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200 years

   
The English word baroque is derived from the Italian barocco, meaning bizarre, though probably exuberant would be a better translation more accurately reflecting the sense. The usage of this term originated in the 1860s to describe the highly decorated style of 17th and 18th century religious and public buildings in Italy, Germany and Austria, as typified by the very baroque angelic organist adorning the Gottfried Silbermann organ completed in 1714 for the Cathedral in Freiberg, Saxony (illustrated above). Later, during the early-to-mid 1900s, the term baroque was applied by association to music of the 17th and early 18th century, and today the term baroque has come to refer to a very clearly definable type or genre of music which originated, broadly speaking, around 1600 and came to fruition between 1700 and 1750.

What is the essence of baroque music? Baroque music expresses order, the fundamental order of the universe. Yet it is always lively and tuneful. Music reflects the mood of the times, then as now as always. Follow the development of music through this brief outline, from the earliest times to the present day, with baroque music in historical context.

Music and its performance has its fashions, like everything else. There are currently two schools of thought in the performance of baroque music: the "modern" and the "authentic" - though both names are misleading. A little knowledge of these alternatives will guide you in your subsequent choice of recordings.
 
 
The English word baroque is derived from the Italian barocco, meaning bizarre, though probably exuberant would be a better translation more accurately reflecting the sense. The usage of this term originated in the 1860s to describe the highly decorated style of 17th and 18th century religious and public buildings in Italy, Germany and Austria, as typified by the very baroque angelic organist adorning the Gottfried Silbermann organ completed in 1714 for the Cathedral in Freiberg, Saxony (illustrated above). Later, during the early-to-mid 1900s, the term baroque was applied by association to music of the 17th and early 18th century, and today the term baroque has come to refer to a very clearly definable type or genre of music which originated, broadly speaking, around 1600 and came to fruition between 1700 and 1750.

What is the essence of baroque music? Baroque music expresses order, the fundamental order of the universe. Yet it is always lively and tuneful. Music reflects the mood of the times, then as now as always. Follow the development of music through this brief outline, from the earliest times to the present day, with baroque music in historical context.

Music and its performance has its fashions, like everything else. There are currently two schools of thought in the performance of baroque music: the "modern" and the "authentic" - though both names are misleading. A little knowledge of these alternatives will guide you in your subsequent choice of recordings. More...

 
    ENLIGHTENMENT : The Age of Reason and Science
  ENLIGHTENMENT : The Age of Reason and Science
The Age of Enlightenment was an intellectual movement in 18th-century Europe. The goal of the Enlightenment was to establish an authoritative ethics, aesthetics, and knowledge based on an "enlightened" rationality. The movement's leaders viewed thems...
 
    The Night Watch, Rembrandt
  The Night Watch, Rembrandt
"Night Watch", 1642; Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. The Night Watch is misnamed because of a very dark varnish that covered it until the 1940's. It should be titled The Company of Captain Frans Cocq. It is a group portrait of a company of civil guards under...
 
    Domenico Scarlatti, Italian Composer
  Domenico Scarlatti, Italian Composer
Italian composer and keyboard player. Son of the composer Alessandro Scarlatti, he worked as his father's assistant in Naples. By 1705 he was living in Rome. His father subsequently sent him to Venice, where he stayed until about 1708. There he proba...
 
       
 
         
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