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Responsories for Holy Week

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Responsories for Holy Week (Latin: Responsoria pro hebdomada sancta) are polyphonic settings for the matins responsories, not of the whole of Holy Week, but only of the last three days: Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

Until the 1955 reform of the Holy Week ceremonies by Pope Pius XII, matins and lauds of these days were normally anticipated on the evening of the preceding day and were celebrated with the special ceremonies of Tenebrae.[1] As a result, the readings and the responsories are sometimes associated respectively with Holy Wednesday, Maundy Thursday and Good Friday, rather than with Maundy Thursday, Good Friday and Holy Saturday.

Also before 1955 the term Triduum Sacrum, which now includes Easter Sunday and takes in only the close of Maundy Thursday, was applied to the whole of Maundy Thursday, including its matins, and excluded Easter Sunday.[2]

Composers who produced polyphonic settings for the responsories in question, which are known also as the Tenebrae responsories, include Carlo Gesualdo (Responsoria et alia ad Officium Hebdomadae Sanctae spectantia, 1611, Jean L'Héritier, Marc-Antoine Charpentier, 19 settings (H 111 -119, H 126 - 134 and H 144), Joseph Haydn (Hob XXIIb), Jan Dismas Zelenka (ZWV 55), Max Reger, Francis Poulenc, Pierre Boulez. Composers generally set to music only some of the 27 responsories.

The responsories

Within the liturgy, each responsory followed a reading. Each day's matins was divided into three nocturns, each with three readings. Over the three days, therefore, the responsories, like the readings, came to a total of 27. They were originally sung in plainchant.

Each day, the first nocturn had three readings from Jeremiah's Book of Lamentations, and the second nocturn three readings from one or other of Saint Augustine's commentaries on the Psalms. The three readings of the third nocturn were from the First Epistle to the Corinthians on Maundy Thursday, from the Epistle to the Hebrews on the other two days.[3]

Maundy Thursday responsories

Maundy Thursday is called in Latin Feria V/Quinta in Cena Domini (an older spelling has Coena instead of Cena), meaning Thursday (fifth day of the week) of the Lord's Supper. Compositions for its nine responsories can therefore appear under such titles as Feria V – In Coena Domini. They can also be named by the day on which they were actually sung, as Charpentier's Les neuf répons du mercredi saint ("The nine responsories of Holy Wednesday").

Responsories of the first nocturn of Maundy Thursday

The three readings of the first nocturn of Maundy Thursday are Lamentations 1:1–5, 1:6–9 and 1:10–14.

In monte Oliveti

The first Maundy Thursday responsory refers to the Agony of Christ in Gethsemane at the foot of the Mount of Olives.

Tristis est anima mea

The second responsory represents Jesus speaking to his disciples in the garden of Gethsemane. The first two lines of the responsory are Matthew 26:38. The last two lines of are more freely based on different Gospel passages, including Mark 14:50 and Luke 24:7.[4]

Settings of this responsory include a motet by Orlande de Lassus, appearing as No. 1 in the Drexel 4302 manuscript, a SSATB motet attributed to Johann Kuhnau, and a setting as part of Francis Poulenc's Quatre motets pour un temps de pénitence.

Ecce, vidimus eum

Responsories of the second nocturn of Maundy Thursday

The readings of the second nocturn of Maundy Thursday are from Saint Augustine's commentary on Psalm 54/55

Amicus meus

Judas mercator pessimus

Second of Poulenc's Sept répons des ténèbres.

Unus ex discipulis meis

Responsories of the third nocturn of Maundy Thursday

The readings of the third nocturn of Maundy Thursday are 1 Corinthians 11:17−22, 11:23−26, 11:27−34

Eram quasi agnus innocens

Una hora

First of Poulenc's Sept répons des ténèbres.

Seniores populi

Responsories of Good Friday

Good Friday, Feria VI/Sexta in Parasceve, meaning Friday (sixth day of the week) of the Day of Preparation (from Greek Παρασκευή). Thus this second set of nine responsories can appear under such titles as Feria VI – In Parasceve.

