058.AlleluiaSongOfSweetness

Please turn to number 58 and join with the clarinets in, “Alleluia, Song of Sweetness”.

Number: 58
First Line: Alleluia, Song of Sweetness
Name: TANTUM ERGO (DULCE CARMEN).
Meter: 8 7, 8 7, 8 7.
Tempo: With dignity
Music: Essay on the Church Plain Chant, 1782
Text: Medeival Latin Hymn
Tr. John Mason Neale, 1818-66 a.

This hymn is a bit of a puzzle.

The first component is the name, “TANTUM ERGO”. Tantum Ergo is usually hymn based on a super old text attributed to St. Tomas Aquinas. But the text of this hymn, doesn’t match that hymn.

The second part of the name, “DULCE CARMEN” is a tune attributed to someone named Michael Haydn from a book called, “‘Essay on the Church Plain Chant,” 1782; Melody from Samuel Webbe’s Motetts or Antiphons, 1792’. OK, that makes sense, and the tune of Haydn’s Dulce Carmen does match this Hymn.

FYI: Michael Haydn was an Austrian composer who lived from 14 September 1737 – 10 August 1806. He was the younger brother of the much more famous Joseph Haydn.

The text of the hymn, though, is a bit more confusing. There is an Anglican Hymn called “Alleluia, Song of Sweetness”, but the words don’t match this hymn. However, there is another hymn called “Alleluia, Song of Gladness” whose text DOES (mostly, other than the Sweetness/Gladness swap) match this hymn and which is often set to Michael Haydn’s DULCE CARMEN.

Alleluia, dulce carmen. [Week before Septuagesima.] The earliest form in which this hymn is found is in three manuscripts of the 11th century in the British Museum. From a Durham manuscript of the 11th century, it was published in the Latin Hymns of the Anglo-Saxon Church (Surtees Society), 1851, p. 55. The text is in Daniel, i. No. 263, and with further readings in iv. p. 152; and in the Hymnarium Sarisuriense, 1851, p. 59. [Rev. W. A. Shoults, B.D.]

Translations in common use:—
3. Alleluia! song of sweetness. Voice of joy, eternal lay. By J. M. Neale. It appeared in the first edition Mediaeval Hymns, 1851, p. 130, in 4 stanzas of 6 lines, and was “corrected for the Hymnal Noted.” Mediaeval Hymns, 2nd ed. p. 184), where it was given in its new form, in 1852, No. 46, and again in the 2nd ed. of the Mediaeval Hymns, 1863. This translation equals in popularity that of Chandler, but it is more frequently and extensively altered. Without noticing minor instances, we find the following: “Alleluia, song of sweetness,Voice of joy that cannot die” in Hymns Ancient & Modern, 1861 and 1875, and many others. “Hallelujah! song of gladness, Voice of joy that cannot die” in Thring’s Collection, 1882, &c. Of these altered forms of Neale’s text, that of Hymns Ancient & Modern, is most frequently adopted.

Whew! All that work for a not very complicated hymn.

Clarinet Arrangement: 058-alleluiasongofsweetness

The usual doubling of each part. Twice through. Audacity “Medium Room” Reverb Effect.

Red Service Book and Hymnal
Red Service Book and Hymnal