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Flute in Bach's Vocal Works
Part 2

Continue from Part 1

BWV 119: Preise Jerusalem, den Herrn - - TC Inauguration
Recorders are Us

Continue of discussion from: Cantata BWV 119 - Discussions Part 4

William Rowland (Ludwig) wrote (October 2, 2005):
[To Santu de Silva] Yes I would agree. It is even grander than BWV 29 written or the same occaision but different year. Thank you for using the word "Blockflote".

In the 1990s; Blockflute players who speak English have been trying to get the English speaking Public to stop using "recorder" for the musical istrument because it is very confusing and if the purpose of language is to communicate clearly ---the term can leave one wondering what is being communicated ---for instance in the sentence---"he played the music on the recorder". Does this mean that he played back some music on an electronic device or he played it on the Blockflote.(or if you will Blockflute).

In discouraging the term 'recorder' for the musical wind instrument--we have brought into English the German word for this instrument which clearly tells us it is a musical instrument, that it is a flute and something about the way it is made. Nothing could be clearer. However, the term 'Fipple Flute' is also acceptable but somewhat less clear.

There are several other English words that can be very confusing depending on what country you are in. For instance the word "jock" which in England (Yorkshire) means someone's lunch. IN the United States "jock" is an athlete. So can you imaging the shock of an American hearing someone say that he is going to eat his jock -----mmmh the American thinks ---is he about to fellate someone someone or he is going to attempt eat an article of clothing or is he a cannabal and eating his latest victim???

The same is true in Australia. Americans say a phrase (which I can not recall at the moment) which is very insulting in Australia. This phrase is said without anyone being offended in the US. I once told one of my friends about an American Actress visiting there who did not know that what she was saying was offensive. He about rolled in the floor with laughter.

Douglas Cowling wrote (October 2, 2005):
Ludwig wrote:
< In the 1990s; Blockflute players who speak English have been trying to get the English speaking Public to stop using "recorder" for the musical istrument because it is very confusing and if the purpose of language is to communicate clearly ---the term can leave one wondering what is being communicated ---for instance in the sentence---"he played the music on the recorder". Does this mean that he played back some music on an electronic device or he played it on the Blockflote.(or if you will Blockflute). >
No, he played it on the "recorder", the accepted English term for the instrument for six centuries.

Give this self-delusion a rest!

Ludwig wrote (October 2, 2005):
[To Doug Cowling] I suppose that you, Mr. Cowling, are an advocate for ignorance and non-communicability---as the saying goes "it is all greek to me". Perhaps you wish us to go back to the days before Boswell and Johnson when English was even more confusing due to spellings. Thanks to the work of Dr. Johnson's lexiography and standardization of English spelling--English became much less confusing and more communicative. If that is so why even bother to speak your words or write them?

It becomes more and more imperative that people communicate clearly in a global world. Wars and great tragedies have begun because some idiot could not communicate his thoughts clearly to others. Likewise lawsuits have been lost because of failure to communicate clearly---sometimes over the mere misplacement of a punctuation mark.

Furthermore; this is not a delusion; the delusion is is in the ideology of those who persist with some supercilious obstinate pretense in trying to use archaic language that was basically the slang of it's day to begin with and does not do what language is suppose to do: COMMUNICATE CLEARLY. There is an imperative need, to that end, aside from regionalisms, in these days of global communication to use standard world English or French or Spanish or Chinese or what and which ever the case maybe so that everyone knows what is being communicated.

There is no excuse for sloppy language usage of a mother tongue and that is why we are often required to study English or whatever the mother tongue is when we go through School.

lvb
(who also is a communications professional in addition to Music)

Douglas Cowling wrote (October 2, 2005):
Ludwig wrote:
< Wars and great tragedies have begun because some idiot could not communicate his thoughts clearly to others. >
BLOCKFLÖTES OF MASS DESTRUCTION!

Chris Kern wrote (October 2, 2005):
Ludwig wrote:
< There is no excuse for sloppy language usage of a mother tongue >
There is nothing sloppy about the use of the word "recorder". It is derived from a now-archaic verb "record" meaning "to sing a tune", but there is rarely any ambiguity -- who uses the word "recorder" to mean "a device that records [i.e. on tape]"? Usually people say "tape recorder" or something like that.

What seems sloppy to me is demanding that a well-established English word of many centuries that most people are familiar with be replaced with a German word that hardly anyone knows.

Tom Dent wrote (October 2, 2005):
[To Ludwig] Yes, recorders are dangerous! Nixon had to resign on account of having one under his desk.

P.S. See here: http://www.dolmetsch.com/Glossary.htm what more authority does anyone need?

Ludwig wrote (October 2, 2005):
[To Tom Dent] The question here is not authority but good clear English. Just because someone uses double negatives does not make it correct because the Oxford Dictionary of the English Language lists certain words that form such double negatives as in "I ain't not!" In this case "ain't for "am not".

Most definely! Let's leave the obstinate folks at Dolmetsch out of this---it was their founder who got all this mess started to begin with with his pompous supercilious Society for archaic anachronistic verbosities.

Mr. Dolmetsch did some wonderful things but on the blockflute score it was his worst blunder to call it what he called it. IF you do not like his name you can always call it what the Orchestration writers called it in English of Dolmetsch's period---Flipple Flute.

Chris Kern wrote (October 2, 2005):
But there is simply no reason to use any other word but recorder. The etymology of the word is irrelevant. It's almost impossible for it to be confused with "recording device" because of context, and the fact that almost nobody uses "recorder" to mean "tape recorder" (or any other kind of recording device).

We have a simple word for the instrument that is attested both prescriptively (in dictionaries), and descriptively (in actual usage). There is no cause to attempt to replace it with words that hardly anyone is familiar with, and which do not even appear in standard English dictionaries.

Douglas Cowling wrote (October 2, 2005):
Ludwig wrote:
< IF you do not like his name you can always call it what the Orchestration writers called it in English of Dolmetsch's period---Flipple Flute. >
I loved that TV show! The one where the dolphin plays the blockflöte to warn of danger!

"They call him Flipple ..."

Ludwig wrote (October 2, 2005):
[To Douglas Cowling] (lol) Sorry it was Flipper and Flipper is long gone from this earth. It is nice of your to remember him.

