Aubert, Eduardo Henrik. 2013. “When the Roman Liturgy became Frankish - Sound, Performance and Sublation in the Eighth and Ninth centuries.” In «Notarum figura : l’écriture musicale et le monde des signes au IXe siècle» - Actes du colloque d’Auxerre (17-18 juin 2011), Études grégoriennes 40, pp. 57–160. At


See also "Nova cluniacensa" by this author.


Moran, Neil K. 2013. “Altrömische Offertoriums-Gesänge in medialen Tonarten. Zum Verhältnis des byzantinischen zum altrömischen und gregorianischen Choral.” Byzantinische Zeitschrift 106 (1): 65–82. doi:10.1515/bz-2013-0006.


Worth to be discussed here…


Atkinson, C.M., 2008. The Critical Nexus: Tone-System, Mode, and Notation in Early Medieval Music, Oxford, New York etc.: Oxford UP US.
Barton, L.W.G., 1995-2012. "Influence of Byzantium on Western Chant". In: The Influences of Byzantium and Syria upon Western Medieval Chant. The Neume Notation Project.
Bischoff, B., 1994. Manuscripts and libraries in the age of Charlemagne, Cambridge: Cambridge UP.
Busse Berger, A.M., 2005. Tonaries: A Tool for Memorizing Chant. In Medieval Music and the Art of Memory, Berkeley, Los Angeles: University of California Press, 47-84. Google.
Colette, M.-N., 1995. Grégorien et vieux-romain: deux différentes méthodes de collectage de mélodies traditionelles? In J. Szendrei & D. Hiley, eds. Laborare Fratres in Unum: Festschrift László Dobszay zum 60. Geburtstag. Spolia Berolinensia. Hildesheim: Weidmann, 37–52.
Floros, C., 1970. Die byzantinischen, slavischen und gregorianischen Tonfiguren und Formeln, Universale Neumenkunde, 3, Kassel-Wilhelmshöhe: Bärenreiter.
Floros, C., 2005. Introduction to Early Medieval Notation, Warren, Mich.: Harmonie Park Press.
Floros, C., 2009. The Origins of Russian Music: Introduction to the Kondakarian Notation, Frankfurt am Main: Peter Lang.
Grier, J., 2003. Adémar de Chabannes, Carolingian Musical Practices, and „Nota Romana“. JAMS, 56, 43–59.
Grier, J., 2005. The Musical Autographs of Adémar de Chabannes (989–1034). Early Music History, 24, 125–168. doi:10.1017/S0261127905000100.
Huglo, M., 1982. Les débuts de la polyphonie à Paris: Les premiers "organa" parisiens. Aktuelle Fragen der musikbezogenen Mittelalterforschung. Texte zu einem Basler Kolloquium des Jahres 1975, Forum Musicologicum 3, Winterthur: Amadeus, 93-164.
Jeffery, P., 2001. The Earliest Oktōēchoi : The Role of Jerusalem and Palestine in the Beginnings of Modal Ordering. In The Study of Medieval Chant : Paths and Bridges, East and West ; In Honor of Kenneth Levy. Woodbridge, Suffolk: Boydell Press, 147–209. Google.
Karp, T., 1998. Aspects of orality and formularity in Gregorian chant, Evanston, Illinois: Northwestern UP. Google.
Levy, K., 1998. Gregorian Chant and the Carolingians, Princeton, N.J: Princeton UP. Google.
Levy, K., 2009. On the Origin of Neumes. In Early Music History - Studies in Medieval and Early Modern Music. Cambridge, New York, New Rochelle, Melbourne, Sydney: Cambridge University Press, 59–90. Google.
Levy, K. & Troelsgård, C., Byzantine Chant. Grove Music Online.
Martani, S., 2003. The Theory and Practice of Ekphonetic Notation: The Manuscript Sinait. gr. 213. Plainsong and Medieval Music, 12,15–42. doi:10.1017/S0961137103003024.
Pfisterer, A., 2002. Cantilena Romana: Untersuchungen zur Überlieferung des gregorianischen Chorals, Paderborn: Schöningh.
Phillips, N., 2000. Notationen und Notationslehren von Boethius bis zum 12. Jahrhundert. In T. Ertelt & F. Zaminer, ed. Die Lehre vom einstimmigen liturgischen Gesang. Geschichte der Musiktheorie. Darmstadt: Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft, 293–324.
Raasted, J. & Troelsgård, C. ed., 1999. Palaeobyzantine Notations II: Acta of the Congress held at Hernen Castle (The Netherlands) in October 1996. Michigan: A.A. Brediusstichting.
Ricossa, L., 2010. "Constantin Floros: Universale Neumenkunde. Quarante ans après, de nouvelles perspectives". Unpublished presentation made during the Colloque international «Musiques et Notations postbyzantines», 25-26 février 2010 à la Haute École de Musique de Genève. Homepage of the author.
Stäblein, B., 1967. Kann der gregorianische Choral im Frankenreich entstanden sein? Wiesbaden: Steiner.
Thibaut, J.-B., 1907. Origine byzantine de la notation neumatique de l’église latine, Paris: Picard. Google.
Troelsgård, C., 2001. What kind of Chant Books were the Byzantine Sticherária? In Cantus planus: Papers read at the 9th meeting, Esztergom & Visegrád, 1998, Budapest: Hungarian Academy of Sciences, 563–574.
Treitler, L., 2003. With Voice and Pen: Coming to know Medieval Song and how it was made, Oxford, New York: Oxford UP.
Wolfram, G. & Troelsgård, C. ed., 2004. Palaeobyzantine Notations III: Acta of the Congress held at Hernen Castle, The Netherlands, in March 2001. In Eastern Christian Studies 4. Leuven, Paris, Walpole: Peeters Publishers. Google.

