[Smt-talk] verbal descriptors of harmony

Paul Setziol setziolpaul at earthlink.net
Wed Mar 3 09:18:56 PST 2010

Hello all.

Bob Kosovsky writes -

>Hi folks,
>We all know harmony can be labeled as Roman numerals:  I, II, III, etc.
>We also know that harmony can be labeled with verbal descriptors:
>tonic, super-tonic, mediant, etc.
>Is there a single word which describes these verbal descriptors?

In as much as the context has been established to be harmony as with the Roman numerals, the single word that applies is "functions".  

In case this is not self explanatory, here's an example -  an "e" minor triad can have a number of identities but, as with the Roman numerals, once you label it as a supertonic it is presumed to have a particular function in a particular key and in a particular context of normal harmonic progression.


Best wishes.

Paul Setziol
Musicianship Coordinator
De Anza College
Cupertino, California

setziolpaul at deanza.edu

setziolpaul at earthlink.net
Paul Set

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