Tuesday, July 22, 2014

"that persevering love with which Saint Mary Magdalene clung resolutely to Christ her master"

May the holy reception of your mysteries, Lord,
instill in us that persevering love
with which Saint Mary Magdalene
clung resolutely to Christ her master.

Mysteriorum tuorum, Domine, sancta perceptio
perseverantem illum nobis amorem infundat,
quo beata Maria Magdalena
Christo magistro suo indesinenter adhæsit.

     Prayer after Communion, Feast of St. Mary Magdalene, 22 July, Roman missal.  In the Liturgy of the hours what appears is only the opening Collect, not this Post-Communion.
     This prayer does not appear with the ancient prayers in the main body of Corpus orationum.  But it is no. 2987 in the online 2004 Concordantia et indices volume of Sources of the Missale Parisiense of 1738, by Gerard O’Connor.  Better yet, Corpus orationum 13 refers from no. 683 (1616?) of the Missale Romanum of 1970/1975 to no. 2987 of the Missale Parisiense of 1706 ed. Noailles () and no. 2987 of the Missale Parisiense of 1685 ed. Harlay ().
     Yet on the other hand, it does not appear in the four Bibliotheque Sainte Genevieve codices of the (?) Missale Parisiense in the Internet Archive dated 1481, 1489, 1490, and 1497.  There the Post-Communion is consistently "Sanctificet nos quaesumus domine et muniat intercedente beata Maria Magdalena", etc.
     So though a lot of work could still be done, I’m going to rest content for now with 1685.
Mysteriorum tuorum, Domine, sancta perceptio perseverantem illum nobis amorem infundat, quo beata Maria Magdalene tibi immobiliter adhæsit.
(There is a brief introduction to the Lyonese rite in the 2nd edition of the New Catholic encyclopedia, but I have not followed up on that.)
     Corpus orationum 13 traces this back to the "noli me tangere" ("Do not touch me") of John 20:17, read in the light of the "adherere" of Ps 73 (72):28 (from the Greek side, not the Hebrew): "it is good for me to adhere to my God".

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Hegel can be so (deceptively?) orthodox!

"the instrumentality of philosophy in introducing these dogmas into the Christian religion, is no sufficient ground for asserting that they were foreign to Christianity and had nothing to do with it. It is a matter of perfect indifference where a thing originated; the only question is: 'Is it true in and for itself?' Many think that by pronouncing the doctrine to be Neo-Platonic, they have ipso facto banished it from Christianity. Whether a Christian doctrine stands exactly thus or thus in the Bible, the point to which the exegetical scholars of modern times devote all their attention, is not the only question. The letter kills, the spirit makes alive: this they say themselves, yet pervert the sentiment by taking the understanding [(Verstand)] for the spirit [(Geist)]. It was the Church that recognized and established the doctrines in question, i.e., the spirit of the Church; and it is itself an article of doctrine: 'I believe in a Holy Church'; as Christ himself also said: 'The Spirit will guide you into all truth.' In the Nicene Council (A.D. 325), was ultimately established a fixed confession of faith, to which we still adhere: this confession had not, indeed, a speculative form, but the profoundly speculative is most intimately inwoven with the manifestation of Christ himself. Even in John (ἐν ἀρχῇ ἦν ὁ λόγος καὶ ὁ λόγος ἦν πρὸς τὸν θεόν, καὶ θεὸς ἦν ὁ λόγος) we see the commencement of a profounder comprehension. The profoundest thought is connected with the personality of Christ, with the historical and external; and it is the very grandeur of the Christian religion that, with all this profundity, it is easy of comprehension by our consciousness in its outward aspect, while, at the same time, it summons us to penetrate deeper. It is thus adapted to every grade of culture, and yet satisfies the highest requirements."

     Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel, [Lectures on] The philosophy of history III.iii.2 ("Christianity"), trans. J. Sibree; GBWW,1st ed. (1952), vol. 46, p. 309.  For the underlying German, see the (second?) Karl Hegel manuscript edition of 1840, p. 402.
     It's what he means by Geist that can seem so frustratingly problematic!