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  • Pardonnez-moi ma réponse tardée, svp. C'est très intéressant.

    Vous pourriez donner quelques exemples concrètes dans les manuscrits, où vous avez trouvé cette manière analytique?

  • Je suis personnellement convaincu que le quilisma ROM est noté de manière analytique, et non pas sténographique (comme le quil. GRE)

  • Thank you for these very interesting quotations and for the link to Constantin Floros' homepage.

    Just for a better understanding, we should mention here, that Michel Huglo's negative review of Floros' Neumenkunde and a lack of an own opinion among several other colleagues were responsible for the unlucky circumstance, that so many scholars of Western Chant did and do not take any advantage to profit from the very broad focus of Floros' study.

    East and West—a symbiosis?

    Unfortunately I missed the opportunity to meet Michel a last time at Cantus planus in 2009, but he send me his contribution in which he tried to regard the relationship between Rome and Constantinople as a symbiosis between Greek and Latin Christianity. I sent it back with many critical comments, because my impression was that this relationship was rather parasitic than symbiotic. My argument was this odd combination to insist on the primacy of the Pope on the one hand and to authorize everything by using a Greek name on the other hand. I analyzed the same strategy concerning the import of Byzantine allélouiaria and the harsh criticism of the imported culture in the case of Pope Gregory the Great, and how James McKinnon reproduced this pattern in his own study of Old-Roman Chant. But after Rome had been destroyed, Gregory's programme had a lot of courage and the power of a new beginning.

    Walter Bershin whose essays were very important for Huglo's comparatistic studies, regarded the Byzantine influence in Beneventan chant and connected it directly with the anti-Byzantine policy which became, by the way, not so evident during the East-West schism, when diplomatic relationships between Pope Leo IX and the Emperor Constantine IX Monomachos were quite good (despite the fact that the Patriarch Michael Keroularios and the Cardinal Humbert of Silva Candida did not cooperate with their alliance). It became quite evident during the Council of Bari 1098, when Archbishop Elias tried to solve the dogmatic differences between Eastern and Western Christianity, mainly because the Byzantine catepanate had been conquered by the Normans and the primacy of the Pope was accepted by the conquerors, when Pope Nicholas II accepted and confirmed officialy their rulership. Nevertheless, the Norman aristocrats became very engaged in founding and supporting Greek monasteries, and Byzantium, despite its cultural attraction, was a weak partner in wars. The Emperors were obviously not very interested in Italy.

    Early neumes

    Concerning the Carolingian reform, the Carolingian cantors' work was definitely "the redaction of the redaction of the redaction," because the primacy and universality of Roman liturgy was partly based on the fact, that it had imported from different local traditions, whether they were Greek or Latin. It was not just one source which came like a river to the other traditions, in some cases it was rather the other way round (also Ambrosian cantors were quite aware of it, when they transcribed their tradition).

