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History of Music
Pre-Renaissance Music: The Evolution of Instruments and Theory
The earliest forms of music were probably drum-based, percussion instruments being the most readily available at the time (i.e. rocks, sticks). These simplest of simple instruments are thought to have been used in religious ceremonies as representations of animals. There was no notation or writing of this kind of “music” and its sounds can only be extrapolated from the music of (South) American Indians and African natives who still adhere to some of the ancient religious practices.
As for the more advanced instruments, their evolution was slow and steady. It is known that by 4000 BCE the Egyptians had created harps and flutes, and by 3500 BCE lyres and double-reeded clarinets had been developed.
In Denmark, by 2500 BCE an early form of the trumpet had been developed. This trumpet is what is now known as a “natural trumpet.” It is valveless, and depends completely on manipulation of the lips to change pitch.
One of the most popular instruments today was created in 1500 BCE by the Hittites. I am talking about the guitar. This was a great step; the use of frets to change the pitch of a vibrating string would lead to later instruments such as the violin and harpsichord.
In 800 BCE the first recovered piece of recorded music was found. It was written in cuneiform and was a religious hymn. It should be noted that cuneiform is not a type of musical notation.
By 700 BCE there are records of songs that include vocals with instrumentals. This added a whole new dimension to music: accompaniment.
Music in Ancient Rome and Greece
Greece was the root of all Classical art, so it’s no coincidence that Classical music is rooted in Grecian innovations. In 600 BCE, famed mathematician Pythagorus dissected music as a science and developed the keystone of modern music: the octave scale. The importance of this event is obvious. Music was a passion of the Greeks. With their surplus of leisure time (thanks to slave labor) they were able to cultivate great artistic skills. Trumpet competitions were common spectator events in Greece by 400 BCE. It was in Greece that the first bricks in music theory’s foundation were layed. Aristotle wrote on music theory scientifically, and brought about a method of notation in 350 BCE. The work of that genius is still studied today.
The next significant step in music’s evolution was by Boethius. In 521 CE he brought the Greek system of notation to Western Europe, allowing the musicians there to scribe accurately the folk songs of their lands. Incidentally, it was Boethius who first wrote on the idea of the opera.
Music in the Middle Ages
Most of the music created after Rome fell was commissioned by the church. The Catholic religion has a long history of involvement (for better or worse) with the musical arts. In 600 CE Pope Gregory had the Schola Cantarum built. This was the first music school in Europe.
Meanwhile in China, music was progressing also: it was reported that in 612 CE there were orchestras with hundreds of musicians performing for the assorted dynasties. Although the specific music from this period in China is unknown, the distinct style supposed to have developed there is reflected even in recent orchestral Asiatic pieces.
In 650 CE a new system of writing music was developed using “neumes” as a notation for groups of notes in music.
144 years after the Schola Cantarum was built, a singing school opened in the Monastery of Fuda, fueling the interest in musical vocation. And by 790 CE, there were splinters of the Schola Cantarum in Paris, Cologne and Metz. In 800 CE the great unifier Charlemagne had poems and psalms set to music. In 850 CE Catholic musicians had a breakthrough by inventing the church “modes.” These modes would later metamorphose into today’s major and minor scales. In 855 CE, the first polyphonic (2 unrelated melodies/voices at once) piece was recorded, and by 1056 this polyphonic style replaced Gregorian chants as the music of choice (even after the Church made polyphonic music “illegal”; this ban was later lifted). In 980 CE, the great tome Antiphononium Codex Montpellier was scribed.
In 1000 CE Guido D’Arezzo made many improvements in music theory. He first improved and reworked standard notation to be more user-friendly by adding time signatures. Then he invented solfege. This is the vocal note scale: do, re, mi, fa, so, la ,ti, do. This innovation has affected almost every modern vocalist.
In 1100 CE, a new secular movement began. This separation of Church from music was a straddling one, and soon this new “folk” music was looked down upon as pagan and borderline blasphemous.
The Renaissance MUSIC DOWNLOAD
On the dawn of the Renaissance in 1465 the printing press was first used to print music. By using a press a composer could organize his pieces and profit from them with great ease. In 1490 Boethius’s writings on opera were republished in Italian.
With the onset of the Renaissance, the rules of music were about to change drastically. This was the beginning of a new enlightened age that would showcase some of the greatest musical minds ever produced.
The history of music at this point is best told by the styles that emerged and the composers who lived after the Renaissance.
Things You Need To Know About Coronavirus
What Is Coronavirus?
Coronaviruses are a type of virus. There are many different kinds, and some cause disease. A newly identified coronavirus, SARS-CoV-2, has caused a worldwide pandemic of respiratory illness, called COVID-19.
What You Need to Know About COVID-19
- COVID-19 is the disease caused by the new coronavirus that emerged in China in December 2019.
- COVID-19 symptoms include cough, fever or chills, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, muscle or body aches, sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, diarrhea, headache, new fatigue, nausea or vomiting and congestion or runny nose. COVID-19 can be severe, and some cases have caused death.
- The new coronavirus can be spread from person to person. It is diagnosed with a laboratory test.
- There is no coronavirus vaccine yet. Prevention involves frequent hand-washing, coughing into the bend of your elbow, staying home when you are sick and wearing a cloth face covering if you can’t practice physical distancing.
Lauren Sauer, M.S., the director of operations with the Johns Hopkins Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response and director of research with the Johns Hopkins Biocontainment Unit, shares information about COVID-19 and what you need to know.
How does the new coronavirus spread?
