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metronome

metronome. Apparatus for sounding an adjustable number of beats per minute and therefore for fixing the tempo of a comp. An early form, called chronomètre, was available at end of 17th cent. and further experiments followed. The idea of the clockwork model patented by Maelzel seems to have been appropriated from the Dutch inventor D. N. Winkel. Maelzel est. a metronome factory in Paris, 1816. The one most commonly used is a pyramidal wooden instrument at the front of which a perpendicular steel strip, about 7½″ long by ⅛″ wide, is pivoted. The principle is that of a double pendulum (an oscillating rod weighted at both ends). The upper weight is movable along the steel strip, and according to its position on the rod the number of oscillations per minute can be made to vary between 40 and 208. The rod beats (or ‘ticks’) as it swings back and forth and a bell may be incorporated which can be set to ring every 2, 3, or 4 beats. Maelzel's graduated scale, fixed to the case, gives speed of oscillation. A composer who wants 78 quarter-note (crotchet) beats in a minute will write ‘M.M. ( Maelzel metronome)  = 78’. A spiral spring, which is wound up like a clock, keeps the instrument beating for a considerable period. Battery and electronically operated metronomes have been marketed. A pocket metronome shaped like a wrist-watch was designed in Switzerland about 1945 and others have been invented which can be synchronized to cope with the complex rhythms found in many modern scores.

It should be mentioned that some composers’ metronome markings are suspect. Editors of early works have in many cases added metronome marks which they think are feasible. The ticking of Maelzel's metronome is supposed to have inspired the theme of the 2nd movt. of Beethoven's 8th sym. Several 20th-cent. composers have incorporated the ticking of actual metronomes into their scores, e.g. Ligeti's sym.-poem for 100 metronomes and Gordon Crosse's Play Ground.

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"metronome." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Music. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"metronome." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Music. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/arts/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/metronome

"metronome." The Concise Oxford Dictionary of Music. . Retrieved October 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/arts/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/metronome

metronome

metronome (mĕ´trənōm´), in music, originally pyramid-shaped clockwork mechanism to indicate the exact tempo in which a work is to be performed. It has a double pendulum whose pace can be altered by sliding the upper weight up or down. The sliding bob indicates the rate of oscillation by means of calibrations on the pendulum. A number to indicate the rate at which the metronome is to be set and a note whose value is to equal one beat of the metronome are often given on a piece of music, preceded by the initials MM, for Mälzel's Metronome—Johann Mälzel (1772–1838) having made in 1816 the type of metronome in general use today. Beethoven and Schumann left such tempo indications for many of their compositions, but for earlier music and often for later music such indications are those of the editor. A pocket-watch type of metronome was developed in the 1940s; a boxlike electric metronome has also become popular, as well as digital metronomes.

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"metronome." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"metronome." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/metronome

"metronome." The Columbia Encyclopedia, 6th ed.. . Retrieved October 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/reference/encyclopedias-almanacs-transcripts-and-maps/metronome

metronome

met·ro·nome / ˈmetrəˌnōm/ • n. a device used by musicians that marks time at a selected rate by giving a regular tick. DERIVATIVES: met·ro·nom·ic / ˌmetrəˈnämik/ adj. met·ro·nom·i·cal·ly / ˌmetrəˈnämik(ə)lē/ adv.

metronome

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"metronome." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

"metronome." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Encyclopedia.com. (October 20, 2017). http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/metronome-0

"metronome." The Oxford Pocket Dictionary of Current English. . Retrieved October 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/metronome-0

metronome

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"metronome." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Encyclopedia.com. 20 Oct. 2017 <http://www.encyclopedia.com>.

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"metronome." Oxford Dictionary of Rhymes. . Retrieved October 20, 2017 from Encyclopedia.com: http://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/dictionaries-thesauruses-pictures-and-press-releases/metronome