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Jenner H. Mozarabic Rite - 3. The liturgical year.

Henry Jenner

Mozarabic Rite - The liturgical year

In the present printed books, the offices are divided after the Roman fashion into "Officium Canonicum per Annum" (answering to the "Officium de Tempore") and the "Sanctorale". As in the Roman books, the fixed feasts from Christmas Eve to the Epiphany (except that the Breviary puts two in the "Sanctorale") come in the "de Tempore", and the Missal, but not the Breviary, includes also St. Clement (23 Nov.), St. Saturninus (29 Nov.), St. Andrew (30 Nov.), St. Eulalia (10 Dec.), the Annunciation (18 Dec.), and St. Thomas the Apostle (21 Dec.) in the same part, though several intermediate feasts come in the "Sanctorale". In the manuscripts (e.g. in the two Libri Orationum, Add. manuscript 30852 and the Verona manuscript printed in Bianchini's edition of Thomasius, which has a very complete sequence of the year) the two parts are not distinguished, and the whole set of days, fixed and moveable, are given in one series. The "Officium per Annum" of the modern books begins with the first Sunday of Advent, as in the Roman, but the "Sanctorale" begins with Sts. Julianus and Basilissa (7 Jan.), and ends in the Missal with St. Eugenia (12 Dec.), while the Breviary includes in it also Sts. Justus and Abundus (16 Dec.), the Annunciation (18 Dec.), St. Thomas the Apostle (21 Dec.), the Translation of St. James the Great (30 Dec.), and St. Columba (31 Dec.). There are six Sundays of Advent, as there were in the Gallican and are now in the Ambrosian. The key day for Advent Sunday is therefore St. Martin (11 Nov.), as it is in the Ambrosian Rite, and, as according to the Council of Macon (581), it was in the Gallican, but Advent Sunday is that next after, not, as in the Roman, that nearest to the key day. Thus Advent Sunday may be on any day from 12 to 18 Nov.

The four feasts which follow Christmas Day are now the same as in the Roman Rite, including St. Thomas of Canterbury. The next day is the Translation of St. James the Great and the last day of the year is St. Columba, Virgin and Martyr, though the Calendar of the Missal includes also St. Sylvester. But, according to the Calendar of the Breviary, the twenty-ninth is "Jacobi Fratris Domini", and there is an office for his feast, as well as a direction to use the Common of one pontiff martyr for St. Thomas of Canterbury, and for the thirtieth there is an Office for the feast (translation) "Sancti Jacobi Fratris Sancti Joannis". In the Missal St. James the Less is not mentioned here in the Calendar, but the Mass of the twenty-ninth is his; there is nothing of St. Thomas, and the table of contents of the Ximenes Missal refers to the Mass of that day as "in translatione Jacobi Zebedei", which it certainly is not. There is no Mass for the Translation of St. James the Great in the printed book, though that for his martyrdom (25 July) is given as the specimen full Mass "Omnium Offerentium" instead of the Ordinary; but in Add. manuscript 30844 (tenth century) there is one which follows the Mass of St. James the Less, though by mistake it is called by the name of St. John the Evangelist. In that manuscript the days after Christmas are St. Stephen, St. Eugenia, St. James (Frater Domini), St. James the Great, St. Columba, leaving one day unoccupied. In Add. 30850, a tenth-century Liber Orationum, "De Alisione Infantum", which according to the present calendars would occupy that day (28 or 29 December), is given next after the Epiphany. In the Hymnal printed with Lorenzana's Breviary, the vacant day is occupied by St. John the Evangelist, and the rest are as in Add. 30844. The Circumcision is on 1 January. If a Sunday occurs between that day and the Epiphany it is "Dominica ante Epiphaniam". The Mass is that of the Kalends of January (i.e. New Year's Day). The three days before the Epiphany are "Jejunia in Kalendis Januarii", said to have been set apart as fasts in contemptum superstitionis gentilium, just as fasts were forbidden during Advent ob impietatem Priscillianistarum, who, denying the Incarnation, fasted at that season. There are analogous instances of this sort of fasting (or not fasting) ad lites et contentiones in the Byzantine practice of not fasting on certain days before Lent begins because of the Artziburion fast of the Armenians and the Ninevite Fast of the Jacobites and Nestorians. After the Epiphany (called also "Apparitio Domini') to Lent nine Sundays are given, the last being "Dominica ante Cineres", the rest being numbered one to eight "Post octavam Epiphani?".