The Great Seal of the United States

OBVERSE:
E PLURIBUS UNUM (out of many, one):
  • Was there in the proposal of the first committee, which consisted of John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson, as galvanized by the consultant Pierre Eugene Du Simitière; which positioned it directly beneath a single shield bearing, in its center, a rose for England, a thistle for Scotland, a harp for Ireland, a flower de luce for France, an eagle for Germany, and a lion for Holland ("(These being the Six principal nations of Europe from whom the Americans have originated.)"), and, around its edges chain-linked eschutcheons containing abbreviations "'for each of the thirteen Independent States of America'" (text of Du Simitière's own blazon, as quoted on pp. 19-20 of Patterson & Dougall); and which submitted its design on 20 August 1776.  Though "when first suggested by Du Simitière as a motto for the Great Seal, it may have alluded not only to the union of the Colonies but also to the diverse origins of the people of the New Republic", it seems worth noting that the reference to the "many" countries of origin was eventually dropped, and that only the "thirteens" of the ultimate obverse (the stars and the stripes, and the thirteen-leafed olive branch (representing peace) and thirteen arrows (representing war) clutched by the bald—i.e. distinctively Americaneagle) were in the end retained.  Cf. the explanation appended to the first blazon of William Barton of the third committee in 1782, as reproduced on pp. 61-62 of Patterson & Dougall.
  • Was referred to the thirteen states explicitly in Barton's third blazon of 1782:  "'the latter represents the several States; all joined in one solid, compact Empire, supporting a Chief, which unites the whole & represents Congress—  The Motto alludes to this Union'" (Patterson & Dougall, 80).
  • Was approved by Congress on 20 June 1782 in the form of Thomson's 19 June 1782 Blazon with "Remarks and explanation".  The latter read, in part, "'The Pieces, paly, represent the several states all joined in one solid compact entire, supporting a Chief, which unites the whole & represents Congress.  The Motto alludes to this union'" (Patterson & Dougall, 84).  As for "the question, Did Congress adopt just the Great Seal design, or the 'Remarks and Explanation' as well?", "The better view seems to be that taken by the editor of the Library of Congress edition of the Journals, namely, that Congress had adopted the whole report as submitted to it, and not the blazon alone.  In any case, the 'Remarks and Explanation' have an official character and status, in that they came directly from the principal creators of the seal design and are thus primary evidence of what Barton and Thomson intended the device to signify, and what Congress knew to be the intent of the designers when the device was adopted" (Patterson & Dougall, 85-86).
REVERSE:
ANNUIT CŒPTIS (he (God) or it (the Eye of Providence) has favored/favors our undertakings):
  • Was preceded by the motto "'Deo favente'" (God favoring), "''which alludes to the Eye in the Arms, meant for the Eye of Providence'" (first and second blazons of William Barton of the third committee, as reproduced on pp. 60 and 65-68 of Patterson & Dougall).
  • Appeared for the first time ''Over the Eye'" in place of "'Deo favente'" in the blazon composed by Secretary of Congress Charles Thomson in 1782 (Patterson & Dougall, 75).  "For Barton's motto Deo favente Thomson substituted Annuit Cœptis" (Patterson & Dougall, 78).
  • Was derived from the Aeneid, bk 9, l. 625, which read, in "an [important] eighteenth-century edition of Virgil" (Patterson & Dougall, 89; cf. pp. 90-91), "Juppiter omnipotens, audacibus annue cœptis (All-powerful Jupiter, favor [my] daring undertakings)" (Patterson & Dougall, 89-91, where the Georgics, bk. 1, l. 40 is also cited).
  • Was approved by Congress on 20 June 1782 in the form of Thomson's 19 June 1782 Blazon with "Remarks and explanation".  The latter read, in part, "The pyramid signifies Strength and Duration:  The Eye over it & the Motto [(ANNUIT CŒPTIS)] allude to the many signal interpositions of providence in favour of the American cause'" (Patterson & Dougall, 85).  As for "the question, Did Congress adopt just the Great Seal design, or the 'Remarks and Explanation' as well?", "The better view seems to be that taken by the editor of the Library of Congress edition of the Journals, namely, that Congress had adopted the whole report as submitted to it, and not the blazon alone.  In any case, the 'Remarks and Explanation' have an official character and status, in that they came directly from the principal creators of the seal design and are thus primary evidence of what Barton and Thomson intended the device to signify, and what Congress knew to be the intent of the designers when the device was adopted" (Patterson & Dougall, 85-86).
