A-LIb 529, Fragment 39

[The cataloguing project Musikalische Quellen (9.-15. Jahrhundert) in der Österreichischen Nationalbibliothek (Musical Sources (9th-15th Century) in the Austrian National Library), conducted by Alexander Rausch and Robert Klugseder at the Austrian Academy of Sciences, has made the Linz Fragments available online in high-resolution images. All links to the source including a preliminary inventory by Reinhard Strohm go to the homepage of this project. The image rights lie with Robert Klugseder who took the photos.]

Christ ist erstanden

After having identified a “Christ ist erstanden” on Fragment 40 inspired by Strohm’s identification of the same cantus firmus on Fragment 39, I turned to the latter fragment to see how this version relates to the former. It turned out that I was not able to find any trace of “Christ ist erstanden” on Fragment 39 so that I strongly suspect some sort of mix-up here. It looks like I “re-found” Strohm’s identification from 1984, now on Fragment 40.

The textless piece on Fragment 39, however, still is an interesting composition with a tenor line which is generated by transposing the cantus down an octave and having it enter with a delay. The canon (“Tenor fugat per Sex tempora In diapason”) seems to imply that the tenor starts six breve units (1 tempus = 1 breve unit) after the cantus line, but when arranging the edition I found that an off-set by three breve units does the trick. I therefore assume that “tempus” refers to a beat (tactus) which apparently and unexpectedly had been lowered from the brevis to the semibrevis level in imperfectum diminutum by the writer of this source. I employed small print for the generated tenor line and omitted the ligature brackets, which are given in the (generating) cantus voice.

The transmission has a number of “Terzverschreibungen” which I hope to have identified correctly and which are all marked in the following edition.

Linz Fragment 39 - the tenor line is generated by the cantus line via a canon

Linz Fragment 39 – the tenor line is generated via the cantus line by a canon

Marc Lewon

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