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schola cantorum

[skoh-luh kan-tawr-uh m, -tohr-] /ˈskoʊ lə kænˈtɔr əm, -ˈtoʊr-/
noun, plural scholae cantorum
[skoh-lee kan-tawr-uh m, -tohr-] /ˈskoʊ li kænˈtɔr əm, -ˈtoʊr-/ (Show IPA)
1.
an ecclesiastical choir or choir school.
2.
a section of a church, cathedral, or the like, for use by the choir.
Origin
1775-1785
1775-85; < Medieval Latin schola cantōrum school of singers
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for schola-cantorum

schola cantorum

/ˈskəʊlə kænˈtɔːrəm/
noun (pl) scholae cantorum (ˈskəʊliː)
1.
a choir or choir school maintained by a church
Word Origin
Medieval Latin: school of singers
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Encyclopedia Article for schola-cantorum

schola cantorum

medieval papal singing school and associated choir, the ancestor of the modern Sistine Choir. According to tradition, the schola cantorum was established by Pope Sylvester I (d. 335) and was reorganized by Pope Gregory I (d. 604), but the first written mention of it dates from the 8th century. The purpose of the schola was to teach both singing techniques and the plainsong repertory, which was then learned by oral tradition. Under Pope Gregory the course of study was said to be nine years. In the gradual standardization of Western church chant, the schola's musicians were a prime influence. Scholae cantorum were also established elsewhere, some becoming major musical centres (e.g., Aix-la-Chapelle [now Aachen, Ger.] under Charlemagne).

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Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
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