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Re: Request for comments: Redesign of TimeSignature

From: Laura Conrad
Subject: Re: Request for comments: Redesign of TimeSignature
Date: 24 May 2002 09:48:13 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.0808 (Gnus v5.8.8) XEmacs/21.4 (Artificial Intelligence)

>>>>> "Juergen" == Juergen Reuter <address@hidden> writes:

    Han-Wen> \time 3 is not valid syntax. I propose that we keep it that way. 
If it
    Han-Wen> [ ] is in between \time and / , then there will be no clash.
    >> This is a problem for transcribing music where the composer wrote "3"
    >> as the time signature, though.  The transcriber soesn't always know
    >> what unit the composer was thinking in 3 of.  And I always have trouble
    >> remembering which denominator will give me a circle.

    Juergen> I thought, by default, semibrevis is always the unit in mensural 
    Juergen> unless you say "alla breve" (slashed circle/semicircle), in which 
    Juergen> brevis is the unit.  But maybe I am wrong?

I think so.  Unless you're defining mensural notation pretty narrowly.
Later people like Dowland and Morley (who can be considered not
mensural any more, but they're writing without barlines) usually use a
half note (minim) as the unit, and earlier (e.g. Lassus) it's
frequently a whole note (semibreve) whether the signature is C or C|.
Earlier still (e.g. Glogauer), it tends to be a breve.  Bruder Konrad
looks to me to be using a semibreve even though it uses a C time
signature, and you could argue that Katzenpfote is using a breve
although the signature is C|.  (See: 
for these examples.)

    Juergen> The problem is that "C" is ambigous unless you explicitly add the 
    Juergen> (which, for contemporary notation, should default to quarter 

That's my point, too.  Since it's ambiguous in the original notation,
it should be left ambiguous in the transcription (which it is in the
printout, if you don't have the barlines, but not in the lilypond).

Laura (mailto:address@hidden , )
(617) 661-8097  fax: (801) 365-6574 
233 Broadway, Cambridge, MA 02139
(If I haven't invited you to my party on June 2, I'm sure it's an oversight.)

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