Friday, October 18, 2013

The Hymns at the Lesser Hours: Compline I

This is the first of three posts about the Compline hymns;see Part II here and Part III here.

The following are the hymns listed for Compline, in Hymn melodies for the whole year, from the Sarum service-books:
Daily throughout the year, except on Double Feasts & from the 1st Sunday in Lent until Trinity Sunday inclusive :-
Te lucis ante terminum

(1) On Sundays & when the Choir has Rulers ... ... 14
(2) On Ferias & Simple Feasts of the lowest class ...11


On Double Feasts during Advent & daily from Xmas Eve to the 8ve of Epiphany, & on all Double Feasts from thence until the 1st Sunday in Lent, on the Vigil of Pentecost, on the Thursday, Friday, & Saturday in the 8ve of the same, & on all Double Feasts from Trinity Sunday until Advent, except on the Feast of the Holy Name :

Salvator mundi Domine ... ... 8

[At Christmas-tide (York): Corde natus ex Parentis ... 73]


On the First Sunday in Lent & daily until Passion Sunday :


Christe, qui Lux es et Dies ... ... 12

On Passion Sunday & daily until Wednesday in Holy-Week inclusive:

Cultor Dei, memento ... ... 13

From Maundy Thursday to Low Sunday no Hymns are sung.

On Low Sunday & daily until Ascension Day :

Jesu, Salvator seculi, Verbum ... 14

On Ascension Day & daily until Whitsun Day :

Jesu, nostra Redempcio ... ... 34

On Whitsun Day, (but not on the Vigil, see above) & on the three days following, & on the Feast of the Holy Name :

Alma chorus Domini ... Sequence p. (xxiij)

[On Monday & Wednesday in Whitsun Week (York):

Laudes Deo devotas ... Sequence p. (x)]


There are so many hymns and tunes here that I plan to break this post into sections; here I'll deal only with the first four melodies listed.  Follow along with the office here, at Breviary Offices, from Lauds to Compline Inclusive (Society of St. Margaret, Boston, 1885).      I'll link-in via iFrame at the bottom of the post too.

Now, let's work our way through all these hymns and melodies, starting with Te lucis ante terminum, the hymn sung "On Sundays & when the Choir has Rulers" (melody #14) and "On Ferias & Simple Feasts of the lowest class"  (melody #11) .   And, no:  I have absolutely no idea what "when the Choir has Rulers"means; that's definitely what it says.  I'm totally stumped.  [EDIT:  But Steve Caruso; see comments!]

Nevertheless, here's hymn melody #14:


Here's an mp3 of this hymn sung to melody #14, sung by the St. David's (Austin, TX) Compline Choir, during an actual service of Compline.   TPL notes that Te lucis ante terminum is:
An old and venerable Ambrosian hymn from the 7th century for the close of day at Compline. This version is the one found in the Monastic Breviary and the Roman Breviary. The current version in the Liturgy of the Hours, which is given below, drops the second verse and replaces it with two other verses.
The words below are from CPDL; the English translation (a version of J.M. Neale's translation) is slightly different from what's on the audio file, as you'll note.  
TE lucis ante terminum,
rerum Creator, poscimus
ut pro tua clementia
sis praesul et custodia.    

Procul recedant somnia
et noctium phantasmata;
hostemque nostrum comprime,
ne polluantur corpora.    

Praesta, Pater piissime,
Patrique compar Unice,
cum Spiritu Paraclito
regnans per omne saeculum.
Amen.
   

To thee before the close of day,
Creator of the world, we pray
That, with thy wonted favor, thou
Wouldst be our guard and keeper now.

From all ill dreams defend our sight,
From fears and terrors of the night;
Withhold from us our ghostly foe,
That spot of sin we may not know.

O Father, that we ask be done,
Through Jesus Christ, thine only Son,
Who, with the Holy Ghost and thee,
Doth live and reign eternally. Amen.


