Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Plumley, Yolanda. "Intertextuality in the Fourteenth-Century Chanson." Music and Letters 84 (August 2003): 355-77.

The practice of intertextual citation and allusion in lyric poetry during the fourteenth century is also apparent both musically and textually in the Ars Nova chanson repertory. Examination of these songs provides new evidence that the practice of citation and allusion was more widespread, more developed, and more varied in its function than previously argued by scholars such as Ursula Günther. Furthermore, looking at cases of borrowing from this period allows one to consider contemporary significance and meaning of works, contacts between composers, and transmission of works. Uses of pre-existing music are noticeable in Mauchaut's Pour ce que tous mes chans fais, where he borrows the opening of the chace Se je chant as a way of conveying ironic humor. In the following Ars Subtilior generation, composers often quoted Machaut's lyrics or made references to his poems in their works. For example, Matteo da Perugia cited both text and music from Machaut's De Fortune in Se je me plaing de Fortune, calling upon a previous authority and developing the model for his own purposes. Subtle musical connections in interrelated works between composers (such as the En attendant songs of Galiot, Senleches, and Philipoctus de Caserta, which all cite the anonymous Esperance qui en mon cuer s'embat) suggest citation games or contests. These examples demonstrate a variety of borrowing methods within the music, creating a web of connections that the audience would have recognized and appreciated.

Works: Machaut: Se je me pleing, je n'en puis mais (Ballade 15) (361), Pour ce que tous mes chans fais (Ballade 12) (363-64); Matteo da Perugia: Se je me plaing de Fortune (365-69); Galiot: En attendant d'amer la douce vie (370); Senleches: En attendant, Esperance conforte (370); Philipoctus de Caserta: En atendant souffrir m'estuet (370); Matheus de Sancto Johanne: Je chant ung chant (371-73); Trebor: Passerose de beauté (374-77).

Sources: Machaut: Se je chant (363-64), De Fortune me doy pleindre et loer (Ballade 23) (365-69); Anonymous, Esperance qui en mon cuer s'embat (370); Philipoctus de Caserta: En attendant souffrir m'estuet (370); Jean Haucourt: Se j'estoye aseürée (371-73); Egidius: Roses et lis (374-77).

Index Classifications: 1300s

Contributed by: Mary Ellen Ryan, Karen Anton Stafford, Hyun Joo Kim

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