Saturday, February 26, 2005

Do Re Me

One of the puzzling questions in music history is the large number of pieces written around Mannheim in the late 1600’s in which the violin section never plays the note of “C.” This is strange since “C” is in the middle of the scale.

Diligent research by noted music historian Peter Schickele has solved this mystery. It seems the local violinmaker made violins with very elaborate scrolls. As often happens, every violinist of in the area had to use one. However violins with these elaborate scrolls could not play the note of “C”. Thus the local composers wrote music that did not use the note of “C” for the violin section.

This is how the dead “C” scrolls came to be.

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