Here's a fantastic Tallis alternatim composition based on melody #14:




Here's melody #11, the ferial tune:

Here's Te lucis ante terminum sung to melody #11, again sung by St. David's Compline Choir; this time, though, it's the "Ferial Tone, à 5," a composition by Thomas Tallis that includes the plainsong tune, and sung in Latin.   The doxology is slightly different on the audio file.


The next hymn is Salvator mundi Domine, sung on a variety of occasions (see list above) to melody #8


Melody #8 is the famous Pentecost hymn tune for Veni, Creator Spiritus.   CPDL has the words in Latin, at a link to a John Sheppard composition, and notes that:
This Compline Hymn setting for the Vigil of Christmas in the Sarum Rite makes use of the Sarum Plainchant also associated with Veni Creator Spiritus. Sheppard sets the second and fourth verses, the odd verses being sung as plainchant.
I would dearly love to have a recording of the Sheppard composition, but alas!  Here, though, via mp3 from the LLPB, is what melody #8 sounds like; just substitute the Salvator mundi Domine text.  The English words below are from the SSM Breviary:

Salvator mundi Domine,
Qui nos salvasti hodie,
In hac nocte nos protege,
Et salva omni tempore.

Adesto nunc propitius,
Et parce supplicantibus;
Tu dele nostra crimina,
Tu tenebras illumina.

Ne mentem somnus opprimat,
Ne hostis nos surrepiat,
Nec ullis caro, petimus,
Commaculetur sordibus.

Te, reformator sensuum,
Votis precamur cordium,
Ut puri castis mentibus
Surgamus a cubilibus.

Deo Patri sit gloria,
Eiusque soli Filio,
Cum Spiritu Paraclito
Et nunc et in perpetuum.
Amen.


SAVIOUR of man, and Lord alone,
"Who through this day hast saved Thine own,
Protect us through the coming night,
And ever save us by Thy might.

Be with us, Lord, in mercy nigh,
And spare Thy servants when they cry;
Blot out our every past offence,
And lighten Thou our darkened sense.

0 let not sleep oppress the soul,
Nor Satan with his spirits foul;
Our flesh keep chaste, that it may be
An holy temple unto Thee.

To Thee, Who makest souls anew,
With heartfelt vows we humbly sue;
That pure in heart, and free from stain,
We from our beds may rise again.

All laud to God the Father be;
All praise, Eternal Son, to Thee;
All glory, as is ever meet,
To God the blessed Paraclete. Amen.

The hymn at York for Christmastide is an ancient, wonderful and famous one:  Corde natus ex Parentis (Of the Father's Heart Begotten).  The melody prescribed, though, isn't the well-known tune called Divinum mysterium, but melody #73, this one:


Again, I have no recording this melody tune above; will try to remedy that.    Here, though, are the Latin words - there are a lot of them! -along with J.M. Neale's English translation:
Corde natus ex parentis
Ante mundi exordium
A et O cognominatus,
ipse fons et clausula
Omnium quae sunt, fuerunt,
quaeque post futura sunt.
Saeculorum saeculis.
   
Ipse iussit et creata,
dixit ipse et facta sunt,
Terra, caelum, fossa ponti,
trina rerum machina,
Quaeque in his vigent sub alto
solis et lunae globo.
Saeculorum saeculis.

Corporis formam caduci,
membra morti obnoxia
Induit, ne gens periret
primoplasti ex germine,
Merserat quem lex profundo
noxialis tartaro.
Saeculorum saeculis.
   
O beatus ortus ille,
virgo cum puerpera
Edidit nostram salutem,
feta Sancto Spiritu,
Et puer redemptor orbis
os sacratum protulit.
Saeculorum saeculis.
   
Psallat altitudo caeli,
psallite omnes angeli,
Quidquid est virtutis usquam
psallat in laudem Dei,
Nulla linguarum silescat,
vox et omnis consonet.
Saeculorum saeculis.
   
Ecce, quem vates vetustis
concinebant saeculis,
Quem prophetarum fideles
paginae spoponderant,
Emicat promissus olim;
cuncta conlaudent eum.
Saeculorum saeculis.
   
