Wednesday, August 28, 2013

On the Feast of the Decollation of S. John the Baptist (Aug. 29)

August 29 is the day the church (most all of it, although some on the old Orthodox calendar use September 11) observes the beheading of John the Baptist; this is one of the few occasions when a saint's primary feast day is not the day of his death.   (John's major feast day is June 24, the Feast of his Nativity.)

Here's what Hymn melodies for the whole year from the Sarum service books prescribes for today, short and sweet:
On the Feast of the Decollation of S. John the Baptist (Aug 29), as on the Feast of one Martyr.
So, let's back up and talk about the hymns for "the Feast of one Martyr"; again from Hymn melodies for the whole year from the Sarum services books:
1st Ev. & Matt.: Martyr Dei, qui unicum
At 1st Ev. (except in Xmas & Paschal-tides) ... ... 25
At 1st Ev. in Xmas-tide & М. throughout the year (except in Paschal-tide ) ... ... 26
During Paschal-tide (1st Ev. & М.) ... ... 39
On Simple Feasts of the lowest class throughout the year (1st Ev. & M.) ... ... 6 or 76

Lauds & 2nd Ev.: Deus, Tuorum Militum
At L. (except in Xmas & Paschal-tides) ... ... 25
At 2nd Ev. (& L. when no 2nd Ev.) ... ... 49
During Xmas-tide (L. & 2nd Ev.) ... ... 27
During Paschal-tide (L. & 2nd Ev.) ... ... 39
On Simple Feasts of the lowest class throughout the year (L.) ... ... ... 40

Follow along with the Offices for this feast at Breviary Offices, from Lauds to Compline Inclusive (Society of St. Margaret, Boston) (published in 1885). You can get all the Psalms, the collect, Chapter, antiphons, etc., for each of the offices of the day at that link, although no music is provided; check the iFrame look-in at the bottom of this post.)

The Latin words for Martyr Dei, qui unicum are these:
Martyr Dei, qui (quæ) unicum
Patris sequendo Filium,
victis triumphas hostibus,
victor (victrix) fruens cælestibus.

Tui precatus munere
nostrum reatum dilue,
arcens mali contagium,
vitæ repellens tædium.

Soluta sunt iam vincula
tui sacrati corporis;
nos solve vinclis sæculi,
amore Filii Dei.

Honor Patri cum Filio
et Spiritu Paraclito,
qui te corona perpeti
cingunt in aula gloriæ.


Here's an English translation of this hymn, at Cyberhymnal, where it is called "Martyr of God, whose strength was steeled." Cyberhymnal notes that the hymn is by an: "Unknown au­thor, 10th Cen­tu­ry (Mar­tyr Dei qui un­i­cum); trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by Per­cy Dear­mer in The Eng­lish Hymn­al (Lon­don: Ox­ford Un­i­ver­si­ty Press, 1906), num­ber 180."
Martyr of God, whose strength was steeled
To follow close God’s only Son,
Well didst thou brave thy battlefield,
And well thy heavenly bliss was won!

Now join thy prayers with ours, who pray
That God may pardon us and bless;
For prayer keeps evil’s plague away,
And draws from life its weariness.

Long, long ago, were loosed the chains
That held thy body once in thrall;
For us how many a bond remains!
O Love of God release us all.

All praise to God the Father be,
All praise to Thee, eternal Son;
All praise, O Holy Ghost, to Thee
While never ending ages run.


Deus tuorum militum can be found at "Early christian hymns," listed as a "Vesper hymn, for the feast of a martyr." CPDL offers a couple of Latin versions; here's one:
Deus, tuorum militum
sors et corona, præmium,
laudes canentes martyris
absolve nexu criminis.

Hic (Hæc) nempe mundi gaudia
et blandimenta noxia
caduca rite deputans,
pervenit ad cælestia.

Pœnas cucurrit fortiter
et sustulit viriliter;
pro te refundens sanguinem,
æterna dona possidet.

Ob hoc precatu supplici
te poscimus, piissime;
in hoc triumpho martyris
dimitte noxam servulis.

Ut consequamur muneris
ipsius et consortia,
lætemur ac perenniter
iuncti polorum sedibus.

Laus et perennis gloria
tibi, Pater, cum Filio,
Sancto simul Paraclito
in sæculorum sæcula.
Amen

 Here are the English words to this hymn, noted as from an unknown author in the sixth century, with a translation by J.M. Neale:
O God, thy soldiers' crown and guard,
and their exceeding great reward;
from all transgressions set us free,
who sing thy martyr's victory.

The pleasures of the world he spurned,
from sin's pernicious lures he turned;
he knew their joys imbued with gall,
and thus he reached thy heavenly hall.

For thee through many a woe he ran,
in many a fight he played the man;
for thee his blood he dared to pour,
and thence hath joy for evermore.

We therefore pray thee, full of love,
regard us from thy throne above;
on this thy martyr's triumph day,
wash every stain of sin away.

O Christ, most loving King, to thee,
with God the Father, glory be;
like glory, as is ever meet,
to God the holy Paraclete.


Below are all the chant scores for this great variety of melodies, along with music files where I've found them.   In use again are the Christmas and Christmastide melodies (25, 26, and 27), one from Easter (as at the Most Sweet Name of Jesus), plus a few others, a couple of which we haven't seen before.



Melody #6 is used at Terce "on Feasts throughout the Year" (Nunc sancte nobis Spiritus) and at None "on Feasts throughout the Year" (Rerum Deus tenax vigor). Unfortunately, I don't have a sound file to post for it; working on that!


Here again is LLPB's recording of melody #25, as used for the familiar Christmas First Vespers hymn Veni, Redemptor Gentium.


LLPB also provides a recording of Hymn tune #26;  the cantor is singing the Christmas Evensong hymn "Jesus, the Father's Only Son."  


LLPB has a recording of melody #27here's a recording of it sung as "From East to West, from shore to shore" (A solis ortus cardine), the Lauds and 2nd Vespers hymn for Christmas Day. 


Here's an mp3 of an example of alternate melody #39 again from LLPB;  it's the same melody as that used for the Easter Mattins hymn, Aurora Lucis Rutilat ("The Day Draws on with Golden Light").
Melody #40 (mp3) is used for the (ferial) Eastertide Sarum hymn for 2nd Evensong, Ad cenam Agni providi ("The Lamb's High Banquet").

The LLPB offers this mp3 of Hymn #49, "O God Thy Soldiers Crown and Guard," as a "Hymn about the Martyrs (male)."   (Hymn #49 is also the tune used for "O Glorious King of Martyr Hosts" (mp3) at LLPB; that's sung on the feast days of several martyrs, such as the Feast of Constance and her Companions.)


