looking for sacred Latin poetry to set to music
  • m_r_taylor
    Posts: 108
    After the Stella Caeli hymn recently made the rounds on social media I became interested in learning more Latin hymns - hopefully to find beautiful Latin poems, on a sacred theme, that could do with a musical setting in the Gregorian tradition. If there are living poets who write in Latin, or if there are older gems waiting to be set to music - where would I start, what should I read, who could I contact? Metrical hymns probably would be simplest to start with, but others not excluded. A snag is that I don't have much Latin, but that's another project...

    A quick search yielded this book online...looks like a good start. I'd have to find out if some of those texts already have musical settings though. "The Latin Hymn-Writers and their hymns" by Samuel W. Duffield, 1889. https://www.gutenberg.org/files/54903/54903-h/54903-h.htm#c28
    Thanked by 1M. Jackson Osborn
  • Jeffrey Quick
    Posts: 1,578
    The motherlode of sacred Latin poetry is the Analecta Hymnica Medii Aevi, most of the volumes of which are available here.
    Thanked by 2m_r_taylor CHGiffen
  • CatherineS
    Posts: 333
    Two books on my reading list: Poetria nova, by Geoffrey of Vinsauf and An introduction to the study of Medieval Latin Versification by Dag Norberg. I got these because I love the hymns of the Office and wanted to learn more about medieval Latin hymns and poetry.
  • You could hardly do better than the historic repertory of office hymns, easily found in Liber Usualis or Liber Hymnarius.

    You might also avail yourself of a Latin psalter, though the psalms are prose, not verse.
    Thanked by 2m_r_taylor CHGiffen
  • m_r_taylor
    Posts: 108
    I knew I could count on you ladies and gents!