For whom do the singers sing?
This painting represents the Chevalier Philip Hinckaert, maitre d'hotel to Philip the Fair, duke of Burgundy, between 1493 and 1504. As in most such portraits, he kneels at a prie-dieu, his prayer-book in front of him. But here the book is closed and covered with a cloth, which perhaps indicates that the painting was made or finished after his death in 1505.(1) Pensively, the Chevalier stares into space; he does not look at the Virgin. Nor, indeed, could he: though she is standing on the same pavement, her physical presence is an illusion, for he is meditating, and his plea, the tiny rhyming couplet `O mater dei memento mei', is a silent prayer.
A banderole with `O mater dei memento mei' is not uncommon in donor portraits; it is very likely what the donor would have said every time he knelt to pray or passed an image of the Virgin. But it had uncommon significance for Philip Hinckaert and his family: his ancestor, the Chevalier Gerrelin, was nicknamed Hinckaert because he was lame (Middle Flemish: hinckaerdt); he prayed to the Virgin for help: `O mater dei memento mei', and was cured when a vision of the Virgin appeared to him saying `Marche droit, Hinckaert'. The family then assumed this name and the prayer as motto, and incorporated a wooden leg in their heraldry, it appears between the initials P and G on the back wall in the painting, together with the stylized leather thong that bound it to Hinckaert's leg. (P and G evidently stand for Philip and Gertrude, his second wife, whom he married in 1494.)
At the beginning of the music manuscript Brussels 228 Margaret of Austria is portrayed kneeling in prayer in her private chamber; a banderole records her words: `Memento mei'. She too prays to the Virgin and Child, but they are in a different frame: across the page in the space before the soprano initial (illus.2).(2) Such portraits, similar to donors' portraits, figure frequently in the musical manuscripts that emerged from the atelier of Petrus Alamire and other musical copyists of what has been called the Netherlands court complex. But while Philip Hinckaert prays in the stillness of his private meditation, Margaret also listens to the music that joins her to the Virgin and Child, both visually and aurally: a setting of the prayer `Ave sanctissima Maria', probably by Pierre de La Rue.(3)
The counterpart in music of the great flowering of devotional painting and illuminated books of hours in the late 15th century is the prayer motet. Motets with personal addresses to Christ, Mary and the saints start to proliferate at this time. It is unlikely that those cast in the first person singular were sung in services: with the notable exception of the Credo, in liturgical texts, except for those taken from Scripture, it is the collective form that rules, for example in the Salve Regina: `Ad te clamamus ... ad te suspiramus ... advocata nostra' (`To thee we cry ... to thee we sigh ... our advocate'). There are many motet settings of prayers in the first person plural such as Ave Maria gratia plena or Sub tuum praesidium confugimus. Many other texts, including liturgical ones, begin with a general invocation, but close with words such as `ora pro nobis Deum' or `miserere nobis'. Sometimes a motet text even refers to the choir of singers, as in Obrecht's commemoration of his father, Mille quingentis, or Josquin's Illibata dei virgo. It seems entirely appropriate for a choir to sing such prayers collectively, not only on behalf of themselves and the listeners, but of all mankind. But a polyphonic setting of a first person singular prayer seems an anomaly.(4)
For whom do the singers sing? This is not a question that is asked very often, and it is probably one that singers themselves rarely think about. If it is chant, the easy answer would be `for the glory of God'. Often the answer will be that the singers sing for themselves, for the sheer love of singing. Sometimes it is just a job: they sing for their supper. The question becomes more pressing in the case of sacred music: do the words matter to the singer? Is it necessary to be a believer in order to sing a confession of faith, as we must do when we sing the Ordinary of the Mass? Of course the answer, for many people, is `No'. Yet I suspect that many will sing what they might not be willing to say.(5)
The singers who stand before the Brussels manuscript, open at Ave sanctissima Maria, are singing on behalf of Margaret of Austria, whether she is present in person or only in the illumination. Although it mostly contains chansons, the manuscript opens with a motet, as if to underline the common devotional practice of beginning any activity, whether rising from bed in the morning or setting out on a journey, with a prayer. Margaret's manuscript begins with this prayer to the Virgin:
Ave sanctissima Maria, mater dee, regina celi, porta paradisi, domina mundi. Tu es singularis virgo pura; tu concepisti Jesum de spiritu sancto; tu peperisti Creatorem et Salvatorem mundi, in quo ego non dubito. Ora pro me Jesum dilectum tuum et libera me ab omnibus malis.
Hail most holy Mary, Mother of God, Queen of Heaven, Gate of Paradise, Mistress of the World. Thou art a singularly pure virgin; thou didst conceive Jesus through the Holy Spirit; thou didst bear the Creator and Saviour of the World, in whom I do not doubt. Pray for me to jesus, thy beloved, and deliver me from all evil.
