Public Lecture by Karl Kügle on the Koblenz fragments at All Souls College, Oxford

The dreaming spires of All Souls College, Oxford.

The dreaming spires of All Souls College, Oxford.

On 8 March 2018, Karl Kügle (Utrecht team) presented the latest results of his SoundMe research on the Koblenz fragments in the Seminar in medieval and renaissance music convened by Dr Margaret Bent at All Souls College, University of Oxford.

In his lecture, entitled “The Koblenz fragments: thirteenth and fourteenth-century music, and fifteenth-century church reform”, Karl reconstructed the original state of the source manuscripts, and offered a new perspective on the genesis of musical fragments in the late fifteenth century by highlighting the role of church reform as a driving force in the dismantling of manuscripts of late medieval music in monastic environments.

In reformed monastic institutions in the Rhineland and the Low Countries, sources of music that previously were material representations of the sounds of Heaven turned into witnesses of an undesirable past. They found their terminal use and – ironically – their niche for survival as binding materials for manuscripts embodying the theology of reform.