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14

RULES FOR CHANTING.

A few simple explanations may be acceptable to some, and will be excused by those who do not wish to chant the Scripture passages here given, or who are themselves much better able to explain the subject.

Every chant in music consists, or is presumed to consist, of seven bars, or ten notes, divided into two parts or clauses.

The first part contains three bars, or four notes, and may be called the swell, or rise, though its notes by no means always go upwards. The second part contains four bars, or six notes, and may be called the fall, though its notes do not always descend. Each part begins with one long note (of a whole bar), which is the essential principle of chanting ; followed by a fixed number of shorter notes, arranged in threes and fives. Thus the swell or rise is one long note followed by three short: the fall is one long note followed by five short. In each part the closing note (though short in comparison of the one long opening note), is longer than its short companions which go before it. It is sometimes allowable, for the sake of ornament, to make the short notes exceed three or five; and sometimes, for the sake of convenience, to substitute one longer instead of two short notes : but

RULES FOR CHANTING.

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the principle of one long commencing (called the reciting or chanting) note must be kept.

Some difficulty occurs in sentences which have fewer than ten syllables, or wbere the sense will not allow of a break, so as to give four syllables to the rise, or six to the fall; or where important notes would fall to unimportant syllables. It is the shortness of the sentences which makes the Te Deum hymn difficult to chant. But sentences with more than ten syllables are easily managed, by giving the extra number to the one long opening note, whether in the rise or fall, or both, as the sense may require the break to be fixed. The most convenient sentences are those which will give three or four syllables to the commencing long note. It is usual, if possible, to give only a single syllable to each of the short notes. But for the sake of sense, the general stress of the chant should fall on important words; and the first short note, whether in the rise or the fall, should be given to a syllable, or should include a syllable, which requires a stress in ordinary speaking. It often happens, therefore, that a long word, or even two short ones together, are given to one of the short notes: and, on the other hand, sometimes an important single syllable is made to answer 16

RULES FOR CHANTING.

for two of the short notes ; the object being to prevent a stress being thrown in some part of the chant upon trifling words, such as of, the, &c.

The single or Gregorian is the natural chant; the double chant is merely two single chants wbich harmonize and follow. Any sentence of ten or more syllables, which allows a break that will give four syllables to the first clause and six to the last, will do for a single chant. The verses in the Book of Psalms are of this kind, and the Prayer-book translation always marks the break by a colon (:). Any two such verses or sentences following each other will answer for a double chant. There are pieces of chanting music in which each syllable has its own note or notes fixed for it; but these are not composed on the same principles, nor will they do for any other sentences than such as happen to have the proper number of syllables required for the particular piece of music. Metrical poetry, if the lines contain the proper number of syllables, can be chanted, but except for Doxologies, or for pieces unsuited for hymn tunes, it seems unadvisable. Nos. 308, 317, 333, are of this kind.

The passages of Scripture in this volume

RULES FOR CHANTING.

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may all be chanted to single chants, and the greater part of them to double chants. The principle on which they are printed is either to put a single sentence into a single line, or to divide it into two lines at the natural break of the sense. Each line, therefore, may be chanted, according to its length, as if it were a whole or a half verse of one of the Psalms : if as a half verse, then two lines will make up the chant. The following few have been pointed, as specimens of single chants:Nos. 131,217, 284, 337, 338. As specimens of double chants, Nos. 10, 72, 92, 94, 160, 184, 229, 298. In some the short notes are in italics, in others not, that they may be used as progressive lessons where chanting is taught. In any of those pointed, when the dot occurs in the middle of a word of one syllable, it is not intended that it

should be chanted as two syllables; but 2, that two notes, or the whole bar, should be

given to that one syllable, with as little break as possible.

MORNING AND EVENING.

1.

Morning Hymn. (L. M.) AWAKE, my soul, and with the sun Thy daily stage of duty run; Shake off dull sloth, and early rise, To pay thy morning sacrifice. Thy precious time misspent redeem; Each present day the last esteem ; Improve thy talents with due care, For the great day thyself prepare. Wake and lift up thyself, my heart, And with the angels bear thy part; Who all night long unwearied sing, High glory to th' Eternal King. All praise to Thee who safe hast kept, And hast refresh'd us while we slept : Grant, Lord, when we from death shall

wake, We may of endless life partake.

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