Published online by Cambridge University Press: 01 October 2007
Relationships between Aquitanian versus and troubadour song have often been adduced, particularly with respect to formal structures or terminology (the term vers used by some troubadours could come from versus). This study adopts a different approach, emphasizing comparative examination of musico-poetic techniques on which much work remains to be done. It uses the refrain – not hitherto a subject of substantive comparative study of these repertories – as a focus of analysis in selected versus and early troubadour pieces. It demonstrates both the rich inventiveness of refrain techniques and how these techniques, deployed in different linguistic environments and in different cultural contexts, shed light on the specificities as well as similarities of each repertory and nourish the individual expressiveness characteristic of the early twelfth-century ‘New Song’.