Outlines of Music History

Outlines of Music History

Outlines of Music History

Outlines of Music History

Excerpt

Art deals with the expression of elevated thought. An art work, therefore, possesses value in proportion to the importance of the thought involved, and the degree of success with which this thought is presented. This manner of presentation, known as the Form, seeks to combine a succession of relative and cumulative details into a uified expression of the central idea.

2. Interrelation of the Arts. Of the five principal arts, Architecture, Sculpture, and Painting are classified as material, Literature and Music as immaterial; since in the first group ideas are conveyed through visible and tangible objects, while in the second they are transmitted more directly from mind to mind. While Literature and Music are thus closely allied, and are frequently found in combination, the former seeks primarily to express exact thought, while the latter can express only abstract sentiments or feelings, dependent upon strictly tonal effects.

3. Slow Development of Music. On account of this indefinite and immaterial character, music developed later than the other arts. Moreover, before any musical system could be formed it was necessary to select certain tones upon which to base it; and, as different systems were founded upon different selections, these systems contradicted, rather than aided each other. Again, owing to the difficulty of accurate notation, whole systems have passed away, leaving scarcely a trace behind them.

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