I came across this piece while I was arranging a series of 16th century motetes in Orphenica Lyra by Miguel de Fuenllana. It is descirbed as “… en fabordon conpuestos” or using compound fabordon.
Fabordon (also fauxbourdon, fauxbordon, and falso bordone) – false drone – is a technique of musical harmonisation used in the late Middle Ages and early Renaissance. The homophony and mostly parallel harmony allow the text of the mostly liturgical lyrics to be understood clearly. In its simplest form, it consists of the cantus firmus (drone) and two other parts a sixth and a perfect fourth below. To prevent monotony, or create a cadence, the lowest voice sometimes jumps down to the octave, and any of the accompanying voices may have minor embellishments.
Think of it as a series of chord progressions with some passing notes.
This piece is written in “ochotonos” or eight different tones.
The text in latin “Donee ponam inimicos tuos …” means “Give me your enemies … and I will lay them at your feet” (i.e. slay them).
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