We deny to claim "any Superiority to ourself
to defyne, decyde, or determyn any Article or Poynt
of the Christian Fayth and Relligion,
or to chang any Ancient Ceremony of the Church
from the Forme before received and observed
by the Catholick and Apostolick Church."

Norman Simplicity

Norman Simplicity
Click image for original | © Vitrearum (Allan Barton)

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

Older News

First, the old news (or, what everyone already knew, from the same source as the previous post, with my emphases):

There were then none of the private prayers with which it is now encumbered — Asperges, Judica, Confiteor and the rest of the preparatory devotions; none of the private prayers at the offertory — Suscipe, Sancte Pater, Deus qui humanae, Offerimus tibi, In spiritu humilitatis, Veni Sanctificator, Lavabo, Suscipe Sancta Trinitas, and the rest. There were no private prayers of the priest before communion — Haec commixtio, Agnus Dei, Domine Jesu Christe qui dixisti, Domine Jesu Christe Fili Dei vivi, Perceptio corporis, Panem celestem, Domine non sum dignus, Quid retribuam, nor those at the Ablutions — Quod ore sumpsimus, Corpus tuum Domine, nor Placeat tibi after Ite missa est; — nor (of course) was there any 'last Gospel' ...

All these private devotions with which a certain section of Churchmen have been diligently farsing the Anglican liturgy were entirely unknown to St. Gregory, and indeed unknown altogether at Rome for a thousand years.

Romanizing clergy of the 1950s: "Just added the Last Gospel." Romanizing clergy of the 1960s: "Just got rid of the Last Gospel."

Now, the older news. I think in an earlier post I said something about the need for the Sanctorale to be subordinated to the Temporale. In this, I was betraying my ignorance as well as my thoroughly "modern" prejudices as formed, of course, by the BCP. The most primitive practice, however, appears to have been the precise reverse: the Sanctorale is the more basic element, with the Temporale -- in particular, ordinary Sundays -- fitted in, almost as an afterthought. This adds a real dimension of difficulty, of course, to the idea of lectionary revision (one of my perennial hobby horses).

In modern times the principal part of our service-books appears to be the Temporale (which includes all the masses for ordinary Sundays as well as those for Sundays and weekdays in special seasons such as Advent and Lent); and the Sanctorale appears as a kind of Appendix to the Temporale. But in ancient times a different arrangement appears to have prevailed. In several mediaeval MSS we find an earlier arrangement: the saints' days are mixed up with the Temporale in groups — a group of saints' day masses before Christmas, another group before LXX, and so on. But it would appear that even this is not the earliest arrangement but only a transitional stage, and that the earliest arrangement was that which we find in Hadrian's Sacramentary, viz, a cycle consisting of the services for Holy-days throughout the year along with those for such special seasons as Advent and Lent, but without any of the services for ordinary Sundays, these being contained in an Appendix by themselves. This is the arrangement which we find in Hadrian's Sacramentary, --except that the Appendix was apparently never sent to Charlemagne — and the same arrangement is found in the most ancient Comes of the Roman Church (e.g. the Würzburg Comes). It is also found in the Missale Bobianum and in the Orationale Gothicum — but in this last the services for the ordinary Sundays are also wanting. It is certainly a problem why the Sunday services were not included in the Codex sent to Charlemagne, and why they were never included (as it appears) in the Orationale Gothicum; but it is very likely that the reason was the same in both cases.

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