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“King of Kings..” a spritual song by young boy

The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church uses a type of Christian liturgical chant known as “Ethiopian liturgical chant,” or “Zema.” Melekket is the name of the associated musical notation. The custom started after the sixth century and is frequently linked to Saint Yared. The evolution of Ethiopian liturgical chants over time is comparable to that of European liturgical chants. The musical tradition of Ethiopian liturgical chants has been attributed to Saint Yared. Yared, who lived in the sixth century, is the earliest example of native Ethiopian musical notation and sacred music that is currently known. He created three distinct chanting styles. They are referred to as geeze, ezil, and ararai. The Ethiopian Church’s Synaxarium attests to the divinity and fidelity to Yared of Ethiopian liturgical chants. Ethiopia had become Christianized by the beginning of the sixth century, during Yared’s lifetime. The Ethiopian Orthodox Tewahedo Church already had a corpus of prayers by that time. Only after that did Ethiopian liturgical chants begin to emerge. Deggwa, Ethiopian antiphons in particular, date from the latter half of the 16th century and are much more recent in origin. Since the fourth century, the majority of the Ethiopian Highlands had been Miaphysite Christian. Ancient chanted liturgy has been preserved from that time period, and the congregation would participate by clapping, ululating, and making rhythmic movements. Ethiopian liturgical chants are based on both written and oral sources, but because of the country’s isolation and the scarcity of primary sources, it is challenging to trace the precise development of Ethiopian church music. Since pitch or melody are not represented by the musical notation (melekket) used for the chants, it differs from other notational systems. It serves as a mnemonic instead. Most studies reach the conclusion that since the 1500s, there has been remarkable consistency. It is likely that the development of Ethiopian liturgical chants is comparable to that of European liturgical chants.

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