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TORCH: The Jerusalem Temple Song in the Cantillation of Psalms 136 and 137

posted Jan 17, 2017, 9:41 AM by David Mitchell   [ updated Jan 17, 2017, 9:42 AM ]
On 7 February I will give a talk called ‘The Jerusalem Temple Song in the Cantillation of Psalms 136 and 137’ for The Oxford Research Centre for the Humanities (TORCH). It really outlines the next step following my SOTS paper two weeks ago. If the Masoretic cantillation really is the lost musical notation of the Temple psalmody, then how do we begin to decipher it. I will examine several of the issues surrounding this question, like “What sort of music would we expect?” and “Are the cantillational marks notes or niggunot (melismas)?” Then I will suggest the musical meaning of the six most fundamental signs: silluq, munah, etnah, merkha, tifha, and mehupakh. It takes place at 6.15pm in the Ursell Room of Pusey House and is, I understand, open to all. So come along if finding the lost music of ancient Israel interests you.
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