Origins of the "Gregorian" Alleluia?
  • A discussion came up the other day as to where the typical "Gregorian" alleluia that everyone knows comes from. I know it is in Jubilate Deo but it predates that.
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 3,014
    Yes, it was the beginning of Lauds of Easter Day.
    In the 1962 books that comes directly at the end of the Vigil Mass. In the 1871 Pustet Gradual it is also directly at the end of the Holy Saturday Mass, there identified as Vespers. Either way it was heard at the end of the Mass following the long series of prophecies and the blessing of the font, so it was well known to the devout.
    Thanked by 1veromary
  • It is found in the Graduale Romanum as being proper for the Corpus Christi Procession
    (pg852 GR) as the antiphon for Psalm 104, Tone VIf if I do some more digging I might be able to find a date somewhere... but at least that gives some idea.
  • I looked it up in our Dominican books because I didn't remember see/singing it.
    It is no where to be found in the Dominican usage for the Vigil Vespers or Lauds of Easter or the Corpus Christi procession. But I did see in the Liber.
    We have taken the Alleluia super psalm antiphons for the major hours and use them for the Alleluia super psalm antiphon for the Little Hours during the Easter season.
    Thanks so much. It was just one of those distracted musings that came to mind one day last week.
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,597
    This is why, by the way, people have long complained, justly so, that we use these Alleluias incongruously with their liturgical heritage. Most of the Paschaltide antiphons have three, some four, Alleluias (I don't have time to look up and see what changes are due to Pius X…), and in any case, this particular triple Alleluia is from Vespers of the Easter Vigil (cue the necessary remark that the Vigil was always a Vesperal service…).
    Thanked by 2tomjaw Nisi
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,569
    And, in terms of incongruity, the Vigil as a Vesperal service occurring in the morning was ... another one.
    Thanked by 1a_f_hawkins
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,597
    That's fine, but it's entirely beside the point and if we must go down this road, the 1955 reform left the Feasts of Feasts without I Vespers, something not corrected at all in the postconciliar form. One might think that it's "incongruous" to anticipate the offices, but it'd been a thing for the centuries by the time Saint Pius V added it to the official rubrics of the Triduum, and it was for good cause: the fast was broken after Vespers. It also allowed for things to be more or less at the same time, while doing everything in good order, in a way that evokes the ordinary schedule, e.g. Holy Thursday is celebrated like a feast up until the Gloria, where it takes on its particularities (no organ, no bells, celebration in coram Sanctissimo) at approximately the same hour as the Mass of feasts would have been celebrated, just with the anticipated schedule.
  • SalieriSalieri
    Posts: 3,039
    The N.O. Holy Week is annoying, no matter how you slice it. Though some aspects are better than in '62.
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • smcatharine
    Posts: 16
    The reality was that Vespers would then be celebrated at 11 AM so that the fast could be broken and Compline celebrated at 5PM so that Matins could be at 8PM.
    Thanked by 1CHGiffen
  • Liam
    Posts: 4,569
    Quite incongruous. Meaning the incongruous has a way of becoming traditional, if not Tradition.
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,597
    SmCatherine, indeed. But, the solution, if people were really worked up about this was to restore a late afternoon vigil. Making this into a midnight Mass with Lauds is based on the false idea postulated without any evidence whatsoever that the prophecies were Matins readings shorn of psalmody, despite the fact that twelve or four readings is not how that office works anywhere else in the liturgical year. It’s also absolute crickets when you point out that the baptismal rites and the associated Divine Liturgy are still celebrated in the morning of Holy Saturday in the Byzantine rite, whereas the night offices and everything up through the Divine Liturgy are anticipated to the night of Holy Saturday and continuing into Easter Sunday. Very few churches have a second Divine Liturgy for those who can’t attend at night (which is something of a Westernization, but the prohibition on celebrating the eucharistic liturgy twice in a day is not absolute),
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 3,014
    I agree the timings of the NO Triduum are different from those of other days of the year. I regard that as a feature, not a bug.
    My inherited 1925 hand Missal has three quarters of a page of small print explaining how the early church celebrated the Vigil, and it corresponds closely to the NO. It adds that the church now (ie 1925) anticipates the resurrection by nearly a full day. It does not attempt to explain why, nor give a justification, but this is a text for the ordinary Mass-goer not a liturgical treatise. To those of us brought up in the 1950s on stirring tales of St Patrick defying the High King by lighting his Easter fire on the hill next to Tara, the restoration of a sane time for these ceremonies seemed entirely admirable.
    Thanked by 2Schönbergian Elmar
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,597
    The theories of the ancient timing of the Triduum offices promoted in the 1920s (I think that it originates with Bl. Ildefonso Schuster, but it was widely adopted) does not correspond to what we actually know about the ancient church. The various authors made it up. Egeria is explicit that the vigil was a vesperal service in Jerusalem, and so are all of the Roman manuscripts which place it after None. You can read in those same handmissals, correctly, because it's in Ordo Romanus I that the catechumens were prepared for the last time in the morning, then the vigil takes place after None. None of these authors engage on this point for whatever reason, even though Egeria's identity was confirmed by the time that they were writing.

