Performance Practice for Parthenia


The notation for ornaments with which we are familiar—trills, turns, mordents, appogiaturas, and so on—dates from the Baroque era, and little hint of it appears in Renaissance music. The only ornaments notated as such in Parthenia are double slashes through the stems of some notes. I’m not sure there is complete agreement on how those should be interpreted, but reading them as mordents and occasionally prall trills or turns works well.

Renaissance composers simply wrote out other ornaments, especially trills, usually with terminations. I have not been consistent in my editions whether I notated them as in the originals or as modern trills.