Friday, September 24, 2021

“The Devil in Music” - A Myth Debunked

Here is a video which I found very interesting and enjoyable: musician Adam Neely thoroughly debunks one of the sillier legends about the medieval Church, namely, that it banned a particular musical interval called a “tritone”, because people thought it sounded so bad that it could summon the devil. For this reason, the interval is popularly known as “diabolus in musica – the devil in music”, although as Mr Neely explains, this nickname is not very old, and did not originally mean what people think it means. Along the way, he offers some useful thoughts about HOW people came to accept such silly and essentially baseless ideas about the Middle Ages, its culture and society, thoughts which are very much worth paying attention to, and applying more broadly to our history as a Church.

More recent articles:

For more articles, see the NLM archives: