John Wallis: writings on music

TitleJohn Wallis: writings on music
Publication TypeBook
Year of Publication2014
AuthorsWallis, J
EditorCram, D, Wardhaugh, B
Ancient AuthorsClaudius Ptolemaeus Math. (TLG 0363), Porphyrius Phil. (TLG 2034), Manuel Bryennius Mus., Math., Astron. (TLG 9029)
Series TitleMusic theory in Britain, 1500-1700: critical editions
Number of Pages254 pp. ill.

John Wallis (1616-1703), was one of the foremost British mathematicians of the seventeenth century, and is also remembered for his important writings on grammar and logic. An interest in music theory led him to produce translations into Latin of three ancient Greek texts - those of Ptolemy, Porphyry and Bryennius - and involved him in discussions with Henry Oldenburg, the Secretary of the Royal Society, Thomas Salmon and other individuals as his ideas developed. The texts presented in this volume cover the relationship of ancient and modern tuning theory, the building of organs, the phenomena of resonance, and other musical topics. []

Table of Contents

Introduction; Letters to Henry Oldenburg, May 1664; Letters to Henry Oldenburg, March 1677; ‘The harmonics of the ancients compared with today’s’: appendix to Ptolemy’s Harmonics, 1682; Notice of Wallis’s edition of Ptolemy’s Harmonics in the Philosophical Transactions, January 1683; ‘A question in musick’, Philosophical Transactions March 1698; A letter to Samuel Pepys, June 1698; Letters to Andrew Fletcher, August 1698; Select Bibliography; Index.

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