Thursday, February 27, 2014

Inclina aurem cordis tui - book bleg

So, my friend and I are enjoying our monastic karaoke experiments, but we've got a problem.

The kindly nuns at Rosano gave me a nice old copy of the Monastic Diurnal they weren't using, and it just happens to be exactly the book the monks at Norcia recommend for use by oblates. It's the 1962 edition translated by the monks at Collegeville (the translations into English are terrible. I mean REALLY bad, occasionally entirely changing the sense of the original Latin... but it just serves to keep us on our toes.)

Br. Anthony, the oblate director at Norcia, told us that it does pretty much exactly reproduce their own Divine Office.

Trouble is, it's a little awkward only having one book between the two of us, and I've checked around and the things are rare as hen's teeth, and considerably more expensive. Yowch! I thought that Baronius does them, but it turns out not. They do a three-volume M. Breviary, but not the single-volume Diurnal.

I am therefore making a little book-bleg.

If anyone has a spare Farnborough Monastic Diurnal lying around they're not using, we can guarantee it will be given a good home and be put to good use.

Drop a note if so...

(btw: I'm getting more and more confused about books. I just found the St. Michael's Abbey Press shop, where they purport to sell a thing called the Monastic Diurnal, that has the right hours in L. and Eng. But from the pic, it looks about twice the size of mine. Any of you liturgy nerds out there know why this would be? Is there maybe music in that one? Any other differences?)



Anonymous said...


I have a close friend up on LI who might have an extra copy of the Farnborough. I emphasize "might." I'll be glad to ask him before next week. I promise to let you know on way or another. Probably by Monday.

As to the Diurnal you're looking at on the Abbey web site, that book is the same as your "Farnborough." Same size and everything. Just an optical illusion making it appear bigger. Just the cut of the page corner might be different. Mine are square, while the one in photos are rounded, but it's otherwise identical.

The Lancelot Andrewes edition of the MD is the only edition I'm aware of with music.
It's not quite the same as the Farnborough MD though, as the latter includes 1961 tinkerings and the Andrewes edition was translated by Anglicans. It also uses the Coverdale Psalm translation, like the Ordinariate.

The best authority on all this stuff though is Dom Benedict Andersen at Silverstream. He's the supreme geek of all Divine Office geeks. Go to FB and message him. He'll be glad to answer any and all questions you might have, with even more annoying detail that me.

Hilary Jane Margaret White said...


James said...


The difference you see in the physical size of the books is due to the materials used in the 2011 reprint. As far as I can tell, it is a faithful reprint of the '62 version of which you have a copy, but the 2011 version is printed on thicker paper. It does NOT contain any music.

The Lancelot Andrewes version is an Orthodox Western Rite printing of the pre-1955 English language Monastic Diurnal. While the language is pretty enough, it will not assist you in your karaoke endeavours.

I believe the book that would be most helpful when singing the Monastic Office is the Monastic Antiphonal. In December of 2013, Corpus Christi Watershed provided a scanned copy here:

The original is from 1934, but Paraclete Press (Solesmes) provided a faithful reprint in 2005. I acquired my copy from the American book store Borders many years ago. I still see several copies on Amazon and the like.

As mentioned above, Dom Benedict is an excellent resource.

Jon said...

Long Island.

Hilary Jane Margaret White said...

The Lancelot Andrewes version is entirely in English, I think. We need Latin, and the translations aren't terribly important.

Though I do admire their liturgical books, as a rule.