Music History Timeline No.1: The Middle Ages & The Reinassance

  • Period: Jan 1, 800 to Jan 1, 1400

    The Middle Ages

    Considered the period between Antiquity and the REinassance period, in music many firsts were to be had. This included music being notated and learned through more than word of mouth, the establishment of kingdoms that form many of the countries know of today and the dominance of the Church.
  • Dec 25, 800

    Charlemange Crowned Emporer

    Charlemange Crowned Emporer
    Charlemange, otherwise known as Charles the Great, is known as the emporor who united a large amount of western Europe. His importance is marked in the fact that without his unification of western Europe, the countries we know of today would not exist in how we know them to be now. He influenced the beginning of what is known as France and Germany today.
  • Jan 1, 900

    Music First Become Notated

    Music First Become Notated
    Music was primarilly transferred through oral traditions and even as it was notated it was still hard to come by as only the church had access to the music and the art of making a manuscript was time consuming with little availbillity to view the manuscript yourself.
    (Bonds 19)
  • Jan 1, 936

    The Start of the Holy Roman Empire

    The Start of the Holy Roman Empire
    Otto the First, after his father died, was appointed his successor and elected as king. During Otto's rule what will later be known as the Holy Roman Empire was established which can be thought as a precursor to Germany, Prussia, and many other countries. The reign of this empire would last until the early 1800s.
  • Jan 1, 1050

    Polyphonic Singing

    Polyphonic Singing
    Polyphonic singing began to replace plain chant. During the Great Schisim, it mostly replaced plainchant due to the divide within the church.
  • Jan 1, 1050

    Musical Notation

    Musical Notation
    The first known instance of notating music was around this time. Before then, musicians would simply follow the music or simply have the music drilled into them. Musical notation is a staple of music theory and performance today.
  • Jan 1, 1053

    The Great Schism

    The Great Schism
    The Great Schism was a result of the divide between the catholic church.The split of the curch resulted in the Roman Catholic Church and the Greek Orthodox Church of today. This is remarkable musically because there was surely a split of styles between the Roman and Greek churches.
  • Jan 1, 1065

    First Manuals on Music Theory

    First Manuals on Music Theory
    Wilhelm von Hirsau, a german Benedictine monk wrote the first manuals on music theory. The work done here would soon make way towards how we learn musical theory today.
  • Jan 1, 1086

    Domesday Book

    Domesday Book
    The Domesday Book was a manuscript of the survey of England by William the Conquerer. It's one of the earliest manuscripts ever created detailing what life was like during William the Conquerer's time and serves as a testament to England's age.
  • Jan 1, 1095

    First Crusade Begins

    First Crusade Begins
    The Crusades were a result of the Catholic church's marital expeditions against Muslims for dominance in the holy land of Jerusalem. There would be a number of major battles throughout the rest of the Middle Ages and part of the Renaissance era. This particular crusade is remarkable in the fact that it was one of the first successes of the Catholic church since they had successfully captured Jerusalem.
  • Jan 1, 1150

    Hildegarde's "Play of Virtues"

    Hildegarde's "Play of Virtues"
    The Play of Virtues is a morallity tale placed to music. Remarkable in the fact that iwas written by a woman- which was unheard of in that time- it covers many of the values held within the day. The Play of Virtues were the story of confrontations between Satan and 16 Virtues with the virtues given personallity through individual singers.(Bonds 22) Satan does not have a singing part because it was thought that the absence of music is hell initself.)
  • Jan 1, 1200

    Cymbals

    Cymbals
    On the other side of the old world, Cymbals were formed and developed in Asia. Cymbals today are part of the percussion section in Orchestra.
  • Mar 1, 1212

    Children's Crusade Begins

    Children's Crusade Begins
    This is a strange crusade that occurs some time before the Fifth Crusade. It's thought that a group of children were influenced by a child who had seen Jesus and was told to go to Jerusalem and reclaim the holy land.
  • Feb 27, 1260

    First Meistersingers Established

    First Meistersingers Established
    Meistersingers were German artisans that belonged to a guild that promoted the arts. It was one of the first times a guild had been developed for the arts.
  • Jan 1, 1315

