Rulers of Music 12” Ruler

Price: $2.95 Members: $2.66


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Item: 10073586


Rulers of Music 12” Ruler

This fun and clever wooden ruler features a list of some of the most renowned Western composers. The ruler has inches and centimeters on one side and a list of composer “rulers” on the other. The dates listed are the years of each composer’s birth and death, if known.

Music consisting of a single sung line, as composed by Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179), is known as monophony. Renaissance composers like Josquin des Près (1450-1521) added more lines of music consisting of different notes and rhythms, a style known as polyphony. Baroque composers like Henry Purcell (1659-1695) in England and Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) in Germany wrote lines of music that were performed simultaneously but using different notes, a style called homophony.

The “head” image is that of Ludwig van Beethoven (1770-1872), who continued to compose, and whose composition continued to evolve, even after he suffered significant hearing loss late in life. The illustration is loosely based on an 1820 portrait by Josef Karl Stieler (1781-1858), now on display in the Beethoven House Museum in Bonn, Germany, Beethoven’s birthplace.

  • American-grown basswood
  • 12” long
  • Made in the USA


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Music Notes

Most Western music is based on a system of notation that evolved around 1600 out of earlier practices. The starting point for any opera is the full score, which contains all individual voices and instruments arranged in a specific order on the page. The written music—representing the sounds a composer creates in his head—then comes to life performed by singers onstage and played by the orchestra.



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