Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online

Get access

(915 words)

Originally, the Greek harmonía meant a “joint” or “means of fastening,” “agreement,” “proportion,” or “concord.” Harmony was held to encompass the entire world, from the cosmos (“harmony of the spheres”) to the individual (harmony of body and soul). In the arts, it denoted in particular proportion and balance among the parts of a whole. Even in Antiquity (Pythagoras, Plato, Aristotle), number became an expression of harmony, not only in terms of the cosmos, but also in terms of the artistic creative process and its aesthetic evaluation. A work, whethe…

Cite this page
Daniel, Thomas, “Harmony”, in: Encyclopedia of Early Modern History Online, Editors of the English edition: Graeme Dunphy, Andrew Gow. Original German Edition: Enzyklopädie der Neuzeit. Im Auftrag des Kulturwissenschaftlichen Instituts (Essen) und in Verbindung mit den Fachherausgebern herausgegeben von Friedrich Jaeger. Copyright © J.B. Metzlersche Verlagsbuchhandlung und Carl Ernst Poeschel Verlag GmbH 2005–2012. Consulted online on 26 February 2024 <http://dx.doi.org/10.1163/2352-0272_emho_SIM_020682>
First published online: 2015
First print edition: 20180915

▲   Back to top   ▲