29 Mar 2011

Phos Hilaron

I have recently posted my freshly composed versification of the ancient Greek hymn, the Phos Hilaron (Φῶς Ἱλαρόν), which is the most ancient Christian hymn outside the Bible itself, dating back at least to the 3rd century AD, if not earlier. It is an evening hymn most appropriately sung at the beginning of vespers in the Liturgy of the Hours. It is first recorded in the Apostolic Constitutions in the 4th century. St. Basil the Great spoke of it as an ancient hymn already in that same century. For the tune I have taken that for Genevan Psalm 77/86 and somewhat extended it to fit the length of the single stanza. The tune is in the hypodorian mode. I may still come up with my own tune at some point.

No comments: