Sunday, August 12, 2012

More Hymn Tune Help

In response to my discussion of hymn tunes and the meaning of "Long Meter" two posts back, and helpful reader John Orzechowski sent me a link to this helpful Franciscan website  which explains even more of those puzzling little notations that are meant to indicate what melody may be used for the breviary hymns.

So thrilled am I to have this resource that I've put a tab (Hymn Tune Help) at the top of this page for myself, and anyone else who wants to master arcane secrets heretofore unknown to all but choir directors!

John also found a site with links to MP3 audio files of traditional Latin breviary hymns . Between this and the MP3 resources from the Mundelein Psalter website, Latin fans have everything they need to add some ancient flare to their daily liturgical hours.


  1. The Hymn Tune Help tab is great! I wonder if any of the apps for the breviary have the hymn music included?

    In Magnificat many hymns suggest using the tune of "The Church's One Foundation". I don't like that tune with other lyrics, so I sing the other words to the tune of Johnny Cash's "Folsom Prison Blues". Hey, it works!

    1. I just went on Youtube to listen to Folsom for the first in a long time. I then tried singing the lyrics of The Church's One Foundation to the Folsom melody.
      Fun, but I don't think I'll be using that one for prayer.
      I'm guessing we could find all sorts of secular folk and pop tunes that are also in the various meters listed in Hymn Tune Help. In fact, a number of our hymn tunes come originally from English, German, and Irish folk songs. But I think these work for us because we don't have the secular associations of the original lyrics that the tune went with. husband enjoys telling the story about hearing a choir of French Canadian nuns singing a lovely lyric about the Sacred Heart, but he recognized the tune as Way Down Upon the Swannee River! And so, major psychological dissonance for him.
      But if the Folsom Prison Blues plus hymn lyrics elevates your mind and heart to God, well, then there's the beauty of private recitation of the hours.