Ludwig wrote (October 3, 2005):
[To Chris Kern] No one was familiar with the damnable word that you are using for the Blockflote in the 1880s amd 1890s when Dolmetsch in his pompous pretense began to use it and the snobs of the 19th century picked it up because they were just as supercilious,pompous and pretensious as Dolmetsch was and just as obstinate. A recorder was and has been since the dawn of Modern Science in the Renaissance a person or instrument that writes or records events. We find it in this usage in the Latin Mass as early as 1253---as in "Recordare jesupie quod sum causa tuae viae." which literally says in English "Record (or remember) sweet Jesus because I am the cause of your life) and we find it in the same meanings in the writings of Ovid, Juvenile, Julius Caesar, Horace and other classic authors.

Yes it is very confusing and it can be easily confused with a electric recording device as well as scientific devices which do the same thing---record or write an event or music.

The issue is clarity and good communication skills in the usage of the English language here. Guessing about your complaints --I do not think many people could trust any directions that they ask of you because you might tell them to "go over there and turn left right there and from there go over yonder---you can't miss it."

While it is not expected that you be a James Joyce or an Auden or an Ernest Hemingway or even a Tennesee Williams--it is reasonable to expect everyone to communicate clearly enough so it does not matter where in the world you are ----standard English means that everyone whose mother tongue is English is going to understand what you say more than 99% of the time.

Chris if you have never heard of Blockflute before you have not been studying your Bach Scores of the Cantatas because that was the flute of the Orchestra until about the time of Mozart when the traverse flute took over. Bach did write for the traverse flute but only rarely.

Yes people still use tape recorders and they are scored for in many Orchestral works today. They also use video recorders as well as many other types of recorders.

Again just because you find a certain word in a dictionary does not mean that it is hic ergo proper English. Both Websters and the Oxford group of dictionaries have words in them that are not proper English.

Chris Kern wrote (October 3, 2005):
Of course people use tape recorders, but there is no danger of confusion of terminology. When people talk about a piece of Bach's being scored with recorders, nobody scratches their head wondering what sense of "recorder" is meant. The word is attested back to the 15th century, and the instrument was essentially lost and forgotten in the 19th century so claiming that the word was not used in that time period has little relevance.

Thomas Braaatz wrote (October 3, 2005):
Ludwig wrote:
>>Bach did write for the traverse flute but only rarely.<<
If you are referring to the "traversa" ['transverse flute'] vis-à-vis "flauto" ['recorder/Blockflöte'], the "traversa" as a descant instrument in the woodwind family comes in 2nd position after the oboe (1st position) as far as Bach's frequency of use within his oeuvre of compositions for instruments. This means that Bach did write less frequently for the 'flauto' than for the 'traversa.'

Ulrich Prinz ("J.S.Bachs Instrumentarium"Stuttgart/Kassel, 2005, p. 242) states:

"Neben der Oboe setzt Bach die Traversa am häufigsten als Diskantinstrument der Holzbläser ein." ["After the oboe, Bach uses most frequently the transverse flute as a descant instrument from the family of woodwinds."]

In order to avoid all this unnecessary controversy and provide a common ground for settling this issue so that we don't have odd-sounding terms like 'fipple flute', etc., why not use the terms that Prinz has settled upon: "flauto" for 'Blockflöte, recorder' and 'traversa' for the transverse flute. (Prinz has cleared up any misconceptions of past commentators/experts who thought that a 'flauto' could also mean a 'transverse flute.' Bach never uses the word 'flauto' or 'fiauto' by itself to mean a 'transverse flute.' There are only a dozen or so instances where Bach uses the word 'flauto' (always in combination with some form of traversa - abbreviations or equivalent forms), otherwise 'flauto' does not mean a 'transverse flute,' but rather a 'recorder/Blockflöte.'

Donald White wrote (October 3, 2005):
[To Ludwig] I'm writing as a newcomer to the Cantata Mailing List, having sent only one message prior to this one (re: Cantata BWV 104, "Du Hirte Israel"---check it out!). Now, day by day, my e-mail bucket fills up with contributions from many fellow Cantata enthusiasts---some enlightening, some amusing, some puzzling, some irritating. Among the latter, I must confess, are "Ludwig's" repeated e-notes insisting that "recorder" must be replaced in English by "blockflute."

"Ludwig," whoever and wherever you are: Chill!! The lexical and etymological record[!!] is entirely against you. So give up! You've lost! In Johann Sebastian's name, surrender!

Robin Kinross wrote (October 3, 2005):
Ludwig wrote:
< No one was familiar with the damnable word that you are using for the Blockflote in the 1880s amd 1890s when Dolmetsch in his pompous pretense began to use it and the snobs of the 19th century picked it up because they were just as supercilious, pompous and pretensious as Dolmetsch was and just as obstinate. A recorder was and has been since the dawn of Modern Science in the Renaissance a person or instrument that writes or records events. We find it in this usage in the Latin Mass as early as 1253---as in "Recordare jesu pie quod sum causa tuae viae." which literally says in English "Record (or remember) sweet Jesus because I am the cause of your life) and we find it in the same meanings in the writings of Ovid, Juvenile, Julius Caesar, Horace and other classic authors. >
< Yes it is very confusing and it can be easily confused with a electric recording device as well as scientific devices which do the same thing---record or write an event or music.>
< The issue is clarity and good communication skills in the usage of the English language here. Guessing about your complaints --I do not think many people could trust any directions that they ask of you because you might tell them to "go over there and turn left right there and from there go over yonder---you can't miss it." >
I think you'd have a stronger argument if you just said that you don't like the Dolmetschian-schoolgirlish associations of the term "recorder" and that you want to claim the instrument for the world of grown-up music. "Clear communication" feels quite weak as an argument.

Santu de Silva wrote (October 3, 2005):
Recorders Are Us

Ludwig writes:
"No one was familiar with the damnable word that you are using for the Blockflote in the 1880s amd 1890s when Dolmetsch in his pompous pretense began to use it and the snobs of the 19th century picked it up because they were just as supercilious,pompous and pretensious as Dolmetsch was and just as obstinate. A recorder was and has been since the dawn of Modern Science in the Renaissance a person or instrument that writes or records events."
Well, you're pointing at one of the most minor infractions in the English assault on reason. I quite agree: there has to be a rational re-configuration of the words that the
English use, a rewriting of the Dictionary, if you will.

One of the most annoying of these is the use of German for German things. Germans themselves, for probably excellent reasons, call themselves Deutch, which would in English be Dutch, a word whose meaning is at present occupied by things belonging to Holland.

