Praesepe
Music (1952) by Heitor Villa Lobos
Poem ‘Beata Virgine’ (1563) by Padre Jose de Anchieta

Sed iuvat interia tanti primordia partus,
Ah…Nascentisque urbem volvere mente Dei;
Quae domus excepit Dominum, quae regia Christum,
Quae dedit infanti culcita blanda torum,
Quae comites sacrae famulaeve fuere parenti,
Qui puero cantus, qui conuere modi:
Nascitur in Bethleem, veteris sub culmine
Nascentem nudum nuda receptat humus.
Fit Praesepe torus; hinc bos, hinc tardus asellus,
Hinc tacitus pueri pendet in ora senex.
Jubilat alma parens, infantulus ore tenello
Vagit, inauditis personat aethra modis.

But it is profitable to turn over in our minds the hidden origins
of this great birth, the town in which God was born;
what home received the Lord, what kingdom welcomed the Christ,
What soft pillows formed a bed for the baby,
Who were the companions and servants for his holy mother,
what songs there were for the child, what music played:
in Bethlehem he is born, under an old man’s roof
the bare earth cradles the naked baby.
The manger becomes his bed; here the ox, here the ass,
here the old man gazes in silence on the child’s features.
The loving mother rejoices, the infant from his tender mouth
utters cries, the air resounds with unheard music.

Text and translation are from the liner notes to the Corydon Singers/Matthew Best Villa Lobos sacred music CD on the Hyperion label (CDA6638, 1992/93.) Used with permission of Hyperion Records.

Buy the CD from Amazon.com– buy the score of Praesepe from Cantus Quercus Press

Composition from Heitor Villa-Lobos and a high quality performance by Ansy Boothrody and the Corydon Singers

Verleih uns Frieden, Op.Posth. – Felix Mendelssohn-Bartholdy (1809 – 1847)
Corydon Singers, English Chamber Orchestra, John Scott & Matthew Best.

Verleih uns Frieden gnädiglich,
Herr Gott, zu unsern Zeiten;
Es ist doch ja kein andrer nicht,
Der für uns könnte streiten,
Denn du, unsr Gott, alleine.

Text by Martin Luther (1483-1546).

Very straightforward text; all that’s needed is a ploddingly literal translation. (The “translation” in ESM is pretty fanciful.)

Verleih uns Frieden gnädiglich, / Herr Gott, zu unserm Zeiten!
Give us peace mercifully, Lord God, / throughout our times!
Es ist doch ja kein Andrer nicht, / das für uns könnte streiten,
For there is indeed no other / that for us can fight,
Denn du, unser Gott, alleine.
but you, our God, alone.

If you are familiar with the Anglican liturgy, or even with Chamberlain’s words on returning from Munich, the above may seem familiar. Luther and the Anglicans both took the words from a mediaeval Latin hymn. Chamberlain took them from the Anglican liturgy. (Credit)

Where charity and love are, there God is.
The love of Christ has gathered us into one flock.
Let us exult, and in Him be joyful.
Let us fear and let us love the living God.
And from a sincere heart let us love each other.

Where charity and love are, there God is.
Amen

Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.
Congregavit nos in unum Christi amor.
Exultemus, et in ipso iucundemur.
Temeamus, et amemus Deum vivum.
Et ex corde diligamus nos sincero.

Ubi caritas et amor, Deus ibi est.
Amen.

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