It is a personal prayer, cast in the first person singular, the kind of prayer with which books of hours are filled. Margaret, kneeling at her prie-dieu, with her prayer-book in front of her, probably said this prayer and many similar ones at her private devotions or while Mass was celebrated. To set such a prayer to music for six voices (La Rue's setting is a triple canon, 6 ex 3) seems surprising, and raises anew the question for whom the singers sing: while they all sing for Margaret, or whoever else is listening, they also are singing for themselves: `Pray for me to Jesus.'(6)
The question for whom the singers sing takes another turn when we consider the case of indulgenced prayers. `Ave sanctissima Maria' is one of these; according to the rubrics in many books of hours (though not officially confirmed) it was composed by Pope Sixtus IV (1474-84), who accorded an indulgence of 11,000 years to those reciting it before an image of the Virgin in sole -- against the golden rays of the sun -- as in the miniature in Margaret's manuscript.(7) Will a singer singing this prayer receive the same indulgence? If he fulfils the necessary conditions, it should not matter if the prayer is said or sung. The tenor singing with intent should gain his indulgence, while the bass who has only dinner on his mind will not. And the listeners? If they are truly contrite and confessed, the normal conditions necessary for receiving an indulgence, will they too benefit? Since it was possible to obtain indulgences for attending services in particular churches on certain days, or merely gazing on the Host at the Elevation, hearing a sung prayer should confer the same benefit as saying or singing it. Thus the singers pray not only for themselves but also for the listeners.
Do indulgences matter? Modern Catholics say little of the subject, and Protestants have always despised the whole business. Judging from books of hours, indulgences did matter, for they are frequently mentioned in rubrics. But scepticism attached to them even in the 15th century, and especially to the sometimes extravagant number of years in purgatory remitted. The compiler of one of the popular devotional books of the time, Bernardino de' Busti, remarked that his Thesaurus spiritualis contained `many prayers privileged by various popes with indulgences, which, if I may say so without prejudice to the truth, have been revoked a thousand times, or in the future will be revoked; nevertheless, because of their wonderful contents they should not be neglected, for those who say them devoutly will obtain many favours from God.'(8)
Many indulgenced prayers are too long to be suitable as motet texts, but a few shorter ones were set frequently. In addition to `Ave sanctissima Maria', two others stand out because they were to be said before well-known, images: `Salve sancta facies' before Veronica with the image of Christ's face on her cloth and `O Domine Jesu Christe adoro te' before the Man of Sorrows or Image of Pity (sometimes in the context of the Mass of St Gregory). Many books of hours display these images and the accompanying prayers, not infrequently with a rubric specifying the amount of the indulgence and the name of the pope according it. Books of hours were often made to order, and while certain items were standard (the Office of the Virgin, Vigils of the Dead, the seven Penitential Psalms, and the two long Marian prayers `O intemerata et in aeternum benedicta' and `Obsecro te sancta virgo Maria'), others were variable, especially the suffrages to saints and prayers to God the Father, Christ, and Mary. If a man or woman (and many books of hours were owned by women) could specify which prayers should be included in a Book of Hours, so might those with musical establishments tell their singers (and composers) what prayers they wished to have sung -- during Mass (sometimes overriding the prescribed texts, as Galeazzo Maria Sforza evidently intended with the motetti missales), during private devotions, or at any time of the day when music was wanted. It is very difficult to know where and when these prayer motets were sung. But the fact that they start proliferating in the late 15th century is a sure indication that there was a need for them. And it is likely that the greatest demand was at courts with chapels, where sacred and secular often flowed together in easy interchange.(9) These chapels most likely had the appropriate images, perhaps at dedicated altars.
Some images were in such great demand in the 15th century that painters specialized in them. This is the case with the Cologne painter known as the `Master of St Veronica'. Illus.3 shows one of his many paintings. According to the most popular of her several legends, Veronica was the woman who held her cloth to Christ's face when he stumbled under the weight of the cross on the way to Calvary, leaving an imprint of his suffering face.(10) A cloth with the likeness of Christ turned up in Rome in the 8th century; it was the most precious relic kept in St Peter's during the 14th and 15th centuries, and the culmination of pilgrimages in Jubilee years.
For many pilgrims, viewing the image may have meant no more than being able to tick off one more relic on their fist of things to see in Rome. But the purpose of images is to transport the spectator in his imagination, to make him vicariously a participant in the actual event: he should empathize with Veronica's compassion, imagine the weight of the Cross, and look with horror and pity on Christ's bloody and sweaty face. To help the viewer fix his thoughts, he recites a player. In the case of the Veronica veil, two prayers are often mentioned in the books of hours: the short `Ave facies preclara', which seems not to have been set to music, and the much longer `Salve sancta facies', for which we have one setting by Obrecht, another attributed to Josquin, and a third by an anonymous composer in the Segovia manuscript. Howard Brown discusses these in a recent article, tracing the history of the devotion to Veronica and her cloth.(11) According to a German devotional book of 1520, the prayer was written by Pope John XXII, who gave an indulgence of 10,000 days for reciting it before an image of the Veronica;(12) it does not need to be the relic in St Peter's -- any image will do. Hence the proliferation of images of the Veronica in art.
