated. Heloise became a nun and he became a monk at St Denis. His highly original scholastic method and his restless and blunt nature aroused opposition to his teaching; principal among his opponents was Bernard of Clairvaux. After condemnation by the Council of Sens in 1140, Abelard found support from Peter the Venerable, Benedictine Abbot of Cluny.

Abelard’s songs are few beside his numerous theological and philosophical writings. Heloise’s testimony suggests that his love songs must have been important from both a literary and a musical point of view. In a later letter (probably revised by Abelard) she declared that he had ‘the gift of poetry and the gift of song’; he ‘composed quite a number of metrical and rhythmic love songs. The great charm and sweetness in language and music, and a soft attractiveness of the melody obliged even the unlettered’. These songs, presumably in Latin, have all been lost: they have not been identified among the anonymous repertory....

Article

Owen Wright

(fl first half of the 11th century). Arab musician and writer. The son of an eminent musician, he became a prominent singer at the Cairo court of the Fatimid caliph al-Ẓāhir (1021–36), and was still active as a teacher in 1057. His music treatise, completed after 1036 and entitled Ḥāwī al-funūn wa-salwat al-maḥzūn (‘Compendium of the arts to comfort sad hearts’), is of particular interest in that it deals with various topics of little concern to other authorities. Written from the perspective of a cultured musician rather than that of a philosopher-theorist, it calls upon a literary tradition of writing about music, and its historical content is frankly derivative, even if of interest for the implication of continuity with the court music of 9th-century Baghdad. But it is wide-ranging in its treatment of contemporary practice, dealing not only with such basics as mode and rhythm, but also with such matters as the normal sequence of events in performance, deportment and etiquette, the materials and construction of the ‘...

Article

Mary Berry

(b nr Ilchester, c1214; d Oxford, c1292). English theologian and philosopher. He studied first under Grosseteste in Oxford, then in Paris. In 1247 he gave up his official teaching in Paris, returning some three years later to Oxford. In about 1255 he entered the order of friars minor. Guy de Foulques (later Pope Clement IV), then Archbishop of Narbonne, wrote about 1265 asking him to outline a syllabus for the reform of learning – a sign of the high esteem in which Bacon and his teaching were held. Bacon responded by composing the three summaries known as the Opus maius, the Opus minor and the Opus tertium, submitting them to the pope in 1268. Clement died, however, that same year, before he had had time to study or implement them. During the next decade Bacon produced further writings on mathematics, science and language, including Greek and Hebrew grammars and a ...

Article

Kurt von Fischer

revised by Gianluca D’Agostino

[Magister Laurentius de Florentia; Ser Lorenço da Firençe; Ser Laurentius Masii, Masini]

(d Florence, Dec 1372 or Jan 1373). Italian composer and teacher of music. He belonged to the second generation of Trecento composers. The name ‘Masini’ probably refers to his being the son of ‘Tomaso’. Villani named him together with Bartholus de Florentia as a composer. According to Gallo he was a canonicus at S Lorenzo, Florence, from 1348 until his death. The madrigal Ita se n’er’a star was presumably composed to rival Vincenzo’s setting of the same text. We may conclude from the texts of the Antefana and Dolgomi a voi that Lorenzo was active as a teacher. The partly contemporaneous activity of Lorenzo and Landini at S Lorenzo makes some kind of master–pupil relationship probable. Similarly, the texts of Ita se n’er’a star and Vidi, ne l’ombra strongly suggest that Lorenzo moved in the same circles as Landini, Andreas de Florentia and Paolo da Firenze. The fact that he died in ...

Article

(b c1000–02; d Füssen am Lech, Bavaria, 1083). Writer on music. He was probably born in Bavaria, and later became a canon of Augsburg Cathedral; by the middle of the 11th century he was acting as scholasticus in the cathedral choir school there. In 1083, as the result of a conspiracy, Henricus was expelled from Augsburg at the same time as his bishop, Wigold. He sought refuge in the monastery of St Mang in Füssen, where he died and was buried. There is insufficient evidence to confirm his identification with Honorius Augustodunensis (see Flint).

Henricus's teachings on music are assembled in a treatise entitled De musica. This survives only in a south German manuscript ( A-Wn cpv 51), which has a lacuna at the end of the treatise. The work is set out in the form of a dialogue between pupil and teacher, a very popular literary technique used two centuries earlier by the author of the ...