I have no information about Melody #76 - nor do I know anything about Hereford hymnal.  As always, though:  I'll return to post audio of it if I find it.


Here's a peek-through to the SSM Breviary; rather than clicking the link above, you can just scroll through the day's offices here, if you'd rather:





There are, as you can imagine, many paintings and other works that deal with this subject; some in Western art are quite gruesome.   Here's one, painted in 1869 by Pierre Puvis de Chavannes , that's not, so much:



Here's a very complicated icon of the beheading of St. John the Baptist; I'm assuming it's Greek (the artist is given as "unknown") because it's today in the Benaki Museum in Athens.  The Wikipedia page says that it's from the 18th Century:



A standard iconographic representation of this event, though, presents John as carrying his own head in a basket (or perhaps on a platter?):

  


The Wikipedia description says that this is "Russian: John the Baptist, Angel of the Desert, with Life in 16 marginal scenes.  School or bad. center: Yaroslavl XVI century. 142 × 96 cm Yaroslavl Art Museum, Yaroslavl, Russia."

I didn't know he was referred to as "the Angel of the Desert"; it's a beautiful name.


Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The Sarum Office Hymns "On the Feast of One Martyr"

From Hymn melodies for the whole year from the Sarum services books:
1st Ev. & Matt.: Martyr Dei, qui unicum
At 1st Ev. (except in Xmas & Paschal-tides) ... ... 25
At 1st Ev. in Xmas-tide & М. throughout the year (except in Paschal-tide ) ... ... 26
During Paschal-tide (1st Ev. & М.) ... ... 39
On Simple Feasts of the lowest class throughout the year (1st Ev. & M.) ... ... 6 or 76

Lauds & 2nd Ev.: Deus, Tuorum Militum
At L. (except in Xmas & Paschal-tides) ... ... 25
At 2nd Ev. (& L. when no 2nd Ev.) ... ... 49
During Xmas-tide (L. & 2nd Ev.) ... ... 27
During Paschal-tide (L. & 2nd Ev.) ... ... 39
On Simple Feasts of the lowest class throughout the year (L.) ... ... ... 40

Follow along with the Offices for this feast at Breviary Offices, from Lauds to Compline Inclusive (Society of St. Margaret, Boston) (published in 1885).  I'll also add an iFrame look-in at the bottom of this post.)


The Latin words for Martyr Dei, qui unicum are these:
Martyr Dei, qui (quæ) unicum
Patris sequendo Filium,
victis triumphas hostibus,
victor (victrix) fruens cælestibus.

Tui precatus munere
nostrum reatum dilue,
arcens mali contagium,
vitæ repellens tædium.

Soluta sunt iam vincula
tui sacrati corporis;
nos solve vinclis sæculi,
amore Filii Dei.

Honor Patri cum Filio
et Spiritu Paraclito,
qui te corona perpeti
cingunt in aula gloriæ.


Here's an English translation of this hymn, at Cyberhymnal, where it is called "Martyr of God, whose strength was steeled." Cyberhymnal notes that the hymn is by an: "Unknown au­thor, 10th Cen­tu­ry (Mar­tyr Dei qui un­i­cum); trans­lat­ed from La­tin to Eng­lish by Per­cy Dear­mer in The Eng­lish Hymn­al (Lon­don: Ox­ford Un­i­ver­si­ty Press, 1906), num­ber 180."
Martyr of God, whose strength was steeled
To follow close God’s only Son,
Well didst thou brave thy battlefield,
And well thy heavenly bliss was won!

Now join thy prayers with ours, who pray
That God may pardon us and bless;
For prayer keeps evil’s plague away,
And draws from life its weariness.

Long, long ago, were loosed the chains
That held thy body once in thrall;
For us how many a bond remains!
O Love of God release us all.

All praise to God the Father be,
All praise to Thee, eternal Son;
All praise, O Holy Ghost, to Thee
While never ending ages run.


Deus tuorum militum can be found at "Early christian hymns," listed as a "Vesper hymn, for the feast of a martyr." CPDL offers a couple of Latin versions; here's one:
Deus, tuorum militum
sors et corona, præmium,
laudes canentes martyris
absolve nexu criminis.

Hic (Hæc) nempe mundi gaudia
et blandimenta noxia
caduca rite deputans,
pervenit ad cælestia.

Pœnas cucurrit fortiter
et sustulit viriliter;
pro te refundens sanguinem,
æterna dona possidet.

Ob hoc precatu supplici
te poscimus, piissime;
in hoc triumpho martyris
dimitte noxam servulis.

Ut consequamur muneris
ipsius et consortia,
lætemur ac perenniter
iuncti polorum sedibus.

Laus et perennis gloria
tibi, Pater, cum Filio,
Sancto simul Paraclito
in sæculorum sæcula.
Amen

 Here are the English words to this hymn, noted as from an unknown author in the sixth century, with a translation by J.M. Neale:
O God, thy soldiers' crown and guard,
and their exceeding great reward;
from all transgressions set us free,
who sing thy martyr's victory.

The pleasures of the world he spurned,
from sin's pernicious lures he turned;
he knew their joys imbued with gall,
and thus he reached thy heavenly hall.

For thee through many a woe he ran,
in many a fight he played the man;
for thee his blood he dared to pour,
and thence hath joy for evermore.

We therefore pray thee, full of love,
regard us from thy throne above;
on this thy martyr's triumph day,
wash every stain of sin away.

O Christ, most loving King, to thee,
with God the Father, glory be;
like glory, as is ever meet,
to God the holy Paraclete.


Below are all the chant scores for this great variety of melodies, along with music files where I've found them.   In use again are the Christmas and Christmastide melodies (25, 26, and 27), one from Easter (as at the Most Sweet Name of Jesus), plus a few others, a couple of which we haven't seen before.



Melody #6 is used at Terce "on Feasts throughout the Year" (Nunc sancte nobis Spiritus) and at None "on Feasts throughout the Year" (Rerum Deus tenax vigor). Unfortunately, I don't have a sound file to post for it; working on that!


Here again is LLPB's recording of melody #25, as used for the familiar Christmas First Vespers hymn Veni, Redemptor Gentium.


LLPB also provides a recording of Hymn tune #26;  the cantor is singing the Christmas Evensong hymn "Jesus, the Father's Only Son."  


LLPB has a recording of melody #27here's a recording of it sung as "From East to West, from shore to shore" (A solis ortus cardine), the Lauds and 2nd Vespers hymn for Christmas Day. 