Strictly viewed, the musical settings of Salve sancta facies would not have gained the indulgence, because none of them sets the complete text, a long rhymed prosa with up to 12 stanzas. The Segovia anonymous set only the first stanza; the setting attributed to Josquin (an unicum of Bologna Q20) comprises the first four -- the length commonly found in books of hours. Obrecht sets eight stanzas, but combines them, rather surprisingly, with the text and melody of the Corpus Christi responsory Homo quidam fecit cenam magnam. Reinhard Strohm has plausibly suggested that the motet was written for a guild of cloth-workers or wool-weavers who sponsored a `table of the poor'; Veronica, of course, was their patron saint.(13) If So, the motet was almost certainly sung before an image of the Veronica.
Images have not always been accepted by the Church, for there is the danger that they, like music, may appeal to the senses rather than the intellect. Augustine valued intellectual above corporeal vision, and was famously worried about the sensual appeal that music had for him. Thomas Aquinas, writing at a time when images had ceased to be a problem, approved of them, since he thought that `the sense of devotion ... is more efficaciously aroused by things seen than by things heard'.(14) In his Complexus effectuum musices Tinctoris appears to turn Aquinas's position around when he states that `Music stirs the feelings to devotion', the sixth of his effects of music -- citing in his support a different passage in Augustine's Confessions (book 10): `I am inclined ... to favour the custom of singing in church, so that through the delights of the ears the weaker spirit may attain to a mood of devotion.'(15) As his 11th effect Tinctoris claims that `music uplifts the earthly mind'. Here he quotes St Bernard: `The jubilation of praise elevates the eyes of the heart.'(16) Music adds one more dimension to praying before an image: vision and sound are fused, intensifying the experience of meditation.
No image could wrench the eyes of the heart more than the Passion. The image shown in illus.4 is not one of those: it is, in fact, a visual example of a meditation, commonly known as the Mass of St Gregory. According to the legend, one day as Pope Gregory was celebrating Mass in the Roman church of Santa Croce in Gerusalemme, there appeared to him a vision of Christ on the altar, showing the wound on his side and surrounded by the instruments of the Passion: the so-called Image of Pity or Man of Sorrows. Only he sees the vision; his assistants and the bystanders are oblivious to it. Then, according to Bernardino de' Busti and numerous books of hours, Gregory, moved by the devotion and compassion he experienced, decreed that anyone who devoutly said a certain three prayers before an image of the Man of Sorrows, together with five Pater nosters and five Ave Marias, providing he had confessed all his sins and was contrite, should receive an indulgence of 14,000 years. The prayers normally follow in the manuscripts that contain this image, as they do in this early 16th-century Book of Hours.
This indulgence is probably the one most frequently found in devotional books, with increasing numbers of years and prayers. If we are to believe Busti, successive popes from Nicholas V onwards doubled and redoubled the indulgences; Pius II added two more prayers, and Paul II a sixth and a seventh. The apex is reached in a breviary printed in Venice in 1522, where Innocent VIII is said to have added two more prayers and doubled all previous indulgences: this would come to 112,000 years. But we should not believe Busti. As Eamon Duffy has recently shown, five of the prayers already existed in England by the early 9th century.(17) But no matter: Busti's view was that of his time, and the prayers were presumed efficacious. Moreover, they were short and easily memorized. Busti gives them in the following form:(18)
O Domine Iesu Christe: adoro te in cruce pendentem: coronam spineam in capite portantem: deprecor te ut tua crux liberet me ab angelo percutiente.
O Lord Jesus Christ, I adore thee hanging on the cross, wearing the crown of thorns upon thy head: I beseech thee that thy cross may deliver me from the angel that smiteth.
O Domine Iesu Christe: adoro te in cruce vulneratum: felle et aceto potatum: deprecor te ut tua vulnera sint remedium anime mee.
O Lord Jesus Christ, I adore thee wounded on the cross, given gall and vinegar to drink. I beseech thee that thy wounds may be the salvation of my soul.
O Domine Iesu Christe: adaro te in sepulchro positum: mirrha et aromatibus conditum: deprecor te ut tua mors sit vita mea. O Lord Jesus Christ, I adore thee laid in the sepulchre, embalmed with myrrh and spices: I beseech thee that thy death may be my life.
O Domine Iesu Christe: pastor bone: iustos conserva: peccatores iustifica: omnibus fidelibus miserere: et propitius esto mihi peccatori.
