Gibbons/Loosemore, "O Lord, Increase My Faith"
  • Apologies if this has been hashed before. I heard this old chestnut today. It's been some years since I sang it, and can accept the reattribution. But the text I remember is:

    O Lord, increase my faith,
    strengthen me and confirm me in thy true faith,
    endue me with wisdom,
    charity, charity, and patience.
    In all my adversity,
    teach me to say Amen.

    CPDL instead gives:

    O Lord...
    endue me with wisdom,
    charity, chastity, and patience
    in all my adversity.
    Sweet Jesus, say Amen.

    Are Forum scholars prepared to declare "Sweet Jesus" to be authentic? Setting aside the apparently confused punctuation, which the three CPDL editors all treat differently than this, I still wonder about that last line. Surely, the version I remember makes significantly more sense in the context.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,705
    In F.A. Gore Ouseley's "Collection of the Sacred Compositions of Orlando Gibbons (of which the scores are not contained in Dr. Boyce's collection), From the Original Mss. and Part Books" (1873) ... one finds the full text is:
    O Lord, increase my faith,
    strengthen me and confirm me in Thy true faith,
    endue me with wisdom,
    charity, and patience.
    In all my adversity,
    sweet Saviour, say Amen.

    Notes:1. The word "charity" is repeated, and the repetition is not "chastity.
    2. In the "Anthems Used in the Cathedral Church at Durham" ... "sweet Jesus" replaces "sweet Saviour." In some editions/performances, "Jesus" is replaced by "Jesu" (with the English pronunciation "dgee-soo" or "dgee-zoo" (not "yay-zoo").
    3. The Henry Loosemore version is usually given with Richard's second text, the first phrase being "O Lord, increase our faith" (with "us" substituting for "me" and "our" for "my"). Also, the Loosemore version makes "patience" a three-syllable word "pa-ti-ence."

    The Gore Ouseley collection is available at IMSLP. It coincides with the edition I sang from for several years when I sang at All Saints' Episcopal Church in Princeton, NJ.
  • This was done at Walsingham this morning.
    The words I remember are the first ones given by Richard above. I've never seen 'sweet Jesus', nor 'sweet Saviour', which isn't to say that one of them isn't 'authentic'.

    And thanks, Chuck, for the reminder about how to pronounce 'Jesu' in English - when this appears in an English text it is English, not Latin. Americans seem to have an enormous amount of denial about this - the verity of it notwithstanding.
    Thanked by 1Salieri
  • Funny.

    I grew up singing O Lord, increase my faith, and have a copy somewhere. I'm sure the text reads "charity, chastity and pa-ti-ence."

    F.A. Gore Ouseley was known (before it apparently became déclassé) as FAG Ouseley
  • MarkS
    Posts: 266
    We also sang the Gibbons at 10:00 this morning. The text as I have always known it has included the repeated "charity's," and I have never encountered "Sweet Jesu/Jesus" but rather "teach me." Now I'm curious!
  • Sweet Jesu (as if it were spelled Jhesu) is what I remember.
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,705
    From the Gore-Ouseley collection, here is a scan.
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 2,374
    Teach meeeeeeetu say what? We did it today as edited in Lionel Dakers The New Church Anthem Book, in a minor. I'm very fond of the fa contra si at "confirm", something I remember being bowdlerized fictacized in some editions. CPDL would have two different pages for the work…

    A quick peak at JSTOR turns up John Morehen's article The Gibbons-Loosemore Mystery (The Musical Times, Vol. 112, No. 1544 (Oct., 1971), pp. 959-960) in which he describes the identification of Loosemoore's writing in a organ book, now in the NY Public Library, containing OLIOF. The only previously known source was a 18c copy in the BL made by Loosemore's successor Tudway, who ascribed the work to Gibbons. The announcement in 1965 was followed by three new editions and is a little help in dating Chris ;-)

    As to Jesu, I may have posted this link before but the sound effect still cracks me up every time.
  • CHGiffenCHGiffen
    Posts: 4,705
    @Richard Mix. The version attributed to Loosemore differs in a few minor details from the version attributed to Gibbons (at least at CPDL). The Loosemore has the 3-syllable "pa-ti-ence" and the "chastity" thing. I'm getting the impression that the text alterations go back quite a way.
  • CharlesW
    Posts: 11,270
    From the Gore-Ouseley collection, here is a scan.


    Makes a good organ interlude, too, when no singers are present. Nice piece!
  • DRH
    Posts: 1
    Does anyone know the author of the anthem text or the original published source?
  • DRH, I'm sorry this will ping you too as I have not the answer for you, but I must thank you, because this piece was totally unknown to me and is an absolute gem. I will start my choir on it next week. It is terribly lovely.
  • .
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,372
    FWIW, a text search of an online version of the 1559 BCP yields no confirmation of such provenance.
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • Liam -
    I realised after I wrote the above (now deleted) commtent that this is not such a collect. Being in the first person makes it not at all probable. There are, though, a number of little anthems of this period that do have such a provenance.
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,372
    Indeed. You may have been thinking of Gibbons' "Almighty and Everlasting God", which is, IIRC, the BCP collect for the Third Sunday after Epiphany.