Macte iudex mortuorum,
macte rex viventium,
Dexter in Parentis arce
qui cluis virtutibus,
Omnium venturus inde
iustus ultor criminum.
Saeculorum saeculis.
   
Te senes et te iuventus,
parvulorum te chorus,
Turba matrum, virginumque,
simplices puellulae,
Voce concordes pudicis
perstrepant concentibus.
Saeculorum saeculis.

Tibi, Christe, sit cum Patre
hagioque Pneumate
Hymnus, decus, laus perennis,
gratiarum actio,
Honor, virtus, victoria,
regnum aeternaliter.
Saeculorum saeculis.


Of the Father’s love begotten,
Ere the worlds began to be,
He is Alpha and Omega,
He the source, the ending He,
Of the things that are, that have been,
And that future years shall see,
Evermore and evermore!

At His Word the worlds were framèd;
He commanded; it was done:
Heaven and earth and depths of ocean
In their threefold order one;
All that grows beneath the shining
Of the moon and burning sun,
Evermore and evermore!

He is found in human fashion,
Death and sorrow here to know,
That the race of Adam’s children
Doomed by law to endless woe,
May not henceforth die and perish
In the dreadful gulf below,
Evermore and evermore!

O that birth forever blessèd,
When the virgin, full of grace,
By the Holy Ghost conceiving,
Bare the Saviour of our race;
And the Babe, the world’s Redeemer,
First revealed His sacred face,
evermore and evermore!

O ye heights of heaven adore Him;
Angel hosts, His praises sing;
Powers, dominions, bow before Him,
and extol our God and King!
Let no tongue on earth be silent,
Every voice in concert sing,
Evermore and evermore!

This is He Whom seers in old time
Chanted of with one accord;
Whom the voices of the prophets
Promised in their faithful word;
Now He shines, the long expected,
Let creation praise its Lord,
Evermore and evermore!

Righteous judge of souls departed,
Righteous King of them that live,
On the Father’s throne exalted
None in might with Thee may strive;
Who at last in vengeance coming
Sinners from Thy face shalt drive,
Evermore and evermore!

Thee let old men, thee let young men,
Thee let boys in chorus sing;
Matrons, virgins, little maidens,
With glad voices answering:
Let their guileless songs re-echo,
And the heart its music bring,
Evermore and evermore!

Christ, to Thee with God the Father,
And, O Holy Ghost, to Thee,
Hymn and chant with high thanksgiving,
And unwearied praises be:
Honour, glory, and dominion,
And eternal victory,
Evermore and evermore!

And just because I love the (11th C., I believe) melody Divinum mysterium, I'll include this video from "Concordia Theological Seminary Fort Wayne Kantorei. Recorded in Kramer Chapel on the campus of CTS, Ft. Wayne." I would certainly recommend its use during Christmastide as an alternative!  They are using a different set of words here, though.



Here's more about the hymn from the Wikipedia page linked above:
Of the Father's Heart Begotten alternatively known as Of the Father's Love Begotten is a Christmas carol based on the Latin poem Corde natus by the Roman poet Aurelius Prudentius, from his Liber Cathemerinon (hymn no. IX) beginning "Da puer plectrum," which includes the Latin stanzas listed below.[1]

The ancient poem was translated and paired with a medieval plainchant melody Divinum mysterium. Divinum mysterium was a "Sanctus trope" - an ancient plainchant melody which over the years had been musically embellished.[2] An early version of this chant appears in manuscript form as early as the 10th century, although without the melodic additions, and "trope" versions with various melodic differences appear in Italian, German, Gallacian, Bohemian and Spanish manuscripts dating from the 13th to 16th centuries.[2]

Divinum mysterium first appears in print in 1582 in the Finnish song book Piae Cantiones, a collection of seventy-four sacred and secular church and school songs of medieval Europe compiled by Jaakko Suomalainen and published by Theodoric Petri.[3] In this collection, Divinum mysterium was classified as "De Eucharistia" reflecting its original use for the Mass.[4]