Here's an mp3 of an example of alternate melody #39 again from LLPB;  it's the same melody as that used for the Easter Mattins hymn, Aurora Lucis Rutilat ("The Day Draws on with Golden Light").
Melody #40 (mp3) is used for the (ferial) Eastertide Sarum hymn for 2nd Evensong, Ad cenam Agni providi ("The Lamb's High Banquet").

The LLPB offers this mp3 of Hymn #49, "O God Thy Soldiers Crown and Guard," as a "Hymn about the Martyrs (male)."   (Hymn #49 is also the tune used for "O Glorious King of Martyr Hosts" (mp3) at LLPB; that's sung on the feast days of several martyrs, such as the Feast of Constance and her Companions.)


I have no information about Melody #76 - nor do I know anything about Hereford hymnal.  As always, though:  I'll return to post audio of it if I find it.

Here's a peek-in to the Office at the SSM Breviary:



Saturday, August 24, 2013

Anglican Chant XXVIII: Psalm 63 (Jones)

From the YouTube page:
The Schola Cantorum sings Psalm 63, "Deus, Deus meus," at Choral Evensong on 15 May 2011 at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church, Highland Park, Pittsburgh, PA. Chant: Jones. Alastair Stout, organ; Peter J. Luley, choirmaster.



 Here's the 1662 BCP (Coverdale) Psalter text:
1  O God, thou art my God *
 early will I seek thee.
2  My soul thirsteth for thee, my flesh also longeth after thee *
 in a barren and dry land where no water is.
3  Thus have I looked for thee in holiness *
 that I might behold thy power and glory.
4  For thy loving-kindness is better than the life itself *
 my lips shall praise thee.
5  As long as I live will I magnify thee on this manner *
 and lift up my hands in thy Name.
6  My soul shall be satisfied, even as it were with marrow and fatness *
 when my mouth praiseth thee with joyful lips.
7  Have I not remembered thee in my bed *
 and thought upon thee when I was waking?
8  Because thou hast been my helper *
 therefore under the shadow of thy wings will I rejoice.
9  My soul hangeth upon thee *
 thy right hand hath upholden me.
10  These also that seek the hurt of my soul *
 they shall go under the earth.
11  Let them fall upon the edge of the sword *
 that they may be a portion for foxes.
12  But the King shall rejoice in God; all they also that swear by him shall be commended *
 for the mouth of them that speak lies shall be stopped.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Anglican Chant XXVII: King's College Cambridge Psalm 23 (Goss)



Here's the 1662 BCP (Coverdale) Psalter text:
1 The Lord is my shepherd *
therefore can I lack nothing.
2 He shall feed me in a green pasture *
and lead me forth beside the waters of comfort.
3 He shall convert my soul *
and bring me forth in the paths of righteousness, for his Name’s sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death , I will fear no evil *
for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff comfort me.

5 Thou shalt prepare a table before me against them that trouble me *
thou hast anointed my head with oil, and my cup shall be full.
6 But thy loving-kindness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life *
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord for ever.

This is from the YouTube page:
Anglican Chant by Sir John Goss (27 December 1800 -- 10 May 1880) was an English organist, composer and teacher.

Born to a musical family, Goss was a boy chorister of the Chapel Royal, London, and later a pupil of Thomas Attwood, organist of St Paul's Cathedral. After a brief period as a chorus member in an opera company he was appointed organist of a chapel in south London, later moving to more prestigious organ posts at St Luke's, Chelsea and finally St Paul's Cathedral, where he struggled to improve musical standards.

As a composer, Goss wrote little for the orchestra, but was known for his vocal music, both religious and secular. Among his best-known compositions are his hymn tunes "Praise my Soul, the King of Heaven" and "See, Amid the Winter's Snow". The music critic of The Times described him as the last of the line of English composers who confined themselves almost entirely to ecclesiastical music.

From 1827 to 1874, Goss was a professor at the Royal Academy of Music, teaching harmony. He also taught at St Paul's. Among his pupils at the academy were Arthur Sullivan, Frederic Cowen and Frederick Bridge. His best-known pupil at St Paul's was John Stainer, who succeeded him as organist there.
wikipedia

There are 17 other Anglican Chant videos on this playlist, too.  Have fun!

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

In Assumptione Beatæ Mariæ Virginis, ad II vesperas

From the website of the Brazilian Benedictines, here are (mp3) recordings of Second Vespers of The Feast of St. Mary the Virgin (Assumption, August 15); I added the image.  You can follow along with the service at Divinum Officium; enter 8-15-2013 in the date box, hit "Enter," then click Vesperae.
In Assumptione Beatæ Mariæ Virginis
ad II vesperas


Our Lady of Vladimir, one of the holiest
medieval representations of the 
Theotokos
Introitus - organum (2m27.1s - 2012 kb)

Deus, in adiutorium (55.5s - 759 kb)

Hymnus: Ave, Maris stella (2m39.4s - 2181 kb)

Psalmus 109, antiphona Assumpta est Maria (2m42.3s - 2219 kb)

Psalmus 112, antiphona Maria Virgo assumpta est (2m29.6s - 2046 kb)

Psalmus 121, antiphona In odorem unguentorum (2m31.2s - 2068 kb)

Psalmus 126, antiphona Pulchra es et decora (2m31.8s - 2076 kb)

Lectio brevis (21.9s - 301 kb)

Responsorium: Assumpta est Maria (1m48.9s - 1490 kb)

Magnificat, antiphona Hodie Maria Virgo cælos ascendit (5m33.3s - 4558 kb)

Kyrie, eleison; Pater noster; Dominus vobiscum (2m46.5s - 2227 kb)

Benedicamus Dominum; Sit nomen (1m07.5s - 924 kb)

Ecce panis (1m35.6s - 1308 kb)

Tantum ergo VII (1m10.4s - 964 kb)

Panem de cælo, Deus qui nobis (1m15.4s - 1031 kb)

Te laudamus, Domine (1m31.3s - 1249 kb)

Finalem - organum (3m22.8s - 2774 kb)

Friday, August 09, 2013

On the Feast of the Assumption of the B. V. Mary (August 15)

I'm continuing the completion of my Office Hymn listings.  Here are the hymns for the Feast of the Assumption listed at Hymn melodies for the whole year from the Sarum service books:
On the Feast of the Assumption of the B. V. Mary:
1st Evensong:  O quam glorifica ... ... ... ... 66
Mattins:  Quem terra, pontus, ethera ... ... ... ... 63
Lauds O gloriosa femina ... ... ... ...63
2nd Evensong: Letabundus ... ... Sequence, p. (11)
(But within the 8ve & on the 8ve day, O quam glorifica,  as above.)


