Sunday, September 28, 2008

September 29: The Feast of St. Michael and All Angels

From Hymn melodies for the whole year from the Sarum service books:
On the Feast of S. Michael & all Angels (Sept. 15):
Evensong & Mattins: Tibi, Christe, Splendor Patris ...... 67
Lauds: Christe sanctorum ... ... ... ... 59

We think that "(Sept. 15)" designation is a misprint in the book, since September 29 has been St. Michael's day since the Middle Ages, at least, according to New Advent.

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; also check the iFrame look-in at the bottom of this post.

Here's the chant score for Tibi, Christe, Splendor Patris:
Here's G. Vianini's version of the hymn:

The Latin words are attributed to Rhabanus Maurus (776-856); here's the English translation, from Cyberhymnal, and again from J.M. Neale:
Tibi Christe splendor Patris
Vita ac virtus cordium
In conspectu Angelorum
Votis voce psallimus
Alternantes concrepando
Melos damus vocibus.

Conlaudamus venerantes
Omnes caeli milites
Sed precipue primatem
Celestis exercitus
Michaelem in virtute
Conterentem Zabulum.

Quo custode procul pellas
Rex Christe piissime
Omne nefas inimici
Mundo corde et corpore
Paradyso redde tuo
Nos sola clementia.

Gloriam Patri melodis
Personemus vocibus
Gloriam Christo canamus
Gloriam Paraclyto
Qui Deus Trinus et Unus
Extat ante secula.
Thee, O Christ, the Father’s splendor,
Life and virtue of the heart,
In the presence of the angels
Sing we now with tuneful art,
Meetly in alternate chorus,
Bearing our responsive part.

Thus we praise with veneration
All the armies of the sky;
Chiefly him, the warrior primate,
Of celestial chivalry,
Michael, who in princely virtue
Cast Abaddon from on high.

By whose watchful care repelling—
King of everlasting grace—
Every ghostly adversary,
All things evil, all things base,
Grant us of Thine only goodness,
In Thy paradise a place.

Laud and honor to the Father,
Laud and honor to the Son,
Laud and honor to the Spirit,
Ever Three, and ever One,
Consubstantial, co-eternal,
While unending ages run.

You can also find Tibi, Christe, Splendor Patris in The Latin hymns of the Anglo-Saxon church. Interestingly, Tibi, Christe, Splendor Patris is listed in "Early christian hymns" as a "Hymn to the Archangel Raphael." The next page lists Te Splendor et Virtus Patris as the "Hymn to the Archangel Michael"; this change represents yet another divergence in the Sarum use.

Here's TPL on Te Splendor et Virtus Patris:
From the Roman Breviary. This hymn is by Pope Urban VIII (1632) and is based upon Tibi, Christe, splendor Patris which is attributed to Rabanus Maurus.

This video is labeled "Tommy Smith's KARMA [Tibi, Christe, splendor Patris] dedicated to Norway and its lost souls" - I'm sure after the shooting there. The music here is definitely based on this hymn tune.

Here's the chant score for the Lauds hymn, Christe, sanctorum decus angelorum ("Christ, the Fair Glory of the Holy Angels"):

You can listen to the St. Mark's Cathedral Compline Choir (Seattle) sing this hymn to melody #59 (at about 1:05) on this mp3 of their September 29, 2013 podcast of Sunday evening Compline.   That's a link to an mp3 of the entire service, and the hymn is the first thing sung - but it's always very worth listening to the whole service.  You'll also hear a version of Tibi Christe, splendor patris with polyphonic alternatim by Palestrina.  If the link to the mp3 doesn't work, get the whole service at this page.

Here's TPL on Christe, sanctorum:
This hymn, less the concluding doxology, is attributed on questionable grounds to Rabanus Maurus (776-856), a pupil of Alcuin. It is traditionally used for Laudes for the feasts of the Archangels Michael, Gabriel, and Raphael. Today, verses 2, 3, and 4 of the hymn are used for their feast on September 29.
And here are the words from that page:

CHRISTE, sanctorum decus Angelorum
Rector humani generis et auctor,
nobis aeternum tribue benigne
scandere caelum.

ANGELUM pacis, Michael ad istam
caelitus mitte, rogitamus aulam:
nobis ut crebro veniente crescant
prospera cuncta.