O Lord Jesus Christ, good shepherd, save the just, justify sinners, have mercy on all the faithful, and be well disposed to me, the sinner.
O Domine Iesu Christe: propter illam amaritudinem tuam quam pro me in cruce pendens sustinuisti: maxime quando nobilissima anima tua egressa est de corpore tuo sanctissimo: miserere anime mee in egressu suo.
O Lord Jesus Christ, for the sake of that bitterness of thine that thou didst sustain for me, hanging on the cross, above all when thy most noble soul departed from thy most holy body: have mercy on my soul in its departure.
O Domine Iesu Christe: adoro te descendentem ad inferos: liberantemque captivos: deprecor te ne permittas me illuc introire.
O Lord Jesus Christ, I adore thee descending into hell and liberating the captives: I beseech thee not to permit me to enter there.
O Domine Iesu Christe: adoro te ascendentem in celum: sedentemque ad dexteram patris. deprecor te miserere mei. Amen.
O Lord Jesus Christ, I adore thee ascending into heaven, and sitting on the right hand of the Father: I beseech thee, have mercy on me. Amen.
The Prayers of St Gregory, either singly or as a cycle, were set to music a number of times in the course of the 15th and 16th centuries. The best known is the setting (of the first five) attributed to Josquin, O Domine Jesu Christe adoro te. Sombre and restrained, set for low voices and largely chordal, this is music ideally suited to the eyes of the heart.(19) Cycles were also composed by Gombert, Senfl, Heinrich Finck, Maistre Jan and Willaert, and single prayers by Brumel, Mouton, Renaldo, Manchicourt, Maillard, Victoria, Felis and Giovanni Gabrieli, as well as several anonymous settings. Brumel's setting may in fact be part of a cycle that is only partially preserved; the fourth of the prayers, `O domine Jesu Christe pastor bone', appears under his name in Bologna Q19 and, as Barton Hudson realized, anonymously and with a changed text pleading for recovery from illness, in Florence Panc. 27. But in the latter manuscript the fifth prayer follows, and stylistically it forms a pair with Brumel's.(20)
O Domine is the earliest musical setting of the cycle of prayers. It appears in only one source, Petrucci's collection of Passion motets, Motetti B (1503). The tone is penitential, as befits the text, though the composer has not chosen the mode most often associated with such texts, Phrygian. Instead he opted for Dorian, using frequent B??s, often appearing as the root of a chord; the harmonic movement gravitates towards A, on which the second and third prayers end (the fourth prayer closes on F). The text comes to the fore: even when the setting is not chordal, at least two of the voices deliver the same words simultaneously. Only in the longer final prayer does the music become more expansive, with imitations more widely spaced and a melismatic Amen that sinks down sequentially to the final cadence.
Here is truly a prayer motet: solemn, reverent, unostentatious, and with the text clearly understandable. Not a word is missing in any voice. Therefore the same benefit will accrue to each singer singing the prayers as if he were saying them -- and perhaps even more, if we believe with Tinctoris that `music stirs the feelings to devotion'. To sing these prayers with devotion requires attention not just to the music and the declamation of the text, but entry into the most heightened state of belief, contemplating the unfathomable divine mystery. The first three prayers evoke graphic images: Christ hanging on the cross, with the crown of thorns; the wounds that pour forth blood; and the deposition and burial. It is likely that these prayers would be sung or said in sight of these images: the Crucifix, universal in Catholic churches; an image of the Man of Pity, where the wounds are prominent, as in illus.4 (devotion to the wounds was widespread at the time); and a Pieta. And if these images are not contemplated directly, then a mental image can be formed. Moreover, the first three prayers evoke not only sight but the senses of touch (the pain of the thorns), taste (gall and vinegar), and smell (myrrh and spices).(21) The fourth prayer is more general, turning away from images and sensations to Christ's role in the Redemption. The fifth prayer is the culmination of the series (the sixth and seventh prayers are dearly later additions), the most emotive and personal of the prayers: the sinner beseeches mercy on his soul at the moment of death `for the sake of that bitterness of thine that thou didst sustain for me'.
