Animal Pictures in Gallus' Moralia
AbstractGallus used also for his secular music the Latin language, indicating the contentual difference from madrigals by designations "Harmoniae morales", "Moralia", – in a free translation: "Golden Lessons". They are characterized by moral seriousness and the ethical idea, yet among them there are also a few pictures from the animal world. Their total number is eight, six in the collection "Harmoniae morales" (1589, 1590), and two in the posthumously-issued collection "Moralia" (1596). In these compositions the author reproduces the characteristics of various animals, mostly the voices of domestic and wild fowls, "Currit parvus lepulus" (HM 3) portrays the young hare trying to escape from the hunters, "Gallus amat Venerem" (HM 6) the cock's courting and crowing, "Quam gallina sum parit ovum" (HM 7) the cackling of a hen before and after laying an egg, and "Dulcis amica veni" (HM 21) is a song of praise of a nightingale, while "Permultos liceat cuculus" (M 27) is about a cuckoo, which can sing but its own cuck-oo, although it has been singing for years and years. These compositions are clearly pictures of the animal world, whereas the other three are clearly moralia, i. e. compositions treating facts of life with admixture of instructive suggestions drawing on pictures from the animal world. In this respect the outstanding one is "Anseris est giga" (EM 47), in which the composer renders imitations of the goose, the coocku, and the raven; ""Linguo coax ranis" (HM 46) introduces beside the raven a new soloist – the frog; and in "Qui cantum corvi" (M 26) we again come across the croaking of the raven. All in all, these are brief compositions of bright moods, sometimes coming close to the chanson, but especially based on onomatopoetic elements which impart to them a peculiar colouring and charm. Even if the total number of them in Gallus' entire ouevre is not big, the composer belongs among those composers of his time who explored motives from the animal world comparatively often and in an artistically convincing way. With such works he has expanded the motifs of his art by subjects that were in his time in vogue, has enriched the vocabulary of his musical idiom and thus demonstrated new dimensions of his creative talent.
Copyright (c) 1985 Danilo Pokorn
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
Authors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors are confirming that they are the authors of the submitting article, which will be published (print and online) in journal Musicological Annual by Znanstvena založba Filozofske fakultete Univerze v Ljubljani (University of Ljubljana, Faculty of Arts, Aškerčeva 2, 1000 Ljubljana, Slovenia). Author’s name will be evident in the article in journal. All decisions regarding layout and distribution of the work are in hands of the publisher.
- Authors guarantee that the work is their own original creation and does not infringe any statutory or common-law copyright or any proprietary right of any third party. In case of claims by third parties, authors commit their self to defend the interests of the publisher, and shall cover any potential costs.
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work.