We should, by rights, call things of Holland "Hollandish," which would make perfect sense, and German things "Dutch", since the word already exists in the language. Words such as "harpsichord" and "English Horn" are already insults to the intelligence!

Unfortunately, the English themselves form a small but vocal minority of those who use English (to say nothing of the Americans, who tend to cling to the least rational aspects of the language with great determination, such as the Imperial Measure system - -that is, yards, feet and inches, which are not in use in the British Empire at all), and they seem to own the copyright on the language, as it were. Technically, if the British choose to call a flute a violin, and a violin a banana, there's little anyone can do.

However, I chose to acknowledge your preferences with a parenthetical reference to the blockflöte, and I am much dismayed that the gesture - -which I considered to be a conciliatory one- - is being used as a springboard for another outburst of indignation on your part!

You must realize that the word "recorder" for blockflöte is much-loved by the British--indeed across the commonwealth. It represents a new era in Bach performance, and unlike for you, it recalls lovely, ethereal music, in contrast to the more robust and - -may I say it?- - more common tone of the transverse flute. If you were to get your wish, you would deprive British lovers of Bach of a dear symbol of something that made Bach new and wonderful to many of us. No doubt we could bring ourselves to use such words as "fipple-flute" or "blockflute" if we put our minds to it, and some day all generations would call us blessed, but the requisite brief period of deprivation will be impossibly hard to bear.

John Pike wrote (October 3, 2005):
[To Ludwig] Do I detect a flame war starting here? I find these comments directed at Doug, particularly as he is a professional musician, patronising and insulting. This discussion on recorders has been done to death. I don't think there can be a single person other than you, Ludwig, who does not commonly refer to recorders. PLEASE STOP THIS NOW. I dread to think what the next 20 e mails in my inbox have to say about this subject.

Bradley Lehman wrote (October 3, 2005):
The New Grove's article about recorders doesn't have any problem with the nomenclature, calling the instrument a "recorder." It also nicely explains--with plenty of examples--why recorders are traditionally associated with death/otherworld themes in some of the musical literature (which another list member here claimed not to
understand, recently).

I don't understand the various argumentation here against these plain and simple historical facts of usage. The composers and performers knew what they were doing in writing for this instrument, whatever it was called; and why does any set of names for it really matter that much? The instrument can make beautiful and evocative music. I recall some 15+ years ago playing the recorder solo in Benjamin Britten's opera "Noye's Fludde" where it is supposed to suggest the dove flying around, looking to see if the earth is habitable again yet. Bits of flutter-tongueing for the dove's coo or wing-flapping or whatever. Nice piece, and well-written for recorder players of only modest ability--which suited me perfectly, as that's not my main instrument. That whole opera is nicely written for children's abilities, and for modestly-trained adults, vocally or in the orchestra.

Brendan (Dorian Gray) wrote (October 4, 2005):
Actually, Noye's Fludde is scored for adult voices and children's voices, as well as a small children's orchestra complement to a more substantial (and difficult) "adult" orchestra. I have performed the piece before with my younger students and found it to be an astonishingly rich experience, both musically and socially. If I remember correctly, and I'm not at all sure I do, for the recorder part accompanying the dove, we had a lovely interpretive dancer do a little routine for that part and it was quite charming.

Ludwig wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To Bradley Lehman] Groves is behind the times. It takes them roughly about 10-20 years now to get caught up although the first edition back in the 19th century was very much to date even having a listing for Tschaikovsky and Wagner.

Ludwig wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To John Pike] I am a professional musician myself.

Ludwig wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To Donald White] ACH JA?????????

Ludwig wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To Thomas Braatz] Thanks for the reference. The "flauto" as you call it was the standard flute of the Orchestra of those days. the Flauto traverso---appears in some of the Cantatas, I believe but not sure one of the Brandeburgs, and I am sure that you may know others.

John Pike wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To Ludwig] Brandenburg 5 uses a Flauto traverso. Brandenburg 4 should really be done with 2 recorders.

Peter Bright wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To Santu de Silva] This is interesting - I've been having a sabatical away from this generally wonderful list for the last few months - I come back and there is the same rather illogical debate on the use of 'recorder', when there must surely be less than 1 in 10 thousand people who actually reject the name in favour of 'blockflute'.

This was done to death in the past - in December 2004 (http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Topics/Flute.htm), in May 2005 (http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Topics/VDG.htm) and in various comments stretching back at least to 2003 by the lone voice of William promoting the ghost of Dolmetsch.

On Amazon there are over 700 albums in the classical section which contain musicians who play the recorder. There is precisely 1 album listed which contains the term 'blockflute': The album is called 'Ladder of Escape' and features the wonderful jazz musician Eric Dolphy. I fear that many list members themselves are wishing for a ladder of escape to avoid the preposterous argument that we should do away with the term 'recorder'.

Bradley Lehman wrote (October 4, 2005):
Brandenburg recorders

John Pike wrote:
< Brandenburg 5 uses a Flauto traverso. Brandenburg 4 should really be done with 2 recorders. >
...each of which has a second and quieter recorder strapped to it, for the echo portion of movement 2. Search the page: http://www.recorderhomepage.net/torture2.html
for "Rampe". http://www.uni-leipzig.de/museum/musik/musik/exponat/mi/aero/bor/bfloete/nr.1154/1154e1.html

Douglas Cowling wrote (October 4, 2005):
John Pike wrote:
< Brandenburg 5 uses a Flauto traverso. Brandenburg 4 should really be done with 2 recorders. >
I didn't know Bach wrote for two electronic recording devices?!!

Oh silly me, I was just confused momentarily by the term "recorder"!

I guess I'm beyond the pail!

John Pike wrote (October 4, 2005):
[To Bradley Lehman] How absolutely fascinating! You learn something every day!

Thomas Braatz wrote (October 5, 2005):
Bradley Lehman wrote:
>>Brandenburg 5 uses a Flauto traverso. Brandenburg 4 should really be done with 2 recorders....each of which has a second and quieter recorder strapped to it, for the echo portion of movement 2.<<
In mvt. 2 of BWV 1049, what are the mechanical difficulties involved in shifting/switching in a split second from forte to piano while essentially moving from one instrument to another?

Why has noone yet attempted to perform this mvt. in the required fashion? Or has this already been done?

Ulrich Prinz indicates that www.bachdigital.de (once it is up and running again) will have musical examples along the pictures of the instruments involved.

