Palmer: Origines Liturgicae 14.
Vol. I: Antiq. of the English Rit. Ch. I, Pt. I, Sect. XI-XVI.



This sublime composition has been referred to several different authors. Some have ascribed it to Ambrose and Augustine, others to Ambrose alone others again to Abondius, Nicetius, bishop of Triers, or Hilary of Poictiers. In truth, it seems that there [227] is no way of determining exactly who was the author of this hymn. Archbishop Usher found it ascribed to Nicetius in a very ancient Gallican Psalter, and the Benedictine editors of the works of Hilary of Poictiers cite a fragment of a manuscript epistle of Abbo Floriacensis, in which Hilary is unhesitatingly spoken of as its author1; but Abbo lived five or six centuries after that prelate, and therefore such a tradition is most doubtful. Some reasons, however, appear to justify the opinion, that Te Deum was composed in the Gallican church, from which source we also derive the inestimable Creed bearing the name of Athanasius. The most ancient allusions to its existence are found in the Rule of Caesarius, bishop of Arles, who lived in the fifth century2, and in that of his successor Aurelian3. It has been judged from this, that the Te Deum may probably have been composed by some member of the celebrated monastery of Lerins, which, was not far from Arles; or perhaps by Hilary of Arles, who seems to have composed the Athanasian Creed in the fifth century. Another presumption in favour of the same notion is deducible from the wording of this hymn. The verse, "Vouchsafe, O Lord, to keep us this day without sin," Dignare Domine die isto sine peccato nos custodire, gives reason to [228] think that it was originally composed for the matin, and not for the nocturnal office, for it appears that the day is supposed to have actually commenced. Now Caesarius and Aurelian both appoint Te Deum to be sung in the morning, while Benedict directed it to be sung in the nocturnal office on Sundays4, and hence we may observe that the former appear to have adhered closer to the intentions of the author of this hymn than the latter; that therefore they were better acquainted with the author’s design than Benedict, and therefore the hymn was probably not composed in Italy, but in Gaul.

In the office of matins this hymn occupies the same place as it always has done, namely, after the reading of Scripture5. The ancient offices of the English church gave this hymn the title of the "Psalm Te Deum," or the "Song of Ambrose and Augustine" indifferently. As used in this place, it may be considered as a responsory psalm, since it follows a lesson; and here the practice of the church of England resembles that directed by the council of Laodicea, which decreed that the psalms and lessons should be read alternately. The following original Latin of Te Deum is transcribed from the breviary of Sarum, Psalter, folio vii.

We praise thee, O God: we acknowledge thee to be the Lord.

All the earth doth worship thee : the Father everlasting.

To thee all angels cry aloud : the Heavens, and all the Powers therein.

[229] To thee Cherubim and Seraphin : continually do cry,

Holy, Holy, Holy : Lord God of Sabaoth;

Heaven and Earth are full of the Majesty : of thy Glory.

The glorious company of the Apostles : praise thee.

The goodly fellowship of the Prophets : praise thee.

The noble army of Martyrs : praise thee.

The holy Church throughout all the world : doth acknowledge thee ;

The Father : of an infinite Majesty;

Thine honourable, true : and only Son;

Also the Holy Ghost : the Comforter.

Thou art the King of Glory : O Christ.

Thou art the everlasting Son : of the Father.

[230] When thou tookest upon thee to deliver man : thou didst not abhor the Virgin’s womb.

When thou hadst overcome the sharpness of death : thou didst open the Kingdom of Heaven to all believers.

Thou sittest at the right hand of God : in the Glory of the Father.

We believe that thou shalt come : to be our Judge.

We therefore pray thee, help thy servants : whom thou hast redeemed with thy precious blood.

Make them to be numbered with thy Saints : in glory everlasting.

O Lord, save thy people : and bless thine heritage.

Govern them : and lift them up for ever.

Day by day : we magnify thee;

And we worship thy name : ever world without end.

Vouchsafe, O Lord : to keep us this day without sin.

O Lord, have mercy upon us : have mercy upon us.

O Lord, let thy mercy lighten upon us : as our trust is in thee.

O Lord, in thee have I trusted : let me never be confounded.

