Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Bradley, Catherine A. “Re-Workings and Chronological Dynamics in a Thirteenth-Century Latin Motet Family.” Journal of Musicology 32 (Spring 2015): 153-97.

A case study of a family of motets based on the Latus tenor demonstrates the multi-directional relationship between musical models and their offspring and highlights the limitations of general theories of chronology when studying thirteenth-century motets. The Latus discant (from Allelulia Pascha nostrum immolatus est) has a strong transmission history in the major “Magnus liber” sources. The two motetus texts conceived for the discant, Radix venie and Ave Maria, exhibit both similarities that suggest a codependent relationship and differences that suggest strongly independent responses to the same musical model. There is also musical evidence suggesting that the Latus discant was reworked in the creation of motets derived from it. The textual revisions in the double motet Radix venie/Ave Maria/Latus suggest that this motet was created by the unusual (but not unprecedented) method of combining two preexisting texts designed for the same musical model. The members of this motet family and their relationships to each other and to the Latus discant unsettle the conventional logic of motet chronology—particularly the assumption that the conductus motet is the earliest motet—and demonstrate the complexity of motet creation.

Works: Anonymous: Radix venie/Radix venie/Latus (162-84), Ave Maria fons letitie/Latus (162-84), Quant l’aloete s’esjoist en mai/Latus (194), Radix venie/Ave Maria/Latus (184-91)

Sources: Anonymous: Latus discant from Allelulia Pascha nostrum immolatus est (154-158, 162-91); Anonymous: Ave Maria fons letitie/Latus (184-91, 194)

Index Classifications: Polyphony to 1300

Contributed by: Matthew Van Vleet

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