Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Arts


College of Arts and Sciences


Music, MA

First Advisor

Hans-Jorgen Holman


Problem Little is known about Henry Purcell's application of phrasing and articulation in his harpsichord works, therefore an investigation of the original performance practices of his harpsichord suites is needed. This study purposed to establish how best to phrase and articulate the harpsichord music of Henry Purcell, especially his eight harpsichord suites. Method Detailed study of Purcell's harpsichord suites and a review of the literature directly related to them and the matter of fingering, articulation, and phrasing in Baroque performance provided the basis for conclusions on how to phrase and articulate Purcell's harpsichord suites. Application of Purcell's fingering practices, as well as of rhythmic inequality and authentic ornamentation at the keyboard was also made. Results Purcell's fingering practices, evidenced by his fingered prelude and scale, yielded frequent paired articulation and rhythmic inequality. Analysis of articulation patterns of Purcell's time also indicate articulation of ornaments and articulation over the barline and at midbar. Conclusions English Baroque performance can be best understood and is attainable through articulation and certain rules of fingering, the apparent key to the use of rhythmic inequality and proper articulation.

Subject Area

Music--Interpretation (Phrasing, dynamics, etc.), Harpsichord music.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0 International License.


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