Once the physical aspect of playing what seems like an awkward instrument which appears like Siamese twins where one can get in the way of the other very easily has been mastered, it would seem that the problem of losing pitch when playing softer on a recorder has been solved.

I am eager to hear a recording of this instrument as properly applied in the 2nd mvt. of the Brandenburg 4. Does anyone know of any recording?

Tom Dent wrote (October 7, 2005):
[To Thomas Braatz] Today's recorder virtuoso - e.g. Piers Adams - has little apparent difficulty in switching back and forth between 4 or 5 different recorders. Not all held at once in the hands, of course. Or even playing two at once. It is akin to changing manuals on the harpsichord.

The only thing is that the 'piano' recorder will be cold when the 'forte' one is warm after playing the first movement. However, the intonation is sufficiently flexible for a good player to overcome this. Or one could surreptitiously warm up the 'piano' side during strategic moments in the first movement.

The potentially hairy moments come when there is a bar of 16th notes 'piano' followed by a whole bar of 'forte'. Bach has arranged it such that no otheinstrument plays just at that moment, so the player can take a barely noticeable fraction of time to change sides without getting rolled over by the rest of the band.

One might see the 'interruptio' two bars before the end of the slow movement as a creative exaggeration of the player's need for a break between p and f. It is, though, quite possible that the players worked hard to overcome this quirk of the instrument and were able to switch almost instantaneously from one to the other.

The path of art is not the path of least resistance. Ask some harpsichordists practising the Presto of the Italian Concerto...

Bradley Lehman wrote (October 7, 2005):
[To Tom Dent] I asked an organbuilder recently what he hears from some organists, in response to the fact that his firm never puts electric stop-combination actions into any of their instruments. No piston cheating. He replied that such organists just have to learn how to make a sensible musical pause!

Personally, I don't care if pistons are there or not, because I almost never use them. Strictly "a la carte". In the music I care to play, if I can't do all or most of it without stop-assistance from a device or a deputy, the proposed registration is over-thought and too fussy. If it's congregational singing, there should be a little break between stanzas anyway. If it's solo, why are we trying to change registration during a phrase?

In one piece in my recording (released soon), on very close listening during one notated pause in a Brahms chorale, it's possible to hear me go bam-bam-bam-bam-bam pulling five stops quickly in succession before playing the next beat. Hey, that rhythm is part of the performance and it sets up the excitement of the next loud passage!.....

I remember once in a studio class we all worked on the musical feature of rhythmically-exciting and appropriate page turns.

 

Recorder - Dolmetsch - etc.

Aryeh Oron wrote (March 13, 2006):
I received the following message off-list.

*****************************************
Dear Site Owner,

I was interested to read some comments made in October last year about Dolmetsch and the recorder.

One of your contributors writing under the nom de plume Ludwig suggests that nobody in the late 1800s would have known of the word recorder.

This seems a very strange comment as the word in its plural form 'recorders' appears in Shakespeare's Hamlet and Shakespeare, in England, has seldom been out of fashion nor his plays unperformed.

Any one with any pretence at having received an adequate education would have read Hamlet and would therefore be familiar with the famous recorder lesson therein.

Yours,

Dr. Brian Blood
Dolmetsch Musical Instruments
*****************************************

The relevant discussion can be found at: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Topics/Flute-2.htm

Would you like to respond?

Ludwig wrote (March 14, 2006):
[To Aryeh Oron] Thank you. I will be happy to reply as I have to the Oxford folks etc. However, I need an address to personally reply as I do not see one here and apparently Dr. Blood has distorted what I have said for going on now some 20 plus years.

Dolmetsch has been very stubborn about the nomenclature of the Blockflutes that they make---some of which are very nice instruments--in fact I have a complete collection of them--quintet.

To refresh the group's memory: Blockflutes neither record nor do they practice anything and therefore there is no justification for using 11 and 12th century slang of corrupted Latin. Using the Walter Dolmetsch's term for the instrument is like someone trying to tell you where they live but never can communicate it to you clearly because they say things like 'well you go to over there and turn at the traffic light there and the house is over there you know---you can' miss it". This jibberish is about as clear good English as mud.

Their were people on the list back then who were as obstinate about this matter as Dolmetsch has been or still is. However, things have now moved ahead in many musical quarters accepting the change with proper nomenclature being used and accepted as it should have been for the past 100 years or more. The proper English name for the instruments that Dolmetsch makes

is (choose your word and spelling): Blockflute, Blockflote, Fipple Flute. The last name you will find in many Orchestration books from the 19th century and earlier--- particular the famous Forsyth one. Reason: It accurately describes how the instrument is made---on a block like an Organ Pipe (ever noticed how a group of Blockflutes sound like an Organ). Walter Dolmetsch apparently was a member of the Society for Anachronism when he picked up Chaucerian slang for this instrument. I speak and write several languages and personally feel that the English and German Blockflute nomenclature is the most accurate name for the insturment although in French and Italian Flauto dolce and Flûte douce are ok but to my ears the blockflute does not sound sweet as some of the flute stops of an Organ.

It is now the 21st century and this Chaucerian term can not only be confusing but is not good modern English and it needs to rip as have many other obsolete words such as ye, ye(article),hoven, hath etc have come to be.

I have written a Concertante for a Quintet of BLockflutes but if you wish to find it ---you will be wasting your time trying to find it under the former name of Dolmetsch. Many of my colleagues who are also professional composers now use the proper nomenclature but some publishers are still behind the times and continue to muddy the waters.

Ed Myskowski wrote (March 14, 2006):
<> I see another discussion of flute/recorder developing. I am posting this partial (first paragraph only) so it does not appear as an afterthought, tomorrow or next day. I have rechecked the flute section of general topics, and flute a bec still seems an acceptable (or not too objectionable) option for recorder/flauto/blockfloete. But who knows? Topics (2), vocals, and (3), text, to follow.

Chris Rowson wrote (March 14, 2006):
Ludwig wrote:
< ... Reason: It accurately describes how the instrument is made---on a block ... >
I had thought I would refrain from responding to this post, since I don´t have much to say about it that wasn´t said in previous cycles. However, I mentioned it to my wife, who is a German flute player, and she tells me that the reason a "Blockflöte" is so called is because the element at the top that one blows into is a "Block" or is made out of one.

Neil Halliday wrote (March 14, 2006):
<>
On the issue of recorders: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Recorder

This comprehensive article does not raise the issue of a misnomer. Notice that Pepys and Milton, as well as Shakespeare, are mentioned as examples of authors among others referring to recorders in the 16th and 17th century in England.

