Music in the Renaissance Period

Timeline created by Adamramirez1
In Music
  • 1430

    Start of the renaissance

    Start of the renaissance
    The Renaissance is marked by a new wave of thought involving many aspects of life. Mainly, these focused on the performative arts, scientific advancement and knowledge among general society, and a shift away from reliance on religion for self-actualization. The main focused and idealized formations of thought of the time were primarily Greco-Roman in nature.
  • Mar 25, 1436

    Nuper Rosarum Flores and Guillame Dufay

    Nuper Rosarum Flores and Guillame Dufay
    French composer and a central figure in the Burgundian School, Guillame Du Fay was regarded by his peers as the greatest of all mid fifteenth century composers. Dufay to many encapsulates the musical beginning of the renaissance, as he is commonly credited as the first of many composers to write in renaissance style. He was noted for both his church music and secular chansons. In March of 1436 Du Fay debuted his motet "Nuper Rosarum Flores" for the consecration of the Florence Cathedral.
  • 1450

    Puisque M'Amour

    Puisque M'Amour
    Written sometime in the first half of the 15th century, the Puisque M'Amor encapsulates many of the styles utilized by Dunstable, causing many scholars to credit him with this piece. The piece itself utilizes 3rd and 6th harmonies repeatedly as well as having the basses lead the music along rather than carrying it; something indicative of a first-inversion structure throughout most chords.
  • 1453

    Death of Dunstable

    Death of Dunstable
    Dunstable. The man credited with sparking the commonly known "triadic" form of music, passed away in 1453. Dunstable was known for employing "The English Quality" to great effect in his music. This meant that he used what is now referred to as first inversion chords routinely, something that has stuck around through musical periods, albeit less often, though still used commonly. to bridge chords together with a more impactful growth. Many of his works weren't published until 1953
  • 1475

    Creation of the first dictionary of musical terms

    Creation of the first dictionary of musical terms
    Johannes Tinctoris (1435-1511), a music theorist and composer, writes "Diffinitorum Musicies" The first catalogue of musical terminology. It is because of Tinctoris and a handfull of others that we really understand the musicality of pieces as far back as the mid sixteenth century. Tinctoris talks about the English style of chords taking music into a transitionary period. This chord style is mainly characterized by using the third of a chord as the bass note, otherwise known as first inversion.
  • 1475

    Missa Prolationum and Johannes Ockeghem

    Missa Prolationum and Johannes Ockeghem
    Ockeghem is regarded as the most influential composer of the renaissance style and, looking at Missa Prolationum, it isn't hard to tell why. The piece is beautiful in every respect of the word. It takes on a truly divine polyphonic feel, yet it is devoted to no such religious institution. Ockeghem's music truly encapsulates the "religious themes gone secular" sentiment brought on by the renaissance's top Italian scholars. Scholars who used reason to reach new heights above medieval mysticism.
  • 1485

    Ave Maria and Josquin Des Prez

    Ave Maria and Josquin Des Prez
    Ave Maria has a beautiful homophonic texture seen in the two upper voices which is then emulated in the lower voices. This creates a canon-esq feel in the piece, yet ultimately is more imitative of a homophonic and polyphonic style. By many, the Ave Maria is believed to be a masterful blueprint of polyphonic structure in music. Josquin Des Prez composed piece during his service in the North Italian Court at Milan. Des Prez was hailed by Martin Luther as the greastest renaissance composer
  • 1490

    Birth of Adrian Willaert (1490-1562)

    Birth of Adrian Willaert (1490-1562)
    Willaert was a Netherlandish composer who travelled to italy and emulated the Polyphonic style of music. He eventually would go on to create the massively accredited Venetian School of music around 1550. Were it not for WIllaert, we would have far less examples of renaissance music today.
  • Feb 2, 1525

    Birth of Palestrina

    Birth of Palestrina
    Palestrina, one of the greatest renaissance composers, was born in February of 1525 near Rome. Being born in the middle of the renaissance and having grown up with it's melodies, it is little wonder why he is regarded as one of the most exemplary renaissance composers in form and structure. Later in his life, Palestrina would go on to become the most famous representative of the roman school of music in his time.
  • 1550

    The Venetian School of Music

    The Venetian School of Music
    The all-important venetian school of music was arranged in 1550 by Adrian Willaert. The venetian school brought many of the great polyphonic composers of the renaissance period together so that they may create beautiful, influential scores that uphold their style.
  • 1564

    Birth of Shakespeare

    Birth of Shakespeare
    Shakespeare, while not a composer himself, was one of the earliest of men to incorporate full scores into his performances. This would go on to employ and demand work from many great renaissance composers, and establish this trend for the foreseeable future.
  • 1564

    Birth of Galileo and Music of the Spheres

    Birth of Galileo and Music of the Spheres
    A brilliant scientist and mathematician, Galileo shared his love and infatuation of astronomy to many of the great minds around him. In the context of music, Galileo is from a school of thought that believed music and astronomy were complementary sciences. This goes into "music of the Spheres", The idea that music is made by the proportions between celestial planets and stars. This Idea lead Galileo and others to believe that music helped one understand astronomy.
  • 1570

    Spem in Alium- Thomas Tallis

    Spem in Alium- Thomas Tallis
    When analyzing the vocal changes between the medieval era of music and that of the renaissance, one rather large shift comes in the arrangement of chants. Chants, while typically lying in the lower end voices like the bass, rose to the other parts and created an innate divine quality in the musical feel. No piece brings about this shift more prommenantly then the rahter extreme case of "Spem in Allium" by Thomas Tallis.
  • Death of Palestrina

    Death of Palestrina
    The great Roman Renaissance composer Palestrina passed away in February of 1594.
  • End of the Renaissance

    End of the Renaissance
    the start of the 17th century marks the firm end of the renaissance.