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4. The Neapolitan si-rth is a major triad built on the lowered supeftonic (nb p nb in C minor). Its half-step relation to the tonic gives it a peculiarly dark rlualiqr that is unique among chromatic chords.b?.HAPTE The Neapolitan Chord D l"o" Lrtrnrple 1 AND coNrRASr the pair of pre-dominant-dominant-tonic progres- sions in Example 1. We will examine the properties and uses of this chord in this chapter. bS. the musical effect is altogether different. clf talf .t Because of its l. -+l)li r've progress downward by perf'ect 5ths lrom the tonic in minor (i.i Despite this minimal alteration in the pre-dominant harmony of the second passage. If bE). What is the only note that is changed? \. b6. The Dh 1bi. bi. Neapolitan bi . "ng"r-tders an altered triad that we call a Neapolitan sixth chord.s the most distant relation before the tritone (bB) is reachecl. t1r" .

::i:'. however.Tffi'il:[h#:1ilIlT"f.'il*'peras TnE bI16. Composers did not consider the cross-relation between lem.l"u:H.:::. J )J 65 43 c: .qs l C.Hlrilt.Hl.:*:Jn. While "sixth" refers to the fact that the chord is ordinarily found ::fi:.H1il:i.ii"?V as in Example 3.'il"'s".rrENTrAl Pnn-DoMrNAxr CHORD We tlpically find the Neapolitan slxth in the minor mode.6 bll' V i J)+ c: i6 bII6 (tii'7/v) v i 2.THE 'II6 AS A CADENTIAL PRE-DOMINANT CHORD 409 iil'.. where it usually substitutes for a diatonic pre-dominant (iv or iid$) in authentic cadences.6 1. When partwriting with the Neapohtan sixth in this tlpe of cadential progression. In addition. in different voices a prob- . usually \. Example 3 A..(81. b2 and\2.:1iil:1i'l'iil. we should never move fto* bi (of the Neapolitan) to !2 (of the V chord) in the same voice part (Example 2).*fi l: obscure.::il. ftr" tonic scale degree may be harmonically supported by either a cadential ! or an applied chord. we should double the bass (4) rather than the more active b6 or bi scale degree.' Example 2 I I c' i6 l.Ito t The soprano line often bridges the melodic diminished 3rd between the lowered supertonic and leading tone with stepwise motion: hi .#7.

]+ c. BeBrHovnx: PrlNo Souere rN C{ lrrxon.rrAN the "M oonlight" cH0RD This passing motion is often missing. 2 ("Moouncur").410 fcrr. it may assume an e1rbellishing role within the phrase.27. as the excerpt in Example 4 from S onata demonstrates.'ti"?v) THe bII6 AN EMBELLTSHING Pnn-UOnnINANT CHOnU Although the Neapolitan normally occurs at cadences.s (. I "il' (vg) i bII6 v7 E-?-S-i -i i When harmonizing an upper-voice descent of that incor- porates a hII6 chord. What is the function of the circled tones in the upper voice of this excerpt? . such as a i6 (Example 6). we should avoid the troublesome similar 5ths that could lccur between the Vii'?V and V by doubling the chordal 5th in the dominant triad (Example 5). J'. Op. No. i6 LII6 LII a. In this capacity the dominant harmonr normally resolves to a weaker form of tonic.2sl rHE NEAp0r.

No. composers will sometimes elaborate the Neapolitan chord with some kind of melodic fourish or gesture.THE TII6 AS AN EItBFTLLISHiNc pRE-DoNrrNAt{T Exarnple cHoRD 477 6 ScHuraeNN: Paprlr. MozeRr: Praxo SoNare rN D MAJoR. as in the passage from Beethoven's "Moonlight" Sonata (Example 8b). K. as in the excerpt from Mozart's Fantasia (Example 8a). 2. as in Mozart'.284. Op. l0 C: (1116 'ii"34) i6 i\/4\ \ Y ?/ An embellishing bII6 may also move directly to i6. .s stepwise cluence of sixth chords in Example 7. or extend it through several beats or even measures.orus. se- iII 6b669 i In order to emphasize its particularly dark quality.