It would seem that those people concerned with this terminology might as well accept that English is by no means a consistent language, and 'go with the flow', on an English speaking list.

Ludwig wrote (March 14, 2006):
[To Chris Rowson] Your wife is very correct and there is not a better German or English word for this Flute. If you have a cheap plastic one --you can see what she and I are talking about.

Chris Rowson wrote (March 15, 2006):
[To Ludwig] What she was pointing out is that a "Blockflöte" is so called because it is made with a Block, rather than on a Block.

Tom Hens wrote (March 16, 2006):
Chris Rowson wrote:
< I had thought I would refrain from responding to this post, since I don´t have much to say about it that wasn´t said in previous cycles. However, I mentioned it to my wife, who is a German flute player, and she tells me that the reason a "Blockflöte" is so called is because the element at the top that one blows into is a "Block" or is made out of one. >
There is absolutely no mystery about why a recorder is called a Blockflöte in German or a blokfluit in Dutch. The block is the essential part of the head joint, usually made of softwood, that makes up the bottomside of the windway. In wooden recorders, this can normally be removed for maintenance, in plastic recorders it's often an integral part of the head joint (glued together in the factory that is, and not made of softwood of course, although some people make plastic recorders with cedar-coated blocks). With the block removed, you don't have a musical instrument, just a tube with holes in it. There is absolutely no connection to a recorder being "made on a block like an Organ Pipe", whatever that is supposed to mean.

Tom Hens wrote (March 16, 2006):
Ludwig wrote:
<lots snipped>
< However, things have now moved ahead in many musical quarters accepting the change with proper nomenclature being used and accepted as it should have been for the past 100 years or more. The proper English name for the instruments that Dolmetsch makes is (choose your word and spelling): Blockflute, Blockflote, Fipple Flute. >

<> Not a single English dictionary agrees with you.
<>

Ludwig wrote (March 16, 2006):
To Tom Hens]
<>
If anyone has ever taken a Blockflute apart then you would see just how similar the construction of the Blockflute is to an Organ Pipe.(you will need to look into an Organ pipe below the lip.) Take any metal
Organ Pipe(without slicing up) and you will see in it's basic anatomy that it is the same construction
and anatomy of a blockflute.

Now you may wonder if this is true why does a Principal 8' pipe sounds differently from a Blockflote.

The answer is all in the design of most Organ Pipes (as well as Orchestra Instruments)---as the Principal pipe which does not taper(the blockflute we play does),the bore of the tube, the size of the mouth, toe and the cut up of the mouth of a pipe and whether a pipe tapers or not. Once these things are dealt with then we have to consider the manipulation of the lip of the pipe. By manipulating it; we can add or take away various possible tone qualities to it. For instance the hard German Sound of a North German Principal (which I like)can be turned into a French Montre simply by manipulating the lip and even turned into an English Diapason using the same proceedures.

This applies to metal pipes only.(While we are speaking of this ---it is a mistake to translate a French Montre into English as Diapason because they are not the same--the only thing that is common is that they are foundation stops. Likewise it is erroneous to translate from German Principal into Montre or Diapason.)

Ed Myskowski wrote (March 16, 2006):
<>
We could compromise on the "lingua franca". Flute a bec. Bec for short.

Sounds like a Blockfloete. Akin to a flute.
<>

Thomas Braatz wrote (March 17, 2006):
Tom Hens stated:
>>By this time the transverse flute was in general use and the recorder probably pretty much gone, but that doesn't necessarily mean the word "flauto", used without qualifiers, had shifted to mean "flauto traverso", or that musicians wouldn't still be aware of the earlier meaning. Even today, it's still quite common to use "flauto traverso" in Italian, "Querflöte" in German, or "dwarsfluit" in Dutch, in contexts in which it is quite clear that the modern transverse flute is meant and no possible confusion with the recorder exists. Terminology often outlasts the things it stands for, and just because the "flauto" became obsolete doesn't mean people automatically transferred the same designation to the "flauto traverso".<<
We both agree that by 1760 "the transverse flute was in general use and the recorder probably pretty much gone."

The question to be researched is what the following titles of compositions listed with the specific dates really meant to anyone coming upon them after c. 1750:

1.. Christoph Weigel, jr. (1702/3- 1777) published some odes for singing and playing to the accompaniment of a 'Clavier, Violino, and Flaute traversière' 1746/1747 but then c. 1750 he has a composition entitled "Divertimenti per Flauto e Basso.Continuo, c. 1750

2. Franz Joseph Haydn: composed a piece (lost) with the designation: ,per il Flauto' 1765 [Did Haydn ever compose anything for the recorder?]

3. Karl Joseph Toeschi (1731-1788) a student of Karl Stamitz has a composition: "Sei Quartetti per Flauto, Violino, Alto è Vc . ... il Dialogo musicale" Paris, 1765

4. Luigi Boccherini: Op. 34 Concerto per Flauto (no date given)

My personal guess would be that, with the exception of Weigel who seems to represent the transitional period for the definition of 'Flauto', the others would favor "Flauto = transverse flute".

In the MGGI (Bärenreiter, 1986) , Hans-Peter Schmitz wrote the article on 'Flöte' and has some interesting observations regarding the changing terminology of 'Flauto' in the 18th century:

>>Von den Flöten-Instrumenten her betrachtet, liegt die große Stilwende nicht um 1600, sondern ein halbes Jahrhundert später; auch die Wende vom Zeitalter des Barock zur klassischen Periode trat bei der Flöte um ein Halb-Jahrhundert verzögert ein. Das neue Klangideal forderte Schärfung, Aufhellung und Verstärkung des Klanges der Instrumente; in diesem Sinne ist die Bedeutung des Cembalos, der Oboe, der Trompete und nicht zuletzt der schon hier siegreichen Violine aufzufassen, bei der die Zeit selten unterläßt, »durchdringend« oder »scharf« hinzuzusetzen. Darüber hinaus verlangte das neue affekthafte Ausdrucksideal von den Instrumenten die Fähigkeit zur persönlichen Aussage. - Um dieser neuen, dem Instrumente wesensfremden Ideale willen mußte die Blockflöte um die Mitte des 18. Jahrhunderts aus dem Instrumentarium ausscheiden und sich auf das Land und in die Kinderstube zurückziehen (erst um 1910 wurde sie wiedererweckt); doch scheint bis etwa 1750 »Flöte« allein (flûte, flute, flauto) immer noch vorwiegend die Blockflöte zu bedeuten.<<

