Wednesday, February 14, 2024

The Lenten Tract Domine, Non Secundum

Dómine, non secundum peccáta nostra, quae fécimus nos: neque secundum iniquitátes nostras retríbuas nobis. V. Dómine, ne memíneris iniquitátum nostrárum antiquárum: cito antícipent nos misericordiae tuae, quia páuperes facti sumus nimis. Hic genuflectitur V. Adjuva nos, Deus, salutáris noster: et propter gloriam nóminis tui, Dómine, líbera nos: et propitius esto peccátis nostris, propter nomen tuum.

Tract O Lord, not according to the sins which we have committed, nor according to our iniquities do Thou repay us. V. Lord, remember not our former iniquities: let thy mercies speedily come before us, for we are become exceeding poor. All kneel. V. Help us, O God, our Savior: and for the glory of Thy name, O Lord, deliver us: and be merciful to our sins for Thy name’s sake.

Beginning on Ash Wednesday, this beautiful tract is traditionally sung every Monday, Wednesday and Friday of Lent until Holy Monday, with the exception of Ember Wednesday. Several composers have put their hand to setting in polyphony, such as the great Josquin des Prez (1450/5 ca. - 1521).
Another version, by his Spanish contemporary Juan de Anchieta (1462-1523).
The next generation is represented by a Frenchman named Jacquet Colebault (), who spent most of his life as master of the chapel in the cathedral of the northern Italian city of Mantua. (He is usually called Jacquet de Mantua, or ‘de Mantoue’ in French.) His very impressive version is nearly 10 minutes long.
Another version, by Jacques Arcadelt (1507-68), who was born in Namur in the County of Flanders (now part of Belgium), but also worked much of his life in Italy, in both Florence and in the Sistine Chapel in Rome, and ended his days in the French royal chapel.

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