The Liturgy: Sequence, Trope, and Drama
The origin and development of the sequence have for long been the subject of discussion among liturgical scholars and musicologists, and a great deal remains obscure. The chant Alleluia. like the Kyrie eleison. was a vestige of the Greek rite which had remained in the Latin rite of Rome, as Gregory the Great indicates in the letter cited above (p. 41). It had become the custom, especially in joyous seasons such as Easter, to prolong the final a of the Alleluia that commonly followed the antiphon and versicle (the gradual) between the Epistle and Gospel. This produced an additional melody which was called a jubilus or jubilatio. Sometimes the jubilus itself was divided into separate musical phrases called sequences (sequentiae). A further step was the addition of words to fit the melody, thus forming a new liturgical text.
KeywordsThirteenth Century Biblical Study Latin Text Roman Emperor Sweet Odor
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