Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 3.djvu/274

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262 SCHOOLS OF COMPOSITION.

satisfied, provided no rules were unnecessarily broken. The best men of the period, fully alive to the importance of this distinction, aimed at the harmonious effect, and succeeded in attaining it, without the intervention of the conundrum. And thus arose a School, so simple in its con- struction, that more than one modern critic has accused its leaders of poverty of invention. The injustice of this charge is palpable; for when it answered the purpose of these Composers to write in a more learned manner, they invariably found themselves equal to the occasion, though they cared nothing for ingenuity for its own sake. And the result of their spirit of self-control is, that though their Church Music may be deficient in the breadth and grandeur which were attained, at a later period, in Italy, their Madrigals are among the finest in the world.

Beyond this point, Art made no great ad- vance in Flanders. We must seek for the traces of its farther progress in Italy. [See POLY- PHONIA; MASS; MADRIGAL; JOSQUIN ; OBRECHT; OK EG HEM ; etc. etc.]

V. The formation of THE EARLY ROMAN SCHOOL was one of the most important, as well as the most obviously natural results of the employment of Flemish Musicians in the Pontifical Chapel. It was not, however, until many years after the return of the Papal Court from Avignon, that Italian Composers were able to hold their ground successfully against their foreign rivals. When they did begin to do so, the style they most affected was so strongly influenced by that then prevalent in the Nether- lands, that it is not always easy to distinguish works of the one School from those of the other, as a comparison of the following passage from Costanzo Festu's Madrigal, 'Quando ritrovo la mia pastorella,' l with the opening of Archadelt's ' Vaghi pensier,' 2 will sufficiently demonstrate.

COSTANZO FESTA. (Venice 1541.) Quan - do rl - tro - - vo la mi - a pas - to -

��W Sr

��i

�� ��rel - la.

��pra - to con

��r '

le pe - cor*

��1 Though this is, probably, the best-known Madrigal In the world, we are unable to find any printed edition, of later date than the 16th century, to which we can refer, in illustration of our remarks. The popular English translation is irreproachable, so far as the verses are concerned ; but, the Music is so much altered, to accommodate them, that Its rhythm Is scarcely recognisable. We therefore give a lew of the opening bars, as they stand in the original ; referring the reader, for the remainder, to Dr. Burney's MS. Score, in the British Museum. Compare the extract also with the example from Archadelt's 'II bianco e dolce cigno,' given in vol. ii. pp. 188-9.

2 This Madrigal will also be found in Archadelt's Third Book.

��SCHOOLS OF COMPOSITION.

In pas - tu - ra, lo ml gliac-cos t'e pres-to la sa -

��- lu - to.

��La ml ris-pon-de, tu sia ben ve-

���JACQUES ARCHADELT. (Venice 1541.)

�� ��Va - ghl pen - sier che CO - il

��pas- [so

�� ��pas-so,che co - si pas -so pas

���Scor - to m'ha - ve

��ra - gio - nar'

��In the distribution of their Vocal Parts, the massive weight of their Harmonies, the persistent crossing of the Melodies by which those Har- monies are produced, the bright swing of their Rhythm, and other similar technicalities, these two examples resemble each other so closely, that, had they been printed anonymously, no one would ever have supposed that they could pos- sibly have belonged to different Schools. The secret is explained by their simultaneous publi- cation in Venice. The Netherlanders had long found a ready market for their Art Treasures, in Italy. The Italians had, by this time, learned how to produce similar treasures for themselves ; and Costanzo Festa's talent placed his works at least on a level with those of his instructors, if not above them. His genius was incontestable : he was equally remarkable for his power of adaptation. Though by no means wanting, either in learning, or ingenuity, he here shows himself willing to reduce his Madrigal to the simplicity of a Faux- bourdon, in order to secure the harmonic richness so highly prized at this particular epoch. He did so, constantly, and always with success ; for, to the purity of style cultivated by the best of his contemporaries in the North of Europe, Festa

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