Re: [liturgy-l] Review: Camaldolese Office Book - Lauds and Vespers
- On Sun, 20 Jan 2008 10:39:36 -0500 (EST)
>In Bob Taft's The Liturgy of the Hours he quotes Cassian from c. 420 in
> It says there, 'An early way of using the psalms in Christian worship
> was by concluding the praying of the psalm with a period of silence
> and a psalm prayer.'
> Although I like the idea, I have always wondered about this. What
> evidence is there for such a practice, early in christian worship, of
> "concluding the praying of the psalm with period of silence"?
> regards from gray salt lake city,
> john burnett
"... but, there, while all keep silence when the Psalm is finished, the
prayer that follows is offered up by the singer." Institutes II, 8
and several similar passages. Such that the whole psalmody looks like:
"Twelve psalms currente psalterio, as follows:
Seated: Psalm read tractim by a soloist, standing.
Standing: Silent prayer with arms extended.
Prostration: Praying [silently] all the while.
Standing: Silent prayer with arms extended;
Collect by the presider."
from p.60 of the paperback edition (ISBN:0-8146-1405-1), 1986, The
Liturgical Press, Collegeville, MN. Taft quotes other early works
coming out of the Egyptian monastic tradition that point in the same
Hope this helps.
> 2.1. Re: Prayer Officeshmmm. interesting comparison between the kathisma hymns and the collects,
> Posted by: "James Morgan" rdrjames@... rdrjames
> Date: Wed Feb 6, 2008 7:16 pm ((PST))
> Just a thought on the use of 'psalm collects' during the recitation of
> the psalter. In the Eastern tradition we have 'kathisma prayers' which
> are added at the end of each kathisma or section of the psalter. John
> burnett will no doubt have more information on this. they are only used
> in private recitation, not in the offices.
> And I intend to get the Camaldolese book. it looks to be very
but actually not quite the same, although they do reflect the theme of the
day of the week or of the saint and feast if it's one of those days. Their
purpose is to provide a bit of music (and an occasion to stand), which
breaks the monotony of reciting 15 or 20 psalms in a sitting. Or rather,
three sittings, interrupted by kathisma hymns.
Here are a couple of examples, from the Paralikitiki (a.k.a Octoechos, or
Book of the Eight Tones), which is the main book used throughout the year
for the (eight-)weekly cycle of vespers and matins. They almost always
have special melodies, but if you don't know the special melody, you use
the troparion tone:
From Matins on the Lord's Day, Tone 1:
After the First Reading from the Psalter, we sing the Resurrectional
The soldiers who kept watch over your tomb, O Savior, / fell down as dead
at the lightning brightness of the angel, / who appeared and proclaimed
the resurrection to the women. / We glorify you, the Destroyer of
corruption; / we fall down before you, who are risen from the tomb, / our
V. Arise, O Lord my God, lift up your hand: / do not forget your poor
until the end.
Nailed to the cross of your own will, O Merciful One, / and laid in the
tomb as dead, O Giver of Life, / by your death you have wiped out the
power of death, / for the gatekeepers of hades trembled before you. / With
your-self, you have raised up the dead from the ages, / O only Friend of
Glory; both now. Theotokion.
All of us who, yearning, seek refuge in your goodness, / know you to be
the Mother of God, / who after bearing child remained truly Virgin. /
Indeed, we sinners have in you an intercessor, / and in temptation we have
you as our salvation, / who alone are without blemish.
And another set from Monday, Tone 1:
After the second Reading from the Psalter, other Kathisma Hymns [of
[To the melody:] The soldiers standing guard.
In your open arms receive me, O my Father; I have wasted my life like the
prodigal. But I gaze, O my Savior, on the inexhaustible wealth of your
great mercy. Despise not my heart, though I have utterly wasted it. O
Lord, to you I cry, pleading for mercy: Father, I have sinned against
heaven and before you.
V. O Lord, do not rebuke me in your anger, or chasten me in your wrath.
Fearsome is your judgment seat, and your judgment is just; but my works
are very evil. Come, O merciful Lord, before it is too late: save me and
deliver me from punishment. Redeem me, O Master, from the condemnation of
the goats, and count me worthy to stand at your right hand, O Judge most
Glory; both now. Theotokion.
O pure Virgin, pilot my wretched soul and have pity on me, for I perish,
sinking into the deep water under a multitude of offenses; and in the
dread hour of death, set me free from the fearsome sentence of the
However, it is not at all correct to say that the kathisma hymns are used
only in private recitation and not in public liturgy. There is nothing in
our books which is intended for private recitation only. What has happened
is that, in Russian parish usage, the singing of the kathisma hymns (which
by the way are found only at matins, not after the psalter at vespers) has
dropped out in most places along with the recitation of the psalms
themselves; but russians tend to do at least a good-sized chunk of the
canon (and i believe that some sing the kathisma hymn that's appointed for
after the 3rd ode of the canon as well). The greeks don't recite the
psalter and don't sing the canon at all, except for the seasonal
katavasiai (the concluding verse of each ode), but they do sing the
kathisma hymns. However, in monasteries, they do everything just as
appointed in the books.
The first hymn on monday ("In your open arms") above, by the way, happens
to be the one that is sung when a novice is brought forth to be tonsured
as a monk. The Znamenny melody i'm familiar with is quite beautiful.
i'm sure all of this is quite opaque to our western friends.
regards from snowy salt lake city,