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date: 20 February 2020

Parislocked

  • Gordon A. Anderson,
  • Thomas B. Payne,
  • Daniel Heartz,
  • Richard Freedman,
  • James R. Anthony,
  • John Eby,
  • Elisabeth Cook,
  • Beverly Wilcox,
  • Paul F. Rice,
  • David Charlton,
  • John Trevitt,
  • Guy Gosselin
  •  and Jann Pasler

Extract

Capital city of France. It is situated on the River Seine, downstream from its junction with the River Marne. The city proper has a population of approximately 2.2 million, with approximately 10 million in the greater Paris area.

The importance of Paris as a musical centre in medieval times lies chiefly in the period from the mid-12th century to the early 14th, when it led the European musical world in its institutions and in new methods of composition. Although there were other centres of great musical importance—the Benedictine abbeys of St Maur-des-Fossés and St Denis, the royal Ste Chapelle, and the Augustinian abbey of St Victor, for example—the most celebrated activity occurred at Notre Dame. The cathedral nurtured some of the first recognized composers of stature, and they in turn realized some remarkable achievements: the earliest inclusive corpus of polyphonic liturgical music for the celebration of the Mass and Office; the first system of musical notation that clearly specified rhythmic values as well as pitches; and the development of major new musical genres. At Notre Dame not only organum but monophonic and polyphonic conductus attained their richest forms; and the creation of the motet from the discant sections of organum became a landmark in musical history. Moreover the most important musical theorists from about ...

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