`O mater dei memento mei' intones the singer in long notes at the end of Josquin's Ave Maria ... virgo serena (see ex.1),(22) perhaps gazing on a painting of the Virgin, on the altar or in his choirbook, perhaps re-creating her image in his mind, perhaps thinking of nothing more than dinner. And since he is singing a four-part motet he is not alone: three other singers utter the same prayer. Some may pray for themselves or for the listeners, others merely sing. Those singing the motet for the first time may be taken by surprise on suddenly finding themselves giving voice to a prayer, for Josquin has inserted a personal prayer at the end of a text on the five joys of the Virgin, beginning Ave cuius conceptio. This text, which celebrates the five main events of the Virgin's life, differs from the ordinary five `Joys of the Virgin' because it begins with the Conception. It seems not to pre-date the 15th century, and is associated with the increasing devotion to the Virgin's Conception and the cult of St Anne.(23) So far as I can determine, it appears almost exclusively in French books of hours, sometimes in conjunction with an Office or Mass of the Conception.(24) Although not always explicitly stated, this feast is often to be understood as the Immaculate Conception, a doctrine not officially sanctioned until 1477 (by Sixtus IV), and a matter of longstanding and continuing controversy between the Franciscans (pro) and Dominicans (contra).(25)
Josquin's motet to the Virgin, with its attached prayer, may have served as a model for a poetic prayer (see appendix) to the Virgin by Jean Molinet, based on the same five feasts as in Josquin's text.(26) While Josquin prefaced the text with two lines from the sequence `Ave Maria ... virgo serena', and added the prayer at the end, Molinet wrote a dizain on each of the feasts, embedding the prayer `O mater dei memento mei' in an acrostic in each of them.(27)
Like the artist who painted the words `O mater dei memento mei' on the portrait of Philip Hinckaert, Josquin and Molinet offer their artistry to the Virgin together with their prayer. Time and space of another kind govern sung and poetic prayers: singing or saying the work of a deceased author also allows his prayer to be heard once more, spoken from beyond the grave. Thus every time we sing Ave Maria ... virgo serena we also sing for Josquin.(28) Jean Molinet said as much for himself in another `Oroison a la Vierge Marie', including the lines:
Fais nous tel grace en la fin de nos jours
Que moy, liseur de ceste oration,
Et le facteur aions grace a tousjours.(29)
Portions of this paper were read at the 23rd Conference on Medieval and Renaissance Music, Southampton, 8 July 1996, and at the Annual Meeting of the American Musicological Society, Baltimore, 9 November i996. My thanks to Leofranc Holford-Strevens for a critical reading and for improving my translations, and to Nicholas Rogers, archivist at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge, for helpful suggestions.
(1) See the description in A. Arnould and J. M. Massing, Splendours of Flanders (Cambridge, 1993), p.42, with reference to earlier literature. Little is known about Hinckaert.
(2) Brussels, Bibliotheque royale Albert [I.sup.er, Ms.228, ff.iv-2.
(3) On this prayer and its numerous musical settings, see B. J. Blackburn, `The Virgin in the sun: music and image for a prayer attributed to Sixtus IV', Encomium musicae: essays in honor of Robert J. Snow, ed. D. Crawford (in press).
(4) The musical expression of personal prayers is not new, of course; one has only to recall the `pious' trouvere songs and other vernacular lyrics of the 12th and 13th centuries. But the polyphonic setting of non-liturgical Latin prayers in the first person singular is new in the 15th century. (My thanks to Christopher Page for reminding me of the monophonic precedents.)
(5) Harold Copeman has considered some of these questions and others (including the difficult question of singing anti-Semitic texts) in Singing the meaning: a layman's approach to religious music (Oxford, 1996).
(6) Two main traditions of this text are set out in Blackburn, `The Virgin in the sun'; of the 36 settings examined there, most follow what must be the original form of the prayer, in the first person singular. Several change `dubito' to `dubitamus' and `me' to `nos'; yet others have a mixed form, retaining `dubito' but changing the last lines to `Ora pro nobis' and `libera nos'.
(7) As demonstrated in Blackburn, `The Virgin in the sun', this is a prayer on the Immaculate Conception, and this particular form of the image, with Mary standing on a crescent moon (the `mulier amicta sole' of the Apocalypse), became the standard way to represent the Immaculate Conception.
(8) `In hoc libro ponuntur multe orationes a summis pontificibus diversis indulgentijs privilegiate. Que licet ut ita dicam sine veri preiudicio essent milies revocate: vel in futurum revocarentur: tamen propter eorum mirabilem continentiam non debent dimitti. Quia illas devote dicentes multas gratias a deo impetrabunt': Bernardino de' Busti, Thesaurus spiritualis cum quamplurimis alijs additis noviter impressus ([Lyons]: Nicolaus Wolff, 1500), f.50v.
(9) The names of the composers of prayer motets are suggestive in this regard, pointing dearly to Milan and Ferrara. In Petrucci's motet volumes the following prayer motets are written (or contain passages) in the first person singular:
Motetti A (1502) Josquin, Ave Maria ... Virgo serena Compere, 2.p. of Crux triumphans (with `nostra'): Jesus nomen dignum Gaspar [van Weerbeke], Ave domina sancta Maria (a version of Ave sanctissima Maria) Anon., Ave vera caro Christi Gaspar, Christi mater ave [Gaspar], Mater digna dei Motetti B (1503) Josquin, O Domine Jesu Christe adoro te Gaspar, Anima Christi sanctifica me Anon., Adoro te devote latens Compere, Officium de Cruce (In nomine Jesu), last section, Hora completorii Motetti C (1504) [Josquin], O bone et dulcis domine Jesu Anon., Respice me infelicem Anon., Miserere mei deus quoniam in te anima mea Anon., Magnus es tu domine Motetti Libro quarto (1505) Mouton, O Maria virgo pia Ghiselin, Miserere domine Ghiselin, O gloriosa domina Ninot, O bone Jesu Motetti a 5 (1508) Regis, Clangat plebs Diniset, Ave sanctissima Maria
(10) A recent book on this theme is E. Kuryluk, Veronica and her cloth (Cambridge, MA, and Oxford, 1991). There are many earlier studies.