Summary: After having previously discussed in detail how Flute (transverse) and Flute (recorder) were very much more similar in sound quality beginning in the Middle Ages and how the divergence between these two types of flutes gradually increased over the centuries with a great change/difference between them taking place not c. 1600 but c. 1650. A similar slow change also took place during the transition from the Baroque to the Classical period (from elsewhere in the article it becomes clear that he is referring to c. 1750 as time when the transverse flute truly began replacing the recorder.) This was due to the continuing attempts to make the transverse flute have greater volume and a sharper, brighter sound (more penetrating and better intonation). This also came as the need for more expressive instruments (transverse flutes among them) became stronger and represented the new ideal. Because the recorder, due to its inherent nature, was unable to compete against the sound now demanded from flute-like instruments, the recorder was forced to be dropped from the general collection of instruments normally assembled as an orchestra. In the middle of the 18th century, the recorder left its position in orchestras and withdrew into the countryside and became a toy instrument upon which children could learn to play music. Only as late as 1910 was serious interest in the recorder revived. Yet it appears that until 1750, the word 'flute or flauto' still predominantly meant recorder and not transverse flute.

David Lasocki, in his articles covering the recorder and transverse flutes in the Grove Music Online, Oxford University Press, 2006, acc. 3/17/06, sets the date of transition even earlier: 1735.

Here are two articles, which will also explain why 'recorder' is a legitimate term to use in English:

>>Flauto (It.)(See Flute or Recorder)

Until about 1735, composers specified flauto traverso or simply traversa (not traverso) when they intended the flute; the word flauto without modification invariably meant recorder (especially the treble), to which the terms flauto a becco, flauto diritto or flauto dolce also apply. Composite terms mentioned in musical sources include: flauto a culisse (Swanee whistle); fiauto d'echo, scored for by J.S. Bach in his fourth Brandenburg Concerto (probably just a treble recorder, possibly an Echo Flute); flauto d'amore (either a flute, lowest note a, a minor 3rd below tconcert instrument, or occasionally an alto flute in G); flauto di voce ('voice flute': a recorder, lowest note d', also a type of Mirliton); flautone (a large recorder; since the 19th century an alto or bass flute); flauto octavo (a small recorder); flauto pastorale (occasionally applied to panpipes); flauto piccolo (either a piccolo, which in Italian is now more usually called ottavino, or else a small recorder or flageolet); flauto taillo (tenor recorder); and flauto terzetto (flute, lowest note f').<<

>>The verb 'to record', meaning 'to remember for oneself, to recall to another', derives from the Latin recordari, 'to remember'; thus a recorder was a rememberer or relater, such as a minstrel or, by extension, his instrument (E. Partridge: Origins: A Short Etymological Dictionary of Modern English, New York, 1958). The first known use of the word to refer to a musical instrument was in 1388, when the household accounts of the Earl of Derby (later King Henry IV) listed 'i. fistula nomine Recordour mpta London pro domino' (the name of the instrument was misreported as 'Ricordo' by Trowell, D 1957). In English literature the term recorder first appeared in the poem The Fall of Princes by John Lydgate (written 1431-8) where it apparently referred to the pan pipes: 'Pan, god off Kynde, with his pipes sevene / Off recorderis fond first the melodies'. A Latin-English dictionary from 1440, Promptorium parvulorum, gave 'recorder or lytyll pipe' as the translation of canula (the Campus florum cited as the authority for the term has not been traced).

In most European languages, the first term for the recorder was the word for flute alone: in German 'Fleite' (von Aich, LXXV-hubscher Lieder, 1519) or 'Flöte' (Virdung, 1511, rendered as 'flute' and 'fluyte' respectively in the French and Dutch translations of 1529 and 1568); in Italian, 'flauto' (letter from G.A. Testagrossa, 1518) or 'fiauto' (Verona, list of city musicians, 1484); in Spanish, 'flauta' (testament of Antón Ancóriz of Saragossa, 1472). Beginning in the 1530s, an appropriate adjective was often added, describing either the nine holes of the medieval and Renaissance recorder (fleute a neufte trous; see J. Palsgrave: Les clarissement de la langue francoyse, 1530), the eight holes of the Baroque recorder (flauto da 8 fori, 'Tutto il bisognevole', ?1630), the vertical orientation (flauto diritto, letter from Giovanni Alvise, 1505), the soft or sweet tone (fluste douce, Mersenne, 1636; flauto dolce, Küsser, Erindo, 1694; flauta dulce, Pedro Rabassa, Miserere, 1715), the supposed association with England (fluste d'Angleterre, Mersenne, 1636; litui anglicani, rector of the English Jesuit College in St Omer, France, first decade of the 17th century) or with Italy (flauto italiano, Bismantova, 1677, rev. 1694), the block (Blockflöte, Praetorius, 1619), the 'beak' of the Baroque recorder (flûte à bec, Hotteterre, Pièces, 1708; flauta bocca, Reynvaan, 1795), or the ability of the recorder in c'' to fit well into the hand (handfluit, Matthysz, Bc1649). When the Baroque recorder was introduced to England by a group of French professionals in 1673, they brought with it the French names, 'flute douce' or simply 'flute', which overlapped with the traditional name until at least 1695. From 1673 to the late 1720s in England, therefore, the word 'flute', hitherto reserved for the transverse instrument, always meant recorder - a switch of terminology that has caused endless confusion among modern writers and editors. When the transverse flute overtook the recorder in popularity in England in the 1720s, the latter began to be distinguished further by the terms 'common flute' (John Loeillet, Sonata's for Variety of Instruments, 1722) or 'common English-flute' (Stanesby, c1732), later contracted to 'English flute' (The Compleat Tutor for the Flute, c1765). John Grano used 'German flute' and 'flute' interchangeably for the transverse instrument by 1728-9, although a few writers were still using 'flute' to mean recorder until at least 1765. Standard 20th-century names for the recorder include: flûte à bec or flûte douce (Fr.), Blockflöte (Ger.), flauto dolce, flauto a becco or flauto diritto (It.), blokfluit (Dutch), furulya or egyenesfuvola (Hung.), flauta de pico (Sp.) or flauta dulce (Latin-American Sp.) and tatebue or r&#299;k&#333;da (Jap.). The neologism blockflute, derived from the German Blockflöte, goes back at least to F.J. Giesbert's recorder tutor (Mainz, 1936). The German terms Längsflöte and Schnabelflöte have long since gone out of fashion.<<

Santu de Silva wrote (March 17, 2006):
[To Ludwig] Nothing you can say will persuade me, for one, to use blockflote instead of recorder. I use both words, depending on my mood, and I have nothing against the lovely German word "blockflote", with all the attendant umlauts and other paraphernalia. While I admire your single-minded determination to spread what you obviously see as some kind of terminological gospel--it is indeed good to have goals in life; something to give it shape and meaning-- still, it has to be clear by now that continuing your efforts expose you to being seen in the light of a crank.