Te Deum laudamus : te Dominum confitemur.

Te æternum Patrem : omnis terra veneratur.


Tibi omnes Angeli : tibi cœli et universæ potestates,

Tibi Cherubin et Seraphin : incessabili voce proclamant,

Sanctus, Sanctus, Sanctus : Dominus Deus Sabaoth;

Pleni sunt cœli et terra : majestatis gloriæ tuæ.

Te gloriosus Apostolorum chorus.


Te Prophetarum laudabilis numerus,

Te Martyrum candidatus : laudat exercitus6.

Te per orbem terrarum : sancta confitetur Ecclesia;


Patrem immensæ majestatis;

Venerandum tuum verum : et unicum Filium;

Sanctum quoque Paracletum Spiritum.

Tu Rex gloriæ Christe.

Tu Patris sempitern u Filius.

Tu ad liberandum suscepturus hominem : non horruisti Virginis uterum.

Tu devicto mortis aculeo : aperuisti credentibus regna cœlorum.


Tu ad dexteram Dei : sedes in gloria Patris.

Judex crederis esse venturus.

Te ergo quæsumus, famulis tuis subveni : quos pretioso sanguine redemisti.

Æterna fac cum sanctis tuis : in gloria numerari.


Salvum fac populum tuum Domine : et benedic hæreditati tuæ.

Et rege illos : et extolle illos usque in æternum.

Per singulos dies : benedicimus te.

Et laudamus nomen tuum : in sæculum et in sæculum sæculi.

Dignare Domine die isto sine peccato nos custodire.

Miserere nostri Domine : miserere nostri.

Fiat misericordia tua Domine super nos : quemadmodum speravimus in te.

In te Domine speravi : non confundar in æternum.



In the ancient English offices the matins (nocturns) terminated with Te Deum, and were immediately followed by lauds (ancient matins). This office began with several psalms, of which one was the "psalm Benedicite," or "the Song of the Three Children," as it was variously called7. This canticle was retained in the position it now occupies, and is appointed to follow the first lesson, in place of Te Deum, at the pleasure of the officiating minister. In the Mosarabic, or ancient Spanish office, Benedicite is also used at lauds8. The ancient liturgies of the Gallican and Spanish churches prescribed the Song of the Three Children to be sung between the lessons9, and we adopt the same rule in the office of Morning Prayer. Benedict and Amalarius both speak of Benedicite as used at matins (lauds10); and Athanasius appointed it to be said at the same time11. When used as appointed by the English office, it may be regarded in the light of a responsory psalm.

| Sect XI | Sect XIII |



After the psalms of lauds, amongst which Benedicite occurred, the ancient English offices prescribed [232] a short lesson from scripture12,. Benedict, in the sixth century, and Amalarius, A.D. 820, both speak of the lesson in this place13. The reformers of our offices enlarged this short lesson, appointing it always to be taken from the New Testament, accordiiig to the ancient rule of the Egyptian church in the fifth century; for, according to Cassian, only two lessons were read in their nocturnal or matutinal assembly, of which the second was always taken from the New Testament14.

| Sect XII | Sect XIV |



The lesson at lauds, in the ancient English offices, was followed by the canticle which is the subject of the present section, and which was indifferently called the "psalm Benedictus," and the "Song of the Prophet Zacharias15." It occupies at present the same relative position as it has always done in the English offices. Benedict speaks of a Canticum de Evangelio as occurring in this place, but whether he refers especially to this Song of Zacharias or not, I cannot determine16; however, Amalarius, A.D. 820, speaks of this position of Benedictus17.



This was read amongst the Psalms of lauds in the office of Salisbury, and other English churches18; and the only difference between its present and former position is, that it was formerly read before the lesson, and is now read after it. Amalarius, A.D. 820, speaks of this psalm as used in lauds19. Benedictus and Jubilate Deo, either of which may be used in this place, are to be regarded in the light of responsories to the second lesson, according to the ancient custom of the Christian church, by which psalms and lessons were appointed to be said alternately.

| Sect XIII | Sect XV |



The office of lauds was succeeded by that of prime, or the first hour, according to the ancient English offices. In the office of prime, after several psalms, which have not been retained, the Athanasian Creed, termed "Psalmus Quicunquie vult," was sung on Sundays20. According to the English ritual at present, this psalm, or creed, is still repeated or sung on certain feasts in the same position relatively to the Benedictus, and the following prayers, as it has always occupied.

