Friday, March 24, 2006

a GIRM oddity - anyone ever notice this?

In Latin:
64. Sequentia, quae praeter quam diebus Paschae et Pentecostes, est ad libitum, cantatur post Allelúia.

In English:
64. The Sequence, which is optional except on Easter Sunday and on Pentecost Day, is sung before the Alleluia.

So.....the Latin tells us to do the sequence after the Alleluia, but the English says to do it before.

Maybe it’s a typo - this line appears after the line describing the Alleluia, and in the chant books the sequences appear after the Alleluia. I don’t have a Lectionary on hand - anyone care to check and comment?

Interestingly, the 1975 GIRM, in English, doesn’t specify when the sequence happens, just that it’s optional except on Easter Sunday and Pentecost.

This shakes things up a bit, though, as I consider: the Alleluia is usually our priest’s “walking music”; the start of the music is when he gets up. But if there’s a sequence coming after, he’ll have to get up of his own. And are we supposed to stay standing during the sequence, or do we sit back down?


At Saturday, March 25, 2006 12:30:00 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Will you be my "Crisis Cantor?"


I'm a post Vatican II girl (so please forgive my ignorance where it shows), who has joined the choir. We're practicing for the Triduum, but our choir only meets once a week and they haven't much patience for teaching me the proper pronunciations of Latin vowels. We have to sing the Pange Lingua of course, but I can't keep straight: A's sound like E's? Or is it E's sound like A's? If you could just tell me what each of the vowels are supposed to sound like and I study that, I think it would help.


At Saturday, March 25, 2006 12:36:00 PM, Blogger Cantor said...

It’s not unlike typical classroom Spanish pronunciation. Even more akin to Italian, but not many people have had Italian.

In very general:

a = ah
e = eh
i = ee
o = aw
u = ooh

ti + another vowel (almost always) = "tsee" and the other vowel


ae & oe behave exactly as "e"

GIA publishes a reprint of “The Correct Pronunciation of Latin According to Roman Usage”, which can be considered authoritative for ecclesiastical Latin pronunciation.

Post here which words you’re having problems with, and I’ll help you. You might also pick up a recording of the Mass Ordinary chanted, which will give you a sense of how things go.

At Saturday, March 25, 2006 12:39:00 PM, Blogger Cantor said...

Incidentally, I think we’re almost all post-V2 in the blogosphere. :)

At Sunday, March 26, 2006 9:23:00 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

That's terrific. I'm copying and pasting that (to my forehead!!).

Thank you, Cantor

At Sunday, March 26, 2006 11:41:00 PM, Blogger ScholarChanter said...

So it sounds like we could be singing the sequence at every mass. It is too bad that this is not a common practice! Sequence texts are such beautiful prayers. Veni Sancte Spiritus!

At Monday, March 27, 2006 7:16:00 AM, Blogger Cantor said...

Well, that’s the logical conclusion from Adoremus’s logic to justify “Dies iræ” at a Novus Ordo Mass.....since there’s no normative definition of a sequence.

Sequences used to be sung all the time, but Trent got rid of all but four as part of their normalizing of the liturgy. The liturgy, then as now, was seen as critical in fighting heterodoxy and heresy.


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