I'm learning about decorated suspension. But I don't understand the explanation below. Could you guys help me with this?

P/s: I type the script of explanation below, so you guys with smartphone screen can read it more easier.


The non-suspending voice is usually stable (i.e. does not move) during stages 2 and 3 of the suspension.

However, one way of DECORATING a suspension to change the note of the non-suspending voice at stage 3. This voice would jump to another chord note, usually another imperfect consonance, at the point of resolution. This tends to happen more with 7-6 and 2-3 suspensions than with 4-3. It can also occur in a 9- 8 suspension. The following shows some previous examples which have been decorated in this way; play them and comment on them (are they related?):

enter image description here


1 Answer 1


The author wants to illustrate a suspension with and without decoration.

This part: S: 7-(6) 3! in plain English means: `suspension: seventh above will normally resolve to a sixth where the top voice moves down by step and the lower voice doesn't move, but instead it can be "decorated" where the top voice moves down by step and the lower voice moves to a chord tone forming a third between the two voices."

The un-decorated suspension would look like...

enter image description here

In the decorated suspension, the lower voice is decorated by moving from D to G (circled in red.)

enter image description here

  • The bar between 7 and 6 means the lower voice is held and therefore the changing intervals of a seventh to a sixth are formed by the movement of the higher voice.
  • The parenthesis around six (6) mean it is the expected interval of the un-decorated resolution
  • The exclamation point after three 3! means "surprise, this isn't the standard resolution, it's a decorated resolution."

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