Use this URL to cite or link to this record in EThOS:
Title: Sound the gospel trumpet : the musical representation of Christ the Logos as harmony in medieval text and image
Author: Pemble, Alison Sian
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2015
Availability of Full Text:
Access from EThOS:
This thesis explores the fundamental relationship between Christian Logos doctrine and musical harmony in e1eventh- and twelfth-century religious thought, showing how and why musical imagery was used to represent Christ's theological role as the provider of harmony at every level (physical, spiritual, moral, eschatological and scriptural). I show firstly how the medieval Christian concept of Christ the harmonising Logos has its origins in pagan Greek ideas of logos as a linguistic and mathematical ordering principle. In particular I investigate the role of logos in Pythagorean and Platonic thought as a specifically musical harmonising principle by which the two extremes of the octave gap are reconciled and united in proportional relationship through mathematical mediation. I demonstrate how medieval thinkers attributed this pagan notion of musical logos to Christ. Thus the Logos is regarded as the harmonising Mediator who reconciles all the archetypal dualities of human existence (God and man, creation and New Creation, heaven and earth, body and intellect, time and eternity, Law and grace, Old and New Testaments) in order to unite these opposite extremes and so 'make the two one' [Eph.2:14]. Secondly I demonstrate how this pre-Christian notion of a linguistic and mathematical harmonising principle also features in ancient Jewish thought. Thus the thesis explores how in the Hebrew Scriptures the harmonious unity of the created universe is effected firstly through God's spoken word, and secondly by his mathematical wisdom through which he 'orders all things in measure and number and weight' [Wis.ll:21]. I show how medieval religious thinkers again attributed these Jewish ideas ofa harmonising 'word' and 'wisdom' to Christ. The thesis demonstrates how complex ideas about Christological harmony are represented in medieval text and art through the use of musical imagery, both harmonic and instrumental, and specifically through trumpet imagery.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available