Inheritances from First and Second Species. As always, the melodic quality of your composed line is paramount. These guidelines should help you achieve that. In 3rd species, the line of counterpoint may either begin on the first quarter note of the measure, or it may begin with a quarter note rest. In either case, the first. Third species is the most labour-intensive of the five: four crotchets must be written last note of your counterpoint ('G≥') but also to the third-last note ('F≥').


Author: Dario Bergnaum
Country: Germany
Language: English
Genre: Education
Published: 10 November 2015
Pages: 206
PDF File Size: 26.33 Mb
ePub File Size: 22.25 Mb
ISBN: 713-8-34179-874-7
Downloads: 8129
Price: Free
Uploader: Dario Bergnaum

Download Now

Other beats Beats 2—4 should exhibit a mixture of consonant and dissonant intervals to promote variety. Third species counterpoint consonances, unisons are permitted on weak beats when necessary to make good counterpoint between the lines.

Any dissonance must follow the pattern of the dissonant passing tone or the dissonant neighbor tone, explained below.

Also explained below are a number of standard patterns for consonant weak beats.

  • 3rd species | Music at ListeningArts
  • How to write in Third Species
  • 3rd species
  • The counterpoint line
  • Third Species

Harmonic dissonances Generally, dissonances in third species can occur on beat 2, 3, or 4, third species counterpoint should be preceded and followed by stepwise motion with the exception of the double neighbor and the nota cambiata, explained below. This promotes smoothness, both by keeping the dissonances off of the strongest beat of the bar, and by coupling them with the smoothest melodic motion.


If all dissonant notes in the counterpoint follow one of the following models, they should have a pleasing effect. If not, they may sound third species counterpoint or unresolved, or will be difficult to sing.

Composing a third-species counterpoint – Open Music Theory

The dissonant passing tone third species counterpoint in the space of a melodic third via stepwise motion. The notes before and after the passing tone must be consonant with the cantus. Note that it is possible to have two dissonant passing tones in a row P4—d5 or d5—P4.

As long as these dissonances do third species counterpoint fall on downbeats and the counterpoint moves in stepwise motion in a single direction, there is no negative effect.

Third Species Counterpoint

The dissonant neighbor tone ornaments a consonant tone by stepping away and stepping back to the original consonance 6—7—6 over the cantus, for example. The unison may occur anywhere in the bar except on the first quarter. The quarter-note voice may not repeat a tone, either within the bar or across the bar line.

Ending Cadence The requirements for the final bar of the counterpoint are the same as those of the first and second species. The penultimate tone of the counterpoint must be scale degree 7 if the c. Avoid having more third species counterpoint two consecutive strong-beat 5ths or 8ves example Although two consecutive leaps of a third in the same direction may be used occasionally, full-octave arpeggiations should be avoided, since they break up the line and are not, in these relatively rapid note values, truly a vocal idiom third species counterpoint Embellishing tones consonant skips with a return to the original noteare very useful in 3rd species.

Composing a third-species counterpoint

This 3-note figure original note, embellishing tone, original note can begin on the first, second, or third beats in the measure. The embellishing tone must third species counterpoint a consonant interval against the CF, and should not be further than a P4 away from the original note example 16a.


The ordinary consonant skip or CS not including a return to the initial tone in the leaping pair is analogous to the leap of second species, and is still useful in third species counterpoint species.

Remember that leaps of a P4 or greater should be followed by a return in the opposite direction 16b.

Use large leaps leaps greater than a P4 third species counterpoint restraint and taste, as always. In other words the second note may be a dissonant passing note between consonances on the first and third beats.

Likewise, the third note third species counterpoint be dissonant if it is a passing note between consonances on the second and fourth beats. In the same way, the fourth note may be dissonant if it is a passing note between consonances on the beats immediately before and after it figure 2.

third species counterpoint


Related Posts: