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Les Très Riches Heures de Jean de France, Duc de Berry (postercrazed)

February / Février

I will add a note to my last post. Traditional music and Louis-Claude Daquin‘s Noëls took me to liturgical music. Catholics sing hymns. Protestants may sing anthems. However, the seasons, lightness and darkness, were celebrated in antiquity and are celebrated in most Churches. So-called “Paganism” entered Christianity almost unnoticeably.

For instance, the brothers Limbourg included Zodiacal signs in the illuminations of Jean de France, Duc de Berry’s Les Très Riches Heures de Jean de France, Duc de Berry. It forms a semicircle. (See Zodiac, Wikipedia.)

I have noted in earlier posts that the Roman Saturnalia consisted in festivities held on the day or season of the longest night. The world was upside-down, so the slave was master. Similar festivities, the kōmos, took place in ancient Greece, a very long time ago. The kōmos was disorderly. It was a “drunken procession.” (See Kōmos, Wikipedia.)

Comedy has its roots in the Greek kōmos (eirôn vs alazṓn). The young overcome the old in a struggle called the agôn, hence protagonist. But, there are tournaments (tournois), sports, and other “struggles” or competitions.

Modern zodiac wheel showing the 12 signs used in horoscopic astrology Zodiac – Wikiwand
The Ancient and Medieval kōmos as depicted in Peter Apian‘s Cosmographia (Antwerp, 1539)
(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Therefore, Louis-Claude Daquin wrote Noëls, Christmas Carols. These were the songs of the season and cross-cultural because the day of the longest night has given rise to festivities in other cultures. Les Grands HurleursCoucou introduces Spring, as does Daquin’s Cuckoo, a magnificent piece. Spring is about to come.


Love to everyone 💕

Victor Julien-Laferrière interprète Le Chant des oiseaux de Pablo Casals
Le Pigeon migrateur / The Passenger Pigeon par Jean-Jacques Audubon

© Micheline Walker
4 February 2021