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16th-century Italian rustic part-song, usually for three unaccompanied voices, having no set form other than the presence of a refrain. The villanella was most often written in chordal style with clear, simple rhythm. Traditional rules of composition were sometimes broken; for instance, the normally forbidden movement of voices in parallel fifths was common in the villanella. The villanella was not a folk form but a reaction against the more refined madrigal, often parodying well-known madrigal texts and music.