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Composers You Should Know: Medieval

Lists, facts, dates, links, and more, organized by time period

Notable Medieval Composers (500 - 1430)

If you wish to be generally familiar with classical music, here is a short list of composers you should know from this period.

Name

Birth

Death

Nationality

Representative Pieces

MMC

Bingen, Hildegard von

1098

1179

German

Ordo Virtutum (liturgical drama)
Symphonia armoniae celestium revelationum (song cycle)

CDs
Scores

de Vitry, Phillipe

1291

1361

French

Motets in Roman de Fauvel
Motets in Ars Nova (music theory book)

CDs

Dunstable, John
 ML410 .D933

~1390

1453

English

Missa Rex seculorum (mass)
motets

 
Scores

Landini, Francesco

~1325

1397

Italian

147 ballate (in the Squarcialupi Codex)

CDs
Scores

Machaut, Guillaume de
 ML410 .G966

~1300

1377

French

Messe de Nostre Dame (mass)
Motets, Ballades, and Virelai

CDs
Scores

Medieval Composers (500 - 1430)

If you are a student of Music History or Composition, here is a more detailed list of composers you should know from this period.

Name

Birth

Death

Nationality

Representative Pieces

MMC

Abelard, Peter

1079

1142

French

O quanta qualia (hymn)
Planctus Jacob super filios suos (hymn)

Adam de la Halle

~1237

1288

French

Le Jeu de Robin et Marion (musical play)

 
Scores

Binchois, Gilles

~1400

1460

French

Triste plaisir et douloureuse joye (rondeau)

CDs
Scores

Bingen, Hildegard von

1098

1179

German

<Ordo Virtutum (liturgical drama)
Symphonia armoniae celestium revelationum (song cycle)
CDs
Scores

de Vitry, Phillipe

1291

1361

French

Motets in Roman de Fauvel
Motets in Ars Nova (music theory book)

CDs

Dunstable, John
 ML410 .D933

~1390

1453

English

Missa Rex seculorum (mass)
motets

 
Scores

Jacopo da Bologna

fl1340

1386?

Italian

Non al suo amante (madrigal)

CDs

Landini, Francesco

~1325

1397

Italian

147 ballate (in the Squarcialupi Codex)

CDs
Scores

Léonin

1135

1201

French

Magnus Liber (organum)

CDs

Machaut, Guillaume de
 ML410 .G966

~1300

1377

French

Messe de Nostre Dame (mass)
MotetsBallades, and Virelai

CDs
Scores

Pérotin

1160

1225

French

Viderunt omnes (organum)

CDs
Scores

Piero, Maestro

~1300

1350+

Italian

Cavalcando con un giovine accorto (madrigal)

Power, Leonel

~1370/85

1445

English

Alma redemptoris mater (mass antiphon)
Mass (in the Old Hall Manuscript)

 
Scores

Tuotilo

~850

~915

Irish

an Easter drama

Vogelweide, Walther von der

~1170

~1230

German

Palästinalied (song)
Unter der Linden (song)

Yared

505

571 

Ethiopian

The Book of Zimare (liturgical chants)