    Nevertheless, we should also be aware, whenever we use our question mark "?", that it derived directly from the Latin positurae (an "interrogatio" in Latin ekphonetic notation). If I remember well the Messine elaboration, they used the neume called "quilisma" for it. I am curious to learn from your opinion, is it true that there is no "quilisma" in Old-Roman notation, as some students of Solange Corbin like to regard it?

    The Old-Roman Practice of Alleluia singing
    According to Gregory the Great (letter to Bishop John of Syracuse, Oct. 598) the Roman habit to sing the alleluia was imported from Jerusalem during…
  • Anyone who believes that “Floros’ work is extremely notorious, controversial, and certainly not widely accepted” is obviously not aware of his book Gustav Mahler: The Symphonies which has gone through a dozen or more re-printings or his publications on Alban Berg und Hanna Fuchs - Briefe und Studien, György Ligeti - Jenseits von Avantgarde und Postmoderne, Johannes Brahms - "Frei, aber einsam" - Ein Leben für eine poetische Musik, Anton Bruckner - The Man and his Work, Peter I. Tschaikowsky, Gustav Mahler - Visionary and Despot - Portrait of A Personality, Anton Bruckner - The Man and his Work, Beethoven’s Eroica - Thematic Studies,  Humanism, Love and Music etc. (cf., over 20 books as well as numerous articles, the latest from 2013).  Floros dealt with Huglo’s article Les noms des neumes in Origins of Western Notation (p. 238f.):

    We regret so say that we cannot share the opinion of our esteemed colleague.  In our opinion the nomenclature of the Latin neumes must have been developed in the first half of the 9th century at the latest.  There are several reasons for this it would seem – and these are of critical importance for our study. 

    He discussed the review of the UNK by Haas in Introduction to Early Medieval Notation, p. 137-138. 

    As for the idea that “neumatic notation is a Frankish invention”, one might take into consideration Stäblein’s conclusion in his article Kann der gregorianische Choral im Frankenreich entstanden sein? (p. 169):

    Zusammenfassend lässt sich sagen: die im Titel gestellte Frage, ob der gregorianische Chorlal im Frankenreich redigiert worden sein kann, kann nur in negative Sinn beantwortet werde.  Die für die fränkische These vorgebrachten Gründe genügen nicht, sie schmelzen bei näherem Zusehen dahin, wie der Schnee in der Sonne

    Prof. Dr. Dr. hc. mult. Constantin Floros
  • I guess Neil Moran was just pointing at an idea by Jean-Baptiste Thibaut (see bibliography).

    I fear these particular comparisons by Floros can just prove that the Roman values, whatever they are, always depend on Hellenic or Byzantine culture (see Barton), despite the fact how inventive Frankish cantors were, when they developed "nota romana." It is impossible to prove that a melodic notation itself was a Byzantine invention, except for a particular way to use modal signatures as an addition to ekphonetic notation.

    But the comparisons in Aubert's and Moran's essay engage to explain differences between the Roman and the Frankish tradition after the Carolingian reform, and both traditions seem to be quite different. Some scholars still tend to ignore or to explain it in order to regard the Frankish as the Roman and some even argue that the Frankish is more Roman than the Old-Roman, despite the fact that every chronicle commented about the difference—with quite individual explanations, of course.

    A very few think about the odd circumstance, that Rome was always the place to authorize reforms, but not the place to realize them, at least not as long as the Roman liturgy was declared as the tradition which has to be followed by cantors with another tradition elsewhere. Hence, Roman cantors did not need to bother themselves with the invention of a melodic notation. Rome and Roman sources alone cannot offer the explanation, why Italian cantors started nearly 100 years later to write notated chant books. The 11th century is the period of reform papacy whose main target was the organization of South Italian church provinces, in a later phase their reforms did also care about a unification of the liturgy and its chant.

    The constellation became quite complicated, when clerics who were educated with the Frankish version of Roman chant, became Pope or at least a reforming abbot who had to supervise some these reforms in a certain region. The "origin" is just a certain period (the crisis of iconoclasm to be precise), when certain clerics at Rome and at Constantinople (Stoudios monastery) became engaged to establish common rules and to create new notated chant books, which claim to represent more than just one local tradition. The other way to regard them as a document of a local school is obviously much easier and more plausible, but local cantors did not need to invent notation just to codify their own school.

    The question with respect to both essays, is what exactly is the advantage to compare also Byzantine and other local traditions as well? What was the motivation of Mozarabic cantors to notate their own tradition who had not the aim to reform? If Frankish became Roman, how and when was this possible?

