The pitches of a given scale are named with Latin ordinals : Prime ( prima ) = "the first", second ( secunda ) = the second, third ( tertia ) the third, etc. The same designation is also used for the interval that the tone is forms with the keynote of the ladder. Therefore, in the C major scale, for example, "the third" means the note e; In contrast, “a third” can denote any of the intervals c – e, d – f, e – g, etc. When not the interval but the tone level is meant, the clearer terms third tone , fifth tone etc. are sometimes used.
In the course of history, the stock of basic tones was expanded by inserting intermediate tones, which were derived from the basic tones by raising or lowering them by a semitone . In musical notation , these derived pitches are identified with the corresponding accidentals . A root note can only occur either offset or in its original form. For example, in the F major scale, the fourth degree can only be written as b (the lowered b); the a sharp - which sounds identical in equal tuning - is not available because the a belongs to the scale.
A third layering of the pitches results in the chords of a scale. The steps and the associated chords - three, four, five or even larger multi-notes - are usually named in the theory of degrees with Roman numerals from I to VII. Here is an example of an F major scale and the F-HM6 scale, which results from the harmonic minor scale from the 6th note (note and triad names in a notation common in jazz):
|F major||F-HM6 scale|
|II||G||Gm||m7||9||g ♯||G ♯ °||♭ 7||♭ 9|
|III||a||At the||m7||♭ 9||a||At the||Δ||9|
|IV||b ♭||B ♭||Δ||9||b||B °||7th||♭ 9|
|VII||e||E °||m7b5||♭ 9||e||E.||7th||♭ 9|
- M. Honegger, G. Massenkeil (ed.): Das große Lexikon der Musik Volume 4, Herder 1876, page 194
- HJ Moser: Allgemeine Musiklehre , 3rd edition, Verlag de Gruyter 1968, page 42
- Walter Opp: Handbuch Kirchenmusik , Volume 1, Merseburger 2001, pages 216, 225, 235. ISBN 3-87537-281-6