"From Words of Paradise" (2021)

"From Words of Paradise" (2021)

Words of Paradise is a composition by Robin Hayward (2015) and is inspired by the ideas of the Renaissance Dutch linguist Jan van Gorp (1519 - 1572), who thought he had shown the Flemish dialect Brabantic to be the original language spoken in Paradise.

Observing Brabantic to have a higher proportion of single-syllable words compared to other languages, Becanus reasoned that as the first language must also have been the simplest, all languages must ultimately be derived from it. He also drew on the idea that reversing a word’s sound reversed its semantic meaning. The composition draws on the sound of 13 such single-syllable reversible words that Becanus used to support his theories, using hocketing techniques to combine them into longer ‘words’.

Preparing words


Music composed by Robin Hayward (2021)

Web programming by Benjamin Jefferys (2021)

Played by Zinc & Copper

Musician credits

Elena Kakaliagou - horn
Hilary Jeffery - trombone
Robin Hayward - tuba

Project supported by Musikfonds FEB Stipendium, Neustart Kultur 2021