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gambe du positif

English translation: gamba on the 'Positive' [positif also found] organ

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GLOSSARY ENTRY (DERIVED FROM QUESTION BELOW)
French term or phrase:gambe du positif
English translation:gamba on the 'Positive' [positif also found] organ
Entered by: Tony M
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10:04 Jun 28, 2007
French to English translations [PRO]
Art/Literary - Music / organ stops
French term or phrase: gambe du positif
I am having trouble identifying this registration, described as a "registration des plus simples" and used in conjunction with "salicional du
Grand-Orgue, flûte du Récit et quelques basses de pédale". The work in question is the Consolateur in Jeanne Demessieux's Méditations sur le Saint-Esprit.
arbizonne
gamba on the 'Positive' organ
Explanation:
The 'Positive' is one of the departments of an organ, just like Great, Choir, Swell, Pedal, etc.

(It can also be a small accompaniment organ in its own right)

I'm not so sure about 'gambe', I think we'd more likely say 'viola da gamba', but you might have to check that.

'salicional' is a very quiet, whispering stop

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Note added at 1 hr (2007-06-28 11:15:18 GMT)
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This Wikipedia article is interesting, and confirms the use of 'gamba' alone:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organ_stop

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Note added at 2 hrs (2007-06-28 12:37:46 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

You might also find this Wiki list useful:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_pipe_organ_stops

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Note added at 7 hrs (2007-06-28 17:16:15 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

'Positive' is another name sometimes given to the 'Choir' division of certain organs.

FWIW, Googling on Choir + Great + Swell + Pedal + organ with Positive yields over 35,000 results, while the same search with 'positif' yields only 272; of course, in the former case, the much more common word 'positive' is bound to lead to a large number of red herrings
Selected response from:

Tony M
France
Local time: 01:34
Grading comment
Excellent, many thanks.
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer

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Summary of answers provided
3 +3gamba on the 'Positive' organ
Tony M
4 +1[NFG] gamba on the positif
Richard Benham


  

Answers


6 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +1
[NFG] gamba on the positif


Explanation:
This is mainly just confirmation of Tony's excellent answer, with some clarifying detail I couldn't fit into the comment box.

"Gambe" or "gamba" is a string stop, named after the "viola da gamba", which was a bit less robust in tone than more modern string instruments.

The thing that worried me about Tony's answer was the "positive organ". It turns out that this word is an acceptable alternative to "positif". But I think "positif" is to be preferred, for the following reason.

The term "positive organ" was used in the Middle Ages to refer to a non-portable organ. A portable organ was called "portative". Anyway, even non-portable organs were pretty simple affairs in the middle ages, and the term "positive organ" refers nowadays to a simple, single-manual organ without pedals. It may also refer to a manual on a larger organ, and in particular one for softer stops, but it might be better to use the more customary term "positif", borrowed from French. Of course it's an artificial distinction, but it is a useful distinction.

The other point worth noting is that the "positif" seems to be more or less obsolete.

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 6 hrs (2007-06-28 16:08:05 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

PS if you look up "gamba" on the reference, you can actually listen to some sound samples.


    Reference: http://www.organstops.org
Richard Benham
France
Local time: 01:34
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 8

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Tony M: Super, thanks a lot, Richard! In my organ-building days, the factor I worked for always called it 'positive', and that's the label I've seen on the few UK organs where I actually found one / Just an assistant!
10 mins
  -> You were an organ builder?! Well maybe I should pipe down! As you say, though, there are very few of them around in the Anglophone world, no matter which way you spell it!
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1 hr   confidence: Answerer confidence 3/5Answerer confidence 3/5 peer agreement (net): +3
gamba on the 'Positive' organ


Explanation:
The 'Positive' is one of the departments of an organ, just like Great, Choir, Swell, Pedal, etc.

(It can also be a small accompaniment organ in its own right)

I'm not so sure about 'gambe', I think we'd more likely say 'viola da gamba', but you might have to check that.

'salicional' is a very quiet, whispering stop

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 1 hr (2007-06-28 11:15:18 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

This Wikipedia article is interesting, and confirms the use of 'gamba' alone:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Organ_stop

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 2 hrs (2007-06-28 12:37:46 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

You might also find this Wiki list useful:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_pipe_organ_stops

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 7 hrs (2007-06-28 17:16:15 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

'Positive' is another name sometimes given to the 'Choir' division of certain organs.

FWIW, Googling on Choir + Great + Swell + Pedal + organ with Positive yields over 35,000 results, while the same search with 'positif' yields only 272; of course, in the former case, the much more common word 'positive' is bound to lead to a large number of red herrings

Tony M
France
Local time: 01:34
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 42
Grading comment
Excellent, many thanks.

Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  Cervin: See also http://www.elycathedral.co.uk/music/the_organ.html for a huge list of stops put in a new organ at Ely Cathedral-it might help too (or confuse you, but I hope not!)
3 hrs
  -> Thanks, Cervin! What a SUPER instrument, eh?!

agree  Richard Benham: A good reference for organ stops is (surprise) www.organstops.org. I am trying to remember whether there is a preferred English name for "positive", though.//Chambers gives "positive" for the small organ and as a variant of "positif" for the manual.
4 hrs
  -> Thanks, RB! I said you were an authority on organs, you see! I've seen it written as Positif and even Positiv, but I think this is the preferred (or at least commonest) version

agree  jean-jacques alexandre
21 hrs
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Changes made by editors
Jul 4, 2007 - Changes made by Tony M:
Created KOG entryKudoZ term » KOG term


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