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Thread: Figured bass for a Dom 7th chord

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    Default Figured bass for a Dom 7th chord

    Hello, my friends

    Maybe I'm confused but for a Dom 7th chord the formula is 1-3-5-b7.
    So, I think the figured bass (showing all the nºs) should be 7-5-3 with a natural sign before the 7 (in this case I'm using the nat sign because I'm thinking about the A7 in the key of A Maj. If I was in C Maj then it should be a b (flat) before the 7.

    Am I thinking right?

    I don't know why all the examples I've found for this put only a 7 without any sign.

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    Senior Member EdwardBast's Avatar
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    In the key of A major, if you have A in the bass and the figure "7," the note indicated by the figure will be G# and the chord will be a major 7th chord, not a dominant 7th. If you want a dominant 7th chord on A in the key of A, there will be a natural sign in front of the 7 and the chord will be V7 of IV, a secondary dominant.

    Now if what you want is the V7 chord of A major in root position, that would have E in the bass and the figure "7," since the 7th would be D natural and D is already natural in the key signature — 7 without an accidental sign always indicates a diatonic 7th, that is, the one that occurs naturally in the key.

    For root position triads one never needs to use 3 and 5 in the figures (unless they are altered), these are assumed.
    Last edited by EdwardBast; Nov-04-2018 at 15:17.

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    Thank you for the reply, Edward.

    So, I'm thinking correctly...any accidental out of the key implies an accidental, whatever it would be.
    I was puzzled because I couldn't find any figured bass notation with the accidental...probably because all the examples were of a V chord and not I as asked.

    ...and the chord will be V7 of IV, a secondary dominant.
    So, when notating chord functions, whenever a secondary dominant function applies it must be always shown or there are exceptions?

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    Considering the above I am thinking why the natural sign on the G?

    fg.jpg

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    Senior Member EdwardBast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rbarata View Post
    Considering the above I am thinking why the natural sign on the G?

    fg.jpg
    It's just cancelling the G# on the first beat. The last six chords in that progression can be analyzed in E minor. In fact, the chord you have circled has no viable Roman numeral designation in C major and really must be analyzed as the Vii°7/V in E minor.
    Last edited by EdwardBast; Nov-04-2018 at 20:59.

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    Senior Member EdwardBast's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rbarata View Post
    Thank you for the reply, Edward.

    So, I'm thinking correctly...any accidental out of the key implies an accidental, whatever it would be.
    I was puzzled because I couldn't find any figured bass notation with the accidental...probably because all the examples were of a V chord and not I as asked.

    So, when notating chord functions, whenever a secondary dominant function applies it must be always shown or there are exceptions?
    If one is doing typical Roman numeral analysis, yes, one should indicate the nature and function of any chords out of key.

    What greater comfort does time afford than the objects of terror re-encountered and their fraudulence exposed in the flash of reason?
    — William Gaddis, The Recognitions

    Originality is a device untalented people use to impress other untalented people and to protect themselves from talented people.
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    It's just cancelling the G# on the first beat.
    Opss...haven't noticed that one. Now it's clear...

    In fact, the chord you have circled has no viable Roman numeral designation in C major and really must be analyzed as the Vii°7/V in E minor.
    It might be hard to explain but, if possible, could you explain how the Vii°7/V fits in E minor. I understand where the Vii°7/V came from but why E minor? Unless you're using the context (the final chord and others) the Vii°7/V could be something completely different.

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    Senior Member EdwardBast's Avatar
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    There's not really much to explain. The Vii°7/V is just a standard secondary dominant function chord preceding the dominant. (Note that in this case the I6/4 chord is just the dominant with an as yet unresolved 6/4 suspension.) It's commonplace. The chords preceding that are also in E minor: Vii6/5 of IV, IV.

    The voice-leading in the last two chords is questionable. The G, a suspension, should have resolved down to F#.

    What greater comfort does time afford than the objects of terror re-encountered and their fraudulence exposed in the flash of reason?
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    Senior Member EdwardBast's Avatar
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    I meant in the last three chords. Both the 6 and 4, G and E respectively, should have resolved down.

    What greater comfort does time afford than the objects of terror re-encountered and their fraudulence exposed in the flash of reason?
    — William Gaddis, The Recognitions

    Originality is a device untalented people use to impress other untalented people and to protect themselves from talented people.
    Basil Valentine

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