(This feast is called "The Repose of the Blessed Virgin Mary" at Breviary Offices, from Lauds to Compline Inclusive (Society of St. Margaret, Boston); that book was published in 1885.  You can get all the Psalms, the collect, Chapter, antiphons, etc., for all the offices of the day at that link, although no music is provided - or check the iFrame look-in at the bottom of this post. )

And the 1979 Book of Common Prayer calls this day simply "The Feast of  St. Mary the Virgin"; it is a Major Feast in the Episcopal Church.

O quam glorifica is a beautiful hymn; I was not familiar with it previously.  Melody #66 is never used at any other office on any other day; it's a really lovely tune with an unusual meter (11-11-11-11):


Here it is sung by the Trappist monks of Gethsemani in Kentucky (Thomas Merton's monastery - and he actually might have been singing here, because the YouTube page says this recording is from 1958):



Here are the Latin words (verse 3 is not included on the video above):
O quam glorifica luce coruscas,
Stirpis Davidicæ regia proles.
Sublimis residens, Virgo Maria,
Supra cæligenas ætheris .

Tu cum virgineo mater honore,
Ang(e)lorum Domino pectoris aulam
Sacris visceribus casta parasti;
Natus hinc Deus est corpore Christus.

Quem cunctus venerans orbis adorat,
cui nunc rite genuflectitur omne;
A quo te, petimus, subveniente,
Abjectis tenebris, gaudia lucis.

Hoc largire Pater luminis omnis,
Natum per proprium, Flamine sacro,
Qui tecum nitida vivit in æthera
Regnans, ac moderans sæcula cuncta.
Amen. 
It's quite beautiful in English, too; this is, I believe, G.H. Palmer's translation, from The Hymner:
O with what glorious lustre thou shinest,
Daughter of royalty, David's descendant!
Throned in majesty, Mary the Virgin,
Thou 'mid the blessed ones sittest exalted.

Keeping thy virginal honour unspotted
E'en in thy motherhood, chastely thou gavest
Shrine for the Holy One, Lord of the Angels;
Thus in humanity God was incarnate;

Whom the whole universe lowly adoreth,
Duly on bended knee tendering homage:
We on thy festival pray him to grant us
Light and felicity, darkness dispelling.

This, of thy clemency, Father of glory,
Grant through thine only Son, who, with the Spirit,
Evermore one with thee liveth and reigneth
In the bright firmament, ordering all things. Amen.


Here is the chant score for melody #63 from Hymn Melodies:; this melody is used for both the Mattins and Lauds hymn on Assumption.




Here's an mp3 the cantor from LLPB singing melody #63; it's the Mattins hymn Quem terra, pontus, ethera, called "The God Whom Earth and Sea and Sky" in English.  This hymn is also sung at Mattins on Purification (Candlemas).

Here are the words from Oremus; the note says "Words: attributed to Fortunatus, sixth century; trans. John Mason Neale, 1854."
The God whom earth and sea and sky
adore and laud and magnify,
whose might they own, whose praise they swell,
in Mary's womb vouchsafed to dwell.

The Lord whom sun and moon obey,
whom all things serve from day to day,
was by the Holy Ghost conceived
of her who through his grace believed.

How blessed that Mother, in whose shrine
the world's Creator, Lord divine,
whose hand contains the earth and sky,
once deigned, as in his ark, to lie.

Blessed in the message Gabriel brought,
blessed by the work the Spirit wrought;
from whom the great Desire of earth
took human flesh and human birth.

O Lord, the Virgin-born, to thee
eternal praise and glory be,
whom with the Father we adore
and Holy Ghost for evermore.

The Lauds hymn, O gloriosa femina (sometimes "O gloriosa domina"), is sung to the same melody today;  O gloriosa domina is also sung at Lauds on Purification (Candlemas)

This set of words comes from the SSM Breviary mentioned above (p.291);  it uses the same meter as Quem terra, pontus, ethera, so just sing it to the same tune, as prescribed.
O GLORIOUS Virgin, throned in rest
Amidst the starry host above,
Who gavest nurture from thy breast
To God with pure maternal love:

What we had lost through sinful Eve
The Blossom sprung from thee restores.
And granting bliss to souls that grieve.
Unbars the everlasting doors.

O gate, through which hath passed the King:
O hall, whence light shone through the gloom;
The ransomed nations praise and sing,
Life given from the virgin womb.

All honour, laud, and glory be,
O Jesu, Virgin-born, to Thee;
All glory, as is ever meet,
To Father and to Paraclete. Amen.

CPDL has the words to O gloriosa Domina, in Latin and English; the words above are clearly taken from the same original Latin text, so it's definitely the same song:
O gloriosa Domina
excelsa super sidera,
qui te creavit provide,
lactasti sacro ubere.

Quod Eva tristis abstulit,
tu reddis almo germine;
intrent ut astra flebiles,
Caeli fenestra facta es.

Tu regis alti janua
et porta lucis fulgida;
vitam datam per Virginem,
gentes redemptae, plaudite.

Gloria tibi, Domine,
qui natus es de Virgine,
cum Patre et Sancto Spiritu
in sempiterna secula. Amen.



O Heaven's glorious mistress,
elevated above the stars,
thou feedest with thy sacred breast
him who created thee.

What miserable Eve lost
thy dear offspring to man restors,
the way to glory is open to the wretched
for thou has become the Gate of Heaven.

Thou art the door of the High King,
the gate of shining light.
Life is given through a Virgin:
Rejoice, ye redeemed nations.

Glory be to Thee, O Lord,
Born of a Virgin,
with the Father and the Holy Spirit,
world without end. Amen.

Here's a page from the Poissy Antiphonal that includes both of these hymns - but the melodies seem quite different:




And here again is Letabundus, the Christmas Sequence Hymn, sung today at Second Vespers, as it is on Candlemas also. Here's a lovely version, sung by the Gregorian Singers of the Cremona Church of Sant’Abbondio:



Here's the score, from Hymn Melodies for the whole year from the Sarum service-books:





Here's an image of the score from the same source:





Here's the entry for this feast from the wonderful website Full Homely Divinity:

The Feast of Saint Mary the Virgin - Marymas
August 15th
 O God, who hast taken to thyself the blessed Virgin Mary, mother of thy incarnate Son: Grant that we, who have been redeemed by his blood, may share with her the glory of thine eternal kingdom; through the same thy Son Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen. (Collect for the feast, 1979 BCP)
The feast days of the saints are often referred to as their "heavenly birthdays" since they ordinarily celebrate the day when the saint died and thus passed into the new life of the Kingdom of Heaven.  No one illustrates this better than the Blessed Virgin Mary. Tradition relates that, when the time of her death drew near, all of the apostles gathered in Jerusalem to be with her--all except Thomas, who was preaching the Gospel in India and was unable to return to Jerusalem in time. The apostles gathered around her in a house on Mount Zion, near the Upper Room where they had shared the Last Supper with Jesus and had also received the Holy Spirit with Mary on Pentecost. In the charming medieval carving at the left, John still appears quite youthful, standing on the near side of her bed. Peter is wearing glasses and is reading to her. When she died, the apostles carried her to a tomb in the Garden of Gethsemane, which, tradition says, belonged to Mary's family.

