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Music in Late Medieval Bruges (Oxford Monographs on Music) Paperback – January 17, 1991

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Product Details

  • Series: Oxford Monographs on Music
  • Paperback: 292 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press; Revised edition (January 17, 1991)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0193164183
  • ISBN-13: 978-0193164185
  • Product Dimensions: 5.9 x 0.7 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #6,616,891 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"A magisterial fusion of music history and local historiography...Beyond its vast erudition, modestly concealed beneath a lively and engaging prose style, the book offers much more: it explodes with ideas, unearths and reexamines questions that seemed to have been laid to rest long ago, and approaches music historiography in a way which one hopes future studies will emulate....Brilliant, innovative, and provocative, Strohm's book is a paradigm of history and criticism at its best and a landmark in the historiography of late medieval music."--Journal of the American Musicological Society

"Brilliant and at times provocatively written...a remarkable achievement; a major contribution to our understanding of 15th-century music."--Early Music

"Packed with fascinating details about the musical life of Bruges and those who practiced it...[the book] must be considered one of the major studies of its kind....It is invaluable in filling a gap in our knowledge and offers a fascinating glimpse into the manifold areas of musical creation and performance in an important Flemish city."--Speculum

"Strohm's contribution is new again, equally and suggestively rich. It is a major contribution to 15th century studies."--Musical Times

"Exceptionally rich in facts, ideas and hypotheses, enough of them to occupy scholars for years to come."--Times Literary Supplement

About the Author

Reinhard Strohm, Professor of Music History, Yale University.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Giordano Bruno on April 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
I'm shocked to find this fascinating book out of print and selling used for outlandish prices. If my review intrigues you, you'll have to turn to your local library for help.

Musicologists and performers of Renaissance music will know of this book already and be aware of its contents. That's as it should; much of what Strohm offers is quite specialized, and his analyses of musical forms will not be intelligible to non-musical readers. But there's another larger side to this important study, which I think might be of interest to anyone who likes to read social history.

Bruges in the late Middle Ages, or Renaissance if you prefer, was one of the nurseries of the so-called Franco-Flemish school of composition, which spread its influence to every corner of western Europe in the late 14th and the 15th Centuries. The best known of the Franco-Flemish musical mafia - Josquin, Ockeghem, Isaac, etc. - spent most of their careers elsewhere, but at least one great composer stayed close to Bruges, Jacob Obrecht, and his biography is recounted in Strohm's book.

What makes "Music in Late Medieval Bruges" potentially interesting to non-musicians is Strohm's presentation of the niche music occupied in the society of a prosperous Medieval city. Strohm discusses why, where, and when music was performed, not only in the churches but in all public fetes and holidays, in ceremonies of diplomacy and statecraft, in guild affairs, and in private life. Bruges, like most important urban centers, employed town musicians, both singers and instrumentalists. Many of the powerful guilds that ran the city's economy also had associations with specific intrumentalists, both players and makers.
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