About this blogger:
A theorist, organist, and conductor, Jeff Ostrowski holds his B.M. in Music Theory from the University of Kansas (2004), and did graduate work in Musicology. He serves as choirmaster for the new FSSP parish in Los Angeles, where he resides with his wife and children.
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"I am of the opinion, to be sure, that the old rite should be granted much more generously to all those who desire it. It’s impossible to see what could be dangerous or unacceptable about that. A community is calling its very being into question when it suddenly declares that what until now was its holiest and highest possession is strictly forbidden, and when it makes the longing for it seem downright indecent. Can it be trusted any more about anything else? Won’t it proscribe tomorrow what it prescribes today?"
— Pope Benedict XVI, writing in 1997

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2-1 Suspension in Guerrero Motet
published 20 February 2017 by Jeff Ostrowski

HOSE WHO STUDY music history enjoying finding early uses of more modern chords. Giovanni Gabrieli used the Major-Minor Seventh chord. (Orlando di Lasso did as well, though infrequently.) In this remarkable motet by Francisco Guerrero, written circa 1555AD, Guerrero uses a 2-1 suspension in measure 33. We know it’s not a mistake, because the line in question is a perfect canon with the voice above it:

352 suspension Guerrero


Click here to read the full text, from John 17: 1-3. Guerrero’s setting in many ways reflects the text, which is quite powerful. It is the only part of Scripture I know where our Lord refers to Himself as “Jesus Christ.”

JESUS CHRIST is God, in spite of the heretical teachings of Arius. The Council of Nicaea formulated a Creed all Catholics know—after Arius was given a chance to make his arguments—and also formulated (according to many accounts) twenty canons, which are summarized as:

Canon 1: On the admission, or support, or expulsion of clerics mutilated by choice or by violence.

Canon 2: Rules to be observed for ordination, the avoidance of undue haste, the deposition of those guilty of a grave fault.

Canon 3: All members of the clergy are forbidden to dwell with any woman, except a mother, sister, or aunt.

Canon 4: Concerning episcopal elections.

Canon 5: Concerning the excommunicate.

Canon 6: Concerning patriarchs and their jurisdiction.

Canon 7: confirms the right of the bishops of Jerusalem to enjoy certain honors.

Canon 8: concerns the Novatians.

Canon 9: Certain sins known after ordination involve invalidation.

Canon 10: Lapsi who have been ordained knowingly or surreptitiously must be excluded as soon as their irregularity is known.

Canon 11: Penance to be imposed on apostates of the persecution of Licinius.

Canon 12: Penance to be imposed on those who upheld Licinius in his war on the Christians.

Canon 13: Indulgence to be granted to excommunicated persons in danger of death.

Canon 14: Penance to be imposed on catechumens who had weakened under persecution.

Canon 15: Bishops, priests, and deacons are not to pass from one church to another.

Canon 16: All clerics are forbidden to leave their church. Formal prohibition for bishops to ordain for their diocese a cleric belonging to another diocese.

Canon 17: Clerics are forbidden to lend at interest.

Canon 18: recalls to deacons their subordinate position with regard to priests.

Canon 19: Rules to be observed with regard to adherents of Paul of Samosata who wished to return to the Church.

Canon 20: On Sundays and during the Paschal season prayers should be said standing.

I am by no means an expert on this period of history, but I don’t believe St. Athanasius was allowed to attend the Council of Nicaea because he was only a deacon at that time.