    As Gregory DiPippo observes, one doesn't usually light a fire when it's already dark, which is the minimum rubric in the NO and required in the 1955 rubrics since the Mass must begin around midnight. The only reason for Mass to go into the night was because of baptisms. But the Mass is not noted to be in nocte like on Christmas. It is also not entirely clear how "Mass should be late" advocates in the twentieth century reconciled this to the existence of a (largely inferior) tradition of four prophecies, and you're still reading the longest of the twelve as it is.

    Lauds is now sung around one or two in the morning, which is also incongruous; the Rule of St Benedict divides Matins and Lauds, and they are only linked together in the Roman way during the Triduum, for which the OSB simply uses the Roman books. So now you've moved the incongruity from the front end to the back end.

    As to the other days, the Mass of the Lord's Supper is festive, and therefore celebrated at the hour of feasts, and the original Mass of the Presanctified celebrated in the morning, the first half being repeated with the people in the parishes.

    So, no, neither of these is a "sane time." They're both wrong, in different ways, and this thinking also extended to the theory that the Mass of Ember Saturday was also a vigil lasting into the night (they completely misunderstand how it works…)
    Thanked by 1tomjaw
  • a_f_hawkins
    Posts: 3,014
    I understand vespera in Latin to refer to evening, the time of the evening star, and of lamp lighting. You don't see stars until the daylight is fading, and you don't light lamps until daylight is fading.
    A vesperal service in the latitude of Jerusalem would naturally occur after the daylight working hours, just as people naturally start cooking around then, after work, so as to eat after the heat of the day - that is what they mean by evening.
    I deliberately cited an ordinary source, a hand missal for congregational use from before Bugnini was even a student for the priesthood.
    Does the obsession with midnight even exist before clocks became common and a "day" was redefined to start at midnight? But I can see why we and the Romans would want to regard the whole time between sleeps as the same day, and that that clashes with the Jewish/Moslem definition of the day ending at dusk and a new one starting.
  • fcbfcb
    Posts: 305
    I am just going to go ahead and admit that I am having a hard time following the disagreement here.

    Is it a disgreement over timing, with the options being 1) morning (pre-55 Missal), 2) just before/at dusk (what many parishes do), 3) just after dusk (what chanceries tell parishes they should do) or 4), midnight (post-55/pre-70 Missal )? If so, I'll admit that #1 seems to make nonsense of the Exsultet, though I could see arguments for any of the others (thought I'm really too old for #4).

    Or is it a disagreement over which office should conclude the Vigil, with the options being 1) Vespers (pre-1955), 2) Lauds (post-55/pre-70) or 3) nothing (post-70)? If so, I really don't have a dog in this fight.

    Or is the disagreement something else that I am missing entirely?
  • MatthewRoth
    Posts: 1,597
    It began with what I considered a misleading answer over the origins of this Alleluia… it’s attached to Lauds in the 1955 liturgy, but it’s originally, and was always, a part of Vespers once that office officially became a part of the rite. The one knock on what used to be the EF over which many trads would agree is that Holy Week isn’t that old and is a hot mess to celebrate.

    But then it devolved into defending the time changes themselves as if the changes were either justified or correct or both. They are certainly not the latter, even if some changes were warranted.

    Gregory DiPippo notes that the incongruent text of the Exultet is transferred to the celebration of Lauds in his article on the hours of the Triduum published as a part of the Compendium of the Holy Week reforms. I don’t think that anyone denies that it’s a little weird to anticipate the vigil with a fire sung and the Exultet sung in the morning light.

    However, celebrating Pascal Matins in settings other than the monastery is feasible if you anticipate the service. The office is once again reduced to the priest’s private prayer book, because it is simply unfeasible to turn around from the Vigil to celebrate Compline and Matins. Even the reformed vigil of Pius XII makes this impossible.

    Pastoral common sense would allow for anticipating the Vigil in this case just as cathedrals anticipated Tenebrae of Spy Wednesday/Holy Thursday before the newly-appointed chrism Mass in the 1955 reform (no longer anticipating those offices is also incongruous with the rite…). Plus the vigil is still anticipated in places with multiple communities, and as you note, some parishes ignore it even though chanceries always send a memo with the correct times.

    a_f_hawkins: The source merely repeated what the other authors of the period said without any evidence whatsoever. No one disagrees much about what “vespera” means in Latin, although in the Roman rite, there’s hardly any textual incongruity if you anticipate an office, so long as Compline is celebrated in the afternoon in order to anticipate Matins sometime im the evening or indeed after dark, unlike in the Byzantine rite with the Phos Hilaron. Even the antiphon of the Magnificat at the Paschal Vigil doesn’t help much: the fact is that one Gospel says “evening,” i.e. after the Jewish Sabbath ended without any doubt whatsoever, another “morning.”

    But “daylight is fading” is nevertheless not what the rubrics say. They specify after dark. It would be one thing to insist that the vigil be celebrated in the evening in most places where Matins will not be chanted. It’s another to specify after dark or to order that Mass begin at midnight.
    Thanked by 1tomjaw