Beat the clock

The Daily Telegraph - - Letters To The Editor -

SIR – Gra­ham Chainey’s view (Let­ters, Oc­to­ber 11) that tem­pos have slowed down and should be faster can­not be sup­ported. If Schu­mann’s Träumerei is played at 80 or 100 crotch­ets per minute, the ti­tle is negated.

Many early 19th-cen­tury metronome marks are roughly twice the speed of those used by later com­posers or of speeds com­puted be­fore the metronome. There is mount­ing ev­i­dence that at the be­gin­ning of the metronome era, a dou­ble beat was mea­sured, in anal­ogy to the to-and-fro move­ment of a pen­du­lum, or the tick

and the tock of a clock. Now we mea­sure just the tick or the tock. Pe­ter Tyrrell

Sal­is­bury, Wilt­shire

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