Some time later, the apostles discovered that Mary's tomb was empty. This was not like the Resurrection of Jesus: Mary was not raised from the dead and did not appear to the apostles after her death; nor did an angel announce the news. Rather, her tomb was simply empty and they concluded that she had been taken directly into heaven ("assumed"), in much the same way that scripture and tradition attest that the greatest saints of the Old Testament--Enoch, Moses, and Elijah--were taken up bodily. In time, Thomas returned from India and the apostles told him what had happened, together with their conviction that Mary had been assumed into heaven. According to this tradition, Thomas once again played the role of the doubter and insisted that he would have to see the evidence before he would believe. At this point, we may perhaps be forgiven for thinking that the tradition is a bit unfair to Thomas. It hardly seems possible that this apostle who had traveled far and risked much to share his faith would make the same mistake twice. Nevertheless, the tradition has him going to the tomb of Mary where, instead of her body, he found the tomb full of fragrant flowers--one version of the tradition says the flowers were roses and lilies. And then, looking up, he saw Mary herself, going up to heaven. Looking back, she saw Thomas and dropped the girdle which had tied her robe and an angel delivered it into the hands of Thomas.

It was not until 1950 that the Assumption of Mary was defined as a dogma of the Roman Catholic Church, when Pope Pius XII proclaimed that "the ever-virgin Mary, having completed the course of her earthly life, was assumed body and soul into heaven." In reality, however, this dogma was nothing new. It simply made it a matter of obligation for Roman Catholics to believe what many Christians have always believed, namely, that God had "taken to himself," for eternity, the blessed woman who had borne his incarnate Son in time. All believers look forward to "the resurrection of the body and the life of the world to come." At the Council of Chalcedon in 451, the emperor asked the patriarch of Jerusalem to bring the relics of Mary to Constantinople so that they could be enshrined at what was then the center of the world. The patriarch replied that there were no relics because, as he said, the apostles had found that her tomb was empty and her body had been assumed into heaven: she had already gone where we all hope to go.




Some Christians have difficulty with this idea because it is not in the Bible (though, as we have already noted, the Bible does tell of others who have been assumed, body and soul, into heaven). Nevertheless, Mary's role in our salvation, and her particular relationship with God is a pivotal one on our behalf. Her "yes" to the Archangel Gabriel opened the way for God to take on our humanity, to become fully one with us in the flesh. As an ancient prayer says, God humbled himself to share our humanity in order that we might share in his divinity. In the moment that Mary said "yes" to God's plan, she was already one with God in a unique way, bearing within her body God himself. A connection such as this transcends by far the intimacy of human relationships. Indeed, it reaches beyond death--and so the Church believes.

At the Council of Ephesus in 431, Mary was given the title "Theotokos"--"God-bearer" or "Mother of God." Nestorius taught that the divinity and humanity of Jesus were distinct and never mingled, so that Mary was "Christotokos," the mother of the man Jesus, but not the mother of God incarnate. The teaching of Nestorius was rejected by the Council and Mary has been known ever since as Theotokos, in token of the fact that she carried God himself in her womb, and continued ever after to share a special union with him, both in life and in death. In the West, Mary's feast on August 15th is called the Assumption. In the East it is called Koimesis--"Dormition" or "Falling Asleep." Both titles are somewhat vague about the details. Indeed, in spite of the tradition concerning Thomas's vision of her ascent into heaven, the Church is officially silent on the way in which she got there. What is clear is that, as our Collect says, God took Mary to himself, to be with him and one with him for ever. And that is what we celebrate on this day.

There are two places in Jerusalem associated with the end of Mary's earthly life. One is the basilica in the Garden of Gethsemane (above) which houses her tomb. The other is a monastery on Mount Zion on the traditional site of her falling asleep. Dormition is the name the community of German Benedictines have given to the Abbey that crowns Mount Zion. A life-sized sculpture of the Theotokos in the crypt of the Abbey church shows the influence of traditional Byzantine iconography. In the traditional Orthodox icon, Jesus himself is depicted, standing by his Mother as she falls asleep, and holding her soul, like a child, in his arm.

Taking its cue from the experience of Thomas at the tomb of Mary, the celebration of this feast includes the blessing of fragrant flowers and herbs. Flowers have always been associated with Mary in a particular way. She is the Mystical Rose and many flowers are named for her or have popular names that relate to her. Here is a link describing many of Mary's flowers. And here is another link to a slide show with more information about Mary's flowers and Mary Gardens. A Mary Garden is a place to honor the Mother of God, as well as a place to go for quiet reflection and prayer. It could also provide a setting for your Easter Garden.  Mary Gardens may be found on the grounds of monasteries and churches, and also in the gardens of private homes. They are planted with flowers, herbs, and trees that are named for Mary or associated with her and her Son in scripture and tradition. They may also have statuary, icons, and other art and symbols that provide a focus for prayer and contemplation. Ideally, a Mary Garden is enclosed to provide a place truly set-apart, but even a dish garden can serve the purpose if properly used as a means of focusing prayer.

August is the wrong time to plant any kind of garden, but Marymas would be a good day to begin planning and marking out a Mary Garden. Some plants and seeds and bulbs do best if planted in the fall, and others can be added in the spring. Here is a link that will help you choose appropriate plants for your Mary Garden. In addition to the online resources linked above, Vincenzina Krymow's book Mary's Flowers is a beautifully illustrated text about the flowers associated with Mary and their legends. It includes information about how to create your own Mary Garden. Krymow has also written a companion volume, Healing Plants of the Bible. (Click here to find both of these books in our Bookshop.)
Llandaff Cathedral in Wales has a unique variation on a Mary Garden which we like a lot: each of the niches in the reredos of the Lady Chapel has a sculpture of a flower named in Welsh in honor of Mary.