Responsories of the first nocturn of Good Friday

The readings of the first nocturn of Good Friday are Lamentations 2:8–11, 2:12–15 and 3:1–9.

Omnes amici mei

Velum templi scissum est

Vinea mea electa

Second of Poulenc's Quatre motets pour un temps de pénitence.

Responsories of the second nocturn of Good Friday

The readings of the second nocturn of Good Friday are from Saint Augustine's commentary on Psalm 63/64

Tamquam ad latronem existis

Tenebrae factae sunt

This responsory is included on p. 269 of the Lutheran Neu Leipziger Gesangbuch (1682). Third of Poulenc's Quatre motets pour un temps de pénitence, and fifth of his Sept répons des ténèbres

Animam meam dilectam

Responsories of the third nocturn of Good Friday

The readings of the third nocturn of Holy Saturday are taken from Hebrews 4:11 – 5:10.

Tradiderunt me

Jesum tradidit impius

Third of Poulenc's Sept répons des ténèbres

Caligaverunt oculi mei

Fourth of Poulenc's Sept répons des ténèbres

Responsories of Holy Saturday

Holy Saturday, Sabbato Sancto in Latin. Responsories for this day can appear under such titles as Sabbato Sancto.

Responsories of the first nocturn of Holy Saturday

The readings of the first nocturn of Holy Saturday are from Lamentations, 3:22–30, 4:1–6 and 5:1–11.

Sicut ovis

Responsorium:
  Sicut ovis ad occisionem ductus est,
  Et dum male tractaretur, non aperuit os suum :
  Traditus est ad mortem ut vivificaret populum suum.
Versus:
  Tradidit in mortem animam suam,
  Et inter sceleratos reputatus est.

Jerusalem surge

Plange quasi virgo

This responsory has some parallels with the Book of Joel, e.g. "plange quasi virgo" ("Lament like a girl", 1:8), "accingite vos et plangite sacerdotes ululate ministri altaris" ("Put on sackcloth and mourn, you priests; Wail, you ministers of the altar", 1:13) and "magnus enim dies Domini et terribilis valde" ("for the day of Yahweh is great and very awesome", 2:11).

Responsorium:
  Plange quasi virgo, plebs mea.
  Ululate pastores, in cinere et cilicio,
  Quia veniet Dies Domini Magna
  Et amara valde.
Versus:
  Accingite vos, sacerdotes, et plangite,
  Ministri altaris, aspergite vos cinere.

Responsories of the second nocturn of Holy Saturday

The readings of the second nocturn of Holy Saturday are from Saint Augustine's commentary on Psalm 63/64.

Recessit pastor noster

O vos omnes

The text is adapted from the Latin Vulgate translation of Lamentations 1:12. Some of the most famous settings of the text are by Tomás Luis de Victoria (two settings for four voices: 1572 and 1585), Carlo Gesualdo (five voices: 1603; six voices: 1611), and Pablo Casals (mixed choir: 1932).

Ecce quomodo moritur justus

Based on Isaiah 57:1–2. A german version of the text of this responsory is set as Der Gerechte kömmt um. Poulenc set it as the seventh of his Sept répons des ténèbres.

Responsories of the third nocturn of Holy Saturday

The three readings of the third nocturn of Holy Saturday are Hebrews 9:11–14,  9:15–18 and  9:19–22.

Astiterunt reges terrae

Aestimatus sum

Sepulto Domino

Sixth of Poulenc's Sept répons des ténèbres

References

  1. ^ Thomas Pope, Holy Week in the Vatican (Dublin 1874), p. 70
  2. ^ Frederick Aquilina, Benigno Zerafa (1726-1804) and the Neapolitan Galant Style (Boydell & Brewer, 2016), p. 74
  3. ^ Liber Usualis 1961, pp. 631−773
  4. ^ Melamed, Daniel R. (1995). J.S. Bach and the German Motet. Cambridge University Press. pp. 148–149. ISBN 0-52-141864-X.
  5. ^ Algemesí (17 Feb 2019). "Aestimatus sum" (Podcast). Gregorian Chant Summit. Retrieved 7 May 2019.

External links

This page was last edited on 3 October 2020, at 11:57
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