St Gengulphus - Patron saint of deceived husbands and unhappy marriages
  • Simon
    Posts: 118
    Happy to announce a new project of the Psalterium Foundation

    Saint Gengulphus was a Burgundian knight of Varennes-sur-Amance in the present département of Haut Marne, France. He was a man of outstanding piety and charitableness who served as a soldier under Pepin the Short, and whose martyrdom took the unusual form of being murdered (ca 760) by his wife’s lover. His name is entered as a saint and martyr in the Roman Martyrology on 11th May, which is generally accepted to have been the date of his death. Whilst being particularly regarded as the patron saint of deceived husbands and unhappy marriages, St Gengulphus also has traditional assocations with shoe-makers, tanners, glove-makers, horsemen, knights and huntsmen.

    We have found music for his office. After scores of hours of (mostly online) searching we (Psalterium Foundation) located an early manuscript of almost all of the office (Magnificat antiphon for the first vespers, full matins – invitatorium, 9 antiphons and 9 responds – and full lauds, but, only text of the Magnificat of the second vespers) of St. Gengulphus in an early/mid 13th century manuscript. Thus, only the music (not the text!) was missing for the second vespers in this early manuscript. Still looking for the music for this text – possibly in a later manuscript! An 11C hymn was also found - but noted without melody.

    A website (very informative - most of the input from a retired Anglican priest who has lived in France for many years) has been revived (offline for several years) and again put online with some editing and with addition of a very informative chapter on the music for St Gengulphus. See:

    The above mentioned manuscript (a noted breviary and filed as Metz 0461) was lost in a bombing raid on the city of Metz (NE France) in WWII, but survived in a microfilm made by the Abbey of Solesmes in the interbellum years (possibly earlier) to support their research into Gregorian chant restoration.

    An early hymn for Gengulphus was also found in an 11th century manuscript – text only, still searching for appropriate music for this hymn. The hymn proved more difficult than finding the office material, but we did locate it in Monumenta Germaniae Historica in an account by a very renowned 20th century German historian of the Merovingian period – Wilhelm Levison – on the life of St Gengulphus. Levinson consulted over 60 medieval manuscripts for this account.

    Present planning is to record the office music in the church in Malay (southern Burgundy) in a week long recording session in October 2020. This is the same location as used for the Psalterium Project completed in May 2018. A magnificent location for a recording of this music. Presentation of the Gengulphus project is scheduled for May 2021.

    Hey! Why not Gengulphus? Keeps me off the street and searching for chant music lost in the mists of time and hoping for a revival. A Saint for unhappy marriages - what could be more relevant?

    Look forward to any comments.

  • tomjaw
    Posts: 1,610
    The Hymn appears to be Iambic trimeter, melodies for the Hymn 'Quodcumque in orbe' (older text 'Quodcumque vinclis') part of the longer 'Felix per omnes', should fit

    It is not a common meter but has a few melodies,

    Interestingly the 'Felix per Omnes' is a Hymn used today, for The Feast of St. Peter Chair in Rome.
    Thanked by 1Simon
  • RMSawicki
    Posts: 70
    So St. Gengulphus is the patron saint of deceived husbands and unhappy marriages...


    St. Guntram (or Gunrtammnus) is the patron saint of the divorced...

    It sounds like we have a team of "Holy G-Men" to pray to regarding all our friends and relatives suffering marital strife.

    Good to know!

    Saints Gengulphus and Guntram, ora pro nobis!

    Gaudete in Domino Semper!
    Thanked by 1Simon
  • ghmus7
    Posts: 1,176
    Howbout a patron saint for decieved music directors.
    Thanked by 1madorganist
  • francisfrancis
    Posts: 8,380
    Howbout a patron saint for decieved music directors.
    St. Robert F. Hayburn