monophonic texture
A single line of melody with no harmony or accompaniment.
Polyphonic texture
Two or more independent lines heard simultaneously (contrapuntal texture).
Ancient Greek scale patterns distinguished by their own unique order of tones and semitones.
The earliest form of notation in Western art music. Small notational symbols indicating the direction of the melodic line.
a capella
Vocal music without instrumental accompaniment.
Monophonic, modal melody in unmeasured prose rhythm.
The Eucharist service in the Roman Catholic Church, consisting of prayers, reading from the bible, and reenactment of the last supper.
Mass Proper: Gradual
The fourth variable section of the Mass, usually melismatic and in responsorial style.
responsorial singing
Solo voice (verse) alternates with choral passages (respond).
Many notes for each syllable of text.
2-4 notes for each syllable of text.
One note per syllable of text.
cantus firmus
An existing melody which serves as the structural skeleton for a polyphonic composition.
The voice that contains the cantus firmus.
organal style
A style of organum in which the upper voice uses faster note values. The cantus firmus is sung in very long note values.
Vocal music in which a new melodic line(s) is added to an existing Gregorian chant.
discant style
A style of organum in which the cantus firmus has fster rhythmic values and the movement of the two voices is closely related.
rhythmic modes
Rhythmic patterns of long and short nores related to poetic meters. Provided rhythmic structure in the absence of note values.
Two or more texts are heard simultaneously.
Vocal composition with or without instrumental accompaniment, often polytextual.
Pope Gregory I
Organized and codified the chants that had accumulated, establishing a uniform liturgical service.
Musica enchiriadis
Anonymous 9th century treatise containing the earliest examples of notated polyphony.
Leonin and Perotin.
Two leading composers of the Notre Dame school.