(11) H.M. Brown, `On Veronica and Josquin', New perspectives on music: essays in honor of Eileen Southern, ed. J. Wright with S.A. Floyd (Warren, MI, 1992), pp.49-61.
(12) Nicolaus Salicetus, Liber meditationum ac orationum devotarum. Qui Anthidotarius anime dicitur (Nuremberg, 1520), f.87. All such attributions and especially the claims of indulgences differ from source to source and are untrustworthy.
(13) R. Strohm, Music in late medieval Bruges (Oxford, 1985), pp.143, 145.
(14) Thomas Aquinas, In IV libros sententiarum, lib. 3, dist. 9, q. 1, a. 2, sol. 2, ad 3. Quoted in Blackburn, `The Virgin in the sun', n.44. Devotional images are the subject of H. van Os, The art of devotion in the late Middle Ages in Europe, 1300-1500, trans. M. Hoyle (London, 1994), which illustrates the three types discussed in this article and many others.
(15) Johannes Tinctoris, Complexus effectuum musices, in Opera theoretica, ed. A. Seay, Corpus Scriptorum de Musica, xxii (American Institute of Musicology, 1975), p.169. See now Egidius Carlerius and Johannes Tinctoris, On the dignity and the effects of music: two fifteenth-century treatises, trans. and annot. J.D. Cullington, ed. R. Strohm and J. D. Cullington, Institute of Advanced Musical Studies Study Texts, ii (London, 1996), pp.54, 70, from which the translation is taken.
Christopher Page has called attention to Tinctoris's unsignalled borrowings from Augustine in the Complexus, and suggests that it is quite possible he knew them through Aquinas's Summa theologiae, which incorporates the relevant passages from the Confessions; see C. Page, `Reading and reminiscence: Tinctoris on the beauty of music', Journal of the American Musicological Society, il (1996), pp.1-31, esp. pp.11-16. Like Augustine, Tinctoris stresses the effect music has on him personally.
(16) `Oculos cordis attollit iubilus laudis': Tinctoris, Complexus effectuum musices, ed. Seay, p.172; Tinctoris, On the dignity and the effects of music, ed. Strohm and Cullington, pp.56, 94. Tinctoris gives the source in St Bernard as Super cantica; Cullington and Strohm did not find the exact wording, but point out similar phrases involving `iubilus cordis'.
(17) In the Book of Cerne. By the 10th century they had become part of the Adoratio Crucis on Good Friday. See E. Duffy, The stripping of the altars: traditional religion in England c.1400-c.1580 (New Haven and London, 1992), pp.238-43. For the Adoratio Crucis see K. Young, The drama of the medieval church (Oxford, 1933), i, pp.112-48.
(18) Many books of hours contain these prayers, sometimes in a different order, and sometimes beginning `Domine Jesu Christe' or even `Adoro te, domine'. Before the 147os only the first five prayers commonly appear in devotional books.
(19) Josquin des Prez, Werken, ed. A. Smijers, Motetten, ii (Amsterdam and Leipzig, 1924), no.10. (The last word of the prima pars is incorrectly given as `penitente' in the edition; it is `percutiente'.) Certain technical aspects of the motet cast doubt on the attribution; I shall take up the question elsewhere.
(20) Bologna, Civico Museo Bibliografico Musicale, Ms. Q19, ff.93v-94, published in Antoine Brumel, Opera omnia, v, ed. B. Hudson, Corpus Mensurabilis Musicae, v/5 (American Institute of Musicology, 1972), pp.86-8; Florence, Biblioteca Nazionale Centrale, Ms. Panc. 27, ff.86v-88, with the text `O Domine Jesu Christe, te supplices exoramus ut N. servum tuum languescentem et molesta febre pressum, ab omni egretudinis gravamine incolumen per merita tue passionis sanitatisque munere letum reddere digneris.' The secunda pars bears the normal text of the fifth prayer, beginning `O domine Jesu Christe propter illam amaritudinem'.
