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Reviews567 Maricarmen Gómez Muntané, El Canto de la Sibila, I: León y Castilla. Madrid: Editorial Alpuerto, 1996. Pp. 77 + illustration, musical transcriptions. The editor of the present book is one of the most successful of Spanish musicologists today, judging from Gómez Muntané's recent record of editions, ranging across ages of Spanish manuscript and printed collections, and her numerous articles reaching into the pages of this journal. Her twenty-eight-page Introduction treats the tenth-century origin, dramatization, vernacularization, and late cultivation of the "Song of the Sybil" in transpyrenean ritual practices beyond those of the Spanish March. Chief resources, appropriately used, are Higini Angles' La Música a Catalunya fins al segle XHI (1935) and Richard B. Donovan's Liturgical Drama in Medieval Spain (1958). Gómez edits the extra-Catalonian-Valencian witnesses of the famous prophetic praeconium of the Nativity in two formats: first, the texts with critical notes and source reference following each version, all concluded by a very serviceable bibliography; second, the edition proper in musical score. Her introduction deals with this and related quasiliturgical creations, notably the Pseudo-Augustinian Sermo de symbolo and the Ordo Prophetarum. She considers the case of ten text-music versions of the sibylline prophecy which she has edited in historical progression: I. Sigiienza (Arch. Capit. 20, fol. 35v); II. León (Arch. Capit. 23, fols. 4v-8r); III. Toledo (Arch. Capit. 48.10, fol. 40r-40v); IV. Madrid, B.N. 10069 (Cantiga No. 100), with El Escorial, B. del Monasterio B.I.2 (Song No. 12); V. Monastery of Silos (lost MS., accessed through a photograph in the private collection of J.Ma Lamaña, fols. viiiv-xiv); VI. New York, Hispanic Society of America, HC:380/897, fols. 10G-102'; VII. Madrid B. del Palacio Real 11-1335, fol. cclv; VIII. Sevilla, B. Colombina 7-1-28, fol. lxxxviiP; IX. Sevilla, B. Colombina 7-1-28, fols. ciiiiv-cvr; X. Toledo, Arch. Capit. 21, fols. 29v-30r. The last four versions are polyphonic: VII by Alonso de Cordoba, VIII anonymous, IX by Juan de Triana, and X by Cristóbal de Morales (VII and IX edited by Angles, Table III). Included also, as discussed in the introduction, are the verses of Cristóbal de Castillejo (a 1494 in Salamanca-c.1590 in Toledo). In the Latin versions, I and II from the twelfth and thirteenth centuries respectively, there is disagreement, reflected in the testimonies from France and Catalonia, over the inclusion of the Doomsday fanfare Audite quid dixerit ("Hear what she will have said [at that last day]"). Also not unexpected is the fact that the thirteen standard verses of music that alternate with the refrain Judicii signum: tellus sudore madescet ("The sign of Judgment: The earth will become moist with sweat"), observed in Gomez's transcriptions, are at variance among themselves. They trade quid pro quo at least four individual melodies. Pivotal is the transfer of refrain and verses from Latin to vernacular , for not only is there a shift of language but also the sacred-secular 568Comparative Drama aesthetic often mirrored in the language. A fascinating case in point —Version IV—is the "religious," but not even quasi-sacred, Cantiga from the court of Alfonso the Wise in Galician-Portuguese "[i]n which St. Mary prays for us to her Son on the Day of Judgment" (Madre de Deus). Gómez suggests that the king's knowledge of the verses may have resulted from his hearing the Pseudo-Augustine sermon at Toledo, but in any case their verses' paraphrase to a musical contrafact in Alfonso 's collection proves his familiarity with the associated words and music. Lyrical mutuality is demonstrated in the accommodation of the music by the isosyllabic stereotype of the Alfonsine version. The longer or shorter line lengths of Latin have been reclothed in the uniform of an invariable syllable count, and the melody becomes a comfortable fitting stereotype. Musical notation, further, is needed for but one verse with the refrain, making it unnecessary for the scribe to "augment or diminish the number of notes," while the Latin exemplars' constant variations of syllable count require him to copy out the music's...

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Additional Information

ISSN
1936-1637
Print ISSN
0010-4078
Pages
pp. 567-570
Launched on MUSE
2016-10-05
Open Access
No
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