Tenorlied (Ger.: ‘tenor song’)
- Stephen Keyl
The principal type of German polyphonic lied from about 1450 to about 1550. Tenorlieder are characterized by a cantus firmus (or ‘tenor’) which frequently consists of a pre-existing melody and is most often found in the tenor part. The cantus firmus is generally surrounded by three contrapuntal voices, giving a total of four parts, though early examples are usually in three parts and late ones sometimes in five or more. Many Tenorlieder are in bar form (...