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of L'viv Polytechnic National University

"Problems of Ukrainian Terminology"


Bulyk-Verkhola S. The lexical-semantic processes in the Ukrainian musical terminology // Website of TC STTS: Herald of L'viv Polynechnic National University "Problems of Ukrainian Terminology". 2013. # 765.


The article are presented in the authors' edition

Sofia Bulyk-Verkhola

L'viv Polytechnic National University




Bulyk-Verkhola S., 2013


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The article is dedicated to the analysis of the processes that took place in Ukrainian musical terminology. Musical historic terms, archaic names and synonyms that went out of active use. New music alterms such as borrowings, derivative words, dialectic words enriched themusical terminology. Availability of such processes let us confirm that Ukrainian musical terminology is in the continuous development.

Keywords: Ukrainian language, musical terminology, historic term, archaic name, synonyms term, new term.


Musical terminology, being an inseparable part of the language lexical composition, is an open system that is permanently in dynamics, it is quite boldly mirrored in front of us either with the appearance of the new words or with certain lexical units coming out of usage (because of loss of their communicative capacity), or with the change of meaning of the existing words (in the direction of becoming either broader or narrower) [7, p. 3]. Different nations of the world have contributed to the musical terms creation for centuries. That is why the layers of different historical epochs and the considerable number of borrowings are present in the Ukrainian musical terminological system.

The lexical-semantic processes happening in the musical terminological system of the Ukrainian language have already been the subject of the research interest. In his paper From the history of the Ukrainian church-musical terminology O. Horbach described the musical vocabulary recorded in the written sources of the ղ-V centuries [4]; the dialectal musical vocabulary was in the Z. Bulyks centre of interest [2, 3]; certain observations on the musical terminology were listed in the collective study by T. Panko, I. Kochan, H. Matsyuk The Ukrainian terminological studies [8]; the complex synchronic-diachronic research of the analyzed terminology was done by the author of this article, who defended the PhD paper The Ukrainian musical terminology formation and development [1].

The purpose of this article is the discovery of changes that happened in the Ukrainian musical terminology. The urgency of this report is caused by the necessity to follow the specific processes: historisms, archaisms, synonyms coming out of the active usage; replenishment of the musical terminological system with the new nominations borrowings, derivatives, dialectal names.

The process of the musical terminology improvement is directly linked to the musical culture development. That is why the quantitative and qualitative changes within Ukrainian musical terminology are the result of interaction of both linguistic and extra linguistic factors and regularities.

The following changes take place within the Ukrainian musical terminological system:

1. The musical terms are coming out of the active usage, they are nowadays perceived as historisms. One can see these nominations only in the limited number of papers on the history of music, in fiction, in the historical information, etc. The process of the music terms coming out of usage takes place because of the following reasons:

a) some genres, musical compositions, styles of music have disappeared: the gallant style (the style of European music of the V century) [11, p. 47], znamenni singings (the system of the old orthodox religious singings of the ղV centuries) [11, p. 93];

b) the performers of the musical compositions have disappeared because of the changes in the social-political and spiritual life: the lyrist (the folk Ukrainian musician-singer in the V century) [11, p. 141], the skomorokh (the vagrant folk musician, singer, acrobat of the Kyiv Rus times) [11, p. 245];

c) some musical instruments are not used anymore: the aulos (the ancient Greek wind musical instrument with double tube) [11, p. 6], the nabat (the ancient Rus percussion instrument, similar to the kettle drum; large bell that was used to signal alarm) [11, p. 171];

d) the changes in the system of musical sounds recording and their properties have taken place: the diaphony (in the Ancient Greece the dissonance, is the opposite to symphony consonance; in the Middle Ages was the music of two voices composition) [11, p. 70], znamena, znamya, kryuky (the non-linear signs that were used to record the old Slavonic singings) [11, p. 93].

2. The archaic names are falling into disuse. The musical names are replaced with other terms with more precisely defined meaning. Thus, in the paper The Musical Grammar (Gramatyka muzykalna) [5] by the most prominent Ukrainian music expert of the VV centuries Mykola Dyletskyi one can find the terms, which were later replaced with other terms: the proportion meter in 3\1, 3\2, 3\4, the measure the white note, chvertka nepovyazanaya (the disconnected quarter) the quarter, chvertka vyazanaya ( the connected quarter) the eight.

Some terms, which were used in the ղ century in the Halychyna region by S. Vorobkevych, V. Matyuk, K. Pankivskyi, P. Bazhanskyi, A. Vakhnyanyn, have been replaced with the new ones: vidklychnyk cancel, obnyzhnyk(the lowerer) flat, pidvyshnyk (the higherer) sharp, skalya, stupnytsya scale, tryzvin triad, harmonic singing two voices singing; some borrowed terms have changed their gender: temp temp, sopran - soprano.

3. The terms-synonyms that were used during some period to denote the same notion are falling into disuse. In the pairs musykia [5, p. 3] music [11, p. 163] (kind of art), kontrapunt [11, p. 124] polyphony [11, p. 205] (type of polyphony in which separate melodies or groups of melodies have independent sounding and independent intonation-rhythmic development) the first terms have gone out of usage and replaced by the new ones.

4. The composition of the Ukrainian music terminology is being replenished. The renewal of the musical terminological system is caused by the needs of the musical life. The enrichment of the musical terminology takes place owing to the derivational processes, usage of the borrowed terms and utilization of the dialectic names.

