Sunday, June 15, 2008

Eripe me

Here's an unusual item that has been in the back of my mind (always too occupied with recherche liturgy) the last few weeks when saying the Office: a cento psalm - a gathering together of various psalm verses, treated as a psalm - from the Mozarabic Office of the Dead, at Vespers. The words Eripe me, occurring in some of the Little Hours early in the weekly cycle, reminded me not just of the preces at Prime, where they used to occur, but also of this, the first of the strange invented psalms the Gothic Breviary gives in its Officium Mortuorum (coll. 976-989).

Here is the text, a transcription with annotations, and a translation - note that it is the opening "psalm" of Vespers of the Dead, prefixed only by the antiphon Eripe Domine animas nostras de morte, ut placeamus tibi in lumine viventium ("Deliver, Lord, our souls from death, that we may please Thee in the light of the living"), which is obviously based on eripuisti animam meam de morte,... ut placeam coram Deo in lumine viventium(Ps 55:13):

Text not available

Eripe animam meam ab impio, * frameam tuam ab inimicis manus tuæ. (Ps 16:13b-14a)
Eripe me de manu inimicorum [nostr]orum, * et a persequentibus me. (Ps 30:16b)
Illustra faciem tuam super servum tuum, salvum me fac in misericordia tua: * Domine, non confundar, quoniam invocavi te. (Ps 30:17-18a)
Eripe me de inimicis meis Deus meus: * et ab insurgentibus in me libera me. (Ps 58:2)
Eripe me de operantibus iniquitatem: * et de viris sanguinum salva me. (Ps 58:3)
Eripe me de luto ut non infigar: * libera me ab [h]is qui oderunt me, et de profundis aquarum. (Ps 68:15)
Eripe me, [quia] tu scis improperium meum, * et confusionem meam, et reverentiam meam. (Ps 68:19b-20)
Eripe me de inimicis meis Domine, ad te confugi: * doce me facere voluntatem tuam, quia Deus meus es tu. (Ps 142:9-10a)
Eripe me, et libera me de aquis multis; [et] de manu filiorum alienorum. * Quorum os locutum est vanitatem: et dextera eorum, dextera iniquitatis. (Ps 143:7b-8; 143:11)
Eripe me Domine ab homine malo: * a viro iniquo eripe me. (Ps 139:2)
Eripies me de contradictionibus populi: * constitues me in caput gentium. (Ps 17:44)
Eripiens inopem de manu fortiorum ejus; * egenum et pauperem a diripientibus eum. (Ps 34:10b)
Eripuit me de inimicis meis fortissimis, et ab his qui oderunt me: * quoniam confortati sunt super me. (Ps 17:18)
Gloria et honor Patri et Filio et Spiritui Sancto * in sæcula sæculorum. Amen. (Mozarabic Doxology)

Deliver my soul from the wicked one: * thy sword from the enemies of thy hand.
Deliver me out of the hands of [our] enemies; * and from them that persecute me.
Make thy face to shine upon thy servant; save me in thy mercy. * Let me not be confounded, O Lord, for I have called upon thee.
Deliver me from my enemies, O my God; * and defend me from them that rise up against me.
Deliver me from them that work iniquity, * and save me from bloody men.
Draw me out of the mire, that I may not stick fast: * deliver me from them that hate me, and out of the deep waters.
Deliver me because thou knowest my reproach, * and my confusion, and my shame.
Deliver me from my enemies, O Lord, to thee have I fled: * teach me to do thy will, for thou art my God.
Deliver me from many waters: [and] from the hand of strange children: * whose mouth hath spoken vanity: and their right hand is the right hand of iniquity.
Deliver me, O Lord, from the evil man: * rescue me from the unjust man.
Thou wilt deliver me from the contradictions of the people: * thou wilt make me head of the Gentiles.
Delivering the poor from the hand of them that are stronger than he; * the needy and the poor from them that strip him.
He delivered me from my strongest enemies, and from them that hated me: * for they were too strong for me.
Glory and honour to the Father and to the Son and to the Holy Ghost * unto the ages of the ages. Amen.

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