Chant, Ecclesiastical

Chant, Ecclesiastical The following are additional particulars:

"Singing is mentioned in the apostolical times (Ac 16:25; 1Co 14:26), just as our Lord and his disciples sang a 'hymn,' that is, certain psalms; but what the music was is unknown. The church song was probably founded on Greek music; and antiphonal singing, alluded to by Pliny, took its origin at Antioch, and was adopted by St. Basil at Neo-

Caesarea, in Egypt, Palestine, and Arabia. St. Ambrose introduced it into the West at Milan, employing the use of the East in psalms and hymns, which were responsively sung in the night hours during the Arian persecution by the empress Justina to relieve the weariness of watching. Previously, in many times and in many churches, single voices chanted while the congregation merely joined in at the end, and meditated in silence. The people now joined zealously in the chanting, until at length their extreme vociferation necessitated the institution of a distinct order of singers or choristers by the councils of Laodicea and Carthage, and at length, despite popular opposition, in the West. Milan became the school of music for western Europe, and the title of the old melody for the Te Deum, the Ambrosian Chant, preserves the name of its originator, although Gregory's name, as, that of the later reformer, is now mole commonly associated with it. In the East, Chrysostom, with melody and sweet harmony at night, the choral processions accompanied by tapers which were carried in cruciform stands, endeavored to outvie the attractive hymnody of the Arians. Athanasius, at Alexandria, caused the reader to intone the Psalms with so slight an inflection of the voice that it was more like singing than reading, and Augustine contrasts it with the Arlee table modulation used at Milan. Jerome complained of theatrical modulations in singing. Pope Gelasius, in 494, condemned the abuse, and in the 6th century Pope Gregory introduced the plain chant, a grave and natural tone which repressed the caprice of the singers and reduced them to uniformity. In 705 Charlemagne enforced its observance throughout the Western Church. The Gregorian school at Rome was imitated by those of Lyons in France, and of Africa, mentioned by Gregory of Tours: St. Patrick in Ireland, Benedict and Theodore at Metz and Soissons, Augustine and Theodore at Canterbury, Precentor John of Rome at Wearmouth, James the Deacon at York, Eddi in Northumbria, cir. 668, Putta at Rochester, and Mabran at Hexham, were the founders of the ecclesiastical chant in Great Britain. The councils of Cloveshoe and Trent, St. Bernard and John of Salisbury, in the reign of Henry, reprobated a florid style in church, for as early as the 11th century Thurstan of Caen, abbot of Glastonbury, endeavored to introduce more lean more pleasing melody than the Gregorian tones. Trumpets, cornets, pipes, and fiddles in 1512 are mentioned in English churches by Erasmus; virginals, violins, harps, lutes, fiddles, recorders, flutes, drones, trumpets, waits, and shawms by Bale; bagpipes, lutes, harps, and fiddles by Whitgift. In 1635, lyres and harps were used at Hereford, and two sackbuts and two cornets at Canterbury;

and at the Chapel Royal, Lincoln, Westminster, Durham, and Exeter orchestral music accompanied the chant after the Restoration. Country churches but recently lost such accessories. The early Anglican single chant was founded upon the plain chant, and the double chant occurs first in Dean Aldrich's MSS. Several of the Roman school rose to the pontificate, as Gregory II, Stephen III, and Paul I, on the Continent; and in England many of the precentors were raised to the episcopate or an abbacy, and were usually recommended for their office by their learning as well as for their musical skill, like Eadmer and John of Thanet at Canterbury, Simeon of Durham, Somerset of Malmesbury, and Walsingham of St. Alban's. Monks in their monasteries followed the example of the clergy in their churches, and Lerins became the school of southern France. Some conventual rules, such as those of Hilarius, Macarius, and Serapion, allowed only the abbots to chant. Women joined in the chant, as appears from Gregory of Nazianzum, and Isidore of Damietta. The Capitulars permitted them to sing the rite antiphonally with men at funerals: and the Councils of Chalons and Aix-la-Chapelle, in the 19th century, desired nuns to sing the offices.

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