    Eduardo Henrik Aubert & Neil K. Moran about the Early Transmission of Plainchant during the Carolin…
    Aubert, Eduardo Henrik. 2013. “When the Roman Liturgy became Frankish - Sound, Performance and Sublation in the Eighth and Ninth centuries.” In «Nota…
  • I would also like to add that I do not refer to Floros for many reasons. His extremely speculative propositions - on which see Max Haas's lengthy review of his Universale Neumenkunde - are not at the top of my list. The foremost reason is that whether SOME SORT OF neumes originated in Byzantium is not relevant for my analysis of the Western sociocultural preconditions for their use. Whether they were created ex nihilo/ex veteris notis in the West, or adopted/adapted from the East does not change the viewpoint that there were specific sociocultural features in Francia that supported the use and diffusion of neumes. In a forthcoming article I will turn to the question of the earliest appearance of neumes in the West  ("origin" is a word social historians abhor since François Simiand, Henri Pirenne and Marc Bloch) and I will support my claim (which is totally independent from the article in Études grégoriennes) that a certain set of signs for writing music were graphically developed in Francia.

  • I entirely subscribe to what Geert has just written.

  • Although the Byzantine origin of Latin chant notation might seem obvious and I don't want to argue against it, a "conclusive proof" for this can not be based only on the origin of the "names" for the Latin neumes. Especially not since Michel Huglo in his "Les Noms des neumes et leurs origine" (1954) justified that these names are of later date then the neumes themselves.

  • To cite C. Floros, Introduction to Early Medieval Notation, p. 94:

    “Detailed comparative investigations of the Latin neumes and Peleobyzantine signs have led in this respect to extremely surprising results.  Then it becomes clear that many names of neumes are borrowed words or borrowed translations from Middle Greek, others represent original expressions in Latin, and other can be described as Graecized word formations. 

    Words borrowed from Middle Greek are the terms apostrophaapostrophos, distropha - dyo apostrophoi, quilismakylisma (roll), and oriscus, a term which perhaps comes from iporoi (outflow).  One observes that the corresponding Latin and Paleobyzantine terms designate the same neumes and the same figures. 

    The same applies mutatis mutandis for the following terms, which represent borrowed translations from Middle Greek: punctum, punctuskentema (prick / stab), bipunctumdyo kentemata (two stabs), tripunctumtria kentemata (three stabs), flexaperispomene (bending), scandicusanabasma (rising up), porrectusepegerma (re-erect), torculusstrepton (twisting), tremulatromikon, tremulikon (tremble), pes quassusseisma (shake), salicuschoreuma (dance figure), pressuspiasma (squeeze), franculusklasma (fracture), semitonushemitonion (the half tonal), and semivocalishemiphonon (half-voiced). 

    The names of the following litterae significativae could be shown to be borrowed translations from Middle Greek: equaliterison (same, even) supra -  ano (above),  sursum / altius / levarepsele (high, higher ) humiliter / iusum / inferiuschamele (low, deep), deprimaturbathy (deep),  mediocriter – oligon (a little),  mediocriter  (in the sense of in medio) – meson (middle step), cito vel celeritergorgon (fast), tenerekratema (hold) and a (augere?) / argon (slow. 

    To sum up, then, the great number of names of neumes that have been shown to be borrowed words or borrowed translations from Middle Greek provide conclusive proof for the Byzantine origin of Latin chant notation.” 

    However, the author of one of the rejection notices for my article writes: “Many of the author’s assumptions seem to be based on the work of Constantine Floros (here, perhaps, on his view that the Romans had Byzantine neumes), but the author does not make these assumptions explicit. Floros’s work is extremely notorious, controversial, and not certainly not widely accepted. (A look at Sam Barrett’s recent review of Moran’s recent translation of Floros will give a sense of the notoriety surrounding this work. )”

    It would seem that Cambridge fellow Eduardo Henrik Aubert subscribes to the same viewpoint as Sam Barrett.  C. Floros is accorded not so much as a footnote in his article! 

  • I changed now the title and added to Henrik E. Aubert's current publications another relevant one by Neil K. Moran, whose early ideas we already discussed together with an essay and a book by Rebecca Maloy (please click here).

    Discussing Neil Moran and Rebecca Maloy
    Neil Moran wrote: I have completed a study on MEDIAL MODE OFFERTORIES and have submitted it for publication. and continued with a quotation and a r
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