From ancient times, in every culture, herbs and various flowers have been known to have healing properties. The blessing of herbs and flowers on Marymas is a way of "baptizing" the wisdom of traditional healing and combining it with the Christian wisdom that recognizes that God is the true source of healing and that salvation (wholeness) is ultimately found only in the Son of Mary, Jesus Christ. Thus, it was customary for the faithful to bring bunches of herbs and wild flowers to church on this day. They were blessed at the beginning of the Eucharist and then taken home to be used for healing and protection through the coming year. For the renewal of this tradition, an abbreviated form of the traditional prayers are found on ourMarymas Prayers page (click on the title).

In many parishes and especially at shrines, this is a day for processions and for celebrations that continue after the liturgical observances have been completed. Traditionally, working people had a holiday from work, so that there were also family celebrations. Today, we must be more creative about marking these holidays in our homes, and it may be necessary to transfer some of the celebration to the weekend in order to keep the spirit of a fully homely divinity alive and healthy. If your parish does not have a procession on this day, or if you are unable to attend, why not have a family procession? Hymn singing does not require an organ for accompaniment, and does not need to rival the Kings College Choir in order to praise God in joyful song. (You will find an assortment of good hymns on our Sing of Mary page.) Homemade banners can be as simple as strips of cloth waved by children, or as elaborate as those with greater skills can make them. Our homes can be filled with fragrant flowers and herbs. In the northern hemisphere, this is an outdoor feast. If you do not have a Mary Garden, any garden or park will serve--even the back porch, fitted out with potted plants and cut flowers and herbs, will serve quite well.

An especially good, yet relatively simple way to celebrate this feast is to have a tea party. A festive table can be set in your version of a Mary Garden, which is already full of flowers. Perhaps a few Mary flowers could be put in a small vase on the table. For drinks, we suggest teas that are scented with herbs or made entirely with herbs, as well as a fruit and herb punch from our friends at Catholic Culture that children will enjoy. For those who like old fashioned black teas, there are teas that are flavored with roses--a natural for the feast of the Mystical Rose. Earl Grey tea is another good choice as it is infused with Bergamot, a variety of Monarda, or Bee Balm, which is also known as Sweet Mary. For food, at the tea party, we suggest nasturtium sandwiches and strawberry shortcake. It is a little late in the season for local strawberries but, with modern refrigeration and transportation, it seems that almost any fresh fruit or vegetable can be obtained year-round. The strawberry was known as the "Fruitful Virgin" because it blooms and bears fruit at the same time. Another lovely European tradition says that the strawberry is sacred to Mary who accompanies children to keep them safe when they go strawberry picking on St. John's Day. The nasturtium is known as "St. Joseph's Flower." It is an edible flower and can be combined with cream cheese to make tea sandwiches. Tea should be accompanied by prayers appropriate to the occasion, such as the Collect of the Day which begins this article. Children should be told the story of Mary's heavenly birthday--how else will they learn it? Tomie de Paola's beautifully illustrated book Mary: The Mother of Jesus (available in our Bookshop) tells the story reverently and well. Finally, everyone will enjoy a walk in the garden which could easily be made into a game, with an award, such as a Mary-blue ribbon, for the person who identifies the most flowers and herbs that are named for Mary.
 
For more information about Mary on FHD, click on the links below and also visit our pages on Marymas Prayers and Sing to Mary.


Feasts of Mary
Here is a list of some of the Feast Days which celebrate Mary and her role in our salvation:
December 8th - The Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

December 12th - Our Lady of Guadalupe
December 18th - Santa Maria de la O
December 25th - The Nativity of Our Lord Jesus Christ

February 2nd - The Presentation of Our Lord Jesus Christ in the Temple,
also known as the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary, and Candlemas

March 19th - Saint Joseph (Spouse of the Blessed Virgin Mary)

March 25th - The Annunciation of Our Lord Jesus Christ to the Blessed Virgin Mary

May 31st - The Visitation of the Blessed Virgin Mary

July 26th - The Parents of the Blessed Virgin Mary, Joachim and Anne

August 15th - Saint Mary the Virgin
(The Assumption, or The Dormition of the Mother of God)

September 8th - The Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
(Our Lady of Glastonbury)
September 24th - Our Lady of Walsingham
October 1st - The Protecting Veil of the Mother of God
November 1st - All Saints' Day (formerly Saint Mary and All Martyrs)

And here's a peek-through to the SSM Breviary; rather than clicking the link above, you can just scroll through the day's offices here, if you'd rather:





Thursday, August 08, 2013

Ola Gjeilo: Ubi Caritas

Sung for Compline at the 2013 RSCM King's College Training Course in July at Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania:



This piece uses only the first stanza of this hymn/antiphon sung at Maundy Thursday, but here is a set of words to all three stanzas used today:

Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.
Congregavit nos in unum Christi amor.
Exultemus, et in ipso jucundemur.
Timeamus, et amemus Deum vivum.
Et ex corde diligamus nos sincero.
Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.
Simul ergo cum in unum congregamur:
Ne nos mente dividamur, caveamus.
Cessent iurgia maligna, cessent lites.
Et in medio nostri sit Christus Deus.
Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.
Simul quoque cum beatis videamus,
Glorianter vultum tuum, Christe Deus:
Gaudium quod est immensum, atque probum,
Saecula per infinita saeculorum. Amen.
Where charity and love are, God is there.
Christ's love has gathered us into one.
Let us rejoice and be pleased in Him.
Let us fear, and let us love the living God.
And may we love each other with a sincere heart.
Where charity and love are, God is there.
As we are gathered into one body,
Beware, lest we be divided in mind.
Let evil impulses stop, let controversy cease,
And may Christ our God be in our midst.
Where charity and love are, God is there.
And may we with the saints also,
See Thy face in glory, O Christ our God:
The joy that is immense and good,
Unto the ages through infinite ages. Amen.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

On the Feast of the Most Sweet Name of Jesus (Aug 7)

Still filling in my Sarum Office hymn listings!  So here are the hymns for this feast day, from Hymn Melodies for the Whole Year from the Sarum service-books:
On the Feast of the most sweet Name of Jesus ( Aug 7) & during the Octave (when the Service is of the Feast ):
EvensongExultet cor precordiis ... ... ... 25 or 41
Mattins: Jesu, dulcis memoria ... ... ... 26
Lauds: Jesu, Auctor clemencie ... ... ... 27 or 39

This feast day, needless to say, isn't on the Calendar anymore.   According to New Advent, it's the same Feast that's now celebrated in most traditions on January 1 - the Feast of the Holy Name - but as you can see (in the citation below) it has been observed at other times in various traditions.

