Reference Entry

Continuo

Peter Williams and David Ledbetter

in Grove Music Online

Volume Grove Music Online, issue Published in print January 2001 |
Published online January 2001 | e-ISBN: 9781561592630

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Continuo playing in varying ensembles was an art practised by players of chordal instruments throughout Europe for roughly two centuries after about 1600. The instruments used included keyboard (organ, harpsichord), plucked string (chitarrone/theorbo, lute, guitar, harp) and bowed string (lirone, bass viol, violoncello). The continuo was fundamental to music in the 17th and 18th centuries to such an extent that its characteristic manner of notation, the Figured bass (It. basso numerato; Fr.

Keywords: Definition; Origins; Development; Instruments; Playing techniques

Reference Entry.  18614 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Music

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