    Great Famine of 1315

    Great Famine of 1315
    Before the black plauge there was the great famine. Millions of people died due to the poor crop yields of the year before and general misfortune. It's very much a precursor to what else would be happening throughout the 14th century.
  • Jan 1, 1322

    Counterpoint Banned

    Counterpoint Banned
    Pope John XXII banned counterpoint in the catholic church.Counterpoint often contains augmented 4th sounds which were considered to be unholy in the church and a disgrace to god for sounding so evil.
  • Jan 1, 1325

    “Tournai Mass” First Polyphonic Mass

    “Tournai Mass” First Polyphonic Mass
    The Tourani Mass was held and performed in mass. It's remarkable in the fact that it was the first polyphonic mass and that it comprised of six movements sung in three parts. It was the first of it's kind.
  • Jan 1, 1331

    Black Plauge Starts In Asia

    Black Plauge Starts In Asia
    Before the Black Plauge famously ravaged Europe, it had started it's dark journey through the provinces of Asia and the Middle East. I would make it's way through Europe in about 15 years, where millions would subcumb to it.
  • Jan 1, 1337

    Beginning of Hundred Years War

    Beginning of Hundred Years War
    The Hundred Years war marked the beginning of a longstanding conflict between France and England. It's remarkable in the fact that there was development in the millitary strength of the two countries.
  • Jan 1, 1348

    Black Death Enters Europe

    Black Death Enters Europe
    The Black Death started it's ravaging path in Sicilly, quickly spreading throughout much of Europe up to 1353. It is one of the worse pandemics in history and resulted in at least 100 million people sucumbing to the plauge.
  • Jan 1, 1350

    Behold Spring

    Behold Spring
    Francesco Landini composed this piece. It's remarkable in the fact that it was the first work that used polyphony while also being secular.
  • Jan 1, 1350

    I Can All Too Well Compare My Lady

    I Can All Too Well Compare My Lady
    Guillaume de Machaut composed the song "I can All Too Well Compare My Lady." This work is polyphonic and retells the story of the sculptor Pygmyllion who prayed to the beautiful sculpture ignoring all else.
  • Period: Jan 1, 1425 to

    The Reniassance

    Meaning "rebirth" in French, the Reinassance was a time of just that and the first birth of many ideas. The main principles of the Reinassance were to develop ones self as a human being rather than a being all for the church. Intellectuals and artists alike indulged in their conversations with one another and developed ideas the likes of which had never been seen before up to this point.
  • Jan 1, 1437

    Counterpoint in Musical Comp is Created

    Counterpoint in Musical Comp is Created
    John Dunstable developed counterpoint in musical compositions. Counterpoint is when two harmonies coexist interdependently but have their own singular rhythms and melodies. Counterpoint exists today in many forms of popular music such as many of Simon & Garfunkle's pieces.
  • Jan 1, 1453

    Hundred Years' War Ends

    Hundred Years' War Ends
    The Hundred Year war ended with France gaining much of the territory that England had gained over the conflicts. Though there were truces throughout the Hundred Years' war, it still ended in favor of the French. The end result of the Hundred Years' war generally lead to the Wars of the Roses in England due to unhappy nobles.
  • Jan 1, 1455

    First Printed Book

    First Printed Book
    The first book ever printed was Gutenberg's Bible. This would mark the beginning of many things including mass produced written books, publishing and so much more.
  • Jan 1, 1465

    First Printed Music

    First Printed Music
    By the time the printing press was invented, so had the first piece of printed music. Because of the printing press, music was now able to be mass produced and handed out to the common man allowing many opportunities to be had and for music to spread quicker than ever before.
  • Jan 1, 1485

    House of Tudor Established

    House of Tudor Established
    The House of Tudor of England holds many infamous figures including Henry the VIII and Elizabeth I. This family's long reign had many ruthless triumphs and marks in history.
  • Jan 1, 1490

    Beginning of Ballet

    Beginning of Ballet
    The first ballete was preformed in Italian courts and afterwards spread to other parts of Europe, being further developed in France. Ballet was a return to dance being involved with music- as music's purpose back in the middle ages was for dancing to. The value and syngergy of dance and music is still prevelant today.
  • Jan 1, 1492