You can get the full office for this day - Psalms, collect, Chapter, antiphons, etc., although no music is provided - at Breviary Offices, from Lauds to Compline Inclusive (Society of St. Margaret, Boston).    (See also the iFrame peek-in at the bottom of this page.Clearly, as late as 1885 - the publish date of that book - at least some Anglican religious orders were still celebrating this August feast.  Here's a link to the SSM website

Here are all five chant scores listed; interestingly, #s 25, 26, and 27 are the same melodies used for the Christmas Office (although some are used at other times as well); melody #41 is used twice at Transfiguration and twice on Ascension Day, as well as for Common of Saints days; and #39 is used during Paschaltide in a variety of ways. 








Sing Exultet cor precordiis to melody #25 or #41.    Here's LLPB's recording of melody #25, as used for the familiar Christmas First Vespers hymn Veni, Redemptor Gentium.   On this feast day, you can sing Exultet cor precordiis to this tune, using the following set of English words for this hymn; they come from Breviary Offices, from Lauds to Compline Inclusive (Society of St. Margaret, Boston)
Exultet cor precordiis

O LET the heart exulting beat,
"When Jesus' holy Name resounds;
Above all other it is sweet,
And in all gladness it abounds.

Jesus, Who comforteth in woe,
Jesus, Who heals the wounds of sin,
Jesus, Who curbs the fiends below,
Jesus, Who routs Death's arms within.

Jesus! it soundeth sweetest, best,
In every measure, hymn, and song;
And with its comfort soothes the breast,
And lifts us up, and makes us strong.

Let that great Name of Him the Lord,
Jesus, from tongues of all men peal;
And let the voice and heart accord,
That every ill its sound may heal.

Jesus, Who savest sinners lost,
Be present as we kneel in prayer;
Guide Thou the erring, tempest-tost,
And us, Thy guilty servants, spare.

O let Thy Name be our defence,
In every peril guard and stay,
And purging us from sin's offence.
Perfect us in the better way.

O Christ, all glory be to Thee,
Who shinest with this Name above,
Honour, and worship, majesty,
Be Thine, O Jesu, Lord of love.

O Jesu, from the "Virgin sprung,
All glory be ascribed to Thee,
Like praise be to the Father sung,
And Holy Ghost eternally. Amen. 

Or, use hymn tune #41 as an alternative; here's an an mp3 of that tune from LLPB (with the words for "a Hymn for Morning Prayer of the Feast of the Ascension of our Lord")

LLPB also provides a recording of Hymn tune #26;  the cantor is singing the Christmas Evensong hymn "Jesus, the Father's Only Son."    Here are the Latin words - along with Edward Caswall's 19th Century English translation - for Jesu, dulcis memoria, the Matins hymn for the Feast of the Most Sweet Name of Jesus:
Jesu, dulcis memoria

Jesu, dulcis memoria,
dans vera cordis gaudia:
sed super mel et omnia
ejus dulcis praesentia.

Nil canitur suavius,
nil auditur jucundius,
nil cogitatur dulcius,
quam Jesus Dei Filius.

Jesu, spes paenitentibus,
quam pius es petentibus!
quam bonus te quaerentibus!
sed quid invenientibus?

Nec lingua valet dicere,
nec littera exprimere:
expertus potest credere,
quid sit Jesum diligere.

Sis, Jesu, nostrum gaudium,
qui es futurum praemium:
sit nostra in te gloria,
per cuncta semper saecula.
Amen.



Jesus, the very thought of Thee
With sweetness fills the breast;
But sweeter far Thy face to see,
And in Thy presence rest.

Nor voice can sing, nor heart can frame,
Nor can the memory find
A sweeter sound than Thy blest Name,
O Savior of mankind!

O hope of every contrite heart,
O joy of all the meek,
To those who fall, how kind Thou art!
How good to those who seek!

But what to those who find? Ah, this
Nor tongue nor pen can show;
The love of Jesus, what it is,
None but His loved ones know.

Jesus, our only joy be Thou,
As Thou our prize will be;
Jesus be Thou our glory now,
And through eternity.


(More English verses:

O Jesus, King most wonderful
Thou Conqueror renowned,
Thou sweetness most ineffable
In Whom all joys are found!

When once Thou visitest the heart,
Then truth begins to shine,
Then earthly vanities depart,
Then kindles love divine.

O Jesus, light of all below,
Thou fount of living fire,
Surpassing all the joys we know,
And all we can desire.

Jesus, may all confess Thy Name,
Thy wondrous love adore,
And, seeking Thee, themselves inflame
To seek Thee more and more.

Thee, Jesus, may our voices bless,
Thee may we love alone,
And ever in our lives express
The image of Thine own.

O Jesus, Thou the beauty art
Of angel worlds above;
Thy Name is music to the heart,
Inflaming it with love.

Celestial Sweetness unalloyed,
Who eat Thee hunger still;
Who drink of Thee still feel a void
Which only Thou canst fill.

O most sweet Jesus, hear the sighs
Which unto Thee we send;
To Thee our inmost spirit cries;
To Thee our prayers ascend.

Abide with us, and let Thy light
Shine, Lord, on every heart;
Dispel the darkness of our night;
And joy to all impart.

Jesus, our love and joy to Thee,
The virgin’s holy Son,
All might and praise and glory be,
While endless ages run.)


Here's TPL on the famous Jesu, dulcis memoria:
Iesu, Dulcis Memoria is a celebrated 12th century hymn attributed to St. Bernard of Clairvaux (1090-1153), Doctor Mellifluus. The entire hymn has some 42 to 53 stanzas depending upon the manuscript. Parts of this hymn were used for the Feast of the Holy Name of Jesus, which was formerly celebrated on the Sunday between the Circumcision and Epiphany, or failing such a Sunday, on January 2. The part below was used at Vespers. In the liturgical revisions of Vatican II, the feast was deleted, though a votive Mass to the Holy Name of Jesus had been retained for devotional use. With the release of the revised Roman Missal in March 2002, the feast was restored as an optional memorial on January 3. Similarly the Feast of the Holy Name of Mary was restored as an optional memorial on September 12 in the revised Missal.


The hymn is more often sung to this better-known (and very beautiful) tune:





LLPB has a recording of melody #27here's a recording of it sung as "From East to West, from shore to shore" (A solis ortus cardine), the Lauds and 2nd Vespers hymn for Christmas Day.   You can sing Jesu, Auctor clemencie to this tune today; here's a translation, again from the SSM Breviary:
Jesu, auctor clemencie

Jesu, the Beauty Angels see,
The ears' ecstatic minstrelsy.
The nectar of the Heavenly Home,
The lips' delicious honey comb.

