Monday, June 8, 2015

For the Honourable Lord Albrecht Stampher upon being Named a Vigilant of the Order of the Laurel

By THLaid Colyne Stewart, June AS 50 (2015)

[Voice 1:]
I sing now of a man most wise,
Who is adept at all he tries,
And has now come to Royal’s sight.

[Voice 2:]
I sing now of a man most prized,
Whose blade flashes’ neath the skies,
And who is known well for papers that he writes.

[Voice 3:]
I sing now of a man who tries,
Who where others fall he doth still rise,
And who wields a pen long into night.

[Voice 4:]
I sing now of a man who cries
With joy as manuscripts higher rise,
And with whom base ignorance doth lose the fight.

We sing now of Albrecht, eyes
Set upon the scholar’s guise,
Who will be raised to gloried height.

By Their decree, the Herald cries
For Albrecht, Laurel, to arise,
And bid him be a teacher bright

Written as a lied. The lieder (the plural of lied) were several types of German songs as they were referred to in English and French writings. The earliest examples are from the 12th and 13th centuries and were the works of the Minnesingers.

The lied proper usually made use of the bar form. It was made up of a strophe (stanza) divided into two stollen (confusingly also referred to as stanzas, and collectively known as an aufgesang). They were followed by an abesang (the after-song). It was apparently not uncommon for the stollen to be of different lengths. Melodically, the abesang would mirror the end melody of the aufgesang. The bar form was usually represented as AAB (with the As being the two stollen and the B being the abesang).

The courtly minnelieder were monophonic (a single melodic line). As musical notation of this period was not precise, the rhythmic interpretation is open to debate.

In the 14th century the monophonic lied went into decline, while the polyphonic lied was introduced (for two or more voices or voice and instruments).

In the 15th century the polyphonic lieder expanded to having up to four voices, and were addressed to scholars and clergy.

As Albrecht’s persona is 16th century German, I went with the later polyphonic version of the lied, which fit quite well as he is being made a Laurel for research, and the later lieder were often addressed to scholars.


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