    Voyage to the New World

    Voyage to the New World
    Christopher Columbus amongst other wide-eyed explorers, made their way to the fabled new world with the promises of riches, and exploration. These explorations would be important in terms of discovery.
  • Jan 1, 1499

    University of Oxford gives Music Degrees

    University of Oxford gives Music Degrees
    Though music was expected to be apart of the daily life of he denizens of this period, music had never been apart of a university program. The University of Oxford instituted it's first degree in music which started the line of many universities throughout the world today to deliever music degrees to those who desire them.
  • Jan 1, 1500

    The Cricket Composed by Josquin

    The Cricket Composed by Josquin
    Music was often set to poetry during this period. The poem that the music was set with was thought to be humourous so Josquin wanted to make the sounds of the song just as funny. "The text praises the singing of crickets over birds..." (Bonds, 59) which in itself is humourous because it was commonly thought that birds were the ones always singing.
  • Jan 1, 1502

    Book of Masses Published

    Book of Masses Published
    The first Book of Masses by Josquin des Pres was published by Ottaviano de Petrucci. It included five parts which is still used today in Catholic masses.
  • Apr 21, 1509

    Henry the VIII succeeeds to the Throne

    Henry the VIII succeeeds to the Throne
    The start of the reign of one of the most infamous men of the Tudor House. Though not uncommon of monarchs, he had six wives- all unable to bear him a son which left ultimately left him without a legitamate heir. He's also known for establishing his own church (Anglican church)in order to divorce one of his wives.
  • Jan 1, 1515

    95 Theses by Martin Luther

    95 Theses by Martin Luther
    The 95 Theses was essentially a large list of complaints and commentary on what was wrong about the church in Martin Luther's time. Martin Luther himself was a Benedictine monk and his action was very much a spark in the direction of what would later be known as the Reformation.
  • Jan 1, 1516

    Music Engravings

    Music Engravings
    Plates from the printing press were not only used for text but for music as well. These massive plates would then be used to make vast amounts of music to spread widely.
  • Jan 1, 1531

    Calvinism Develops

    Calvinism Develops
    Named after Jean Calvin, Calvinism is a form of theology that spawned from the Reformation that took place during the Renaissance. The general principle Calvinism is that, in the kingdom of God, man will find eternal salvation.
  • Jan 1, 1553

    The Violin

    The Violin
    The violin we know today is thought to have started developing during this time. The violin of today is known throughout the world as a staple part of orchestra in all of it's forms and is also the biggest section of the orchestra. Many string intruments existed before the form of the violin as precursors.
  • Nov 17, 1558

    Elizabeth I Succeeds to the Throne

    Elizabeth I Succeeds to the Throne
    Elizabeth the First would be the last monarch of the Tudor House. As daughter of Henry the VIII she didn't officially succeed to the throne, due to being made illigetimate after the marriage of Anne Boeyln and Henry the VIII was annulled. Queen Elizabeth I would be known as the Virigin Queen among other names since she remained unmarried and was a rather stern queen during her reign.
  • The First Performance of Romeo & Juliet

    The First Performance of Romeo & Juliet
    Romeo and Juliet would be one of the plays that establishes the tradition of Theatre. It's something that we return to, to this day in literature, theatre and even in music.
  • Da Vinci Paints the Last Supper

    Da Vinci Paints the Last Supper
    One of Da Vinci's most iconic portraits of a famous event from the bible. It's remarkable in the fact that figures in the painting actually show human emotion, allowing even the most common of men to relate to the painting and the story of betrayal at the hands of a friend.
  • First Opera Performed

    First Opera Performed
    Dafne by Jacopo Peri was the first opera ever perofrmed, premiering in Florence, Italy. The premise is taken from Greek mythological stories. The opera was only performed initially for a small group.
  • Since Robin Hood- Thomas Weelkes

    Since Robin Hood- Thomas Weelkes
    Thomas Weelkes composed “Since Robin Hood” during this time period. It pays homage to the actual story of William Kemp, who danced to Norwich from London in 9 days. Though simple and humours on the outside there are many intricacies within that, when brought to light, gathers new appreciation. (Bonds, 65)