As of now, researchers know that the new coronavirus is spread through droplets released into the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The droplets generally do not travel more than a few feet, and they fall to the ground (or onto surfaces) in a few seconds — this is why physical distancing is effective in preventing the spread.
How did this new coronavirus spread to humans?
COVID-19 appeared in Wuhan, a city in China, in December 2019. Although health officials are still tracing the exact source of this new coronavirus, early hypotheses thought it may be linked to a seafood market in Wuhan, China. Some people who visited the market developed viral pneumonia caused by the new coronavirus. A study that came out on Jan. 25, 2020, notes that the individual with the first reported case became ill on Dec. 1, 2019, and had no link to the seafood market. Investigations are ongoing as to how this virus originated and spread.
What is the incubation period for COVID-19?
It appears that symptoms are showing up in people within 14 days of exposure to the virus.
What have you learned about coronavirus in the last six months?
What are symptoms of COVID-19?
COVID-19 symptoms include:
- Fever or chills
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Muscle or body aches
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
- New fatigue
- Nausea or vomiting
- Congestion or runny nose
In rare cases, COVID-19 can lead to severe respiratory problems, kidney failure or death.
If you have a fever or any kind of respiratory difficulty such as coughing or shortness of breath, call your doctor or a health care provider and explain your symptoms over the phone before going to the doctor’s office, urgent care facility or emergency room. Here are suggestions if you feel sick and are concerned you might have COVID-19.
If you have a medical emergency such as severe shortness of breath, call 911 and let them know about your symptoms.
Learn more about COVID-19 symptoms.
What Is Coronavirus?
How is COVID-19 diagnosed?
Diagnosis may be difficult with only a physical exam because mild cases of COVID-19 may appear similar to the flu or a bad cold. A laboratory test can confirm the diagnosis. Learn more about COVID-19 testing.
How is COVID-19 treated?
As of now, there is not a specific treatment for the virus. People who become sick from COVID-19 should be treated with supportive measures: those that relieve symptoms. For severe cases, there may be additional options for treatment, including research drugs and therapeutics.
Does COVID-19 cause death?
As of October 28, 2020, 1,168,568 deaths have been attributed to COVID-19. However, 29,843,500 people have recovered from the illness. This information comes from the Coronavirus COVID-19 Global Cases map developed by the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering.
Is this coronavirus different from SARS?
SARS stands for severe acute respiratory syndrome. In 2003, an outbreak of SARS started in China and spread to other countries before ending in 2004. The virus that causes COVID-19 is similar to the one that caused the 2003 SARS outbreak: both are types of coronaviruses. Much is still unknown, but COVID-19 seems to spread faster than the 2003 SARS and also may cause less severe illness.
How do you protect yourself from this coronavirus?
It’s crucial to practice good hygiene, respiratory etiquette and physical distancing. Read more about ways to protect yourself.
Coronavirus: What do I do if I Feel Sick?
- Coronaviruses are common in different animals. Rarely, an animal coronavirus can infect humans.
- There are many different kinds of coronaviruses.
- Some of them can cause colds or other mild respiratory (nose, throat, lung) illnesses.
- Other coronaviruses can cause more serious diseases, including severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).
- Coronaviruses are named for their appearance: Under the microscope, the viruses look like they are covered with pointed structures that surround them like a corona, or crown.
What is Ebola virus disease?
Ebola virus disease (EVD) is a serious infectious disease caused by an ebolavirus. The disease can progress as a viral haemorrhagic fever (haemorrhagic = causing bleeding), resulting in blood loss. Major outbreaks of Ebola virus disease first occurred in 1976 in Sudan and DR Congo, in a village near the Ebola river, after which the virus is now named. Depending on the viral type, the disease proves fatal in 25–90% of cases. In March 2014, the largest outbreak to date occurred in Guinea, and has now spread to other parts of West Africa.
How is Ebola virus disease transmitted?
Person-to-personThe pathogen is transmitted via direct contact with blood and other bodily fluids such as sweat, saliva, faeces or urine from sick people or people who have died from the disease. There is a risk of infection only if individuals show signs of having the disease. Unprotected sexual intercourse with men who have survived the disease carries a risk of infection via their seminal fluid for up to 3 months after recovery, as pathogens are detectable during this period. There is no evidence to date of airborne transmission of the disease. From animals to humansA transmission of the virus from infected wild animals to people was the likely starting point of the Ebola outbreak in West Africa. Fruit bats are the pathogen’s most likely natural reservoir. There is a risk of infection from direct contact with the blood or other bodily fluids from infected wild animals – whether alive or dead – and from fruit bats and apes in particular. In Africa, animal-human transmission of the virus is also possible by the preparation and consumption of uncooked wild animal meat, food that is also known as “bushmeat”. Animals who are native to Germany do not carry any ebolaviruses.
What symptoms do the patients show?
The disease develops as a sudden fever, accompanied by a pronounced feeling of weakness, headaches and muscle pain, sore throat, conjunctivitis and nausea. Skin rashes also occur in some patients. As the disease progresses, patients suffer from vomiting and diarrhoea, as well as liver and kidney malfunctions. Other symptoms may include both internal and external bleeding. In serious cases, the kidneys, liver and other organs may fail, often proving fatal for the patient.
What’s the incubation period – and how long are you infectious?
The period of time between the appearance of symptoms and an infection with ebolaviruses is at least 2 days and no more than 21 days; 8–10 days is a typical period. Patients are infectious once they develop signs of having the disease and remain so while they have a fever. For a male patient, viruses may be present in seminal fluid for up to 3 months after he recovers.