The text of the Divinum mysterium was substituted for Prudentius's poem when it was published by Thomas Helmore in 1851. In making this fusion, the original meter of the chant was disturbed, changing the original triple meter rhythm into a duple meter and therefore altering stresses and note lengths. A later version by Charles Winfred Douglas corrected this using an "equalist" method of transcription, although the hymn is now found in both versions as well as a more dance-like interpretation of the original melody.[2

Here's a peek-in to the SSM Breviary entry for Compline:




Here's something about Compline; as noted, much of the content comes from the Catholic Encyclopedia of 1917:
Compline (/ˈkɒmplɪn/ kom-plin; also ComplinNight PrayerPrayers at the End of the Day) is the final church service (or Office) of the day in the Christian tradition of canonical hours. The English word Compline is derived from the Latin completorium, as Compline is the completion of the working day. The word was first used in this sense about the beginning of the 6th century by St. Benedict in his Rule (Regula Benedicti; hereafter, RB), in Chapters161718, and 42, and he even uses the verb complere to signify Compline: "Omnes ergo in unum positi compleant" ("All having assembled in one place, let them say Compline"); "et exuentes a completorio" ("and, after going out from Compline...") (RB, Chap. 42).

CatholicEastern OrthodoxAnglicanLutheran, and certain other Christian denominations with liturgical traditions prescribe Compline services. Compline tends to be a contemplative Office that emphasizes spiritual peace. In manymonasteries it is the custom to begin the "Great Silence" after Compline, during which the whole community, including guests, observes silence throughout the night until the morning service the next day.

Historical development

This section incorporates information from the Catholic Encyclopedia of 1917. References to psalms follow the numbering system of the Septuagint, as said in the Latin of the Vulgate.
The origin of Compline has given rise to considerable discussion among liturgists. In the past, general opinion (including Bäumer and Batiffol) ascribed the origin of this Hour to St. Benedict, in the beginning of the 6th century. But Jules Pargoire and, later still, A. Vandepitte oppose this opinion and seek a more ancient origin for this Hour.

A text in Callinicus (between 447 and 450), first introduced in Father Pargoire's argument, informs us that betweenVespers and the Night Office there was celebrated in the East a canonical Hour called in this text prothypnia, because it preceded the first sleep, being nothing other than what the Greeks today call apodeipnon, on account of the meal it follows (see Compline in Byzantine usage, below). However, in the thirty-seventh question of his Great Asketikon (Long Rules), St. Basil the Great, also, speaks of an intermediate Hour between Vespers and the nightly Office. Father Pargoire therefore disputes the assertion that St. Benedict was the originator of Compline, being rather disposed to trace its source to St. Basil.

In the article mentioned above, Father Vandepitte confirms these conclusions; nevertheless he states, in the clearest terms, that it was not in Cæsarea in 375, but in his retreat in Pontus (358-362), that Basil established Compline, which Hour did not exist prior to his time, that is, until shortly after the middle of the 4th century. Dom Plaine also traced the source of Compline back to the 4th century, finding mention of it in a passage in Eusebius and in another in St. Ambrose, and also in John Cassian. These passages have been critically examined, and Fathers Pargoire and Vandepitte have proved that before St. Basil's time the custom of reciting Compline was unknown.

At any rate, even if these texts do not express all that Dom Plaine says they do, at least they bear witness to the private custom of saying a prayer before retiring to rest. If this was not the canonical Hour of Compline, it was certainly a preliminary step towards it.

The same writers reject the opinion of Paulin Ladeuze and Dom Besse, both of whom believe that Compline had a place in the Rule of St. Pachomius, which would mean that it originated still earlier in the 4th century.

It might be possible to reconcile these different sentiments by stating that, if it be an established fact that St. Basil instituted and organized the Hour of Compline for the East, as St. Benedict did for the West, there existed as early as the days of St. Cyprian and Clement of Alexandria the custom of reciting a prayer before sleep, in which practice we find the most remote origin of our Compline.