Flower of Virgin Mother blest,
Jesu, true sweetness, purest, best,
Of man the honour and the head.
Thy light of lights upon us shed.

More glorious than the sun to see,
More fragrant than the balsam-tree,
My heart's desire, and boast, and mirth.
Jesu, Salvation of the earth.

Jesu, Who highest bounty art,
And wondrous joyaunce of the heart,
Of goodness the infinity,
Constrain us with Thy charity.

0 King of Virtues. King renowned,
With glory and with victory crowned,
Jesu, by Whom all grace Is given,
Thou honour of the courts of heaven t

Let choirs of Angels singThy Name,
And echo all Thy matchless fame,
Jesus on joyful earth hath smiled,
And us with God hath reconciled.

All honour, laud, and glory be,
0 Jesu, Virgin-born to Thee;
All glory, as is ever meet,
To Father and to Paraclete. Amen. 

Here's an mp3 of an example of alternate melody #39it's the Easter Mattins hymn, Aurora Lucis Rutilat ("The Day Draws on with Golden Light").

It's interesting to me that the Sarum breviary apparently wanted to recall Christmas on this August 7 Feast Day (although it did provide those alternate hymn melodies as well).
Here's the New Advent citation I mentioned above (keep in mind this is from the 1913 Catholic Encyclopedia):
This feast is celebrated on the second Sunday after Epiphany (double of the second class). It is the central feast of all the mysteries of Christ the Redeemer; it unites all the other feasts of the Lord, as a burning glass focuses the rays of the sun in one point, to show what Jesus is to us, what He has done, is doing, and will do for mankind. It originated towards the end of the fifteenth century, and was instituted by the private authority of some bishops in Germany, Scotland, England, Spain, and Belgium. The Office and the Mass composed by Bernardine dei Busti (d. 1500) were approved by Sixtus IV. The feast was officially granted to the Franciscans 25 February, 1530, and spread over a great part of the Church. The Franciscans, Carmelites, and Augustinians kept it on 14 Jan.; the Dominicans 15 Jan. At Salisbury, York, and Durham in England, and at Aberdeen in Scotland it was celebrated 7 Aug., at Liège, 31 Jan., at Compostela and Cambrai, 8 Jan. (Grotefend, "Zeitrechnung", II, 2. 89). The Carthusians obtained it for the second Sunday after Epiphany about 1643; for that Sunday it was also extended to Spain, and later, 20 Dec., 1721, to the Universal Church. The Office used at present is nearly identical with the Office of Bernardine dei Busti. The hymns "Jesu dulcis memoria", "Jesu Rex admirabilis", "Jesu decus angelicum", usually ascribed to St. Bernard, are fragments of a very extensive "jubilus" or "cursus de aeterna sapientia" of some unknown author in the thirteenth century. For the beautiful sequence "Dulcis Jesus Nazarenus" (Morel, "Hymnen des Mittelalters", 67) of Bernardine dei Busti the Franciscans substituted a prose sequence of modern origin: "Lauda Sion Salvatoris"; they still celebrate the feast on 14 January.

In the current Catholic Breviary, the feast is observed (optionally) on January 3, and the hymns - quite obviously deliberately! - all contain the name "Jesus" in the title. They are, per TPL:
This is another set of feast-day hymns formed from a single longer hymn/poem - the one by Bernard of Clairvaux.  More about those hymns at the links.

Here's that iframe look-in to the SSM's Breviary page for this feast:





Sunday, August 04, 2013

"Apolytikion and Kontakion for the Feast of The Holy Transfiguration"

The YouTube page says:
The Feast of The Holy Transfiguration Apolytikion and Kontakion sung in English.


The OCA Website has the words:
Troparion — Tone 7

You were transfigured on the mountain, O Christ God, / revealing Your glory to Your disciples as far as they could bear it. / Let Your everlasting Light also shine upon us sinners, / through the prayers of the Theotokos. / O Giver of Light, glory to You!

Kontakion — Tone 7

On the Mountain You were Transfigured, O Christ God, / And Your disciples beheld Your glory as far as they could see it; / So that when they would behold You crucified, / They would understand that Your suffering was voluntary, / And would proclaim to the world, / That You are truly the Radiance of the Father!


Wikipedia says this about "Apolytikion":
The Apolytikion (Greek: Ἀπολυτίκιον) or Dismissal Hymn is a troparion (hymn) said or sung at Orthodox Christian worship services. The apolytikion summarizes the feast being celebrated that day. It is chanted at VespersMatinsand the Divine Liturgy; and it is read at each of the Little Hours. The name derives from the fact that it is chanted for the first time before the dismissal (Greek: apolysis) of Vespers. In the Orthodox Church, the liturgical day begins at sunset, so Vespers is the first service of the day. The term apolyikion is used in Greek tradition. In Slavic tradition the term troparion is specifically used to stand for Apolytikion, whilst troparion is of more generic usage in Greek tradition.

The apolytikion could be compared in the Western liturgy to the collect or post-communion, inasmuch as it changes for each feast-day of the year and specifically commemorates the subject of the feast.  

Saturday, August 03, 2013

Morales: Parce mihi domine

Exquisite.



 This piece comes from Morales' Officium Defunctorum (i.e, the Office for the Dead).   It's called "The First Reading" in that work; the text orginally comes from the original monastic/ecclesial Office for the Dead, and is indeed the first reading used at the First Nocturne, said on Monday and Thursday.

The citation is from Job:
Parce mihi, Domine, nihil enim sunt dies mei.
Quid est homo, quia magnificas eum? Aut quid apponis erga eum cor tuum?
Visitas eum diluculo et subito probas illum.
Usquequo non parcis mihi, nec dimittis me, ut glutiam salivam meam?
Peccavi, quid faciam tibi, o custos hominum? Quare posuisti me contrarium tibi, et factus sum mihimet issi gravis?
Cur non tolles peccatum meum, et quare non auferes iniquitatem meam? Ecce, nunc in pulvere dormiam, et si mane me quaesieris, non subsistam.


Let me alone; for my days are vanity.
What is man, that thou shouldest magnify him? and that thou shouldest set thine heart upon him?
And that thou shouldest visit him every morning, and try him every moment?
How long wilt thou not depart from me, nor let me alone till I swallow down my spittle?
I have sinned; what shall I do unto thee, O thou preserver of men? why hast thou set me as a mark against thee, so that I am a burden to myself?
And why dost thou not pardon my transgression, and take away my iniquity? for now shall I sleep in the dust; and thou shalt seek me in the morning, but I shall not be.

HT RSM.

LinkWithin

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...