In the second half of the century at the beginning of the ղ century a large number of the borrowed terms-neologisms entered the Ukrainian musical terminology, they denote modern things and phenomena that are mostly related to the development of the musical equipment, with the use of electricity. In particular, the composition of the following thematic groups of the musical terminology is being actively replenished:

the names of the musical directions, flows, styles: disco (the style of the dancing music that appeared out of the soul music in the mid-70-ies of the century in the USA) [6, p. 3], hard rock (the musical flow of the rock music, more heavy and intensive, that appeared during 19721978 on the basis of the blues rock; at the beginning of the 80-ies of the century hard rock grew into heavy-metal) [6, p. 21];

bthe names of the music types, genres, compositions and forms: rock-opera (the musical-drama genre having rock-music as a style basis, and musical as a genre basis; it emerged in the 60ies of the century in the USA and Great Britain) [6, p. 21], hit (popular song or melody, smash hit) [6, p. 4];

c) the names of musical instruments: the bass guitar (the four string electrical guitar developed at the beginning of 50-ies of the XX century) [6, p. 10], the synthesizer (electronic equipment for the sounds obtaining and modulation) [6, p. 11];

d) the names of the musical equipment: the mixer console (the console of the preliminary sound strengthening and processing and control, the weak signals are made stronger on it, several signals from different sources are mixed, sound effects are achieved) [6, p. 6], the monitor (special loudspeakers that stand in front of the performers on the stage and help them listen to each other) [6, p. 6];

e) the names of the musical products: the album (the giant disc recorded by the musician or group) [6, p. 7], music video (the video record of the musical composition, in which the animated cartoon, montage, video effects, computer graphics are used) [6, p. 6];

f) the names of the jobs and professions in music: Disc Jokey, DJ (the commentator at the discos, and also in the musical radio and TV programs) [6, . 3].

The negative phenomenon of the contemporary Ukrainian musical terminology, similar to many other terminological systems, is the considerable reduction of the derivational processes activity, because the balance between the main sources of the Ukrainian musical terminological system enrichment between the terms coinage and the borrowings usage is being lost. In our opinion it necessary to replace some musical terms borrowed from other languages with the proper Ukrainian terms, for example, varhan (Jews harp) (Greek) drymba; kanifol (colophony) (French) zhyvytsya; mundstuck (mouthpiece) (German) dultse; muzet (musette) (French), volynka (bagpipe)(Russian) duda; fleyta Pana (panpipe) (Italian), nay (Romanian) rebro, etc.

The positive phenomenon in the Ukrainian musical terminological vocabulary is its replenishment with the dialectic words, namely:

a) the names of the musical instruments: basolya (the Ukrainian folk stringed musical instrument that resembles the cello; it is common for the Slobozhanshchyna region) [2, p. 217], drymba (Ukrainian folk musical instrument common for the Western Ukraine; its shape resembles a small horseshoe with a thin metal tongue in the middle of it) [11, p. 76], duda,baran, koza, mikh, gayda (the names for muzette (Russian bagpipe) in the Boykivshchyna, Hutsulshchyna, Podillya regions) [2, p. 217], kuvytsya (the name for panpipe in the Slobozhanshchyna region) [2, p. 218], rebro (the name for panpipe in the Hutsulshchyna region) [2, p. 218], trembita (the Hutsulian folk wind musical instrument, a wooden pipe up to 3 meters long without mutes and vents) [11, p. 274], floyara, fryla, frela, floera, dovbushivka (Ukrainian wooden open cross flute) [11, p. 290];

b) the names of the musical instruments details: verkhnyak (upper part of the string musical instrument) [10, v. 1, p. 335], holosnyk (sound hole in the upper part of the box of the folk (mainly stringed) instruments) [10, v. 2, p. 117], dultse (mouthpiece, the detail of the wind instruments) [9, p. 86], spidnyak (the lower part of the kobza, bandura) [10, v. 9, p. 524];

c) the names of persons: the basolist (the musician playing the basolya) [3, p. 39], the bubniy (the musician playing the tambourine) [9, p. 77], the katerynnyk (the musician playing the katerynka (hand organ) [9, p. 94].

5. The semantic neologisms are being created. With the appearance of the new phenomena in the musical art the necessity arises to give names to them. The words already existing in the language are used for this purpose, and the new meanings that have not been used before are attributed to them. As the result the semantic neologisms appear, their old phonetic shell is filled with the new meaning. These particular changes in the semantics have taken place in the terms ballad, bard, canzone, capella (choir), symphony, sonata.

Thus, in the Middle Ages the term ballad denoted the song of the folk origin that accompanied the dances, later the epic-lyric composition of the dramatic character in literature, often with fantastic elements, its contents were cast by the events of the past, legends. In the epoch of romanticism this term penetrated the vocal music, then the instrumental music [11, p. 19].

The Celtic people gave the name bard to the lyrical singer who sang about the deeds of his king and soldiers, in the Middle Ages this term was used to denote the professional poet, nowadays we call the bards those singers who perform predominantly their own compositions accompanying themselves with the guitar [6, p. 2].

The term capella denoted the place in the Catholic church where the singers were located, later this name was given to the church choir, which in accordance with the strict religious rules, sang without accompaniment. Nowadays we call capella the highly qualified choir or the large symphony orchestra [11, p. 109].

Thus, as such processes as the disappearance of some terms and the appearance of the others, the use of the old terms in the new meaning, the replacement of some terms with others, the liquidation of parallel terms take place in the Ukrainian musical terminology, we have grounds to state that the Ukrainian musical terminology is in the state of the continuous development.

We consider the formation of Ukrainian musical terminology to be the language evolution, its modification caused by our spirituality creations. The well-developed national musical terminology is the proof of the high spiritual culture, which gives grounds to predict its enrichment with the new or half-forgotten names.


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