Music Symbols History

More free information and interesting items -  Home Page          Click here for other blocker symbols  

Greeks and Romans used letters of their alphabet to represent notes. Boethius was the first Roman to record the use of letters for notes in the 5 th century AD. A statesman of the court of Theodoric the Great, he used the first 15 letters of the alphabet to represent 15 notes and this became known as Boethian Notation.

A, B, C, D, E, F, and G (as we use today) became more popular in those early days. They used small letters for the second octave and small double letters (such as aa, bb, . . .) for the third octave.

In order to add a note below the basic 'A through G', the note below 'A' was denoted by the greek letter Gamma. At first the Gamma was considered the lowest note of the whole scale. Later, Gamma stood for the lowest note and included the notes above it. Therefore, Gamma represented "the whole scale" (or as we say, "the whole gammut")!

One line ,then over the years, several lines were used to show the pitch of a note. These lines were called the staff or stave. (They were often in different colors.) 4-line staffs to 8-line staffs were used but most in use today are the 5-line staffs. Each line and the space between two lines will correspond to the pitch of a note. Notes increase by one letter as they are drawn on successive, alternating, lines and spaces.

The Treble-clef, also called G-clef or violin clef, identifies the note on the staff from which all the other notes are referenced. The word clef means key. The lower inside loop of the Treble-clef goes around the second line from the bottom of the staff. This line represents G above middle C on the piano.  (An 8 below the Treble-clef would indicate an octave below this.)

The Treble-clef or G-clef symbol originated by using the letter G, representing G above middle C. It changed as shown below.

The Bass-clef or F-clef is drawn so the second line from the top of the staff has a dot of the colon above it and a dot below it. This line represents F below middle C on the piano.

The Bass-clef, or F-clef symbol originated by using the letter F, representing F below middle C. It changed as shown below.

A note in music is represented by a circular mark either between two lines of a staff or with a line of the staff passing through it's center. This location denotes the pitch. (If the circle is solid, it will have a stem, or vertical line attached to it. If the circle is not solid, but an open circle, there may be a stem but no flags. This notation of solid or open coupled with stems, flags attached to the stems, dots added, and ties between stems, represents the duration or length of time a note is sounded.)

The note on the blocker represents an 'eighth-note' - starting with an open circle for a whole-note, attaching a stem to make it a half-note, filling in the circle to make it a quarter-note, and finally adding one flag to make it an 'eighth-note'.

        rounded     square      natural          sharp         rest            

The rounded, lower case b shown above was used to represent the note B-flat (being next to B). This was the origin of our current use of the flat symbol to make any note flat.

In 15 th century Germany, the square shaped b shown above was used to return a flat to a natural. Eventually, the German printers used an h to return a flat to a natural which grew to become our natural symbol. Eventually, this natural symbol was used to cancel flats and sharps.

The Gothic, square b also was written in music as the sharp symbol above, and it raised a B-flat a half-tone. This form grew to mean  'raise a half-tone' and became our symbol for sharp

Flats, naturals and sharps assigned to one note ( or the following note in a measure) are often called accidentals.

In the 14 th century, the line with a crook attached was called crotchet (pronounced like the crochet lace) which meant crook. The French word for crook was also the origin for the crochet needle, giving rise to the name for crochet lace. This crotchet symbol represents a quarter-note rest.

Below are a few examples of how you can personally use these Blockers. You can create your own statements by arranging the symbols.

We are closing out the two different color schemes. We will soon offer only solid grey. Then you can finish them in your own creative and personalized colors and styles.

These Blockers come in two color schemes - Red, White, and Blue Blockers and Silver, Gold, and Black Blockers. Each Blocker has the same symbol on the front and on the back. Red, White, and Blue Blockers are white with a red symbol on one side and the same symbol in blue on the other side. Silver, Gold, and Black Blockers are black with a silver symbol on one side and the same symbol in gold on the other side. Turn them around and you change your color scheme. They are made of concrete and weigh a hefty 3 to 5 pounds depending on width (2 to 3.5 inches). About 4 inches high and 5 inches deep.  Click here for other blocker symbols  

Names        Dates        Places        Abridgements        Cryptograms        Phrases        Numbers

We are closing out the two different color schemes. We will soon offer only solid grey. Then you can finish them in your own creative and personalized colors and styles.

Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure! Click here for more information

Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure!

Official X.com Verification Seal

THANK YOU

More Free Information and Interesting Items - Home Page

Book Blockers  :   Make Statements - Block Books - Cary Their Own Weight