In several recent articles, Pound Burstein has expounded upon the potential for modern sonata analysis to misrepresent a mid-eighteenth-century form by using terminology charged with extraneous, late-eighteenth century connotations. Burstein prefers using eighteenth-century models, primarily those of Heinrich Christoph Koch, to describe the expositions of mid-eighteenth century. Sections of early- and mid-eighteenth century sonata forms often avoid strict categorization and at times serve a dual or ambiguous function. This contradicts the hyper-specialization of thematic sections seen in the late-eighteenth century that influence current understandings of sonata form.
Many eighteenth-century movements feature a proliferating phrase, that is, a phrase with an ambiguous function. Modern terminology struggles to describe these phrases: they often occur between what would be termed the transition and the secondary theme, sharing functions with both. Eighteenth-century descriptions of the form however, are hardly a panacea. Though the models put forth by eighteenth-century theorists like Heinrich Christoph Koch often resonate with the pattern of phrases and endings within these expositions, their terminology fails to convey the function of such passages in a way that the modern listener, performer, and analyst comprehends. This presentation demonstrates the use of proliferating phrases and cadences in Type 2 sonata form movements from the early- and mid-eighteenth century, examines their relationship to both contemporary and eighteenth-century models of the form, and finally, introduces a combined model that accounts for these forms using (mostly) familiar terminology.