The Defect of Werckmeister by Eddy Mulby Eddy Mul | Het ORGEL | Year 97 | (2001) | Issue 2
Het ORGEL 97 (2001), nr. 1, 29-32 [summary]
It is possible to discern three periods in the development of AndreasWerckmeisters attitude toward temperament. In the first period (1681-1691),Werckmeister describes unequally tempered tuning systems. In the second period(1697-1698), he mentions the possibility of equal temperament. In the third period(1702-1707), Werckmeister prefers equal temperament, because it offers the possibility ofmodulating and transposing without bounds. Werckmeister interprets equal temperament as anexample of the way devout and well-tempered humans can live with God in eternal harmony.The Pythagorean comma (the defect in Werckmeisters terms) has thus notonly physical but also theological significance. This vision may have influenced JohannSebastian Bach.