American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition
- n. A theological or philosophical issue presented for formal argument or disputation.
- n. Formal disputation of such an issue.
- n. Music A usually humorous medley.
Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. A scholastic argumentation upon a subject chosen at will, but almost always theological. These are generally the most elaborate and subtle of the works of the scholastic doctors. There are about a dozen printed books of quodlibets, all written between 1250 and 1350.
- n. In music: A fantasia or potpourri.
- n. A fanciful or humorous harmonic combination of two or more well-known melodies: sometimes equivalent to a Dutch concert.
- n. music A form of music with melodies in counterpoint.
- n. philosophy A mode of philosophical debate popular in the Middle Ages, in which any question could be posed extemporaneously.
GNU Webster's 1913
- n. A nice point; a subtilty; a debatable point.
- n. (Mus.) A medley improvised by several performers.
- n. an issue that is presented for formal disputation
- Middle English, from Medieval Latin quodlibetum, from Latin quod libet, anything at all : quod, what; see kwo- in Indo-European roots + libet, it pleases, third person sing. present tense of libēre, to be pleasing; see leubh- in Indo-European roots. (American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
“The apostles also confuted the heathen philosophers and Jews, a people than whom none more obstinate, but rather by their good lives and miracles than syllogisms: and yet there was scarce one among them that was capable of understanding the least "quodlibet" of the Scotists.”
“Ex falso sequitur quodlibet, from a false hypothesis anything can follow, likewise sums up your own m.o. all too well and all too frequently; whether subtly or more overtly and more arrogantly still; distorting what others say, then adding the pointed barb and the tacit, the barely unspoken “fuck-off”.”
“Johannes Brassicanus quoted three of them in his quodlibet Was wölln wir aber heben an?”
“Bruck's style in the German sacred lied shows the move towards the later motet-style settings of chorales, but his greatest achievements were in polyphonic arrangements of German folksongs and court melodies, as well as in the quodlibet.”
“Occasionally, a sufficiently serious religious news item appears that I find it necessary to eschew irony in order to assess, in a serious and sober way, the exigent theological quodlibet.”
“This sort of serendipity goes way back, of course — think of Clément Janequin's "Les cris de Paris," a quodlibet of 16th-century vendors 'cries; In the 19th century, there was a bit of a vogue for the combination of worldly concerns and overheard church music, Schumann's song "Sonntags am Rhine" being a gorgeous example.”
“An impossible world of the fourth kind, at which some contradiction is true but not everything is, provides a counterexample to ex falso quodlibet.”
“Forgive me, quick-witted reader, if this quodlibet to Q has made you querimonious; I'll leave the letter and return to Q, the woman, after I tax you with one more notion.”
“Then someone may turn out to be both a married man and a bachelor, therefore, given the meaning of bachelor™, both a married man and not a married man (and, of course, nobody would infer from this that he is not a man anymore, or both a man and not a man, etc.; so we have another counterexample to ex contradictione quodlibet).”
“Nevertheless -- a fun idea for a quodlibet! deadsongs. vue.77”
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