Music was, in some form or another, a pastime enjoyed by all in sixteenth-century society, and a fundamental part of their lives. It was both through the use of music and partly as a result of its existence that many religious changes occurred during the Reformation. This book explores the part played by music, especially group singing, in the unfolding of the Protestant reforms in Strasbourg. It considers both ecclesiastical and ’popular’ songs in the city, examining how both genres fitted into people’s lives during this time of strife, and how the provision and dissemination of music as a whole affected, and in turn was affected by, the new ecclesiastical arrangement. Whilst it would be naive to assume that the congregations were transformed from impious to pious overnight as the result of the introduction of German hymns, it is clear that there were real and concerted efforts on the part of reformers to get people to embrace the new faith, and writing hymns for them to sing was central to the process. Drawing upon a range of sources - including liturgical orders and hymnals, polemical songs, chronicles of the Reformation and text manuscripts - the book explores the methods by which new songs were introduced in Strasbourg churches, and suggests how congregations might have learnt them. In so doing it provides an account of the process by which reformers found music a place in the new Church, and used it to promote their wider reform agenda.
Table of Contents
Introduction; The Church and the ‘wonderful art’ of music; Abolishing the mass; The move towards conformity; Song texts and their messages; The 1541 Gesangbuch and Strasbourg’s external influence; Conclusions; Appendices; Bibliography; Index.
About the Series
With the publication of its 100th book in 2012, the St Andrews Studies in Reformation Studies series celebrated an impressive publishing achievement. Since its establishment in 1995 the series has consistently offered high-quality, innovative and thought-provoking research in the field of early modern religious history. By encouraging authors to adopt a broad and inclusive interpretation of ’Reformation’, the resultant publications have done much to help shape current interdisciplinary interpretations of early-modern religion, expanding attention far beyond narrow theological concerns. Each title within the series has added to a body of international research showing how the ripples of the Reformation spread to virtually every corner of European society, both Protestant and Catholic, and often beyond. From family life, education, literature, music, art and philosophy, to political theory, international relations, economics, colonial ventures, science and military matters, there were few aspects of life that remained untouched in some way by the spirit of religious reform. As well as widening conceptions of the Reformation, the series has for the last fifteen years provided a publishing outlet for work, much of it by new and up-and-coming scholars who might otherwise have struggled to find an international platform for their work. Alongside these monographs, a complementary selection of edited volumes, critical editions of important primary sources, bibliographical studies and new translations of influential Reformation works previously unavailable to English speaking scholars, adds further depth to the topic. By offering this rich mix of approaches and topics, the St Andrews series continues to offer scholars an unparalleled platform for the publication of international scholarship in a dynamic and often controversial area of historical study.
BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
- HISTORY / Modern / 17th Century
- MUSIC / History & Criticism