Page:A Dictionary of Music and Musicians vol 4.djvu/446

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��WEBER'S LAST WALTZ Letzter Gedanke, Derniere Pense'e. The piece known by these names and beginning thus, and once enormously popular


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��is not Weber's at all, but Reissiger's, and forms no. 5 of his 'Danses brillantes pour le PF.,' written in 1822, and published by Peters of Leipzig in 1824. The probable cause of its being ascribed to Weber is that a MS. copy of it, given by Reissiger to Weber on the eve of his departure for London, was found among Weber's papers after his death here. It has been also published as a song in Germany ' Wie ich bin verwichen'; in London as 'Weber's Farewell' (Chappell), ' Song of the dying child ' (Cramer), etc. [G.]

WECHSELNOTE, DIE FUX'SCHE Fux's Changing-note. A term supposed to represent in the Strict or ancient style of Counterpoint a very striking 'licence,' of which Palestrina and his contemporaries sometimes made use. The Third Species of Simple Counterpoint i. e. Four notes figainst one demanded that ' discords by tran- sition ' (or, as we should now say, Passing-notes) should be approached and quitted by conjunct degrees. In spite of this rule the composers of that time allowed themselves to proceed by a skip from the second or fourth note in the bar (provided it be a discord) to the third below, ascending afterwards to the note on which the discord should properly have resolved itself. The following examples show that this note can appear in two different places in the bar :



��This licence was but rarely used by the old masters, and rather as an interesting exception. It has, however, given rise to much discussion among theorists. Some admired it for its grace- fulness, some objected to it. Under the name of NotaCambiata, Changing-note, and Wechselnote, they have attempted to explain or justify it by eaying that the note which the composers had skipped could be supplied by imagination, thus Ex.3.

��But this explanation attempts to account for the licence by a process contrary to the composers' intentions, and even purposely avoided by them. It may frequently be observed in the history of the development of music, that able and gifted musicians have chosen what is right by instinct, regardless of its contradicting the then existing rules. We, however, have a complete system of harmony at our disposal which the old


masters had not and can therefore regard the licence as perfectly justifiable. We must now remark that Examples i and 2 ought not to come under the same heading, as they have often hitherto done ; each demands and admits of a totally different and separate explanation. According to our present musical terminology, in neither case would the note marked * be called a Changing-note. To us, in Ex. i, this note would appear to be a Passing-note, which proceeds regularly, though not immediately, to the expected interval. B passes to A, inter- rupted by G. Siich interruptions are quite familiar to us. A striking analogy in the music of our time is to be found in the interrupted resolution of another discord (though on a different beat in the bar), namely the Suspen- sion, which is of frequent occurrence nowadays ;

��Ex. 4.

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��In Example a, on the contrary, the B * is, from our point of view, nothing more than an Antici- pation of the chord of G which immediately follows. In this manner the figure can be well explained, justified, or at least shown to be fully admissible. In the course of time this melodic phrase seems to have lost favour, for we seldom find it used by later generations. By Bach, Handel, and some of their successors, it is only employed in recitatives, and even there it is limited to the skip to the third below ; an Anticipation being the result.

Ex. 5.

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�� ��The note in question (which is marked with a * in our examples) is, harmonically regarded, a major or minor seventh, although this does not always appear at first sight. As this note * has been called by the old theorists Nota Cambiata or Changing-note, and Fuz in his 'Gradus ad Parnassuin ' was the first to devote special and careful attention to it, some modern writers thought it advisable to name it the Fux'sche Wechselnote, Fux's Changing-note, in distinction to our modern 'Changing-note.' [F.L.]

WECKERLIN, JEAN BAPTISTB, born at Guebwiller in Alsace, Nov. 9, 1821, son of a manufacturer. So strong were his musical in- stincts, that though educated for trade, he ran

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