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• Illo Humphrey, Ph. D.-HDR • Lecture-Concert: Carolingian Liberal Arts & Humanities | Concert a cappella: Pre-“Gregorian” & “Gregorian” Chant •

• Illo Humphrey, Ph. D. | HDR •

• Médiéviste | Musicologue | Proto-Philologue •

• Lecture-Concert  •

• « Carolingian Liberal Arts & Humanities » •

• Concert a cappella: Pre-“Gregorian” & “Gregorian” Chant •

 (1) Hymnus-Psalmus pro gratiarum actione | Divinum Officium Vigilarum | Tonus sollemnis | 4th century 

 (2) Alleluia, Pascha nostrum [M-R-B-C-K-S] (7th Mode: Tetrardus authenticus)

Dominica Resurrectionis ad Missam in Die | Easter Day Mass | 8th century

 (3) Sequentia cum Prosa Victimae Paschali laudes

(Ist Mode: Protus authenticus)

Dominica Resurrectionis ad Missam in Die | Easter Day Mass | 11th century

 Ollscoil Luimnigh-Éire  / University of Limerick-Ireland 

• Dámh Chruinne Éireann Rince agus Ceol  / Irish World Academy of Music & Dance 

IWA1-08 – 10:30 a.m. | IWA-Theatre 1 – 12:05 p.m. | 19-VII-2016 

This scientific-pedagogical Lecture on the Carolingian Liberal Arts is fourfold. The four closely interrelated capitula briefly developed here are as follows:  

• [1] The Philosophy of Numbers and Proportions, and corollary: The Philosophy of Musical Sounds  

• [2] The Philosophy of the Cognitive Process in relation to musical sound

• [3] Proto-Philology | Latin Stenography | Notae sententiarum (Isidorus Etym. I:21): a new “ecdotique” Approach  

• [4] The complex Transition from the Carolingian oral musical tradition to the Carolingian written musical tradition

• Each of the 4 capitula presents brief indications on Vocabulary, Sources, Key Concepts, one or two pertinent citations and images, highlighting succinctly the section, and a brief Conclusion. The 4th and last capitulum will have 2 musical examples: (1) the Hymn-Psalm Te Deum laudamus, highlighting the sung Pre-“Gregorian” Chant liturgy, (2) the Introit anthem of the Easter Day Mass, Reurrexi (Ps. 138: 18, 5,6,1-2) highlighting the “Gregorian” Chant liturgy with its transitional musical notation in neumes, that is to say the Carolingian and post-Carolingian musical palæography  

• Nota bene: The Lecture is followed by a short a cappella Concert of Pre-“Gregorian” and “Gregorian” Chant, cf. Programme on pages 23 and 24 of the Lecture-Concert •

• Concert a cappella | Pre-“Gregorian” - & - “Gregorian” Chant

Te Deum laudamus

Hymnus-Psalmus pro gratiarum actione 

• Divinum Officium Vigilarum | Tonus sollemnis | 4th century

The Te Deum laudamus is an anonymous pre-“Gregorian” Latin Hymn-Psalm, composed at the end of the 4th century, and which may very well be of Irish origin. It is a doxology chant (chant of praise) sung « in directum », that is to say from beginning to end without refrain, just as monastic psalmody. According to the Rule of Saint Benedict of Nursia (6th c., 2nd half), the Te Deum laudamus is sung at the end of the Office of the Vigils (Matins); cf. Adalbert de Vogüé et Jean Neufville, La Règle de saint Benoît, édition critique, Paris (Editions du Cerf), 1972, Vol. 2, Ch. XI, p. 514-516. In the modern Benedictine practice, the Te Deum laudamus is sung every Sunday, and on most of the feast days in the liturgical year, at the end of the third and last Nocturnal Lesson of the Office of Matins. The Te Deum laudamus has 29 verses, the first 23 of which are the oldest; it should be noted however, that the last 6 verses were added between the 5th and the 6th century. The literary text of the Te Deum laudamus is a subtle mixture of non-metrical poetry, Psalm verses, Psalm collects or orationes (cf. Paris, BnF, Fonds latin 13159, 8th c., f. 155-155v) and biblical verses taken from the Book of Psalms, from the Prophets, and from the New Testament. In the jargon of philologists, musicologists, and liturgists, the practice of text-mixing in order to create a new composite text is called “centonisation”, from the Latin word “cento”, a kind of “literary patchwork” of 100 pieces. From a musical standpoint, the Te Deum laudamus is said to be chanted in the 3rd mode (i.e. E: Deuterus authenticus); this modal attribution is of course an arbitrary anachronism. Indeed, the first known attestation in the West of the 8 ecclesiastical modes ( ὀκτηχος, -ου) is found in the tonary of the famous “Psalter of Charlemagne”: cf. Paris, BnF, Fonds latin 13159 (ca. 795), f. 167r-167v; this manuscript is believed to have been written in France at Corbie (Northern Neustria) for the Abbey of Saint-Riquier; cf. Michel Huglo, Les Tonaires, Paris, 1971, p. 25-29. The Te Deum laudamus is in fact a musical composition whose melody is based entirely on three pentatonic formulas, namely: E G-A, G-A C and for verses 21-23: C-D F. These three pentatonic formulas are also observed in the melodies of the « Gregorian » repertoire. In conclusion, it should be noted that there are 5 different versions of the Te Deum laudamus, namely: Tonus sollemnis, Tonus monasticus, Tonus simplex, Tonus ambrosianus, Tonus iuxta morem romanum

