In his book Gypsy Music, Bálint Sárosi states that the Augmented Second --- as found between the second and third, third and fourth, sixth and seventh in a lot of Gypsy as well as Indian and Middle Eastern music --- came into the music of Eastern Europe (specifically Hungary) through the influence of the Ottoman Empire (who I also understand created cymbals and brass instruments.)

I also find the augmented second in Indian, as well as Middle Eastern music and am hoping someone can shed some light on where it might have come to Turkey from and potentially its earliest examples in folk music.

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    I'm guessing a lot of that kind of music wasn't written down. Why is it called an augmented 2nd, when it likely could be a minor 3rd? In anything apart from 12ET it IS a different note, by 40 cents, but would that have been picked up at that time?
    – Tim
    Sep 13, 2016 at 6:32
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    I think the difference between finding it as an augmented second and as a minor third would be one, that there's not a scale tone between the two if it's a second and also that the augmented second would probably be between the second and third, third and fourth or sixth and seventh scale tones and not between the primary chord tones (tonic, third, fifth, seventh).
    – MikeiLL
    Sep 13, 2016 at 6:36
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    I wonder if this question is too broad.
    – Neil Meyer
    Sep 13, 2016 at 7:52
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    @Tim Actually, "Phrygian with a major third" is one of the most common modes of the harmonic minor. Especially common in metal and industrial music. Oct 22, 2016 at 15:55
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    Dude, the Ottoman Empire was founded in 1299AD. Simple trumpets, made of metal, even, go back at least two thousand years before that. The Ottoman Empire may have made great contributions to the brass instruments, I don't know. But they assuredly didn't get there first. P.S. cymbals Jan 3, 2017 at 8:58

1 Answer 1


I briefly studied Gypsy history, and there is one theory that the Gypsies originated in India and migrated north into Eastern Europe and Hungary, passing through Turkey.

One of the musical forms they would have brought with them is the Indian Raga. In the Carnatic Raga there is a scale form that includes a raised second note, playing up what we would call and Augmented second.

There are other migrations north from India as well, predating the Ottoman Empire, so it is likely that musics in the region using the form with the raised 2nd degree were influenced from the Indian music.

The music is an aural tradition so early transcriptions are difficult to find. There was an interest in Gypsy history in the 1800's in England, but much of the information collected is suspect, as the Gypsies were known to be reluctant to share their actual traditions with outsiders.

  • yes. i want to research when those ragas were developed.
    – MikeiLL
    Feb 22, 2017 at 19:26

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