Dr. Waterland says, that we cannot assign a later period than the year 880, for the introduction of this creed into the office of prime by the English [234] churches; but we have no reason to think that it may not have been used long before that date. It is found in MS. psalters of the seventh and eighth centuries, where no doubt it was placed for the purpose of being sung at prime21. Space does not permit me to do more than refer to the excellent work of Dr. Waterland, as affording a most satisfactory account of this inestimable creed, which, with much ingenuity and reason, be refers to the composition of Hilary, archbishop of Arles, about A.D. 430.

The Athanasian Creed was only recited on Sundays, according to the offices of Sarum and other English churches, and on other days nothing was appointed instead of it. To supply its place on the days when it does not occur, the revisers of our offices appointed the Apostles’ Creed to be repeated. The same rule had also been adopted by cardinal Qingnon, in his revision of the Roman breviary, A.D. 153622.

The Athanasian Creed was sung like the psalms in the English offices, and it was even designated by the title of the psalm Quicunque. These circumstances account for the custom of repeating and singing this creed in the same manner as the psalms, which still prevails in the Christian churches of England.


Whosoever will be saved : before all things it is necessary that he hold the catholic faith.

[235] Which faith except every one do keep whole and undefiled : without doubt he shall perish everlastingly.

And the catholic faith is this : that we worship one God in Trinity, and Trinity in Unity.

Neither confounding the persons : nor dividing the substance.

For there is one person of the Father, another of the Son : and another of the Holy Ghost.

But the Godhead of the Father, of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost is all one : the glory equal, the majesty coeternal.

Such as the Father is, such is the Son : and such is the Holy Ghost.

The Father uncreate, the Son uncreate : and the Holy Ghost uncreate.

The Father incomprehensible, the Son incomprehensible : and the Holy Ghost incomprehensible.

The Father eternal, the Son eternal : and the Holy Ghost eternal.

And yet they are not three eternals : but one eternal.

As also there are not three incomprehensibles : nor three uncreated : but one uncreated, and one incomprehensible.

So likewise the Father is almighty, the Son almighty : and the Holy Ghost almighty.

[236] And yet they are not three almighties : but one almighty.

So the Father is God, the Son is God : and the Holy Ghost is God.

And yet they are not three Gods : but one God.

So likewise the Father is Lord, the Son Lord : and the holy Ghost Lord.

And yet not three Lords : but one Lord.

For like as we are compelled by the Christian verity : to acknowledge every person by himself to be God and Lord;

So are we forbidden by the catholic religion : to say, there be three Gods, and three Lords.

The Father is made of none : neither created nor begotten.

The Son is of the Father alone : not made, nor created, but begotten.

The Holy Ghost is of the Father and of the Son : neither made, nor created, nor begotten, but proceeding.

So there is. one Father, not three Fathers; one Son, not three Sons : one Holy Ghost, not three Holy Ghosts.

And in this Trinity none is afore or after other : none is greater or less than another.

But the whole three persons are coeternal together : and coequal.

So that in all things, as is aforesaid : the Unity in [237] Trinity, and the Trinity in Unity, is to be worshipped.

He therefore that will be saved : must thus think of the Trinity.

Furthermore it is necessary to everlasting salvation : that he also believe rightly the incarnation of our Lord Jesus Christ.

For the right faith is, that we believe and confess : that our Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is God and man.

God of the substance of the Father, begotten before the worlds : and man of the substance of his mother, born in the world.

Perfect God, and perfect man : of a reasonable soul, and human flesh subsisting.

Equal to the Father as touching his Godhead : and inferior to the Father as touching his manhood.

Who although he be God and man : yet be is not two, but one Christ.

One, not by conversion of the Godhead into flesh : but by taking of the manhood into God.

One altogether, not by confusion of substance : but by unity of person.

For as the reasonable soul and flesh is one man : so God and man is one Christ.

[238] Who suffered for our salvation : descended into hell, rose again the third day from the dead.