Nota bene (1): The oldest known source which transmits the literary text of the hymn Te Deum laudamus in its almost entirety, is the famous Irish Antiphonary of Bangor (“Antiphonarium Benchorense”), written around the year 680, transferred to the Italian monastery of Bobbio at an uncertain date, and conserved since 1609 in the Bibliotheca Ambrosiana in Milan, under the call number C.5 inf.;  cf. F. E. Warren, ed., The Antiphonary of Bangor. An Early Irish Manuscript in the Ambrosian Library of Milan, Part I / Part II, Henry Bradshaw Society Nr. 4, 1893/1895, p. 10; see Part II:  In the Bangor Antiphonary, there exists a lacuna of three verses of the Te Deum Laudamus, namely verses: 26, 27, and 29 [sic], see folios 10r-10v

Nota bene (2): The very first known complete musical version of the hymn Te Deum laudamus, with musical notation on a 4-line « guidonian » type staff, and is conserved in the 12th-century Cistercian Antiphonary: Paris, BnF, Fonds latin 8882, f. 143-144. This version of the ‘Te Deum Laudamus’ is not the Tonus sollemnis but closer to the Tonus monasticus.


Bibliography: Dom Paul Cagin, Te Deum ou Illatio ? Contribution à l’Histoire de l’Euchologie latine à propos des origines du Te Deum, Solesmes, 1906, p. 143-144 •

• Illo Humphrey, « L ‘Hymne des Vigiles: ‘Te Deum laudamus’. Une étape importante dans l’histoire de la musique liturgique latine », in Cahiers du centre de recherches musicologiques de l’Université Lumière-Lyon 2 : Itinéraires de la musique française, théorie, pédagogie et création, Anne Penesco (ed.), Lyon (Presses Universitaires de Lyon), 1996, pages 15-50 (12 Plates):

• Illo Humphrey, « Le cantus firmus et la mélodie du ‘Te Deum laudamus’ dans un fragment du manuscrit Cambridge, Gonville and Caius College, 334.727(XIVe s. début) », in Itinéraires du Cantus Firmus VII. Cantus Firmus Hymnologique, Lexicographique, Pédagogique, Édith Weber (ed.), Paris (Presses Universitaires de Paris–Sorbonne), 2004, pages 23-34:

Alleluia, Pascha nostrum

[M-R-B-C-K-S](1) (7th Mode: Tetrardus authenticus)

Dominica Resurrectionis ad Missam in Die | Easter Day Mass | 8th century

Alleluia, Pascha nostrum immolatus est, Christus. Alleluia (da capo) • 

• The Alleluia, Pascha nostrum taken from the New Testament text 1st Corinthians 5: 7, 8.  It is without doubt one of the most magnificent Chants of the Carolingian « Gregorian » repertoire.  Sung in the 7th mode: G (Tetrardus authenticus), it has also an A-B-A1, structure, the B part (i.e. the verse) being reserved for a soloist.  The second verse: « Epulemur in azimis sinceritatis et veritatis », composed in a very high register, is rarely sung. The first known attestation of this chant, dated around the year 800, is found in the Graduals from Rheinau and from Mont-Blandin (ca. a. D. 800) •

Bibliography: Graduale Triplex, Solesmes, 1979, p. 197-198; Sarah Fuller, The European musical Heritage: 800-1750, New York (A. A. Knopf, Inc.), 1987, p. 9-10 (n° 1f) •

Sequentia cum Prosa Victimae Paschali laudes

(Ist Mode: Protus authenticus)

Dominica Resurrectionis ad Missam in Die | Easter Day Mass | 11th century

Victimae Paschali laudes immolent Christiani.

