Definition of species counterpoint
1 : a traditional method of instruction in 16th-century counterpoint based on five increasingly demanding types of two-voice contrapuntal writing based on a preexisting cantus firmus The discipline of species counterpoint was first put forth by Johann Joseph Fux in Gradus ad Parnassum (1725) as a tool for teaching composers. — Markand Thakar, Counterpoint, 1990 —called also strict counterpoint — compare first species, second species, third species, fourth species, fifth species
2 : counterpoint that follows the rules of species counterpoint More recently, Schubert's exercises in species counterpoint and fugue for Salieri and Sechter have attracted attention … — R. Larry Todd, Mendelssohn's Musical Education, 1983 —called also strict counterpoint
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First Known Use of species counterpoint
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