Show Summary Details

Page of

Printed from Grove Music Online. Grove is a registered trademark. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a single article for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy).

date: 16 February 2020

Moldova [Moldova, Bessarabia; formerly Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic] (Rom. Republica Moldova)locked

  • Vladimir Axionov
  •  and Yaroslav Mironenko


[Moldova, Bessarabia; formerly Moldavian Soviet Socialist Republic] (Rom. Republica Moldova)

Country in south-eastern Europe bordered by the Ukraine to the north, east and south and by Romania to the west. The capital city is Chişinău, and the population numbers c4.5 million, 75% of whom speak Romanian. In 1990 the country gained its independence and became known as Moldova.

Vladimir Axionov

Studies suggest that Moldovan folk customs derive from those of Thracian peoples (the Getae and Daci), strongly influenced by Roman and Slavonic arrivals. In the 12th, 13th and 14th centuries a national identity was formed, to be embodied in the Moldavian state with its capital at Iaşi (1387), and the resulting congruence of latinized (Wallachian) and Slav cultures had its effect on folklore, and thereby on secular and, in part, sacred music.

The first professional musicians in Moldavia were the lăutari and their ensembles, the tarafi, whose music was oral. The Orthodox Church, whose liturgies were originally in Greek or Church Slavonic, introduced the Romanian language in the 16th century, and the first manuscripts of chant in Romanian date from the first third of the 18th century. A further early musical tradition was that of the court and military orchestras, which flourished from the 15th century onwards. In the 17th and 18th centuries military bands took on a Turkish colouring and became known as ‘tubulkhanya’ or ‘meterkhanya’. Dimitrie Cantemir (...

You do not currently have access to this article


Please login to access the full content.


Please subscribe to access the full content.