There simply is no percentage in attempting to persuad people to use the most linguistically appropriate word. (The exception is the case where the word is truly hurtful, such as a racial epithet.) Many nationalities have had misadventures in terminological purity, and we must learn from their failures.

Ed Myskowski wrote (March 18, 2006):
Thomas Braatz wrote:
< In the MGGI (Bärenreiter, 1986) , Hans-Peter Schmitz wrote the article on 'Flöte' and has some interesting observations regarding the changing terminology of 'Flauto' in the 18th century: [...] (from elsewhere in the article it becomes clear that he is referring to c. 1750 as time when the transverse flute truly began replacing the recorder.) >
I wonder if you could add some detail, support, or disagreement to Woolf's (Bach: Learned Musician, p. 274) statement that "from the spring of 1724, he [Bach] began using the transverse flute." Maybe you have already covered this particular time, and I have overlooked a detail. If so, point me in the right direction.

Bradley Lehman wrote (March 18, 2006):
recorders --> flutes (was BWV 106)

[To Ed Myskowski] Here is an excellent book on the topic of the instrument's development during the first half of the 18th century, and Bach's use of it: Amazon.com
"The Early Flute" by John Solum (an expert performer/scholar/teacher who has also inspired or commissioned many new pieces for Baroque flute...).

Ludwig wrote (March 18, 2006):
[To Bradley Lehman] Thanks Brad. I guess I will have to content myself to borrowing it from a library as I have gotten to the point my house can not accomodate another book and I am not inclined to throw them in the dump or give away.

Thomas Braatz wrote (March 18, 2006):
Ed Myskowski wrote:
>>I wonder if you could add some detail, support, or disagreement to Woolf's (Bach: Learned Musician, p. 274) statement that "from the spring of 1724, he [Bach] began using the transverse flute." Maybe you have already covered this particular time, and I have overlooked a detail. If so, point me in the right direction.<<
Brad Lehman's suggestion to purchase Solum's book on the 'early flute' in order to confirm or deny Wolff's assertion about Bach first use of the transverse flute in the spring of 1724 seems to be a <questionable>: 1. Solum's book, covering a wide span of centuries with interesting details about early flutes in general was published in 1995 (over ten years ago) and does not purport to focus on Bach and 2. Wolff's updated research solely on Bach was published in 2000.

More recently, Ulrich Prinz published "J.S. Bach's Instrumentarium" in 2005 with truly exhaustive information on the instruments that Bach used. It is from this book that I can share the following information which does provide an answer to the question which was raised:

1. No loncredible are earlier speculations by some Bach experts that certain mvts. from a proto-Passion composed in Weimar from which later both the SMP (BWV 244) and SJP (BWV 245) derived materials (in particular a soprano aria, which later would become BWV 245/35) would have used transverse flutes. The arguments against this are quite plausible and have to do with the differing ranges of recorders vs. transverse flutes and the use of Chorton vs. Cammerton.

2. The earliest documented use of transverse flutes by Bach is found during the Cöthen period, where pairs of transverse flutes (i.e., Traversa I and Traversa II as distinctly separate parts) are employed: BWV 173a, BWV 184a, and BWV 194a. The names of two flute players ("Flötisten" - I will avoid using 'Flautist' here because of possible confusion caused by assuming that 'Flautists' might be considered as playing only recorders at this point in time) are listed as members of the Cöthen Court Chapel Orchestra: Johann Heinrich Freytag (died in August, 1720) and Johann Gottlieb Würdig, a member of the orchestra from 1717/1718 to 1722.

In Leipzig, Bach began writing parts for the Traversa at the end of the 1st yearly cycle of cantatas (spring of 1724). The most likely reason for their appearance in Bach's cantata scores at this time is associated with excellent playing capabilities of one, Friedrich Gottlieb Wild, a law student who first enrolled at the University of Leipzig on April 20, 1723, but who also became one of Bach's music students and for whom Bach wrote a glowing letter of recommendation when Wild applied for the position of Cantor in Chemnitz. For 3 years, Bach was able to rely upon Wild to play the Traversa parts. There was even a stretch of 12 cantatas tht were composed almost consecutively, one week after the other, from August 6th to November 19th of 1724. In each one of these the Traversa plays an important role in the instrumental ensemble. Alfred Dürr had commented about this particular year 1724: "Obviously Bach had a very capable player at hand."

In 1725, the Traversa is used in 10 compositions and in 1726 in 6, most of the time in a solo/obbligato capacity. After 1728 there are 20 compositions where the Traversa appears divided into 2, 3, or 4 parts, probably associated with Bach's connection to the Collegium Musicum, where more university student instrumentalists could be found. Another Bach music student, Christoph Gottlieb Wecker (1706-1774) is documented as playing the "Flaute Traver." Not documented, but considered as possibilities as Traversa players are Bach's third son Johann Gottfried Bernhard and Lorenz Christoph Mizler von Koloff. Late in Bach's life, he composed Traversa parts for Quantz and his pupil, King Frederick the Great.

Ed Myskowski wrote (March 18, 2006):
Ed Myskowski wrote:
>>I wonder if you could add some detail, support, or disagreement to Woolf's (Bach: Learned Musician, p. 274) statement that "from the spring of 1724, he [Bach] began using the transverse flute. <<
Thomas Braatz wrote:
< "More recently, Ulrich Prinz published "J.S. Bach's Instrumentarium" in 2005 with truly exhaustive information on the instruments that Bach used. >
Thank you for the detailed, and incredibly speedy response!