uruon.27.. BrnrHovnu: 131 Pre. Op. III LII" -.No Souare rN Cf./ = L 1-+i+' CTCSC i1"7/v .412 Example [cH. 2 ("MooNrrcur"). No. 2B] rHE NEAPoLTTAN cHoRD B rN A. K.'--- B. Mozenr: Prexo FeNrnsra D unon.397 49 .

at.i"+:. BWV 582 .THE f rr6 AS AN ENTBELLTsHTNG pRL.i'il:T.:n:':.ti:l: employs a tritone leap in the top voice (C6-F$5) that reinforces the demonic character of his Danse macabre.h . Observe the prevailing use of the minor mode. the bII in ma- jor is less common. producing a tritone relation between the sustained Ffi and the C Neapolitan triad. bJ . also employed in the crucial Curse motive of Wagner's Ring cycle.t q4 ) -l Becu: PlssecAGLrA AND Fucur rN C urNon. where bII-V7 is set over a dominant pedal in B minor.J B. Example 10 A. see Example 4c in Chapter 28 of the Workbook.l'-i. Example 9 SerNr-SeENS: DANsE MACABRE tritone bJtJt! ttt- ul (iv VII brr) brr6 The Neapolitan harmony is. vorrr Hrnrunr- srEH'DARETN" (B. Examine the excelpts in Example 10 and identify the Neapolitan harmony in each.T.rcn cHoRALE HaRuoNtzarroN) .'fi #:"i:$lyff ."J.KJtr"il:. "Acu Gorr.-DoNrrNANT cHoRD 473 Ii.H.

so that bi rather than 4 occurs in the bass. In Example 10b. FOR FURTIIER STL'DY An interesting use of the Neapolitan as an initial sprar:h Tnratlutstra continudly $iU6'. harhng back to the'Nature'' mointthe Chopin's C-minor Ballade. .r 126-30) Tructc Ovtattr. Hoe.hO harmonr.No Sorere rx Cil lrrxon. I 4+ The first passage is tlie only instance of a bII6 in all of Bach's chorale harmonizations.r'r':\N (i HoRr) wrr. At the other tive 'i p*t+-that:qens the -Ca-Ga--CF extreme.a. 81 (nnoucrroN oF D. z8l rrrE C.474 tcrr. occurs in tlre first three nreasrrres ol 1C) in the hass. Op. Or.. XVI:36. the bII6 serves as the climar of a triple fugue.. The final cadence of Chopin's funereal C-minor Prelude is frequently cited as an instance of bIl in 53 position (Erample llb).. hou' does Bach ernphasize this chord? Do these first two passages by Bach exemplify cader-rtial or embellishing functions? What is peculiar about the Neapolitan and its voice leadir-rg in the Brahms reduction given in Example 10c? Erplain rvhat happens in the first two beats of the second measure of the Haydn passage. 23. Bnerrrvrs: \TiApor.ITAN CHORD The Neapolitan harmony may appear in other settings. Havors: Pre. the B-majt-rr conclusion of Strauss's Also work. Ornnn Usn s OF THE NTIPOI. In a few instances u'e find it in root position rather than its customary first inversion.

as demonstrated by the excerpts in Example 13.T VI The opening two measures of the piece (Example l1a) reveal its origin. Op. instead directing us back to the tonic. oft ich lechelnd gekos't The radiant pair ofeyes. A poignant instance of the root-position bII -ay also be found in Wotan's touching. where the Dh triad functior. which I often caressed with a smile The Neapolitan may also serve as a neighbor to the tonic.OTHER USES OF THE NEAPOL]TAN CHORD 415 Example 1-l CHoprN: Pnorunn rn C utxon.B . but the dominant of i substitutes for V/VI. No. 28.r IV The return of this material in the last measures (Example 11b) sets up"t the expectation that a cadence in the submediant area will again follow the cadence in i.IIVV. das oft ich la - chelnd ge iv6 das bII Der Augen leuchtendes Paar. Example 12 wecxnn: worerv's Fennwnrr. After the initial i-iv7-V-i.AcT III (srurlrnrno) Au - gen leuch - ten-des Paar. substituting for an embellishing subdominant. where the Neapolitan extends the pre-dominant function: iv6-bll. Farewell. FRoM DIE WALKURE. 20 A. the same progression is repeated in M (Ab major). .