  • "has been translated in more recent Department of State publicationsin the perfect tenseas 'He (God) has favored our undertakings'" (Patterson & Dougall, 89-90).
Eye of God/Providence
  • Was there in the proposal of the first committee, which consisted of John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and Thomas Jefferson, as galvanized by the consultant Pierre Eugene Du Simitière; which called it "'the Eye of Providence'" (text of Du Simitière own blazon, as quoted on pp. 19-20 of Patterson & Dougall); and which submitted its design on 20 August 1776.  "the description and sketch can be regarded as wholly Du Simiètre's creation; they represent his ideas alone, uninfluenced by those of members of the committee.  Both his description and his sketch include four elements that carried over eventually into the Great Seal as finally adopted, two of them into the obverse and two into the reverse.  They are (1) the form or outline of a shield; (2) the eye of Providence in a triangle with a glory; (3) the motto E Pluribus Unum on a scroll; and(4) the year date 'MCCCLXXVI'.  According to the existing evidence, Du Simitière was the one first to propose these four elements.  He set them down on paper, the description in his own handwriting and the sketch with its lettering by his own hand.  Although certain writers have credited either Jefferson or Franklin with suggesting the motto, they are in error, given the documentary evidence, which points to Du Simiètre and no one else" (Patterson & Dougall, 22, who proceed to discuss Du Simiètre's source for the motto "De Pluribus Unum").
  • Was "'surrounded with a Glory'" (first and second blazons of consultant to the third committee William Barton, as quoted on pp. 60 and 65-68 of Patterson & Dougall; but see for the "'Glory'" present in the very first blazon composed by Du Simitiére, see p. 26.  See also the Charles Thomson blazon of 1782, as reproduced on p. 75.
  • Was preceded on Franklin's part (so far as any explicitly biblical or Judeo-Christian reference is concerned) by a representation of Ex 14:21 ff. and the motto "Rebellion to Tyrants is Obedience to God" (Patterson & Dougall, 13-14); and on Jefferson's part by 1) "the children of Israel in the wilderness, led by a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night"), and then 2) a sympathetic revision of the proposal by Franklin:  "Pharaoh sitting in an open chariot, a crown on his head & a sword in his hand passing thro' the divided waters of the Red Sea in pursuit of the Israelites:  rays from a pillar of fire in the cloud, expressive of the divine presence, reachi & command, reaching to Moses who stands on the shore &, extending his hand over the sea, causes it to overwhelm Pharaoh.  Motto.  Rebellion to tyrants is obedce to god." (Undated note by Jefferson in the Jefferson Papers, Ms Div., Library of Congress, as quoted by Patterson & Dougall, 16).
  • Was approved by Congress on 20 June 1782 in the form of Thomson's 19 June 1782 Blazon with "Remarks and explanation".  The latter read, in part, "The pyramid signifies Strength and Duration:  The Eye over it & the Motto [(ANNUIT CŒPTIS)] allude to the many signal interpositions of providence in favour of the American cause'" (Patterson & Dougall, 85).  As for "the question, Did Congress adopt just the Great Seal design, or the 'Remarks and Explanation' as well?", "The better view seems to be that taken by the editor of the Library of Congress edition of the Journals, namely, that Congress had adopted the whole report as submitted to it, and not the blazon alone.  In any case, the 'Remarks and Explanation' have an official character and status, in that they came directly from the principal creators of the seal design and are thus primary evidence of what Barton and Thomson intended the device to signify, and what Congress knew to be the intent of the designers when the device was adopted" (Patterson & Dougall, 85-86).
FREE MASONRY:  see Patterson & Dougall, pp. 529-532.  Conclusion:  "While these points are not conclusive, it seems likely that the designers of the Great Seal and the Masons took their symbols from parallel sources, and unlikely that the seal designers consciously copied Masonic symbols with the intention of incorporating Masonic symbolism into the national coat of arms" (532).

