Joachim Burmeister's early seventeenth-century treatise on the making of music is generally acknowledged to be central to the understanding of Baroque musical practice: it was the first systematically to explore the connection between rhetoric and music that became a cornerstone of Baroque musical thought. But until now neither a reliable modern edition nor a full translation of this seminal work has existed. This much-needed edition by Benito V. Rivera contains a critical transcription of the Latin text and an annotated translation on facing pages.
In a lengthy introduction to the book, Rivera reviews Burmeister's two earlier treatises on musical composition, analyzes Musical Poetics as a whole, and places it within its historical context. An appendix to the edition reproduces the passages of music cited by Burmeister, greatly facilitating the interpretation of Burmeister's explanations of the rhetorical figures. The book will be of interest to music historians and theorists as well as to scholars of rhetoric.
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