CHD Hore Beate Marie Virginis

Prime - Ad Primam

Prime, Terce, Sext and None are called the "small hours" because they are short, - only consisting of a hymn, three psalms, one antiphon, the chapter (with responsory) and the final prayer(s). The hymn is in most cases the same at all the small hours, which can be confirmed at Terce. It is in reality a sequence of 3-4 stanzas, and when Memento salutis takes over in the late 15th century is it in many cases because Veni creator has been left out. Most hymns are concluded with Maria mater gratie.
All the small hours has only one antiphon, the incipit before the first of the 3 psalms, and the full text after the last psalm, before the chapter (there is no canticle at the small hours). Only the antiphon, the sequence of the psalms, and the chapter is of real importance for the determination of the use. The psalms are particular important at Prime. To put it very simplified: A French prototype had the psalms 1+2+3 or (later?) 1,2,5 - a Germanic prototype the first three gradual psalms 119, 120, 121. All the other texts can be subject to changes (either over a longer period of time, or in small local communities).

Appropiate notes from Prime:
Hymn: incipit
Psalms: Group: [1,2,3] [1,2,3,116] [1,2,5] [1,2,5,116] [1,2,6] [116,119,120] [119,120,121] [53,116,117] [53,84,116] [53,118] [118]
Antiphon: incipit
Chapter: incipit; (Optional: Small Responsory-Verses: incipits)
Prayer: incipit (optional)

Deus in adiutorium meum intende etc.- Psalmi
    Psalmi graduales: (The Netherlands, Germany) GKS 3545 (+all Hours in Dutch)
  • Ps. 119 Ad dominum cum tribularer
  • Ps. 120 Levavi oculos
  • Ps. 121 Letatus sum
    (France, Flanders) Thott 535, 537, 543:
  • Ps.1 Beatus vir qui non abiit
  • Ps.2 Quare fremuerunt gentes
  • Ps.5 Verba mea auribus
    Thott 545, 548 (Coutances+):
  • Ps.1, Ps.2,
  • Ps.3 Domine quid multiplicati
  • Ps.116 Laudate Dominum
    Other configurations:
  • Ps.53 Deus in nomine tuo
  • Ps.116 Laudate Dominum omnes gentes
  • Ps.117 Confitemini Domino
    (Use of Rome)
  • Ps.53 Deus in nomine tuo
  • Ps.84 Benedixisti Domine
  • Ps.116 Laudate Dominum omnes gentes
    Monastic uses:
  • Ps.118 Beati immaculati (First part, continued at the following hours)
Antihona Assumpta est [etc., same as above] Prayers:
There are often three prayers at the end of each hour. Only one of them is the collect to the hours, the two others are normally first a prayer to the Holy Spirit, and last a prayer to All Saints. See the incipts in the Tutorial: Reference Tools: Prayers to the Hours of the Virgin.
[Oratio: Prayer to the Holy Spirit]
[Oratio: Prayer to All Saints]

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© Erik Drigsdahl 1997