A History of 'Consonance' and 'Dissonance' by J. Tenney

By J. Tenney

First released in 1988. Routledge is an imprint of Taylor & Francis, an informa corporation.

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12. Morley, op. , p. 141. 13. Jean-Phiippe Rameau, Treatise on Harmony (1722), translated by Philip Gossett (New York: Dover, 1971), p. xli. 14. , p. xlii. 15. James W. , Indiana University, 1964), p. 25. 16. , Allen Forte, in Tonal Harmony in Concept and Practice (New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston, 1962), says u p . 16-17): "In music the terms consonant and dissonant have nothing whatsoever to do with the pleasant or unpleasant quality of a sound. -and in whose view? This was certainly not the view of the major theorists who first formulated the concepts and practices of tonal harmony.

Contains in its first divisions those consonances which together form a perfect harmony. l 1 and about which he had said, in an earlier passage: .. all properties of.. sounds in general, of intervals, and of chords rest finally on the single, fundamental source, which is represented by the undivided string.. " In one of his later theoretical works (Dimonstration du Principe de l'tiarmonie, 1750), he says: The sounding body, which I justly callfitndamental soundthis unique principle, generator and arranger of all music, this immediate cause of all its effects-the sounding body, I say, no sooner resonates than it engenders simultaneously all the continuous proportions from which are born harmony, melody, the modes, the genres, and down to the least rules 68.

The different names the seventh receives in inversion come only from its being compared with sounds other than the fundamental. 22 Even here, the word 'dissonance' refers to an individual note, not to an interval, since it (the seventh) "receives the name of the interval it forms.. ," and this is confirmed even more clearly in the passage immediately following the one just quoted from the Treatise.... a dissonance may reside only in the sound which is compared to the source. This truth becomes even more patent when we consider that the rules about preparing a dissonance by syncopating it and resolving a dissonance by making it descend affect only the upper sound of the seventh, and not the lower sound which is the source..

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A History of 'Consonance' and 'Dissonance' by J. Tenney
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