He ascended into heaven, he sitteth on the right band of the Father, God Almighty : from whence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.

At whose coming all men shall rise again with their bodies : and shall give account for their own works.

And they that have done good shall go into life everlasting : and they that have done evil into everlasting fire.

This is the catholic faith : which except a man believe faithfully he cannot be saved.

Glory be to the Father, and to the Son : and to the Holy Ghost.

As it was in the beginning, is now, and ever shall be : world without end. Amen.

Quicunque vult salvus esse : ante omnia opus est ut teneat catholicam fidem.

Quam nisi quisque integram, inviolatamque servaverit : absque dubio in æternum peribit.

Fides autem catholica hæc est, ut unum Deum in Trinitate : et Trnitatem in Unitate veneremur.

Neque confundentes personas : neque substantiam separantes.

Alia est enim persona Patris, alia Filii : alia Spiritus Sancti.

Sed Patris, et Filii, et Spiritus Sancti, una est Divinitas æqualis gloria, coæterna majestas.


Qualis Pater, talis Filius : talis Spiritus Sanctus.

Increatus Pater, increatus Filius : increatus Spiritus Sanctus.


Immensus Pater, immensus Filius : immensus Spiritus Sanctus.

Æternus Pater, æternus Filius : æternus Spiritus Sanctus.

Et tamen non tres æterni : sed unus æternus.


Sicut non tres increati, nec tres immensi : sed unus increatus, et unus immensus.

Similiter omnipotens Pater, omnipotens Filius : omnipotens Spiritus Sanctus.

Et tamen non tres omnipotentes : sed unus omnipotens.

Ita Deus Pater, Deus Filius : Deus Spiritus Sanctus.


Et tamen non tres Dii : sed unus est Deus.

Ita Dominus Pater, Dominus Filius : Dominus Spiritus Sanctus.

Et tamen non tres Domini : sed unus est Dominus.

Quia sicut singillatim unamquamque Personam, Deum et Dominum confiteri Cliristiana veritate compellimur;

Ita tres Deos aut Dominos dicere : catholica religione prohibemur.

Pater a nullo est factus : nec creatus, sed genitus.

Filius a Patre solo est : non factus nec creatus, sed genitus.

Spiritus Sanctus a Patre et Filio : non factus, nec creatus, nec genitus, sed procedens.

Unus ergo Pater, non tres Patres; unus Filius, non tres Filii : unus Spiritus Sanctus, non tres Spiritus Sancti.

Et in hac Trinitate nihil prius aut posterius : nihil majus aut minus.

Sed totæ tres personæ : coæternæ sibi sunt et coæquales.

Ita ut per omnia (sicut jam supra dictum est) et Unitas in Trinitate : et Trinitas in Unitate veneranda sit.

Qui vult ergo salvus esse : ita de Trinitate sentiat.


Sed necessarium est ad æternam salutem : ut incarnationem quoque Domini nostri Jesu Christi fideliter credat.

Est ergo fides recta, ut credamus et confiteamur : quia Dominus noster Jesus Christus, Dei Filius, Deus et homo est.

Deus est ex substantia Patris ante sæcula genitus : et homo est ex substantia matris in sæculo natus.

Perfectus Deus, perfectus homo : ex anima rationali et humana carne subsistens.

Æqualis Patri secundum Divinitatem : minor Patre secundum humanitatem.

Qui licet Deus sit et homo : non duo tamen, sed unus est Christus.

Unus autem, non conversione Divinitatis in carnem : sed assumptione humanitatis in Deum.

Unus omnino, non confusione substantiæ : sed unitate personæ.

Nam sicut anima rationalis et caro unus est homo : ita Deus et homo unus est Christus.

Qui passus est pro salute nostra, descendit ad inferos : tertia die resurrexit a mortuis.


Ascendit ad cœlos, sedet ad dexteram Dei Patris Omnipotentis : inde venturus est judicare vivos et mortuos.

Ad cujus adventum omnes homines resurgere habent cum corporibus suis : et reddituri sunt de factis propriis rationem.

Et qui bona egerunt ibunt in vitam æternam : qui vero mala in ignem æternum.

Hæc est fides catholica, quam nisi quisque fideliter firmiterque crediderit : salvus esse non poterit.