ANGELUS fortis Gabriel, ut hostem
pellat antiquum, volitet ab alto,
saepius templum veniat ad istud
visere nostrum.

ANGELUM nobis medicum salutis
mitte de caelis Raphael, ut omnes
sanet aegrotos, pariterque nostros
dirigat actus.

HINC Dei nostri Genetrix Maria,
totus et nobis chorus Angelorum
semper assistat, simul et beata
concio tota.

PRAESTET hoc nobis Deitas beata
Patris ac Nati pariterque Sancti
Spiritus, cuius resonat per omnem
gloria mundum. Amen.

CHRIST, the fair glory of the holy Angels,
Thou who hast made us, Thou who o'er us rulest,
grant of Thy mercy unto us Thy servants
steps up to heaven.

SEND Thy Archangel, Michael, to our succor;
Peacemaker blessed, may he banish from us
striving and hatred, so that for the peaceful all
things may prosper.

SEND Thy Archangel, Gabriel, the mighty,
herald of heaven; may he from us mortals
spurn the old serpent, watching o'er the temples
where Thou art worshiped.

SEND Thy Archangel, Raphael, the restorer
of the misguided ways of men who wander,
who at Thy biding strengthens soul and body
with Thine anointing.

MAY the blest Mother of our God and Savior,
may the assembly of the Saints in glory,
may the celestial companies of Angels
ever assist us.

THIS He vouchsafe us, God forever blessed,
Father eternal, Son, and Holy Spirit,
whose is the glory which through all creation
ever resoundeth. Amen.

Here's Medieval Music Database's S. Michaelis archangeli page where you can find snippets of the hymns, responses, and antiphons. Here are the mass chants from the Benedictines of Brazil for Ss. Michaelis, Gabrielis et Raphaelis, Archangelorum.
Here's the beautiful Alleluia in mp3 format; here's the chant score:

Interestingly, in England:
The feast of St Michael the Archangel, 29 September, is one of the Quarter Days, a date for the payment of rents and the beginning or ending of hiring engagements (see hiring fairs). It was also a day for feasting, the traditional fare being a roast goose, fattened on the stubble fields; such geese were sometimes presented by tenant farmers to their landlords. It was said that ‘if you eat goose on Michaelmas Day you will never lack money all year’.

Here's that peek-through to the SSM Breviary for today:

There are, as you might expect, many great images of Michael and the others (here, matter of fact, is an entire page at Wikimedia Commons of "Icons of Saint Michael"). And since I've only used 5% of my allotted Blogger storage so far, why shouldn't I just go ahead and load up on my favorite images? No reason.

Here's a nice one, called "The Archangel Michael Trampling the Devil Underfoot," Russian, from 1676:

Here's one I like a lot for some reason, called "Pala dei tre Arcangeli," by Marco d'Oggiono (who was born in 1470):

Here's an old favorite: Michael by Raphael:

And here's a really interesting one from the other side of the spectrum, of "Virgin and Child with St. John the Baptist and the Three Archangels, Raphael, Gabriel, and Michael," by Sebastiano Mainardi:

And, my favorite of all, "The Mother of God and the Archangels," a 14th-Century mural from the Ubisi Monastery in Georgia:

Really, that is just splendid.


Anonymous said...

I think that must be a typo in that book. The Sarum Breviary (Proctor & Wordsworth), Sarum Missal (A. H. Pearson), and Diurnal (Palmer), as well as Music of the Sarum Office (Renwick) all have the 29th.

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Michael.

Song in my Heart said...

Many, many thanks for this post: I've been looking for appropriate text to set for an anthem to be sung at the first Eucharist of a friend. The connection with St Michael & All Angels is through her former parish, and as it's meant to be a surprise I haven't wanted to consult with her or them on which text to use (I do have the go-ahead from the Vicar and the Musical Director at the church where she is spending her Curacy, of course).

bls said...

Sounds great! I'm glad if the post helped. That Dufay piece is gorgeous, isn't it?

Song in my Heart said...

Yes, the Dufay is gorgeous, even on tinny laptop speakers I'm working on today... I'll have to remember to have a listen with headphones on a computer with a better-working soundcard when I get home.


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