binary form

noun

Definition of binary form

:a two-part musical form in which the first part modulates to the dominant or relative minor and the second returns to the tonic
  • In binary form, the opening melody returns in a key other than the tonic or does not return at all.
  • —John A. RiceAntonio Salieri and Viennese Opera1998
  • In music of the Renaissance and Baroque periods, dances were often written in binary form; and in the collections of idealized dances … that became popular in the Baroque, binary form was increasingly used.
  • —Stanley Sadie and Alison Latham, editors, The Cambridge Music Guide1985
called also song form, two-part form; compare rounded binary form, ternary form

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First Known Use of binary form

1875


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