Section 13.5 The Double Period
The Double Period.
A double period consists of at least 4 phrases and is comprised of an antecedent group and a consequent group. The first two phrases in a double period are the antecedent group and the final two phrases are the consequent group, which ends with a cadence that “answers” the less conclusive cadence (or “question”) that ended the antecedent group.
The melodic scheme of abab’ (four phrases) is commonly encountered in a double period. A double period with this melodic scheme would be described as a “parallel double period” because both the antecedent group and consequent group begin with the same melody.
A double period will typically have one of the following cadential schemes:
Notice that the first two phrases of an antecedent group can consist of an IAC followed by a HC (“Scheme 3” in the above example). This may seem confusing if you are focused on analyzing phrases solely in groups of two instead considering how many phrases are in a section before analyzing the cadential scheme and the form.
Subsection 13.5.1 Repeated Period
You may encounter a section consisting of four phrases that is not a double period but instead is a repeated period.
Examine the difference between these two formal diagrams, noting the cadence after the second phrase in each:
In the next section we will examine phrase combinations that are not periods.