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1. The Mediant Triad

Two common tones link the mediant (iii) and the tonic triads and the mediant and the dominant triads (Figure 10-1).

Figure 10-1. Common Tones, iii I and iii V

2. Triad Positions.

a. The mediant triad is most commonly found in root position (Figure 10-2).

Figure 10-2. Mediant Triad in Root Position

b. The mediant triad can also be found in first inversion in a harmonic sequence (Figure 10-3).

Figure 10-3. iii6 in a Harmonic Sequence

c. The iii6 chord can be found in a series of other first inversion triads (Figure 10-4).

Figure 10-4. iii6 in a Series of First Inversion Triads.

d. The mediant triad is not normally found in second inversion.

3. Doubling.

a. The normal doubling of the mediant triad in root position is a doubled root. The fifth of the mediant triad is the leading tone and should not be doubled (Figure 10-5).

Figure 10-5. Doubled Root, iii

b. Any minor triad can be commonly found with the third doubled. This is particularly true when the third of the minor triad is one of the primary scale tones. The third of the mediant triad is the dominant scale degree, one of the primary tones of the key (Figure 10-6).

Figure 10-6. Doubled Third, iii


Write the missing voices in the following mediant triads (Figure 10-7).

Figure 10-7. Part Writing Mediant Triad, iii

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Answer Key

4. Use of the Mediant Triad.

a. The mediant triad can be followed by the submediant triad. It is sometimes followed by the subdominant triad. The mediant triad is less often followed by the dominant triad (Figure 10-8).

Figure 10-8. Mediant Root Movements

b. The mediant triad should be preceded by the tonic or submediant triads (Figure 10-9).

Figure 10-9. Triads that Precede Mediant Triad

David L. Heiserman, Editor

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Revised: June 06, 2015