Ash Wednesday (Feria quarta in capite jejunii) is an evident late Roman borrowing, rather clumsily inserted, for the Sunday that follows, though called "Dominica prima Quadragesim?", has a Mass and an Office in which Alleluia is used, and at Vespers there is the well- known "Endless Alleluia" (Alleluia Perenne) hymn. In the Hymnal this hymn is entitled "Ymnus in carnes tollendas". The true liturgical Lent does not begin till the Monday after Ash Wednesday. The old Mass Lections of the Sundays in Lent have been disturbed in their order in consequence of the Gospel for the first Sunday (Christ in the Wilderness) being given to Ash Wednesday, and that of the second (The Samaritan Woman) is given to the first, that of the third (The Healing of the Blind Man) to the second, while, so as to keep the Gospel "Jam autem die festo mediante" for Mid-Lent Sunday, that of the fifth (the Raising of Lazarus) is given to the third and a new Gospel (The Good Shepherd) is given to the fifth. The sixth is Palm Sunday, called only "Dominica in Ramis Palmarum", but including, between the Prophecy and Epistle at Mass, the Traditio Symboli in the form of a "Sermo ad Populum". On Maundy Thursday there occurs the same process of removing one of two consecrated Hosts to the Altar of Repose (called monumentum and Sepulchrum) as in the Roman Rite, and there is a service ad lavandos pedes, in both cases with different words. The Washing of the Feet takes place "clausis ostiis et laicis omnibus foris projectis", and the feet of certain priests are washed by the bishop and dried by the archipresbyter. "Postea ad cenam conveniunt." On Good Friday there is a penitential service "ad Nonam pro indulgentia", which consists largely of preces interspersed with cries of various cases of the word "indulgentia" many times repeated, and contains passages similar to the Improperia of the Roman Rite, as well as lections, including the Passion according to St. Matthew. It is the remains of the solemn reconciliation of penitents, and is mentioned by the fourth Council of Toledo (633), canon vi. This is followed by the Adoration of the Cross and the Procession and Communion of the Presanctified. The Easter Eve services are similar to those of the Roman Rite: the New Fire, the Easter Candle, the Prophecies (of which there are only ten, seven of which agree more or less with those of the Roman Rite, though not all in the same order), and the Blessing of the Font. But the words used throughout are very different. Even the "Exultet" is not used, but another hymn of similar import. Before the "Benedictio Cerei" there is a "Benedictio Lucern?", and the Litany is used for the two processions, to the Font before the Blessing and back again after it.

From Easter to Pentecost there is no peculiarity except that the numbering of the Sundays includes Easter Day and that the four days before Whit-Sunday are fasts. Formerly (e.g. in the time of St. Isidore) these fasts came after Pentecost, though they answered to rogation or litany days. Leslie conjectures that the alteration was made because of the Whit-Sunday baptisms. There is no Blessing of the Font on the vigil of Pentecost, but there are allusions to baptism in the services of the vigil and the day itself. The following Sunday only commemorates the Holy Trinity in certain of the prayers at Mass (for which there is a direction to use those of Palm Sunday which have allusions to the Trinity, instead of those for the Sunday, which are to be transferred to the following Tuesday), in the title "in die Sanctissime Trinitatis", and in the hymns in the Breviary Office. Otherwise the day, as far as there is anything defininte about it, is treated as the Octave of Pentecost and the allusions are to the Holy Spirit. Corpus Christi is kept on the following Thursday, and the Mass and Office, though naturally enough influenced by the Roman propers, are composed on a purely Mozarabic plan. In the Missal seven Sundays after Pentecost have Masses, as well as the Sunday before the fast of the Kalends of November. In the Breviary the Sundays after Pentecost are only three. There is a direction in the Breviary that if there is no Feast on any Sunday during that season, one of these three offices must be used. Two sets of three-day fasts occur in this season, one before the Feast of St. Cyprian (13 Sept.) and one before that of St. Martin (11 Nov.). They have nothing to do with either St. Cyprian or St. Martin, whose days only serve as key-days to them (cf. Holy Cross and St. Lucy, as key-days to the September and December ember-days). The November fast is called "jejunia Kalendarum Novembrium". They are really days of Litany or Rogation, and are both mentioned by St. Isidore; the September fast is evidently mentioned by the fifth Council of Toledo (can. i), though obviously by a mistake it calls it "dies Iduum Decembrium", and the November one by the Council of Gerona. In the Sanctorale there are of course a large number of Spanish saints who either do not occur at all or receive only cursory mention in the Roman Calendar, but there are also many that are common to the whole Church, and in the modern books a number of feasts, some of which were instituted after the period of the manuscripts, have been added.

