Here you’ll uncover a short explanation that the theory of the Affections. Choose the use of basso continuo, the exercise of creating music the expressed a single emotion (affect) is distinct to the Baroque era. Later composers want the liberty to express contrasting emotions in a single piece that music. One of the most noticeable results of Baroque composers’ follow to the doctrine of Affections was the practice of break a longer text increase into shorter phrases and setting each together a separate activity with music designed to express a single emotion or affect.

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For example, the Utrecht car Deum by George Frideric Handel (a so late Baroque composer) consists of ten separate movements, while the Te Deum No. 2 in C by Franz Joseph Haydn (a composer of the late timeless era) is a single piece of music v no different movements. Keep in mind that those 2 texts space not specifically the same. Handel’s Te Deum is in English if Haydn’s is in the original Latin. However they offer to highlight the affect of the doctrine of Affections top top music composition in the Baroque.


The doctrine that the affections, likewise known together the doctrine of affects, theory of the passions, theory of the affects, or by the German term Affektenlehre (after the German Affekt; plural Affekte) to be a concept in the aesthetics the painting, music, and also theatre, widely offered in the Baroque era (1600–1750) (Harnoncourt 1983; Harnoncourt 1988). Literary philosophers of that age, through contrast, rarely debated the details of what was referred to as “pathetic composition,” acquisition it for granted the a poet must be required to “wake the spirit by tender strokes that art” (Rogerson 1953, p. 68). The doctrine was obtained from old theories that rhetoric and also oratory (Buelow 2001). Some pieces or movements of music refer one Affekt throughout; however, a sent composer choose Johann Sebastian Bach might express various affects within a motion (Boetticher 2010).

History and also Definition

The doctrine of the affections was an elaborate theory based upon the idea the the passions could be stood for by their outside visible or audible signs. It attracted largely on elements with a lengthy previous history, but very first came to general prominence in the mid-seventeenth century among the French scholar-critics linked with the Court that Versailles, helping to location it in ~ the centre of artistic activity for all of Europe (Rogerson 1953, p. 70). The hatchet itself, however, was only very first devised in the twenty century through German musicologists Hermann Kretzschmar, take care of Goldschmidt, and Arnold Schering, to define this aesthetic theory (Buelow 2001; Nagley and also Bujić 2002).

René Descartes held that there were six basic affects, which have the right to be linked together into numerous intermediate develops (Descartes 1649, p. 94):

Admiration (admiration)Amour (love)Haine (hatred)Désir (desire)Joie (joy)Tristesse (sorrow)

Another authority likewise mentions sadness, anger, and also jealousy (Buelow 2001).

Lorenzo Giacomini (1552–1598) in his Orationi e discorsi identified an affection together “a spiritual activity or operation of the mental in which the is attracted or repelled by things it has come to know as a an outcome of an imbalance in the animal spirits and also vapours that circulation continually throughout the body” (Giacomini Tebalducci Malespini 1597).

“Affections room not the very same as emotions; however, they space a spiritual activity of the mind” (Palisca 1991, p. 3).

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A significant Baroque proponent the the theory of the Affections to be Johann Mattheson (Poultney 1996, p. 107).