Gloria Patri, et Filio : et Spiritui Sancto.

Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper : et in sæcula sæculorum.



This primitive Creed of the Italian and Roman churches has long been used by the church of England in nearly the same position which it occupies at present. Until the reform of the English offices in the reign of Edward the Sixth, it followed the Lord’s Prayer, amongst those prayers which it now precedes24. This position of the Apostles’ Creed had [239] been customary in the ages preceding the Norman conquest, as we may see by the Anglo-Saxon offices25. Amalarius also, A.D. 820, speaks of the Creed as following the Lord’s Prayer amongst the prayers of Prime26.

| Sect XIV | Sect XVI |



These prayers, including the lesser Litany, the Lord’s Prayer, and the versicles and responses, came at the end of the office, according to the ancient English rites27, and they still preserve the same position. Formerly, however, the Apostles’ Creed occurred in this part of the service, from whence it was transferred to its present position. From these prayers also the Confession and Absolution were removed, and replaced by superior formularies at the commencement of the whole office. All this part of the service is very ancient in the morning offices of the western churches. Amalarius, A.D. 820. and Benedict, A.D. 530. both speak of the lesser Litany, "Lord have mercy upon us," &c. and the Lord’s Prayer, as occurring in this place28; the councils of Girone, A.D. 517. and Toledo, A.D. 633. prescribed the latter29; both also are found in the monuments of the Anglo-Saxon church30. The versicles [240] which follow the Lord’s Prayer are described by Amalarius, who wrote in A.D. 82031; and they are found in the Anglo-Saxon offices32: they varied, however, in different churches of the West, even where the same prayers in general were used; but all our versicles and responses are found in the ancient ritual of the English churches, both before and after the Norman conquest; and they occurred in the same place which they occupy at present.

¶ And after that, these Prayers following, all devoutly kneeling; the Minister first pronouncing with a loud voice,

The Lord be with you.

Answer. And with thy spirit.

Minister. Let us pray.

Lord, have mercy upon us.

Christ, have mercy upon us.

Lord, have mercy upon its.

Our Father, which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done in earth, As it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our trespasses, As we forgive them that trespass against us. And lead us not [241] into temptation; But deliver us from evil: For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.

Then the priest standing up shall say,

O Lord, shew thy mercy upon us.

Answer. And grant us thy salvation.

Priest. O Lord, save the king.

Answer. And mercifully hear us when we call upon thee.

Priest. Endue thy ministers with righteousness.

Answer. And make thy chosen people joyful.

Priest. O Lord, save thy people.

Answer. And bless thine inheritance.

Priest. Give peace in our time, O Lord.

Answer. Because there is none other that fighteth, for us, but only thou, O God.

[242] Priest. O God, make clean our hearts within us.

Answer. And take not thy holy Spirit from us.

Tunc fiant preces cum prostratione ad omnes horas33.


Dominus vobiscum.

Et cum spiritu tuo.


Kyrie eleëson.

Christe eleëson.

Kyrie eleëson35.

Pater noster qui es in cœlis, sanctificetur nomen tuum. Adveniat regnum tuum. Fiat voluntas tua sicut in cœlo et in terra. Panem nostrum quotidianum da nobis hodie. Et dimitte nobis debita nostra, sicut et nos dimittimus debitoribus nostris. Et ne nos inducas in tentationem. Sed libera nos a malo. Amen36.



Erigat se sacerdos solus sic dicens37.

Ostende nobis, Domine, misericordiam tuam.

Et salutare tuum da nobis38.

Domine, salvum fac regem.

Et exaudi nos in die qua invocaverimus te39.

Sacerdotes tui induantur justitiam.

Et sancti tui exultent40.

Salvum fac populum tuum, Domine.

Et benedic hæreditati tuæ41.

Da pacem, Domine, in diebus nostris.

Quia non est alius qui pugnet pro nobis nisi tu Deus noster42.

Cor mundum crea in me, Domine.