BIBILIOGRAPHY:
  • Bureau of Public Affairs, United States Department of State.  The Great Seal of the United States.  Publication no. 10411.  Washington, DC:  Office of Public Communication, Bureau of Public Affairs, United States Department of State, 1996 (September).  23 pp.
  • Patterson, Richard & Richardson Dougall.  The eagle and the shield:  a history of the Great Seal of the United States.  Department of State Publication 8900; Department and Foreign Service series 161.  Washington, DC:  Office of the Historian, Bureau of Public Affairs, Department of State, under the auspices of the American Revolution Bicentennial Administration, 1976.  xliv + 637 pp.


Thursday, July 17, 2014

"all time is lost, to which we will not have attached . . . something capable of passing on into . . . eternity."

"from this important distinction between time considered in itself, and time [considered] in relation to eternity, I draw this infallible consequence:  if time is nothing in itself, it follows that all time is lost, to which we will not have attached something more immutable than it, something capable of passing on into blessed eternity."

"de cette distinction importante du temps considéré en lui-même, et du temps par rapport à l'éternité, je tire cette conséquence infaillible:  si le temps n'est rien par lui-même, il s'ensuit que tout le temps est perdu, auquel nous n'aurons point attaché quelque chose de plus immuable que lui, quelque chose qui puisse passer à l'éternité bienheureuse."

     Fr. Jacques-Bénigne Bossuet, "Oraison funèbre de Madame Yolande de Monterby" (Metz, end of December 1656), in Bossuet:  oraisons funèbres, panégyriques, Bibliothèque de la Pléiade 33, ed. the Abbé Bernard Velat (Paris:  Librairie Galllimard, 1951):  23.

     And speaking of time, "Ni les affaires ni les compagnies n'étaient pas capables de lui ravir le temps qu'elle destinait aux choses divines" (24, italics mine).

The Word became word, or The Word became flesh?

1963:
"This verse'the Word became flesh'is the Great Divide.  In all other religions it is Word became worda philosophy, a moralism, a system, a technique, but for all time and all men everywhere, 'the Word became flesh'the Idea became Fact."  E. Stanley Jones, Introduction to The Word became flesh (New York:  Abingdon Press, 1963), 5.
Nothing earlier comes up in Google Books (at least) when searched in English, Latin ("Verbum verbum factum est"), or Greek ("λόγος λόγος ἐγένετο").  But I haven't yet tried any of the European languages.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

"the preaching of the holy gospel itself is also in essence an absolution. . . . although not all believe [it]".

"We cannot censure or reject the general absolution for this reason:  the preaching of the holy gospel itself is also in essence an absolution, in which the forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to manky people in the congregation publicly or to a single person alone, either publicly or privately. . . . For this reason, although not all believe the absolution, it is not to be rejected.  For every absolution, whether it takes place in a communal or individual setting, must still be understood to demand faith and to help those who believe it, as the gospel itself proclaims forgiveness to everyone in the world and excepts no one from this universal [proclamation]."

WA Br 6:  454, ll. 6-13 (453-455):
"auch die predig des heiligen Euangelij selb ist im grund und eigentlich ein absolutio. . . . ob woll nit alle daran glawben. . . ."

de Wette IV (1827), 444-445; CR 2 (1835), 648; E 55 (1853), 9; End 9 (1903), 292W21 (1904), 1812 (modernized):
"auch die Predig des h. Evangelii selb ist im Grund und eigentlich ein absolutio. . . . obwohl nit alle daran gläuben. . . ."

