Tuesday 25 April 2006

Another correspondent has posted Comments about Luc Arbogast, it is remarkable how much interest this fine performer has generated on the web. Lets hope that that translates into people buying his record (more details here).

A couple of friends braved the early morning start last week and attended the University of Oxford's service which uses the 1670 Book of Common Prayer in Latin. During the Elizabethan period Oxford, Cambridge, Eton and Winchester were licensed to use a Latin version of the prayerbook on the basis that their inhabitants would know enough Latin to follow the service. Oxford continues this tradition with one service per term. My friends, one Anglican and one Catholic, found the service fascinating. Though another acquaintaince did comment that he found the idea of the service a little disturbing as Cranmer had fought against the use of Latin. I suppose the issue comes down to one of comprehensibility.

At the BCP service (in English) which we attended at Hampton Court (in March) I was struck by the wonderfully musicality of the administering of communion, the 3 priests recited the rather long rubric in a sort of rhythmical canon that was entrancing and hypnotic. I'd love to be able to reproduce the effect in a piece of music, but feel it would be difficult to get the exact combination of spontaneity and formal construction that seems to have happened naturally with all the priests falling into reciting the text in the same rhythm but at different times.

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