Pythagorean Philosophy And Its Influence On Musical Instrumentation And Composition

Pythagorean Philosophy and its influence on Musical Instrumentation and
"Music is the harmonization of opposites, the unification of
disparate things, and the conciliation of warring elements... Music is the
basis of agreement among things in nature and of the best government in the
universe. As a rule it assumes the guise of harmony in the universe, of
lawful government in a state, and of a sensible way of life in the home.
It brings together and unites." - The Pythagoreans
Every school student will recognize his name as the originator of
that theorem which offers many cheerful facts about the square on the
hypotenuse. Many European philosophers will call him the father ...

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all things are numbers. Based on the belief that numbers were the
building blocks of everything, Pythagoras began linking numbers and music.
Revolutionizing music, Pythagoras' findings generated theorems and
standards for musical scales, relationships, instruments, and creative
formation. Musical scales became defined, and taught. Instrument makers
began a precision approach to device construction. Composers developed new
attitudes of composition that encompassed a foundation of numeric value in
addition to melody. All three approaches were based on Pythagorean
philosophy. Thus, Pythagoras' relationship between numbers and music had a
profound influence on future musical education, instrumentation, and
The intrinsic discovery made by Pythagoras was the potential order to
the chaos of music. Pythagoras began subdividing different intervals and
pitches into distinct notes. Mathematically he divided intervals into
wholes, thirds, and halves. "Four ...

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According to Rowell, Pythagoras began his experiments demonstrating
the tones of bells of different sizes. "Bells of variant size produce
different harmonic ratios." (Ferrara, 1991). Analyzing the different ratios,
Pythagoras began defining different musical pitches based on bell diameter,
and density. "Based on Pythagorean harmonic relationships, and Pythagorean
geometry, bell-makers began constructing bells with the principal pitch
prime tone, and hum tones consisting of a fourth, a fifth, and the octave."
(Johnston, 1989). Ironically or coincidentally, these tones were all
members of the Pythagorean scale. In addition, Pythagoras initiated
comparable experimentation with pipes ...

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Pythagorean Philosophy And Its Influence On Musical Instrumentation And Composition. (2007, June 11). Retrieved April 25, 2017, from
"Pythagorean Philosophy And Its Influence On Musical Instrumentation And Composition.", 11 Jun. 2007. Web. 25 Apr. 2017. <>
"Pythagorean Philosophy And Its Influence On Musical Instrumentation And Composition." June 11, 2007. Accessed April 25, 2017.
"Pythagorean Philosophy And Its Influence On Musical Instrumentation And Composition." June 11, 2007. Accessed April 25, 2017.
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Added: 6/11/2007 01:47:10 PM
Category: Music & Musicians
Words: 1345
Pages: 5

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