Agnus redemit oves, Christus innocens Patri reconciliavit peccatores.

Mors et vita duello conflixere mirando, dux vitae mortuus, regnat vivus.

Dic nobis Maria, quid vidisti in via ?

Sepulcrum Christi viventis, et gloriam vidi resurgentis, Angelicos testes, sudarium et vestes.

Surrexit Christus spes mea, praecedet suos in Galilaeam. Scimus Christum surrexisse a mortuis vere, 

Tu nobis, victor Rex, miserere.

[Amen. Alleluia] •

• The sequentiae cum prosa are syllabic Chants.  They are generally based on a note for note scheme of the melismatic melodies of the Alleluia chants which precede them. However, this well-known sequence with prose is not based on the melody of Alleluia, Pascha nostrum, but on that of the Alleluia, Christus resurgens ex mortuis taken from the Mass of the 5th Sunday after Easter.  Attributed to a certain Wipo the Burgundian (ca. 990-1050), the Victimae Paschali laudes, a short dialog between the disciples of Christ and Mary of Magdala, is also a “centonisation” based on several New Testament texts, namely: Matthew 28: 1-7, Mark 16: 1-11, John 20: 10-20, Romans 6: 9.  This sequence is sung in the 1st mode: D (Protus authenticus).  It is interesting to note that the melody of the Victimae paschali laudes was used by the former Augustian monk and erudite German reformer Martin Luther in 1524 for the composition of the well-known choral « Christ lag in Todesbanden » (« Christ laid in the bonds of death »), which was later arranged for organ by the baroque composer J. S. Bach •


• Bibliography: Dag Norberg, Manuel pratique de latin médiéval, Paris (Picard), 1980, p. 59 ; Ritva Jacobsson, « Le Style des prosules d’Alleluia, genre mélogène », in Le polifonie primitive in Friuli e in Europa.  Atti del congresso internazionale, Cividale de Friuli, 22-24 agosto 1980, edited by C. Corsi, P. Petrobelli, Miscellanea Musicologica 4, Roma, 1989, pp. 367-373; Olof Marcusson, ed. Corpus Troporum II.  Prosules de la Messe I. Tropes de l’Alleluia, Acta Universitatis Stockholmiensis, studia Latina Stockholmiensia 22, Stodkholm, 1976; Richard Crocker, The early medieval Sequence, Berkeley (California), 1977; Graduale Triplex, Solesmes, 1979, p. 198-199.  Nota bene: in this excellent study by Richard Crocker, it should be noted that the Sequentia cum prosa Victimae Paschali laudes, composed in the 11th century, is not mentioned •


(1) The Sigla M-R-B-C-K-S represent the 6 oldest known Carolingian manuscripts containing the repertoire of the Proper “Gregorian” Mass, namely: M = Cantatorium from Monza (9th c.), R = Gradual from Rheinau (ca. 800), B = Gradual from Mont-Blandin (8th-9th c.), C = Gradual from Compiègne (9th c.), K = Gradual from Corbie (after 853), S = Gradual from Senlis (9th c.); cf. Dom René Jean Hesbert, Antiphonale Missarum Sextuplex, Bruxelles, 1935.  However, it must be noted that, these 6 manuscripts contain only the literary text of the Chants, being totally bereft of neumes, that is to say pre-solfegic Carolingian musical notation.  The first neumes appear in Northern Neustria in the 2nd half of the 9th century: cf. Laon (France), Bibliothèque municipale, manuscrit 239 • © Illo Humphrey | Ph. D.-HDR | Explicit | University of Limerick | Ireland | 19-VII-2016 •


• IH | ih | Ph. D.-HDR | Explicit 

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