Compline in the Roman Rite

Prior to Vatican II

It is generally thought that the Benedictine form of Compline is the earliest western order, although some scholars, such as Dom Plaine, have maintained that the Hour of Compline as found in the Roman Breviary at his time, antedated the Benedictine Office. These debates apart, Benedict's arrangement probably invested the Hour of Compline with the liturgical character and arrangement which were preserved in the Benedictine Order, and largely adopted by the Roman Church. The original form of the Benedictine Office, lacking even an antiphon for the psalms, is much simpler than its Roman counterpart, resembling more closely the Minor Hours of the day.

Saint Benedict first gave the Office the basic structure by which it has come to be celebrated in the West: threepsalms (4, 90, and 133) as noted above said without antiphons, the hymn, the lesson, the versicle Kyrie eleison, thebenediction, and the dismissal (RB, Chaps. 17 and 18).

The Roman Office of Compline came to be richer and more complex. To the simple Benedictine psalmody—modified, there is a fourth psalm, "In te Domine speravi" (Psalm 30)— and perhaps at a fairly late date it added the solemn introduction of a benediction with a reading (based perhaps on the spiritual reading which, in the Rule of St. Benedict, precedes Compline; RB, Chap. 42), and the confession and absolution of faults. This is absent from parallel forms, such as that of Sarum.

The distinctive character and greater solemnity of the Roman form of Compline comes from the response, In manus tuas, Domine ("Into Thy hands, O Lord ..."), with the evangelical canticleNunc Dimittis, and its anthem, which is particularly characteristic.[1]

The Hour of Compline, such as it appeared in the Roman Breviary prior to the Second Vatican Council, may be divided into several parts, viz. the beginning or introduction, the psalmody, with its usual accompaniment ofantiphons, the hymn, the capitulum, the response, the evangelical canticle, the prayer, and the benediction.

By way of liturgical variety, the service of initium noctis may also be studied in the Celtic Liturgy, such as it is read in the Antiphonary of Bangor, its plan being set forth by Warren and by Bishop (see Bibliography, below).

Current usage

In the breviary of 1974 Roman Catholic Liturgy of the Hours, Compline is divided as follows: introduction, an optionalexamination of conscience or penitential rite, a hymnpsalmody with accompanying antiphonsscriptural reading, the responsory, the Canticle of Simeon, concluding prayer, and benediction. The final antiphon to the Blessed Virgin Mary (Salve Regina, etc.) is an essential part of the Office.[2] Summorum Pontificum does allow Compline to be recited according to the older form.

Compline in Byzantine usage

Compline (GreekApodeipnonSlavonicPovecheriye; literally, "after-supper" prayer) in the Eastern Orthodox andGreek-Catholic Churches takes two distinct forms: Small Compline and Great Compline. The two versions are quite different in length.

At Compline (whether Small or Great), a Canon to the Theotokos in the Tone of the Week will normally be read (these Canons will be found in the Octoechos). Services to saints in the Menaion that, for one reason or another, cannot be celebrated on the day assigned to them, may be chanted on the nearest convenient day at Compline. In such cases, the Canon for the Saint would be read together with the Canon to the Theotokos, followed by theStichera to the saint from Vespers. There are also particular days (such as certain Forefeasts, Afterfeasts, and days during the Pentecostarion) that have special Canons for Compline composed for them.

The Office always ends with a mutual asking of forgiveness. In some traditions, most notably among the Russians, Evening Prayers (i.e., Prayers Before Sleep) will be read near the end of Compline. It is an ancient custom, practiced on the Holy Mountain and in other monasteries, for everyone present at the end of Compline to venerate the Relics and Icons in the church, and receive the priest's blessing.

Small Compline

Small Compline is served on most nights of the year (i.e., those nights on which Great Compline is not served). On the eves of Sundays and feasts with All-Night Vigil, Compline may be either read privately or suppressed altogether. Among the Greeks, who do not normally hold an All-Night Vigil on Saturday evenings, Compline is said as normal.

The service is composed of three Psalms (50, 69, 142), the Small Doxology, the Nicene Creed, the Canon followed by Axion Estin,[3] the TrisagionTroparia for the day, Kyrie eleison (40 times), the Prayer of the Hours, the Supplicatory Prayer of Paul the Monk, and the Prayer to Jesus Christ of Antiochus the Monk.[4] Then the mutual forgiveness and final blessing by the Priest. After this, there is a Litany and the veneration of Icons and Relics.