There are two modern forms of the Calendar. In that prefixed to the Breviary a rather small number of days are marked, hardly any (as in the Ambrosian Calendar) during the possible Lenten period, but offices of references to the Common are given in a large appendix for a great number of other saints. In that prefixed to the Missal all these days are put in one series, as their Masses are in the body of the book. There are a good many discrepancies in the existing manuscript calendars, and it is not always quite easy to determine the exact day of some of the older feasts, but now most of the days which are common to both have been assimilated to the Roman. The Annunciation is kept twice, on 25 March and on 18 December. The last, called "Annunciatio S. Mari? Virginis de la O", is really the "ExpectatioPartus B. M. V." Its name is referred to a curious custom in the Toledan Use, according to which the whole choir sing a loud and prolonged O at Vespers on that day, to signify, it is said, the eager desire of the saints in Limbo, the Angels in Heaven, and of all the world for the birth of the Saviour. This or the Antiphons known as the "Great O's" may be the cause of the name, which is known outside Spain. The tenth Council of Toledo (656) ordered the Annunciation to be kept on that day, because 25 March came either in the Lenten or Easter period, and thus was unsuitable, and shortly afterwards St. Ildefonsus, with reference to this decree, calls it "Expectatio Puerperii Deipare". In the printed Missal the same Mass is ordered also for 25 March, but no Office is given in the Breviary. (Cf. the Ambrosian custom of keeping the Annunciation on the sixth Sunday of Advent for the same reason.) Sometimes there are other disagreements between the modern Missal and Breviary. Thus, the Decollation of St. John Baptist is given for 29 Aug. (the Roman, and also the Byzantine day) in the Missal, but for 24 Sept. (the old Mozarabic day, as appears from the manuscripts) in the Breviary. In both, 1 May is Sts. Philip and James, and the Mass is the same, mutatis nominibus, as that of Sts. Peter and Paul, while the Office is similar to that of Sts. Simon and Jude. But in the manuscripts St. Philip alone is mentioned, St. James the Less being, as we have seen, already provided with a day in Christmastide, not only in them but also in the printed books. But 1 May is also the feast of St. Torquatus and his companions, the Apostles of Spain, who naturally eclipse the other Apostles. The Sunday before the Nativity of St. John Baptist is kept as "Dominica pro adventu St. Joannis Baptist?". As its position with regard to the general sequence of Sundays is variable, its Mass and Office are given in the Sanctorale. The classification of feasts is very simple. There are Principal Sundays, which are those of Lent and Advent, and of course Easter Day and Whit-Sunday. Feasts are "sex capparum", "quatuor capparum", and "novem lectionum", the last being also called "duarum capparum". The distribution of these titles is occasionally rather arbitrary, and the Missal and Breviary do not always agree. If a feast comes on a Principal Sunday it is transferred to the next day, unless that is a greater feast, when it is put off to the next free day. If two equal feasts fall on the same day (the example given is Sts. Philip and James and St. Torquatus), the office is that of the saint who has a proprietas (proper), unless the other is the Vocatio (patronal feast) of the church, in which case the one with a proper is transferred. If a feast comes on an ordinary Sunday, the Sunday is omitted (quia satis habebit locum per annum) and the feast is kept. During the Octaves which are kept "secundum Regulam Gregorianum", any vacant day is of the Octave, but the Office is not said solemniter except on the Octave day. If a greater feast is followed by a lesser one, the Vespers is of the greater but the last Lauda, with its prayer, is of the lesser. These rules, which do not differ in principle from those of the Roman Rite, are prefixed to the printed Breviary. Their comparative simplicity is probably more apparent than real.

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