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I don't have a clear understanding of the notation used in the following sentence from the article on Augmented major seventh chord from Wikipedia:

As with dominant seventh chords, non-dominant seventh chords including the augmented major seventh usually progress according to the circle, thus III+_M^7 resolves to vi or VI.

If we are referring to the C maj7(♯5) does the III in III+_M^7 represents C, or does it represent E? Knowing that will allow me to know whether C maj7(♯5) usually resolves to D (when III is C) or F (when III is E).

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  • you can really just put whatever sounds good
    – arcioko
    Oct 30, 2022 at 19:05

3 Answers 3

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If your Cmaj7(#5) is interpreted as a III+_M^7, the third degree in A minor, then it should resolve to F which is the sixth degree in A minor.

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  • Is there any reason the Cmaj7(#5) shouldn't resolve to C, or a Cmaj7(#5)/G# shouldn't resolve to a C/G? While it's not typical for a chord to resolve to another with the same root, the contrary motion of the augmented fifth and leading tone work to create a satisfying release of tension.
    – supercat
    Jul 2, 2018 at 22:35
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The article is poorly written. But if you look a little further down, it clearly states "C maj7(♯5) usually resolves to F."

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  • It can. However, sounding rather similar to E+, it resolves nicely to Am. The F sounds like an interrupted cadence.
    – Tim
    Jul 2, 2018 at 7:45
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The wikipedia article is probably incorrect. In the key of C major, the III augmented major 7th chord is E Augmented major seventh. You would be much more likely to find a III augmented chord as a dominant chord if it is going to resolve to VI, a minor VI chord in this case.

Something else to consider, a I augmented major seventh would lead nicely to a VI minor chord (C aug maj 7 to A minor.)

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  • In Stairway to Heaven, my interpretation of the second chord is a CaugM7/G# (which would be the III of the key (A minor), which resolves quite naturally to a C/G, with contrary half-step motion with the B moving to C and the G# moving to G. Just one example of a song, but it's a very well known one, and while the chord isn't often described as a III+/M7, no other explanation accounrds for the roles of both the B and C notes (without the C, the G# would pull upwards rather than downwards, and without the B the movement of G# to C would have no counter-balancing upward half-step motion).
    – supercat
    Feb 19, 2023 at 17:33

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