Great Compline

Great Compline is a penitential office which is served on the following occasions:
Unlike Small Compline, Great Compline has portions of the service which are chanted by the Choir [8] and during Lent the Prayer of St. Ephraim is said with prostrations. During the First Week of Great Lent, the Great Canon ofSaint Andrew of Crete is divided into four portions and read on Monday through Thursday nights.

Due to the penitential nature of Great Compline, it is not uncommon for the priest to hear Confession during the service.

Great Compline is composed of three sections, each beginning with the call to prayer, "O come, let us worship...":

First Part

Psalms[9] 4, 6, and 12; Glory..., etc.; Psalms 24, 30, 90; then the hymn "God is With Us" and troparia, the Creed, the hymn "O Most holy Lady Theotokos", the Trisagion and Troparia of the Day, Kyrie eleison (40 times), "More honorable than the cherubim..." and the Prayer of St. Basil the Great.
Second Part

Psalms 50, 101, and the Prayer of Manasses; the Trisagion, and Troparia of Repentance,[10] Kyrie eleison (40 times), "More honorable than the cherubim..." and the Prayer of St. Mardarius.
Third Part

Psalms 69, 142, and the Small Doxology;[11] then the Canon followed by Axion Estin, the Trisagion, the hymn "O Lord of Hosts, be with us...", Kyrie eleison (40 times), the Prayer of the Hours, "More honorable than the cherubim....", the Prayer of St. Ephraim, Trisagion, the Supplicatory Prayer of Paul the Monk, and the Prayer to Jesus Christ of Antiochus the Monk.[4] Then the mutual forgiveness. Instead of the normal final blessing by the Priest, all prostrate themselves while the priest reads a special prayer intercessory prayer. Then the Litany and the veneration of Icons and Relics.

Anglican usage

In the Anglican tradition, Compline was originally merged with Vespers to form Evening Prayer in the Book of Common PrayerECUSA's Book of Offices of 1914, the Church of England's proposed Prayer Book of 1928, and the Anglican Church of Canada's Prayer Book of 1959 restored a form of Compline to Anglican worship. Several contemporary liturgical texts, including the American 1979 Book of Common Prayer, the Anglican Church of Canada's Book of Alternative Services, and the Church of England's Common Worship, provide modern forms of the service. The Common Worship service consists of the opening sentences, the confession of sins, the psalms and other Bible lessons, the canticle of Simeon, and prayers, including a benediction. There are authorised alternatives for the days of the week and the seasons of the Christian year. As a public service of worship, likeMorning Prayer and Evening Prayer, Compline may be led by a layperson.

Lutheran usage

Among Lutherans, Compline has re-emerged as an alternative to Vespers. The Office of Compline is included in the various Lutheran books of worship and prayer books [along with Matins/Morning Prayer and Vespers/Evening Prayer]. Quite similar to Anglican use, in some Lutheran Churches Compline may be conducted by a layperson.

Don't forget, either, to subscribe to the podcasts of the Compline Choir of St. Mark's Cathedral in Seattle; they are well worth a listen each week.

More Compline links here.

2 comments:

Steve Caruso said...

On "when the choir has Rulers" -- I found a reference in The Encyclopaedic Dictionary: A New, Original and Exhaustive Work of Reference to All English Words, Their Origin, Development, Orthography, Pronunciation, Meaning and Legitimate Or Customary Use (1896) (whew, that's a mouthful...) which states:

"choir-ruler, s.
Roman Ritual: One of the choir who the psalms at vespers on festivals. The choir-rulers, who may be laymen, wear copes, and are two or four in number, according to rank of the feast."

So, they appear to be a type of designated psalmody cantors for feasts.

Peace,
-Steve

bls said...

Thanks, Steve! I can see you went out of your way for that one, and it's most appreciated.

;-)

Really: thanks; I've wondered about this ever since I first read it. I love thing about copes....

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