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In general, the Te Deum may be said to follow the same rubric as the Gloria in excelsis at Mass. In addition to its use in the Divine Office, the Te Deum is occasionally sung in thanksgiving to God for some special blessing eg.

When sung thus immediately before or after Mass, the celebrant, who intones the hymn, may wear the vestments appropriate in colour to the day, unless these should happen to be black. Otherwise, while the rubrics prescribe no special colour, violet is forbidden in processions of thanksgiving pro gratiarum actione , green is inappropriate for such solemn occasions, red though permissible would not suggest itself, unless some such feast as Pentecost, for example, should call for it. White, therefore, or gold, which is considered its equivalent, is thus left as the most suitable colour.

CHAPTER XI - THE TE DEUM

The choir and congregation sing the hymn standing, even when the Blessed Sacrament is exposed, but kneel during the verse "Te ergo quaesumus The official and typical melody is now given in the Vatican Gradual in the Appendix pro gratiarum actione in two forms, the tonus solemnis in which every verse begins with preparatory or intoning notes and juxta morem romanum in which the verse begins ex abrupto. Pothier notes a strong affinity between the melodies of the "Te Deum laudamus," "te dominum confitemur" and those of the Preface, "Per omnia Sursum corda. While the chant melody has been frequently used as a canto fermo for polyphonic Masses, the polyphonic settings are few compared with many hymns of less prominence.

Italian composers of the seventeenth century made settings for several choirs with organ and orchestra. Cherubini's manuscript setting is lost. The first is directed toward the Father and ends with a Trinitarian doxology. It could be a rare survivor of the hymns that were popular before the Council of Nicaea in There are probable references to this hymn in the writings of St.

Cyprian of Carthage and in the Passion of St. Perpetua, which would make its composition earlier than the year The second part, entirely Christological, is evidently later and reflects the controversies surrounding the fourth-century Arian heresy.

Three Verses From the Te Deum scored for Organ Solo

It is also the more-perfect composition faithfully respecting the rules of Latin rhetoric. The third section is formed from a series of verses from the Psalms. It is possible that these were originally versicles added as a litany at the end of the hymn. Something similar happens today when we add the versicle "You gave them bread from heaven …" after the Tantum Ergo.


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Eventually this litany also became part of the hymn itself. There are many theories regarding the author, especially with respect to who composed the second part and added it to the older first part.

Weelkes: Te Deum laudamus ÔÇô fourth service

The most likely candidate is Nicetas circa , bishop of Remesiana, now Bela Palanka in present-day Serbia. This zealous missionary bishop's poetical talent was acknowledged by contemporaries such as St. Jerome and St.

Paulinus of Nola, as well as Gennadius writing about 75 years later. Nicetas' authorship is attested by about 10 manuscripts, the earliest from the 10th century and mostly of Irish origin. It is likely that Ireland's isolation could have kept alive an older attribution, whereas in continental Europe the hymn was attributed to more famous names such as St. Hilary and St. Berlioz considered the finale of his own setting for two choirs, orchestra, and organ "undoubtedly his finest work. The Latin text has been translated into English and has received many settings in that form.

Handel's "Utrecht" and "Dettingen" Te Deums are famous.

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Perhaps the most satisfactory of the recent setting of the Te Deum for use in Church is that of Edgar Tinel, written to celebrate the seventy-fifth anniversary of Belgian independence It is composed for six voice mixed choir, orchestra, and organ. There are about twenty-five metrical translations into English, including the sonorous version of Dryden, "Thee, Sovereign God, our grateful accents praise," and that of the Rev. Clarence A. There are also six versions into English based on Luther's free rendering into German.

There are many German versions, of which the "Grosser Gott, wir loben dich" is commonly used in Catholic churches. Probably the most recent Catholic translation is that found in the new edition London of Provost Husenbeth's Missal for the Use of the Laity , "We praise thee, God: we glorify thee, Lord. Remy Lafort, S. Musical Musings: Prayers and Liturgical Texts.