The setting attributed to Mouton is of the fourth prayer and appears only in the late source Rhau, Symphoniae jucundae (1538.sup.8), no.41; the petition is made for `nobis peccatoribus'. Renaldo's setting of the second prayer, in Bologna Q19, ff.44v-45, has a slightly different (and grammatically incorrect) text: `O domine yhesu christe: te suplices exoramus ut in cruce vulneratum felle et acceto potatum deprecor te ut tua vulnera sint remedium anime mee.'
(21) The phrase that Tinctoris applies to the works of his admired contemporaries, `perfumed with such sweetness', interpreted in musical terms by Rob C. Wegman (`Sense and sensibility in late-medieval music: thoughts on aesthetics and authenticity', Early music, xxiii (1995), pp.299-312), has received a rich metaphorical explanation in Page, `Reading and reminiscence'. Indeed, Pierre d'Ailly's treatise on the spiritual senses, Compendium contemplationis (discussed on pp.28-30), covers not only spiritual hearing and spiritual sight, which (following Aristotle) are associated with memory and understanding, but also spiritual olfaction, awakening the desire for God.
(22) The alto sings what appears to be a litany tone, different from the common litany invocation but matching the setting of the words `Sancta Maria virgo virginum' in the superius and tenor of Noel Bauldewyn's six-part motet of the same name, recently identified by Bernadette Nelson in a Spanish manuscript, Barcelona, Biblioteca de Catalunya, M.1967. See her article `Pie memorie', Musical times, cxxxvi (July 1995), pp.338-44, where she caned attention to the likeness (p.340 and n.25; the incipit is given in her ex.1).
(23) There are other settings by Brumel (Opera omnia, v, pp.3-6); Andreas de Silva, 2.p. of Ave ancilla trinitatis, which also concludes `O mater dei memento mei', unrelated musically to Josquin (Opera omnia, ed. W. Kirsch, Corpus Mensurabilis Musicae, xlix (American Institute of Musicology, 1970-), i, pp.61-8); and Nicholas Ludford (ed. N. Sandon, Antico Edition RCM 127). A single voice from an anonymous English five-part setting is discussed in N. Sandon, `The Manuscript London, British Library Harley 1709', Music in the medieval English liturgy. Plainsong and Mediaeval Music Society centennial essays, ed. S. Rankin and D. Hiley (Oxford, 1993), pp.355-79, esp. pp.371-5. This same manuscript includes a rare English setting of the prayers of St Gregory, beginning `Adoro te'; see ibid., pp.367-70.
(24) The text is related only tangentially to the Office of the Recollectio, for which Dufay composed the plainchant. At the time Michel de Beringhen, a canon at Cambrai Cathedral, endowed this feast in 1457, six Marian feasts were celebrated, including the Visitation. Beringhen wished to add this new collective feast, evidently to bring the number up to the Marian seven. Barbara Haggh discovered that the new text was composed by Gilles Carlier and the music by Dufay; see her preliminary report, `The celebration of the "Recollectio Festorum Beatae Mariae Virginis", 1457-1987', Atti del XIV congresso della Societa Internazionale di Musicologia: trasmissione e recezione delle forme di cultura musicale, ed. A. Pompilio, D. Restani, L. Bianconi, and F. A. Gallo, 3 vols. (Turin, 1990). iii, pp.559-71. Pomerium, under the direction of Alexander Blachly, has recently recorded the First Vespers (Archiv 447 773-2).
(25) This is discussed in Blackburn, `The Virgin in the sun'. The Dominicans speak of Mary's `sanctification' in die womb, holding that as a human being she was not exempt from Original Sin. Herein lies the explanation for the changed text of Ave cuius conceptio in some sources. In Petrucci's Motetti A, Glareanus and several manuscript sources the first two lines read `Ave celorum domina, Maria plena gratia' instead of `Ave cuius conceptio, Solemni plena gaudio' (the same is true of Brumel's setting of Ave cuius conceptio in Motetti C; Cappella Sistina 42 has the correct text). Petrucci's editor, Petrus Castellanus, was a Dominican, and in his church, SS. Giovanni e Paolo in Venice, it is not likely that a motet referring to the Immaculate Conception would have been sung.
(26) Molinet and Josquin may well have been acquainted. Josquin is named first in Molinet's Deploration on Ockeghem, and Josquin set it to music. At the time of Molinet's death in 1507 his son Augustin was a canon at Josquin's church, Notre Dame de Conde; see N. Dupire, Jean Molinet: la vie -- les oeuvres (Paris, 1932), p.16. In 1494 Molinet himself held a canonry at Condd, as well as at Saint-Gery in Cambrai (ibid., P-17). His main prebend, however, was as canon of Notre-Dame de La Salle in Valenciennes.
