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The basic scheme of note values and accents which remains unaltered throughout a composition or a section of it. For instance, 3/4 meter means that the basic note values are quarter notes and that a measure consists of three of those. According to whether there are two, three, or four units to the measure, one speaks of duple (2/2, 2/4, 2/8), triple (3/2, 3/4, 3/8), or quadruple (4/2, 4/4, 4/8) meter. 4/4 is also called common meter.

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