Rhythmic mode  

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- +In [[medieval music]], the '''rhythmic modes''' were set patterns of long and short [[duration (music)|duration]]s (or [[rhythm]]s). The value of each [[musical notation|note]] is not determined by the form of the written note (as is the case with more recent European musical notation), but rather by its position within a group of notes written as a single figure called a "ligature", and by the position of the ligature relative to other ligatures. '''Modal notation''' was developed by the composers of the [[Notre Dame School]] from 1170 to 1250, replacing the even and unmeasured rhythm of early [[polyphony]] and [[plainchant]] with patterns based on the metric feet of classical poetry, and was the first step towards the development of modern [[mensural notation]] (Hoppin 1978, 221). The rhythmic modes of Notre Dame Polyphony were the first coherent system of rhythmic notation developed in Western music since antiquity.
-A '''lai''' was a song form composed in northern [[Europe]], mainly [[France]] and [[Germany]], from the 13th to the late 14th century. +
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-The poetic form of the lai usually has several [[stanza]]s, none of which have the same form. As a result, the accompanying [[music]] consists of sections which do not repeat. This distinguishes the lai from other common types of musically important verse of the period (for example, the [[rondeau (poetry)|rondeau]] and the [[ballade]]). Towards the end of its development in the 14th century, some lais repeat stanzas, but usually only in the longer examples. There is one very late example of a lai, written to mourn the defeat of the French at the [[Battle of Agincourt]] (1415), (''Lay de la guerre'', by [[Pierre de Nesson]]) but no music for it survives.+
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-There are four lais in the ''[[Roman de Fauvel]]'', all of them anonymous. The lai reached its highest level of development as a musical and poetic form in the work of [[Guillaume de Machaut]]; 19 separate lais by this 14th-century [[ars nova]] composer survive, and they are among his most sophisticated and highly-developed secular compositions.+
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-Other terms for the lai, or for forms which were very similar to the lai, include ''[[descort]]'' ([[Provençal]]), ''Leich'' (German), and ''Lay'' (English).+
-==Ars nova versus Ars antiqua ==+
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-Stylistically, the music of the ''ars nova'' differed from the preceding era in several ways. Developments in notation allowed notes to be written with greater independence of rhythm, shunning the straitjacket of the [[rhythmic mode]]s, which prevailed in the thirteenth century; secular music acquired much of the polyphonic sophistication previously found only in sacred music; and new techniques and forms, such as [[isorhythm]] and the isorhythmic [[motet]], became prevalent. The overall aesthetic effect of these changes was to create music of greater expressiveness and variety than had been the case in the thirteenth century. Indeed the sudden historical change which occurred, with its startling new degree of musical expressiveness, can be likened to the introduction of [[perspective (graphical)|perspective]] in painting, and it is useful to consider that the changes to the musical art in the period of the ''ars nova'' were contemporary with the great early [[Renaissance]] revolutions in painting and literature.+
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-The greatest practitioner of the new musical style was undoubtedly [[Guillaume de Machaut]], who also had an equally distinguished career as a canon at Reims Cathedral and as a poet. The ''ars nova'' style is nowhere more perfectly displayed than in his considerable body of motets, [[lai]]s, [[virelai]]s, [[Rondeau (music)|rondeaux]], and [[ballade]]s.+
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-Towards the end of the fourteenth century a new stylistic school of composers and poets centered on [[Avignon]] in southern France developed; the highly mannered style of this period is often called the ''[[ars subtilior]]'', though some scholars choose to consider it a late development of the ''ars nova'' rather than breaking it out as a separate school. This strange but interesting repertory of music, limited in geographical distribution (southern France, [[Aragon]] and later [[Cyprus]]), and clearly intended for performance by specialists for an audience of connoisseurs, is like an endnote to the entire Middle Ages.+
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In medieval music, the rhythmic modes were set patterns of long and short durations (or rhythms). The value of each note is not determined by the form of the written note (as is the case with more recent European musical notation), but rather by its position within a group of notes written as a single figure called a "ligature", and by the position of the ligature relative to other ligatures. Modal notation was developed by the composers of the Notre Dame School from 1170 to 1250, replacing the even and unmeasured rhythm of early polyphony and plainchant with patterns based on the metric feet of classical poetry, and was the first step towards the development of modern mensural notation (Hoppin 1978, 221). The rhythmic modes of Notre Dame Polyphony were the first coherent system of rhythmic notation developed in Western music since antiquity.



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