The treatise on musica plana and musica mensurabilis written by Lambertus/Aristoteles is our main witness to thirteenth-century musical thought in the decades between the treatises of Johannes de Garlandia and Franco of Cologne. Most treatises on music of this century - except for Franco’s treatise on musical notation - survive in only a single copy; Lambertus’s Ars musica, extant in five sources, is thus distinguished by a more substantial and long-lasting manuscript tradition. Unique in its ambitions, this treatise presents both the rudiments of the practice of liturgical chant and the principles of polyphonic notation in a dense and rigorous manner like few music treatises of its time - a conceptual framework characteristic of Parisian university culture in the thirteenth century. This new edition of Lambertus’s treatise is the first since Edmond de Coussemaker’s of 1864. Christian Meyer’s meticulous edition is displayed on facing pages with Karen Desmond’s English translation, and the treatise and translation are prefaced by a substantial introduction to the text and its author by Christian Meyer, translated by Barbara Haggh-Huglo.
Table of Contents
Contents: Introduction, Christian Meyer, translated by Barbara Haggh-Huglo; Translator’s note, Karen Desmond; Edition and translation, Christian Meyer, editor, and Karen Desmond, translator; Critical and explanatory notes, Christian Meyer, translated by Barbara Haggh-Huglo; Indexes.
Christian Meyer (CNRS), is the author of numerous books and articles on medieval music theory and, with Michel Huglo, of the catalogues of music theory, RISM B III, vols. 3-6 (1986-2003). He has edited monochord measurements (1996), treatises from the Garlandian tradition (1998), and the Musica of Hieronymus de Moravia (Corpus Christianorum, 2012). The translator, Karen Desmond (McGill University), researches the intersection between the intellectual and aesthetic experience of music in the later Middle Ages. She has published articles and reviews in Early Music History, Musica disciplina, Journal of Musicology, Journal of Plainsong and Medieval Music, Early Music, The Medieval Review and Notes. The translator of Christian Meyer’s introduction and critical notes, Barbara Haggh-Huglo (University of Maryland), has edited liturgical offices for St. Elizabeth of Hungary (1995) and the Order of the Golden Fleece (2007), and published articles on early music in Brussels, Ghent, Cambrai, and Paris, Johannes Ciconia as theorist, and, with Michel Huglo, on music theory in medieval Parisian libraries.