(27) Published in Les Faictz et dictz de Jean Molinet, ed. N. Dupire, 3 vols. (Paris, 1936-9), ii, pp.-450-2. Since the three sources all date from the early 16th century (Molinet died in 1507), this may be a late work, although the mention of war in the envoi could put it back to the 1480s or earlier. See N. Dupire, Etude critique des manuscrits et editions des poesies de Jean Molinet (Paris, 1932), 15, 34, 46. Since Dupire published his book one source has been destroyed (Tournai, in a fire of 1940) and another discovered: Brussels, Bibliotheque royale, Ms. IV 541 (dated 1568); see J. Lemaire, Meschinot, Molinet, Villon: tdmoignages inedits. Etude du Bruxellensis IV 541, suivie de l'edition de quelques ballades (Brussels, 1979). Dupire remarks that the lines of the poem end in rebuses, but the edition does not make dear what they are. Both Molinet and Josquin, by using the words `sans tache originelle' and `immaculata' respectively, align themselves with the Franciscan position on the Immaculate Conception.
(28) And not only in this motet but in Pierre de La Rue, Missa de Septem doloribus (Opera omnia, ed. N. St John Davison, J. E. Kreider, and T. H. Keahey, Corpus Mensurabilis Musicae, xcvii/3 (Neuhausen-Stuttgart, 1992), no.14). In Osanna II La Rue quotes the superius of Josquin's final passage (a 12th lower) with the words `O mater dei memento mei. Amen' (in Cappella Sistina 36), inserted in the middle of the sequence text `Salve virgo generosa', which is used at this point in the Mass.
(29) `Intercede for us at the end of our days so that I, the reader of this prayer, and the author may ever find mercy' (ll. 130-32); Les Faictz et dictz, ed. Dupire, ii, p.480. The Brussels manuscript mentioned in n.27 places these verses at the end of the poem.
Molinet, `Ung dictier des cinq festes Nostre Dame' Josquin, Ave Maria... virgo serena
Ave Maria, gratia plena
Dominus tecum, Virgo serena.
O quelle offense oultrageuse et acherbe, Ave cuius conceptio, Maledicte Eve apporta en ce monde! solemni plena gaudio, Terreur en vint du serpent qui enherbe Celestia, terrestria, De son venin maint bo coeur net et monde; Nova replet letitia. Justice en fit Dieu qui nos pechies monde; Mes pour avoir paix, Madame saincte Anne, Mente odorant, conchut la douce manne, Tout purement, sans tache originelle, Medecine aspre au pecheur qui se danne, Implorant grace et gloire supernelle.
On estimoit humain lignage mort, Ave cuius nativitas Malleureux, ort et pollut par orgoeul; Nostra fuit solemnitas, Terriblement l'ennemy qui nous mort Ut lucifer lux oriens, Depopuloit tout le poeuple a son voeul; Verum solem preveniens. Icelle dame Anne en fit le recoeul, Mere devint et Marie descherge, Membre divin, du filz de Dieu concherge; tous ses parens feste moult solennelle Menerent lors, alumans maint beau cherge, Implorant grace et gloire supernelle.
On presenta au temple la tres bonne Ave pia humilitas, Marie, fleur flourissant comme lis; Sine viro fecunditas, Terrigene eur, d'honneur l'adresse et bonne Cuius annunciatio Delaissier volt et tous mondains delis; Nostra fuit salvatio. Illec ung angle, issu des cieux pollis, Messagier vray, bon salut luy aporte, Mentionnant que Dieu veult qu'elle porte, Tousjours estant vierge perpetuelle, Messias vif, ouvrant du ciel la porte, Implorant grace et gloire supernelle.
O admirabile effect, la basse lune Ave vera virginitas, Maine le hault soleil qui le regarde, Immaculata castitas, Terrestre fille est dessus toutes l'une Cuius purificatio De qui Dieu fit sa mere et bonne garde; Nostra fuit purgatio. Icelle offrit son effant, qui le garde, Meismes es bras Simeon, en plain choeur; Menant grand joie il dit: `j' sans rancoeur Total salut, car lumiere eternelle Me rend clarte; j'en seray, de bon coeur, Implorant grace et gloire supernelle.'
Or estes vous royne et domines, Ave preclara omnibus Maistresse en court de pardurable tour; Angelicis virtutibus, Terre vous est scabelle et vous regnes Cuius fuit assumptio Dessus les cieux, ou fut vostre retour; Nostra glorificatio. Je vous requiers, dame de noble atour, Me secourir au besoing soir et main; Mendiant suis, grand pecheur inhumain, Tout vostre serf, o Vierge maternelle, Mettes mon fait en vostre seure main, Implorant grace et gloire supernelle.
Princes mondains, triumphans par vaillance, O mater dei En temps de guerre horrible et criminelle, Memento mei, Serves la Vierge, a acqueres bienvoeullance, Amen. Implorant grace et gloire supernelle.
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|Title Annotation:||Listening Practice|
|Author:||Blackburn, Bonnie J.|
|Date:||Nov 1, 1997|
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