Article

Michel Huglo

[Hériger]

(d Lobbes, nr Liège, 1007). Benedictine monk of Liège. From 990 he was abbot of Lobbes. He accompanied Bishop Notker of Liège (formerly Provost of St Gallen) to Rome in 989. Herigerus taught divinity and the liberal arts; Berno of Reichenau described him as ‘of no small authority’ (‘vir non parvae auctoritatis’, PL , cxlii, 1033). He wrote mainly hagiographical and biographical works; in the dedication of his Gesta episcoporum leodiensium to Bishop Stephen of Liège, he quoted documents showing that Stephen composed the Office of the Trinity. His works on chronology were dedicated to his disciple, the monk Hugo, who in 1033 also became abbot of Lobbes. Albéric de Trois-Fontaines recorded that Herigerus in 990 composed Regulae numerorum super abacum Gerberti (see Olleris, 1867, pp.311–24).

In 980 he was mentioned as ‘learned and skilled in the art of music’ (‘didascalum ac musicae artis peritum’, Elevatio s. Landoaldi...

Article

C. Matthew Balensuela

[ValendrinusOlendrinusHollandinusGolandrinusEleandrinusHallis]

(fl mid-14th century). Philosopher and music theorist. He is cited by several late-medieval music theorists for his ideas on chant, including his explanation of half steps outside the Guidonian tradition, his treatment of coniunctae, and his use of the term tonus peregrinus. Johannes is believed to have been born in Monickedam, near Amsterdam. He attended the University of Prague, earning the Bachelor’s in 1355. He may have then travelled to Oxford because his extant writings on logic (Bos, 1985) demonstrate his acquaintance with contemporary English scholars such as William Heytesbury (c. 1313–1372/3) and Thomas Bradwardine (c. 1295–1349). He earned the doctorate in 1368 in Prague and was then named Dean of the Faculty of Arts in 1369 (Monumenta Historica Universitatis Carolo-Fredinandae Pragensis, 1830).

Johannes Hollandrinus’s writings on music have not survived, although he is credited as the author of a ...

Article

Yves Chartier

(b northern France, c850; d St Amand, June 20, 930). Benedictine monk, theorist, poet, composer, teacher and hagiographer. Though chiefly known as a theorist – ironically for works that have proven not to be his own – he was also a writer (of both verse and prose) and a composer, whose reputation has grown considerably with the progressive discovery of works that can positively be attributed to him. Coming immediately after Aurelian of Réôme (Musica disciplina, ?c840s), he was probably a contemporary of the anonymous authors of the Musica enchiriadis and other related treatises to which his name was assigned (Commemeratio brevis, Alia musica, De modis), composed in the same area at the end of the 9th century. He remains one of the foremost expositors of music theory in the Carolingian era.

Apart from a few sketchy indications found in his own works or in the contemporary ...

Article

Jan Kouba

(b Husinec, Bohemia, ?1371; d Konstanz, July 6, 1415). Czech reformer. He was one of the most influential preachers and teachers at Prague University at the beginning of the 15th century. He was burnt at the stake by order of the Council of Konstanz. He has been associated with a number of Latin and Czech hymns, but there is very little evidence to support his authorship; it seems that he arranged the medieval melody ‘Jesu Kriste, štědrý kněže’ (‘Jesus Christ, thou bountiful prince’) in the Jistebnice Hussite hymnbook, and he may also have arranged or translated the texts of several other hymns, but the best-known one attributed to him, ‘Jesus Christus, nostra salus’, is clearly not by him. Some Czech musicologists (e.g. Nejedlý) have described Hus as the innovator of congregational singing in church, but this practice arose in 15th-century Bohemia only after his death. Hus's aesthetic views on music and singing did not deviate from those of the medieval tradition. Thus musical history was influenced only indirectly by him: the Hussite reformation, of which he was the inspiration, constitutes the first significant chapter in the history of Protestant church music in Europe....

Article

Gordon A. Anderson

[Keckius]

(b Giengen an der Brenz, c1400; d Rome, June 29, 1450). German theologian and writer. He studied theology, philosophy and the liberal arts at the University of Vienna from 1422 to 1429, and as a Master of Arts lectured there in mathematics, philosophy and theory from 1429 to 1431. In 1434 he was at Munich, where he held a benefice at the Peterskirche, and in 1441 he studied at Basle, gaining a doctorate in theology. Here he taught for about a year and took part in the reform Council of Basle. In 1442 he joined the Benedictine Order at Tegernsee, a monastery well known at that time for its practice of the arts and sciences; there in that year Keck wrote his treatise Introductorium musicae (GerbertS, iii, 319–29), describing himself as professor of the arts and sacred theology. In 1450 he undertook a penitential pilgrimage to Rome, but died of the plague soon after his arrival....

