advent vespers, psalm tones needed
  • Hi all.

    I'm doing a sung vespers service that is 95% English (only 2 bits in Latin) and I must give thanks to priorstf for helping me to figure out what the correct antiphons and psalms are proper for Dec 20th, 1st Vespers of the 4th Sunday of Advent.

    My next question is, which Psalm Tones should I use?

    I have no written melodies for the antiphons, so I'm just going to sing those to the same psalm tone as the psalm itself. Problem is, I don't know what those are customarily set to.

    Here are the Psalms I'm doing:
    Psalm 122 with antiphon "He comes, the desire of all human hearts; his dwelling place shall be resplendent with glory, alleluia"

    Psalm 130 with antiphon "Come, Lord, do not delay; free your people from their sinfullness."

    also, NT Canticle from Philippians 2:6-11 with antiphon "the fullness of time has come upon us at last: God sends his Son into the world." I also need a melody or psalm tone for that.

    Is there a set melody for the Responsory "Lord, show us your mercy and love." ?

    I'm doing Ave Maris Stella for a Prelude and Magnificat "8G" for Canticle of Mary and O Come, O Come Emmanuel for the Hymn. Does anyone see anything suspect with those choices?

    thanks again to all for the excellent help and time you given me.
  • The week prior to Christmas has a few proper elements. Christian Prayer, p. 96, gives the Responsory as:

    Come and set us free, Lord God of power and might.
    Let your face shine upon us and we shall be saved. * Lord God...

    You will need to include the Magnificat antiphon for the day, which is from the O antiphons, "O Key of David, etc.", at least on the same 8G psalmtone. My hasty adaptation of these two things is attached.

    You are free to choose the tone for the Antiphons and Psalms as you like.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    The monastic office has these antiphons in various places, so you could adopt and adapt some or all of them:

    (references to the 1934 Antiphonale Monasticum -- see the PDF from

    "He comes" is "Ecce veniet", p. 227.
    "Come, Lord" is "Veni Domine", p. 218.
    "The fullness of time" is "Ecce jam venit", p. 213.

    The Responsory is "Ostende nobis Domine" (p. 182).

    The Magnificat antiphon "O Key of David" is on p. 210. It's a lengthy text; could the choir sing it, and share the verses (tone IId) with the congregation?
  • thanks all for some good suggestions. two clarifications:

    on my Daily Prayer, the Responsory for this Vespers is shown on p. 110, not p. 96 which looks to me like the Monday Vespers for 3rd week of Advent. Please correct me if I'm wrong on this.

    second, again on p. 110, it says "for the Canticle of Mary, the antiphone is taken from teh office of the day, 118ff."

    on p. 118, the Antiphon is listed as "O Wisdom," not "O Key." am I wrong here also?
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    "118ff" is for p. 118 and following pages, so the propers for Dec 17-23 start at 118 and continue from there. "O Key" is in the propers for Dec. 20. It's an unusual arrangement, where the propers are associated with calendar days instead of days of the week.

    You know the "code" behind the Magnificat antiphons, right?
    Dec 17: O Sapientia
    Dec 18: O Adonai
    Dec 19: O Radix
    Dec 20: O Clavis
    Dec 21: O Oriens
    Dec 22: O Rex
    Dec 23: O Emmanuel

    The seven initials of those words form the message: "ERO CRAS", Latin for "I will be (there) tomorrow".

    And yes, I think that's the right Responsory on p. 110, but maybe RR knows something I've overlooked.
  • Try these.

    The English translation of "Ecce veniet" did not accord well with the Latin chant; so I centonized another Mode I melody for it.

    "Veni Domine" uses aq very elastic type-melody, which I could easily fit to your English text.

    "Ecce iam venit" is listed in the 2005 antiphonale as a Mode 5 antiphon and is given with psalm tone 5. It is an easily-recognizable Mode 7 type melody. Perhaps I'm missing something. I'll defer to Saulnier.

    I'm also attaching all the Great O antiphons, in case you wish to use the proper melody of "O clavis David" with the Magnificat.
  • I'm looking at Christian Prayer: The Liturgy of the Hours, Daughters of St. Paul, 1976. For Evening Prayer of Dec. 19-23, the Responsory is as I gave it. Maybe they changed it in later editions, or omitted the subtle change in some books.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    That's it. Darth is probably looking at the edition from Catholic Book Publishing.
  • chonak - yes, I am.
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    Here's the rub. It's not a matter of the editions. The propers for the Fourth Sunday of Advent and the propers for Dec. 20 give different Responsories. I'm going to assume that the Sunday one overrides the other; otherwise, there would be no point in listing the Sunday responsory in the book.
  • shouldn't the Propers of Dec. 20 override any other listing? Technically, it isn't yet Fourth Sunday, it's *before* Saturday Vigil for the fourth Sunday . . .
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    The liturgical observance of the Lord's day begins every week with the First Vespers of Sunday, celebrated on Saturday evening/afternoon. It can be before the first vigil Mass. In my diocese (I've heard that) Vespers can't be celebrated before 3 pm.
  • I see the difference between the Sunday and Weekday Responsories in the Advent Weekly cycle to December 16. But the section, From December 17 to 24, seems to be independent of the weekly cycle. So:

    17: Lord, show us your mercy...
    18: Lord, show us your mercy...
    19: Come and set us free...
    20: Come and set us free...
    21: Come and set us free...
    22: Come and set us free...
    23: Come and set us free...
    24: Today you wil know...

    I don't see anything that indicates Sunday or Feria specificity during this time, other than refering to the regular Psalter for the antiphons. I'm not saying this makes any sense, mind you.
  • Bruce, great stuff, many thanks for the quick arrangements. I'm going to sing through everything I've put together sofar (from you and other sources) and make sure it all 'jives'.

    again, thanks for your help
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    For Richard R.: the DSP one-volume edition -- published back when the DSP used to typeset their liturgical books in Helvetica -- has propers for all four Advent Sundays on p. 44-46. The collects vary week to week, but the responsory is the same for all four weeks ("Lord, show us your mercy").
  • dvalerio
    Posts: 341
    chonak wrote:
    > (references to the 1934 Antiphonale Monasticum -- see the PDF from

    Is there a PDF of the Antiphonale Monasticum among the files available at the Musica Sacra website??? I did not find it in the list...
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    Uh-oh. Jeffrey!!
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    Here are the three psalm antiphons:
  • chonak: Just correct the misplaced episema on "venit", and the dotted punctum on the second syllable of "Deus" (la, not ti).
  • chonakchonak
    Posts: 8,308
    Done (above). Thanks.