Bradley Lehman wrote (March 18, 2006):
< Brad Lehman's suggestion to purchase Solum's book on the 'early flute' in order to confirm or deny Wolff's assertion about Bach first use of the transverse flute in the spring of 1724 seems to be a step in the wrong direction: 1. Solum's book, covering a wide span of centuries with interesting details about early flutes in general was published in 1995 (over ten years ago) and does not purport to focus on Bach and 2. Wolff's updated research solely on Bach was published in 2000.
More recently, Ulrich Prinz published "J.S. Bach's Instrumentarium" in 2005 with truly exhaustive information on the instruments that Bach used. >
It's somehow "a step in the wrong direction" to read the work of a recognized expert who has spent a whole career playing and teaching flutes, especially the earlier models, over the past 35+ years?

Dr Solum certainly knows his material better than most other people, and his book remains a terrific resource overviewing the instrument and presenting historical/practical playing techniques. His information doesn't go out of date (somehow) in a mere 11 years, for an instrument that was invented several hundred years ago. I bought his book myself some 7 or 8 years ago, just because I wanted to understand the material; and I'm not a flute player but I work with them. It's always good to try to understand one's colleagues.

Nor does the information of one of the top 18th century German flute builders who wrote about playing it, teaching it, composing for it, and about appropriate musicality: namely, Johann Joachim Quantz, whose book also remains indispensable.

Naw; I suspect it was just an insulting assertion that another expert in playing Baroque instruments (namely Brad Lehman on the keyboards, who must be personally discredited for some reason?) is somehow less credible than those who purchase heavier and newer German hardback books, to be "truly exhaustive" of both patience and of minutiae.

I want to read Prinz's book sometime, myself when I get around to requesting an Interlibrary Loan copy, but I have some higher musical priorities (and commissioned assignments) ahead of doing so, at the moment. It's undoubtedly fine in issues of hardware and positivistic musicology (i.e. "just the facts, ma'am" carefully catalogued and pinned to a butterfly-board, without any messy intrusion of practical musicality or aesthetics, such as we see from Quantz).

As I recall, I was one who recommended Prinz's book here more than a year ago, in advance of its publication, that it would be something worth looking at sometime. Ah yes, here's my archived posting from December 2004 in that regard: http://www.bach-cantatas.com/Topics/Corno-da-caccia.htm
which undoubtedly had some influence on at least one other member's decision to go buy it himself. No thanks to me for recommending an excellent book, but just using that book itself to beat me up personally! The weight of a 450-page hardback is obviously something to be reckoned with, as a cudgel.

Solum's book: Amazon.com [HC] / Amazon.com [PB]

Solum's mini-bio: http://music.vassar.edu/faculty.html?bio=John_Solum

Quantz's book which I recommended on Amazon in 2001, and which was one of my textbooks for a university course (1990-91) in Baroque performance practices: Amazon.com

Prinz's book: Amazon.com

Ed Myskowski wrote (March 18, 2006):
Bradley Lehman wrote:
< No thanks to me for recommending an excellent book. >
Thanks, indeed, for all of the recommendations. I trust it is not inappropriate (that is, it's OK) to say this publicly, since I previously thanked Thomas Braatz for posting relevant citations from one of them.

My immediate re Bach and transverse flute has been answered. Since I am not a Bach (or even music) specialist, I probably don't need more information at the moment. It is always worthwhile to have references recommended for future use.

Thomas Braatz wrote (March 18, 2006):
Bradley Lehman wrote:
>>It's somehow "a step in the wrong direction" to read the work of a recognized expert who has spent a whole career playing and teaching flutes, especially the earlier models, over the past 35+ years?<<
Yes, it is when the question asked by Ed Myskowski is very direct and to the point: "Is Christoph Wolff correct in his Bach biography "Johann Sebastian Bach: The Learned Musician" when he asserts that Bach's first use of the transverse flute was in the spring of 1724?"

Having the Solum book in your possession, as you admit, it would have taken (this is only a suggestion!) you much less time to look up this point in Solum's book and share it with list members than it did take to engage in a long diatribe against me along with a defense of this book which, from your obvious avoidance of providing a simple answer, seems to indicate that no such answer to this specific question is to be found in this book or, if it is mentioned, the research would be out of date.

>>Dr Solum certainly knows his material better than most other people, and his book remains a terrific resource overviewing the instrument and presenting historical/practical playing techniques. His information doesn't go out of date (somehow) in a mere 11 years, for an instrument that was invented several hundred years ago.<<
The specific information which Ed Myskowski was seeking does go out of date. Consider Wolff (2000) and Prinz (2005). Consider Wolff (2000) as well as Solum (1995) were trying to cover much wider fields of information while Prinz (2005) concentrated solely on the instruments which Bach employed. It would appear that Solum has the poorest chance of getting the information correct, if material relating to this question is even mentioned in the book at all.

>>It's always good to try to understand one's colleagues.<<
It is even better to be able to access the best up-to-date sources and give well-founded answers which are as specific and to the point as possible.

>>Nor does the information of one of the top 18th century German flute builders who wrote about playing it, teaching it, composing for it, and about appropriate musicality: namely, Johann Joachim Quantz, whose book also remains indispensable.<<
Not when Quantz is unable to answer a specific question such as the one Ed Myskowski raised.

>>Naw; I suspect it was just an insulting assertion that another expert in playing Baroque instruments (namely Brad Lehman) on the keyboards, who must be personally discredited for some reason?)<<
How did we get all the way from the subject of transverse flutes in Bach's music, more specifically if spring 1724 in Leipzig was the first time Bach used these instruments, to trying to determine the expertise of a list member in playing keyboards? And where is there an attempt to discredit a list member such as you when it was simply pointed out that the book that you recommended as providing the possible answer to a question in all likelihood does not even contain the correct answer, or, if there even is a specific answer given in Solum's book, it would be already outdated by subsequent scholarship?

>>I want to read Prinz's book sometime, myself when I get around to requesting an Interlibrary Loan copy, but I have some higher musical priorities (and commissioned assignments) ahead of doing so, at the moment. It's undoubtedly fine in issues of hardware and positivistic musicology (i.e. "just the facts, ma'am" carefully catalogued and pinned to a butterfly-board, without any messy intrusion of practical musicality or aesthetics, such as we see from Quantz).<<
Of course, with this attitude about the type of scholarship in a book, nothing but empiricism would suffice. This is a dangerous road to follow because such an over-reliance on empirical methods lacks a foundation in substance (actual factual material) that is still being examined carefully and producing new insights into Bach's compositional and performance methods, insights which cannot be obtained simply on an empirical basis.

 

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