Definition and background:
on the modern keyboard, the white keys are considered the diatonic notes, and scales (a series of notes in order from low to high or high to low) that can be made using only those whole-steps and half-steps are considered diatonic scales. In the Middle Ages, the church modes were based on diatonic scales.
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Wikipedia - Glossary of Musical Terminology
Virginia Tech Multimedia Music Dictionary
ORB -- Medieval Music Glossary