Analysis Of Gradual Viderunt Omnes

The chant melody is from the setting of the Gradual Viderunt Omnes from the Mass for Christmas Day. The original piece features a soloist that performs the psalm verse which alternates with a choir that sings the respond. This verse is extremely ornate, and the respond is also very melismatic. It is the only part of the Mass for Christmas Day that is in mode 5. Because of its highly melismatic nature, it was viewed as an appropriate candidate for future composers to base new works off of with ample room for interpretation and adaptation.
Both Viderunt omnes by Leoninus and colleagues and Viderunt omnes by Perotinus utilize the original text for all lines. In both pieces, the rhythm of the tenor is “stretched out into unmeasured sustained notes
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Clausulae on Dominus, from Viderunt Omnes: clausula No. 26 and clausula No. 29; Motets on Tenor Dominus: Factum est salutare/Dominus, Fole acostumance/Dominus, and Super te/Sed fulsit virginitas/Dominus; and De ma dame vient/Dieus, comment porroi/Omnes by Adam de la Halle are four such examples. The tenor lines of Clausulae and Motets have “Dominus” as the text, and the melodies are almost identical to that of the original except for a few notes which were altered presumably to sound better with the duplum. For example, in Factum est salutare/Dominus, measure 18 has a Bb, as seen in figure 3, in place of the original B natural like in the original score. This was a common practice done in order to avoid the tritone, this case containing B in the tenor and F in the duplum. In Fole acostumance/Dominus, the “dominus” is melodically nearly the same as it was in the original chant, however, the melody restarts from the beginning after measure 43 while the text keeps going, as seen in figure 4. That is, “dominus” is only sung once, but the melody is performed twice with that one word. In Super te/Sed fulsit virginitas/Dominus, the tenor melody is the same as it was in the original chant, except for the first two notes. Similar to Fole acostumance, the melody of Super te repeats after measure 19 which mirrors measures 3-21 of Factum …show more content…
It is analogous to how earlier musicians had added texts to chant melismas to create sequences and textual tropes. Both Motets on Tenor Dominus: Factum est salutare/Dominus, Fole acostumance/Dominus, and Super te/Sed fulsit virginitas/Dominus as well as De ma dame vient/Dieus, comment porroi/Omnes are motets. These polytextual motets based off of Viderunt omnes are the most textually engaging compared to the other works based off of it, as the non-tenor lines of text are poems that are performed simultaneously to the original text: “Dominus” in Motets on Tenor Dominus and “omnes” in de ma dame vient/Dieus, comment porroie/Omnes. The text for Factum est salutare is a trope on the original Viderunt omnes; this was a common practice at the time regarding the composition of motets. Its nature is sacred, being that it outlines several biblical events surrounding Jesus Christ. It further exemplifies its proximity to the church in its duplum text, which is Latin. By the thirteenth century, there were essentially no places where Latin was the vernacular language. Rather, Latin was primarily used by the elite and those who worked in the church. Overall, it is the most similar to the other works that draw from Viderunt omnes. The duplum text of Fole acostumance is much more dramatic and more acerbic than that of any other preceding works. In

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