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interesting information about Medieval music,
Definition and description of the
Troubadours: The Troubadours can be described as one of a school
of poets who flourished from the eleventh to the thirteenth
century, principally in Provence, in the south of France, and
also in the north of Italy. They invented, and especially
cultivated, a kind of lyrical poetry characterized by intricacy
of meter and rhyme, and usually of a romantic, amatory strain.
Lute Playing Troubadour
There were several types of Medieval Musicians but the Minstrels and the
Troubadours are the most famous. A troubadour was originally a travelling musician. The
early Medieval Troubadours travelled from one village to the next and many also
travelled abroad. Some travelled to the major cities of Europe whilst
other Medieval Troubadours travelled to the Holy Land accompanying the people who
went on Crusade. The travelling of the early Medieval Troubadours allowed them to
spread the latest news. The themes of the songs sung by the Medieval Troubadours
mainly dealt with Chivalry and
Courtly love - romantic ballads. The
troubadour would play for royalty, lords and nobles. The themes of the songs sung
by the Medieval Troubadours also dealt with chivalry and courtly love but they
also told stories of far lands and historical events.
Medieval Troubadours become
the elite - The Trouveres
The role of the Medieval Troubadours changed to part of an elite society of royalty and nobles. These elite
Medieval Troubadours originated as aristocratic poet and musicians of Provence,
France. Travel in Medieval Times, prompted by the Crusades, led to a
new and unprecedented interest in beautiful objects, elegant manners,
poetry and music. Many Medieval Troubadours were nobles and knights who had
joined the Crusades. The aristocratic Medieval Troubadours were poets who
originated in the south of France where they wrote the lyrics in
Provencal (langue d'oc). The Medieval Troubadours of the north of France wrote in
French (langue d'oil) and were called called
Trouveres. The poetry
of the Medieval Troubadours and the trouvères was invariably linked with music.
These elite Medieval Troubadours even included nobility such as the King of
Navarre, the King of Spain and
King Richard the Lionheart of England.
Richard the Lionheart was the son of
Eleanor of Aquitaine who was one of the greatest patrons of Music
and the Medieval Troubadours of the Middle Ages.
Queen Eleanor of
Aquitaine and the Medieval Troubadours
Eleanor of Aquitaine was the granddaughter
of William IX of Aquitaine. Her grandfather was the first influential
patron of the aristocratic music of the Medieval Troubadours. Her father was
William X continued to patronize the music and poetry of the
Medieval Troubadours. It was only natural that Eleanor of Aquitaine would
continue in this tradition. Eleanor of Aquitaine married
King Henry II
on 18 May 1152. She encouraged the Medieval Troubadours and received them at
the English court. The tradition and arts of the Medieval Troubadours soon became
part of the English society and her son, Richard the Lionheart became
one of these aristocratic Medieval Troubadours and his story has included the
legend of Blondel
In Germany, the troubadours became
minnesingers, or singers of love songs, and as early as the middle of
the twelfth century the minnesingers were already a powerful factor in
the life of the era, counting among their number many great nobles and
kings. The German minnesingers differed from the French troubadours in
that they themselves accompanied their songs on the viol, instead of
The Jongleurs were often collaborators or assistants of
Medieval Troubadours or trouveres. Jongleurs gained a reputation of
itinerant entertainers of the Middle Ages in France and
Norman England. Their repertoire included extravagant skills
in dancing, conjuring, acrobatics, and juggling. The
Jongleurs also played a part in singing, and storytelling.
Many were skilled in playing musical instruments, although
their skills were not greatly recognised or rewarded.
The Medieval Troubadours and
The ideals of courtly love was publicised in the poems, ballads,
writings and literary works of various authors and
sung by Medieval Troubadours.
Geoffrey Chaucer, the most famous
Medieval author, wrote stories about courtly love in the Canterbury Tales.
The Medieval Troubadours sang ballads about courtly love and
were expected to memorize the words of long poems describing the valour
and the code of chivalry followed by the
Medieval knights. The
Medieval Troubadours sang about the Dark Age myths of Arthurian Legends
featuring King Arthur, Camelot and the
Knights of the Round
Table. The Troubadours therefore strengthened the idea
of a Knights Code of Chivalry and Courtly Love.
Medieval Music -
The Medieval Times website provides interesting facts, history and information about the
musicians and styles of music which scatter the history books including
Troubadours. The Medieval Life and Times Sitemap provides full details of all
of the information and facts about the fascinating subject of the lives
of the people who lived during the historical period of the Middle Ages.
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