Wednesday, November 6, 2019

Boethius essays

Boethius essays Throughout history, every society has searched for some way to express its feelings and beliefs. Music has been an integral part of virtually every culture, so it is quite natural for people to have written about this subject. More literature has survived than actual music, which leaves modern scholars with the job of translating, interpreting, and trying to understand the writings of people prior to modern musical notation. Anicius Manlius Severinus Boethius wrote and translated many books on subjects he felt were important to the education of future generations. Of particular interest is his book, The Fundamentals of Music (De institutione musica). Even though this book is no longer used as a basis for music education, it has had a lasting impact on music history and Boethius was born either in or around Rome sometime around the year 480 AD. His father died when he was only seven, and he was taken in and raised by one of the wealthiest aristocrats of the time, Symmachus. Boethius received an exceptional education, married Symmachuss daughter, and led an esteemed career as a politician, writer, and scholar until he was imprisoned and executed in 524. Boethiuss works may be divided into four categories, in chronological order: didactic works, treatises on the mathematical disciplines; the logical works, in essence translations or commentaries on Aristotle, Cicero, and Porphyry; the theological treatises, works expounding orthodox Christian doctrine by the philosophical method; and the Consolation of Philosophy, a purely philosophical treatise written in prison.1 It is the first category, which deals with the mathematical disciplines, that contains his Fundamentals of Music. At the time Boethius wrote these books, music was considered one of the mathematical subjects, along with arithmetic, geometry, and astronomy. Boethius described these disciplines as...

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