Saturday, May 26, 2012

A Pentecost Matins Responsory: Loquebantur variis linguis

Loquebantur variis linguis is the Responsory after the second lesson at Matins of the Feast of Pentecost. This video gives, I think, the chant for that Responsory, and then a piece called Paraclitus egrediens; I'm not sure exactly what the second piece is, or what its liturgical function might have been, but it's another of those interesting medieval chants from Hungary.  I really have to look into that at some point!

Anyway, the chant - and very, very pretty it is, too:



Loquebantur variis linguis
apostoli, Alleluia.
Magnalia Dei, Alleluia.
Repleti sunt omnes Spiritu Sancto,
et coeperunt loqui:
Magnalia Dei, Alleluia.
Gloria Patri et Filio,
et Spiritui Sancto.
Alleluia.


The apostles were speaking
in different tongues, Alleluia,
of the great works of God, Alleluia.
They were all filled with the Holy Spirit,
and they began to speak of
the great works of God, Alleluia.
Glory be to the Father and to the Son,
and to the Holy Spirit.
Alleluia.

The blurb at the YouTube page says this, in Hungarian:

Schola Hungarica vezényel:
Dobszay László
Szendrei Janka

Részlet a Schola Hungarica Magyar Gregoriánum 2. Advent - Karácsony - Pünkösd c. hanglemezéről
Kép: Pünkösd (Bambergi Apokalipszis, XI. század)

Google Translate does pretty well with that, as far as I can tell:

Schola Hungarica conducted by:
Laszlo Dobszay
Janka Szendrei

Excerpt from the Schola Hungarica, the Hungarian second Gregoriánum Advent - Christmas - Pentecost c. sound drive

Picture: Pentecost (Bamberg Apocalypse, XI century.)

Here's the second lesson in its entirely from Breviary.net:

Lesson ii
Sed ecce, si unusquísque vestrum requirátur an díligat Deum : tota fidúcia et secúra mente respóndet, Díligo.  In ipso autem lectiónis exórdio audístis quid Véritas dicit : Si quis díligit me, sermónem meum servábit.  Probátio ergo dilectiónis, exhibítio est óperis.  Hinc in epístola sua idem Joánnes dicit : Qui dicit : Díligo Deum, et mandáta ejus non custódit, mendax est.  Vere étenim Deum dilígimus et mandáta ejus custodímus, si nos a nostris voluptátibus coarctámus.  Nam qui adhuc per illícita desidéria díffluit, profécto Deum non amat : quia ei in sua voluntáte contradícit.
But, behold now, if I shall ask any one of you whether he loveth God, he will answer will all boldness and quietness of spirit : I do love him.  But at the very beginning of this day's Lesson from the Gospel, ye have heard what the Truth saith : If a man love me, he will keep my word.  The test, then, of love, is whether it is shewed by works.  Hence the same John hath said in his Epistle : If a man say, I love God, and keepeth not his commandments, he is a liar.  Then do we indeed love God, and keep his commandments, if we deny ourselves the gratification of our appetites.  Whosoever still wandereth after unlawful desires, such an one plainly loveth not God, for he saith, Nay, to that which God willeth.
V.  Tu autem, Dómine, miserére nobis.
R.  Deo grátias.
V.  But thou, O Lord, have mercy upon us.
R.  Thanks be to God.
R.  Repléti sunt omnes Spíritu Sancto : et cœpérunt loqui, prout Spíritus Sanctus dabat éloqui illis : * Et convénit multitúdo dicéntium, allelúja.
V.  Loquebántur váriis linguis Apóstoli magnália Dei.
R.  Et convénit multitúdo dicéntium, allelúja.
V.  Glória Patri, et Fílio, et Spirítui Sancto.
R.  Et convénit multitúdo dicéntium, allelúja.
R.  They were all filled with the Holy Ghost, and began to speak as the Spirit gave them utterance : * And the multitude came together, singing Alleluia.
V.  The Apostles did speak in other tongues the wonderful works of God.
R.  And the multitude came together, singing Alleluia.
V.  Glory be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Ghost.
R.  And the multitude came together, singing Alleluia.

I'm not sure where the lesson itself comes from, but Lesson 1 is from Gregory the Great's 30th Gospel Homily, so perhaps Lesson 2 continues that reading.  I don't have the book, and it doesn't seem to be online anywhere.

Now, as for Paraclitus egrediens:  there's something in this Google Book (Music as Concept and Practice in the Late Middle Ages) about it, and a reference to Czech medieval music; perhaps Jakub will come along and let us know more.  And that book does look interesting; I'm going to have a look myself in any case.

Here's Thomas Tallis' version, sung by the Tallis Singers:



A shorter version of this text is also used as an antiphon at Lauds and at First and Second Vespers of Pentecost, and also as the Alleluia on the Feast of St. Mark.  Very beautiful, all around.

It's interesting to me that Mary figures so prominently in much of the art for Pentecost; anybody know where that tradition comes from?  It's not Biblical, at any rate - but I'm glad of it. [EDIT: Well, it is Biblical, as Grotheer Shull notes in comments: 'The description of Pentecost in Acts itself begins: "When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord[a] in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind..." That doesn't identifiy who they "all" are, but in the previous chapter of Acts it talks about them getting together to meet in the upper room, and lists "Mary, mother of Jesus" among the people meeting for prayer, which would make it rather likely she was there later when they were assembled again.' Thanks, Grotheer!]

And of course, I can't put up a post for Pentecost without posting a video of the Sequence - probably my favorite of all Gregorian hymns (and Pentecost has some really great ones!):



Holy Spirit, Lord of light,
From the clear celestial height
Thy pure beaming radiance give.

Come, thou Father of the poor,
Come with treasures which endure;
Come, thou light of all that live!

Thou, of all consolers best,
Thou, the soul's delightful guest,
Dost refreshing peace bestow.

Thou in toil art comfort sweet,
Pleasant coolness in the heat;
Solace in the midst of woe.

Light immortal, light divine,
Visit thou these hearts of thine,
And our inmost being fill.

If thou take thy grace away,
Nothing pure in man will stay;
All his good is turned to ill.

Heal our wounds, our strength renew;
On our dryness pour thy dew,
Wash the stains of guilt away.

Bend the stubborn heart and will,
Melt the frozen, warm the chill,
Guide the steps that go astray.

Thou, on us who evermore
Thee confess and thee adore,
With thy sevenfold gifts descend.

Give us comfort when we die,
Give us life with thee on high,
Give us joys that never end.

Amen.

2 comments:

Grotheer Shull said...

Actually Mary's presence in Pentecost-related art does have a scriptural basis. The description of Pentecost in Acts itself begins: "When the Day of Pentecost had fully come, they were all with one accord[a] in one place. 2 And suddenly there came a sound from heaven, as of a rushing mighty wind..." That doesn't identifiy who they "all" are, but in the previous chapter of Acts it talks about them getting together to meet in the upper room, and lists "Mary, mother of Jesus" among the people meeting for prayer, which would make it rather likely she was there later when they were assembled again.

Mary's prominence in particular representations of Pentecost is probably a later addition, but her actual presence is definitely Biblically based.

bls said...

Ah - thanks much, Grotheer. I hadn't put those two ideas together! I'lll have to go have a look at Acts again.

A blessed Pentecost to you....

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