Thursday, September 08, 2022

Music for the Nativity of the Virgin Mary

On the feast of the Nativity of the Virgin Mary, the Magnificat antiphon at Second Vespers is borrowed from the Byzantine Rite, in which it is sung as the troparion at the Divine Liturgy. Here is the Greek original, the Latin translation used in the Roman Divine Office, and an English translation.

Ἡ γέννησίς σου Θεοτόκε, χαρὰν ἐμήνυσε πάσῃ τῇ οἰκουμένῃ· ἐκ σοῦ γὰρ ἀνέτειλεν ὁ Ἥλιος τῆς δικαιοσύνης, Χριστὸς ὁ Θεὸς ἡμῶν· καὶ λύσας τὴν κατάραν, ἔδωκε τὴν εὐλογίαν, καὶ καταργήσας τὸν θάνατον, ἐδωρήσατο ἡμῖν ζωὴν τὴν αἰώνιον.

Nativitas tua, Dei Genitrix Virgo, gaudium annuntiavit universo mundo: ex te enim ortus est sol justitiae, Christus Deus noster: qui solvens maledictionem, dedit benedictionem, et confundens mortem, donavit nobis vitam sempiternam.
Thy birth, O Virgin Mother of God, proclaimed joy to the whole world; for from Thee arose the sun of righteousness, Christ our God; who released us from the curse, and gave us blessing; and confounding death, He granted us eternal life.

Here is a polyphonic setting of the Latin version by Palestrina.

And another by the Polish composer Bartłomiej Pękiel (died ca. 1670).
The Greek version of the tropar:
And the Church Slavonic:

Рождество Твое Богородице Дево, радость возвѣсти всей вселеннѣй: изъ Тебѣ бо возсїѧ Солнце правды Христосъ Богъ нашъ, и разрушивъ клѧтву, даде благословенїе, и оупразднивъ смерть, дарова намъ животъ вѣчный.

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