Article

Svetlana Kujumdzieva

(fl Dyrrachion, now Durrĕs, 1280–1341). Composer, singer, teacher, and theoretician. One of the most famous medieval musicians of Bulgarian origin (on his mother’s side), though he is also considered of great significance in present-day Macedonia. Judging by his Vita, he lived from approximately 1280 to 1341 during the reign of the Emperor Andronikos II. In all probability Koukouzeles was born in Dyrrachion (now in Albania). At an early age he was sent to the great cathedral in Constantinople where he graduated from the school for non-Greek children at the church of St. Paul. After his graduation, he became a singer in ‘Hagia Sophia’, the largest cathedral in Constantinople. He then travelled to Mount Athos and settled in the Great Laura, the oldest and largest monastery on the Holy Mountain, where he died. Soon after his death Koukouzeles was proclaimed a saint. His memory is celebrated on 1 October....

Article

Lawrence Gushee

revised by Bradley Jon Tucker

[Notker III, Notker the German]

(bc 950; d St Gallen, June 29, 1022). Monk and teacher at the Benedictine abbey of St Gallen . His many translations from Latin to Old High German are among the earliest German literary texts; of the 11 translations Notker reported making, four are extant and include two philosophical works by Boethius, two books of Martianus Cappella's De nuptiis Philologiae et Mercurii, and an interlinear psalter. Of special interest to music historians are five short essays in Old High German on musical topics, perhaps intended for elementary music instruction at St Gallen, where Notker taught and directed the school. A brief key in Latin to the meaning of the significative letters (litterae significativae; also known as Romanian or St Gallen letters) is sometimes ascribed to him, but belongs to his namesake of a century earlier, Notker , also of St Gallen.

The not entirely secure ascription of the five little essays to Notker rests principally on three points: the age of the five extant manuscripts (11th century); the language; and the preservation of the largest group (four out of five) in a St Gallen manuscript, whose text was published by Gerbert under Notker's name (...

Article

Lawrence Gushee

revised by Bradley Jon Tucker

[Remigius Autissiodorensis]

(fl 862–c900). Latin writer and teacher. He was the author of a commentary on the De nuptiis Philologiae et Mercurii of Martianus Capella, the ninth book of which deals with music. In 861–2 Remigius was at the monastery of St Germain in Auxerre as a pupil of Heiric of Auxerre. In 876 he succeeded Heiric as master of the school, and in 883 (893, according to some) was given the task of reorganizing the school at Reims. In the period just before his death he taught in Paris where, for example, he instructed Odo of Cluny in dialectic and music.

The commentary on Martianus Capella was but one among many commentaries on Latin grammarians and poets (e.g. Donatus, Priscian, Juvenal, Cato) by Remigius. He also wrote biblical commentaries and several works on religious subjects, including an essay on the ceremonies of the Mass sometimes ascribed to Alcuin. This last work is of some interest for the early history of plainchant (...

Article

(fl early 13th century). Teacher of music, active in France. Anonymus 4 (ed. Reckow, 1967, i, 46, 50), writing about 1275, clearly regarded him as the most significant figure since Perotinus: ‘He taught most widely, and made the singing of music sound truly delicious’. Anonymus 4's reference to him in conjunction with Petrus optimus notator may suggest that he was a scribe; the theorist also reported that ‘the book of books of Perotinus were in use up to the time of Robertus de Sabilone in the choir of Notre Dame in Paris, and from his time up to the present day’. Despite a suggestion that he may have been the first choirmaster of the new cathedral (Niemann, ...

Article

Craig Wright

[Jean de Noyers ]

(b c1370; d before Aug 1410). French composer and pedagogue . Tapissier, whose true name was Jean de Noyers, is named along with the composers Susay and Jehan Vaillant in the anonymous Règles de la seconde rhétorique (c1400) as one of the principal French poet-musicians of the day. By 1391 he had been engaged as a chamber valet and court composer to Philip the Bold, Duke of Burgundy. That same year he accompanied Philip and his court on a journey to Milan and Avignon; in the spring of 1395 he made a second visit to Avignon in the ducal service; and in the summer of 1399 he was with Duke Philip in Flanders. The Burgundian court records reveal that Tapissier maintained an ‘escole de chant’ in Paris and that in 1406 three choirboys of the court were sent to his school ‘to learn how to sing’. In ...