'Anthems at the Washing of Feet' for Holy Thursday
  • Richard MixRichard Mix
    Posts: 1,864
    I find myself wondering about spots other than the usual processions in some upcoming liturgies that are covered by antiphons. I see that Bruce Ford's American Gradual has provided verses from Ps. 50 to be sung with Juxta vestibulum, the "alia ant." for Ash Wednesday (and passes over the responsory), and that the Palm Blessing antiphons are also so supplied (now to find faburdens to go with Schubert!). Why are the Holy Thursday antiphons called "anthems"? We've been singing Maneant vobis (in English) with the remaining antiphon texts used as verses, but this was an improvisation of mine. Are there appointed Psalms for the 8 antiphons?

    Btw, the AG has grown on me quite a lot!
  • Mark P.
    Posts: 248
    The Music of Holy Week" put out by the Gregorian Institute of America in 1957 has psalm verses for all the foot washing antiphons. It's in modern notation and has all of the propers as well as many of the other chants of Holy Week in psalm tone.
  • One of the great curiosities of modern liturgical publications is the array of terms they use to substitute for antiphon and other traditional chants. The term "anthem" derives from "antiphon", but considering the music we associate with "anthem" (choral, English, quasi-liturgical), it is probably not the best substitute.

    Of the seven antiphons for the Washing of Feet given in the modern Graduale, only three have verses attached (Domine tu mihi, In hoc cognoscent, and Maneant in vobis), probably because their format is more like responsories, with the verses taken from the same scriptural passage as the antiphon. The older missal gives the first verse of a Psalm for each of the others, which suggests other verses from the same Psalm could be added as needed. The attached may be of interest, if only as a source for Scriptural references.