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The role of music. Part I – History of Music. History of church music. Early church. We can only guess at the music used by the church during the apostle’s time. We do know that a form of chant was well established by the 4 th century.

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the role of music

The role of music

Part I – History of Music

early church
Early church
  • We can only guess at the music used by the church during the apostle’s time.
  • We do know that a form of chant was well established by the 4th century.
  • Chant was influenced by the Psalms but some hymn-type songs were beginning to be used.
  • The move away from Psalms produced great conflict.
early church1
Early church
  • In the 2nd-3rd century, a more heated controversy arose over the use of instruments.
  • Early church fathers, such as Origen, could not ignore the use of instruments in Scripture but were cautious in using them for church due to associations with lascivious amusements and performances.
early church2
Early church
  • Two trends began to appear:
    • One utilized instruments seeking to be in the world but not of it.
    • The other tended to practice self denial and seclusion.
  • The latter resulted in monasticism in the Catholic Church
  • It eventually won the day and instrumental music was prohibited from the church for nearly 1,000 years.
early church3
Early church
  • Even without music, songs were viewed as a great teaching tool.
  • Heretical teachers recognized this as well (Gnosticism and Arianism).
  • Likewise, Ambrose (4th century), inspired by the near-Eastern hymnic enthusiasm, introduced the metrical hymn into Western worship.
council of laodicea 363 364
Council of Laodicea (363-364)
  • The Council of Laodicea laid down the law concerning music:
    • Forbade all non-Scriptural hymns.
    • Warned about the influence of the secular music style.
    • Took the first step toward the ultimate elimination of congregational singing by designating specific singers to participate in the service.
  • This was the beginning of additional controversies:
    • Sacred vs. secular music
    • Congregational vs. professional singing
church takes over music
Church takes over music
  • As the true founder of papal power and authority, Pope Gregory I (6th century) laid the basis for the church's take-over of music as its sole possession.
  • Music digressed to chant using only one part, but eventually started using multiple parts on special occasions.
church takes over music1
Church takes over music
  • The use of multiple parts developed to the point that it became only for professionals.
  • The common person was unable to participate even if the church allowed it.
  • All songs were also sung in Latin.
  • The church continued its domineering hold on music for the next 600-700 years.
church loses its hold on music
Church loses its hold on music
  • In the 13th -14th century, people began to view church as less important due in part to:
    • Rival Popes in Avignon and Rome
    • Failure of the Crusades
    • Division of the West and East
    • Peasant uprisings
    • Hundred Year’s War
    • Corruption of the clergy
  • Man began to react and turn from the church.
church loses its hold on music1
Church loses its hold on music
  • The common people began to take back music
    • Developed religious folk songs for use outside of church
    • Used familiar music to produce songs that expressed religious urges and feelings rather than teach.
    • Italians utilized music of the troubadours.
    • Likewise, other countries used music native to their countries.
  • Was this a good development or was it a sign of a weakening and corruption of the church?
the church s reaction
The church’s reaction
  • In 1325, Pope John XXII sought to squelch this trend by issuing a bull that spoke against:
    • “Figurated” music.
    • Polyphony in new music.
    • New styles of music.
  • The people resented this legislation and continued to develop music
  • Aristocratic courts became new developer of music.
reformation influence
Reformation influence
  • Began 100 years before reformation with the Czech, John Huss (1369-1415).
  • Utilized single-part songs for the congregation.
  • Would not use instruments.
  • Built a bridge between professional and congregational singing.
  • Tore down the barrier between the secular and sacred.
reformation influence1
Reformation influence
  • Built on the lively singing tradition of the Germans and gave them songs in their own language.
  • Utilized music of the Catholic Church and non-sacred music.
  • Used instruments.
  • Used music with multiple parts.

Martin Luther


reformation influence2
Reformation influence
  • Switzerland
  • Followed Huss in reacting to the Catholic Church.
  • Abolished music
  • Destroyed organs
  • Eradicated all other ornaments in worship

Ulrich Zwingli


reformation influence3
Reformation influence
  • Took over in Switzerland after Zwingli’s death.
  • Believed only what God inspired should be used in worship.
  • Thus, he only used the Psalms
  • Put to metrical form and sung to simple unaccompanied unison tunes.

John Calvin


reformation influence4
Reformation influence
  • As a result of the Reformation, Protestants stood with two musical positions:
    • An emphasis on elaborate polyphonic music.
    • An emphasis on unaccompanied, Psalm-only, simple songs set to simple metrical forms or folkish tunes.
catholic reaction
Catholic reaction
  • The Council of Trent (1545-1563) critcized poor and irreverent singing in divine worship.
  • They commissioned Jacobus de Kerle (1531-1591) to write music according to their principles.
  • It allowed no participation by the people
  • It was only for professional musicians and singers.
english hymnody
English hymnody
  • Called the father of English hymnody.
  • Began writing hymns at the age of 16
  • Advocated hymns of human composure rather than only Psalms.
  • He also paraphrased Psalms in order to create a bridge for the Psalm-only people to feel more comfortable walking across.

Isaac Watts


wesley brothers
Wesley brothers
  • John and Charles Wesley (18th century) came out of the Church of England, which was instrumental in their accepting and using new music.
  • Did not use the choir or organ but used more familiar music.
  • Revivalistic, yet theological.
  • Compared to Puritan Psalm tunes, their songs were characteristic of court songs and considered a radical change.
church music in america
Church music in america
  • Watts’ and Wesley’s hymns were used widely along with Psalms.
  • Singing schools were started in the 18th and 19th centuries which developed new tunes while using mainly European texts (All Hail the Power, Amazing Grace).
  • Shape notes created by singing schools.
  • Music in the 18th and 19th centuries was influenced by the camp meetings, Sunday School movement, and revival/tent meetings.
  • Songs characterized by pleadings to come to Christ, lighter and more optimistic.
  • Psalms/Hymns
  • Instruments/No Instruments
  • Simple/Elaborate
  • Unison/Multiple Parts
  • Congregational/Professional
  • Sacred vs. Secular