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The tension that arose between Spanish, Portuguese, Dutch, French, and British colonial interests—and the ‘‘savages’’ who resisted these invasions—stimulated much of Europe’s endless fascination with the New World. When the final lavish entrée of the ballet Flore unfolded before Louis XIV at the Grand Salon of the Tuileries in 1669, it was intended to reflect the major racial groups of the world. Each section represented one of the ‘‘four corners’’ of the earth: the Europeans, the Africans, the ‘‘Asiatics,’’ and the Americans.

Franciscans, Jesuits, and others also brought European instruments with them to Mexico. Beginning around 1620, Franciscan missionaries even in the farthest northern regions of New Spain could boast organs, bassoons, cornetti, and a collection of music books for singing and instruction. Conversion of the American Indians also involved the teaching of Latin and Gregorian chant. Many missionaries even offered lessons in part-singing. ∞∫ Noble Savagery in Court Entertainments 29 In keeping with this practice, Sagard in 1636 harmonized three of Lescarbot’s earlier notated Micmac songs.

The conflict between the Spaniards and the French provided the background for the story, and an ironic twist occurs when Zima, the ‘‘Amazon’’ chieftain’s daughter, rejects both her Spanish and French suitors and takes the hand of a young Indian brave, Adario. As a female ‘‘noble savage,’’ Zima prefers the simplicity of Indian life to the temptations offered her by the Europeans. Les Indes galantes ends happily as the would-be conquerors join the Indians in the great ceremony of the peace pipe.

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A representation of musical dialects (PHD thesis) by Levitt D A


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