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Encyclopedia of Microtonal Music Theory

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hyperbolaion ( 'υπερβολαιων )

(Greek: 'υπερβολαιων = "superfluous", "of the excessive [strings]")

[Joe Monzo]

The name of the highest-pitched tetrachord in the Greater Pefect System of ancient Greek music-theory. It exists only in the GPS, and not in the LPS.

This tetrachord is conjunct to the diezeugmenon tetrachord just below it. The Greek note-names, in descending order of pitch, are nete, paranete, and trite, and the conjunct note at the bottom is nete diezeugmenon -- the Greek naming system actually makes this lowest note a part of the next lower tetrachord. In the medieval literature the version in the diatonic genus is equated to the letter nominals (descending) a':g:f:e.

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