(rv6.rroN SctNn pRotr. WlcNnn: Iultou. ScHusnnt: "Drn Doppnr-cANcER" r'nolr.2ill 'fHE NEAPoLI'l. (nuoucloN) BL: I C.4"L6 lcH.I Acr III (srurr.l Scnrval"rNcESANG 1 .. 564 (Ven. BRaHns: Vanlarroxs oN A THEME oF HAYDN. 6) B.\N cIloRD 1i3 Example A. Op.l GbrraapAut"tERUNG. (bII6) I .u'ml) bII6 ) D.

this can be seen in the first measures of this exceryt. In the brief piano coda (mm.I. Following the openin$ b. listen to the excerpt while following the reduction in Example 14. This chord is especially prominent in the depiction of tragic wandering in Schubert's song cycle Winterreise. The octave span in the soprano (see the beamed ghs-Eb4l prolongs the Neapolitan. arriving at another bII6 preceded by its V!. Pnct r.r) I The major tonic of the Brahms passage is embellished first by a bII6 and then by a mixture iv6 (Example 13a and 13b). This sequential motion continues through the passage.clrucED }{trApoLITi\N H A RNIoN\' Measures 75 *88 of the si*th of Sihumann's Dauidsbilndlerttinze contain an interesting exarrple of prolonged Neapolitan harmony. which then resolves in a $pical ! cadence.il6. The accompaniment to this haunting song is based on a two-voice motive doubled in octaves. a Neapolitan chord in root position is now exchanged for the Vf that was heard earlier and initiates a conclusion to the piece with a plaeal gesture: (hIf-fzliv)-iv-I. . The conclusion of Wagnert Ring cycle features an extended plagal motion of IV-(ir-hl6)-I (Example 13c).'a sequence of apphed $ dominants initiates a descending s-uecession of sixth chords.. 56-63)." when the child is found dead in his father's arms. the Neapolitan is tonicized in the closing measures of his "Erlkcinig..PROI. The quotations from "Der Doppelgdnger" (Exan'rples 13d and 13e) exernplify Schubertt sensitMty to hanr-ionic color.ONT.D \EAI'0LITA\ IIAR\{O\Y 417 (v6) i6 (tII v7liv i. How does the cornposer avoid parallel 5ths in the i6-blI progression? A careful study of Schuberts songs reveals how closely he associated the Neapolitan harmony with subjects of grief or death in the texts. F or instance.

below).... I.6 ..5 aL L I ) + b) t) .Vi6 vA/:ru.4 v"4/tII) bIIh v 3.2sl rrlrj NEApoLiTAN cHoRD Examplo 14 ScHuMelN: DawpsnUxataxrAuz4 No... 1'outt." lixanrple 1. .. "ir*/ it is preceded by its dominant..oLt'I'A..r. .) (v/trr brr6 (\'ii"7/v) v Neapolitan tonicizations are less common in major... The association between VI and bII in minor may be summed up in ihe adage "The dominant of the Neapolitan is the Neapolitan of the dominant.1\ ^.. In this case.478 lcrr. and bII6. the dominani of the Neapolitan (V/bII) is a bvI triad.\'f n When the Neapolitan chord is tonicized in the minor mode.. . the VI chord (Examples 15 and 6 I 5 4' - rr'16116 {v{n lV$ruii uri6 i6.C . A'r'Io\ oF TIIrr Nl.IT. The Mozart excerpt in Example 16 includes brief tonicizations of ii.

\D 419 Example 16 13 Mozanr: Cr. Or.anrmor QuiNror rN A MAJoR. 2g.116 v7 I We may also encounter extended tonicizations of bIt. IV A' (vii"7iii) ii (vii. 17 CHoprN: Pnrlulr rN B uruon. which shows that the whole passage is actually prolonging the tonic chord in a simple embellishing progression with a very slow harmonic rhlthm. 6 B. tn the Chopin pasin Example 17.IONI(] IZATION OF THE NEAPOLITAN TRI. (nnnucrroN) .7) I (v/bx) . K.. the bII is tonicized and prolonged fbr several measures before it moves to 16 via a Vf. No.581. Study the approach to and depafture from the Neapolitan in the voiceJeading reduction. sage F-amFlo A.

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