     Luther and Melanchthon to the Council of Nuremberg, 18 April 1533, as trans. Timothy J. Wengert, in Defending faith:  Lutheran theological responses to Andreas Osiander's doctrine of justification, 1551-1559 (Tübingen:  Mohr Siebeck, 2012), 70.  "MBW 1320 (Texte 5:  409, 5-410, 17; =WA Br 6:  454, 5-17 (No. 2010, pp. 453-455))" and WA Br 13 (1968), Nachträge und Berichtungen, Synoptische tabelle (1968), 215.
     This is no. 2010 on p. 333 of the 3rd ed. of Kurt Aland's Hilfsbuch zum Lutherstudium (1970), according to which (since I don't have access to  MBW Texte short of ILL) it appears also in "End[ers] 9, 292 [(the Erlangen Briefwechsel)] de W[ette] IV, 444 — E[rlangen] 55, 8 — W[alch]2 21, 1811 — N: XIII [=D. Martin Luthers Briefwechsel Bd. 13. Nachträge und Berichtigungen. Synoptische Tabelle (1968))], 215]".

     Hmmm.

Sunday, July 13, 2014

"the grace to reject whatever is contrary to the name of Christ and to strive after all that does it honour."

O God, who show the light of your truth
to those who go astray,
so that they may return to the right path,
give all who for the faith they profess
are accounted Christians
the grace to reject whatever is contrary to the name of Christ
and to strive after all that does it honour.
Through our Lord Jesus Christ, [etc.]

     Collect for the Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time, Roman missal, as re-translated in 2010, and, in the pre-2010 translation below, the Liturgy of the hours as well.  This one Bruylants (Les oraisons du Missel Romain, vol. 2 (Louvain:  Centre de Documentation et d'Information Liturgiques, Abbaye du Mont César, 1952), no. 336 (p. 93)) traces back to the late 6th- (according to the ODCC the early 7th-) century Leonine sacramentary (Verona, Biblioteca capitolare LXXXV).  See p. 9 of the older edition of that ed. Feltoe, where it appears under April.  The 8th-century Gelasian Sacramentary (Vat. Regin. lat. 316) "preserved the tradition of appointing it for th[e Third] Sunday [after Easter]" more specifically, which is where (following, presumably, the Salisbury rite) it appears in the 1549-1928 Book of common prayer, too (below), as "One of the oldest in the Prayer Book" (Shepherd, Oxford American prayer book commentary (1950), p. 173).  See, for example, the older edition of the Gelasian ed. Wilson, pp. 102-103, for some variants (including the reading "way of righteousness", in square brackets below).  Here is how it appears in the 3rd typical edition (The CTS new daily missal (2012), p. 552):

Deus, qui errantibus, ut in viam possint redire [justitiae],
veritatis tuae lumen ostendis,
da cunctis qui christiana professione censentur,
et illa respuere, quae huic inimica sunt nomini,
et ea quae sunt apta sectari.
Per, [etc.]

Pre-2010 translation of the Missal as reproduced by Fr. Z and in the current Liturgy of the hours: 

God our Father,
your light of truth
guides us to the way of Christ.
May all who follow him
reject what is contrary to the gospel.


1549 Book of common prayer for the Third Sunday after Easter (which is where it appears through the 1928 BCP), as reproduced in the Everyman's Library edition of 1910:

Almightye God, whiche shewest to all men that be in errour the light of thy truth, to the intent that they maie returne into the waye of righteousness; Graunt unto all them that bee admitted into the felowship of Christes religion, that they maye exchew those thinges that be contrary to their profession, and folow all such thinges as be agreable to the same; through [etc.]

1928 Book of common prayer for the Third Sunday after Easter:

Almighty God, who showest to them that are in error the light of thy truth, to the intent that they may return into the way of righteousness; Grant unto all those who are admitted into the fellowship of Christ's Religion, that they may avoid those things that are contrary to their profession, and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same; through [etc.]