Et Spiritum sanctum tuum ne auferas a me43.


| Sect XV | Chap I, Pt II |



The position of the collects (orationes) in the English offices is precisely the same as in the ancient offices of the churches of Sarum, York, &c.; namely, after the prayers (preces)44. It is not very easy to trace the antiquity of this custom of repeating collects at the end of the service. It has certainly, however, prevailed in these churches, even during the period preceding the Norman Conquest45. Amalarius, A.D. 820, speaks of the "oratio consueta," or customary collect after the office of matins46; and he also speaks of a prayer, or collect, and benediction, which always were repeated at the end of the offices47. John Bona endeavours to prove that the collect is mentioned by Benedict, when he directs that the Gospel should be read at the end of nocturns, and the Benediction being given, they should begin matins. Bona explains this benediction to mean a prayer; for Amalarius in one place says that the prayer of the priest is called by two names, [243] either a benediction or a prayer48. This shews indeed that the word benediction may sometimes mean prayer, but it does not prove that it is to be taken in this sense in the present instance; and in another part of the works of Amalarius we find that the offices terminated not only with a prayer, but with a benediction also49: and it is most simple and reasonable to refer the word in the present instance directly to the benediction, which we find actually to have existed. The council of Agde, A.D. 1517, appointed collects to be repeated after the antiphonæ or anthems, at the end of morning and evening prayer50. We also find that the office of morning prayer in the eastern church terminated with a collect or prayer by the priest or bishop, in the third or fourth century51. In Egypt, each psalm was followed by a silent prayer of the congregation, and a collect by the priest52. This custom prevailed in the time of Cassian, and the same appears to have existed even in the time of Athanasius; for when Syrianus, at the instigation of the Arians, proceeded to seize Athanasius, it is related that the people were keeping their vigil or nocturn, and Athanasius desired the deacon to read a psalm, and the people to respond; after which it seems that they prayed in silence by the direction of the [244] bishop53. Athanasius also, in his Treatise on Virginity, enjoins the alternate repetition of psalms and prayers54. Here we have precisely that alternation of which Cassian speaks. Collects to be said at matins and evensong are found in the sacramentary books of Gregory the Great, A.D. 590, and Gelasius, 494, patriarchs of Rome55. It would appear that only one collect was said at the end of the offices, according to the Roman order56. Amalarius speaks of the prayer in the singular number57. Fulbertus Carnotensis, A.D. 1010, in his epistle to Hildegarius, dean of the church of St. Hilary, says, that "the prayer" which is read from the book of sacraments should follow the Lord’s Prayer and versicles58. This probably meant the proper prayer for the time of the day, of which (as I have observed) many are found in the sacramentaries of Gregory and Gelasius. On the other hand, in the Gallican church several collects were said, as appears by the council of Agde, referred to above. The church of [245] Milan also repeated several collects at the close of the offices59.



The collect for the day, the collect for peace, and the collect for grace, all occurred in the ancient offices of the English churches, and are placed in the same position relatively to each other, as they formerly occupied. The collect of the day was read at the end of matin lauds60; after this the "memoria de pace," with the present collect for peace, was read61; and subsequently, nearly at the end of Prime, the collect for grace occurred62. The collects of the day are considered specially in the third chapter of this work, where it appears that, with some exceptions, they are as ancient as the time of Gelasius, patriarch of Rome A.D. 494; and that many of them are much older.



Although I cannot exactly fix the period at which the collect for peace was introduced into this part of the English offices, yet the composition itself is probably as old as the fifth century, and has been used in some way by the English church for above twelve hundred years.

O God, who art the author of peace and lover of concord, in knowledge of whom standeth our eternal life, whose service is perfect freedom; Defend us thy humble servants in all assaults of our enemies; that we, surely trusting in thy defence, may not fear the power of any adversaries, through the might of Jesus Christ our lord. Amen.

Deus auctor pacis et amator, quem nosse vivere; cui servire regnare est; protege ab omnibus impugnationibus supplices tuos; ut qui in defensione tua confidemus, nullius hostilitatis arma timeamus. Per &c.63




With regard to the antiquity Of this prayer, I might repeat what has been said of the collect for peace; but it may be added, that this collect was especially appointed, in the sacramentaries of Gregory and Gelasius, to be repeated in matins. In the time of Gelasius, this form was both a thanksgiving for being brought to the beginning of the day, and a prayer for grace64.

O Lord, our heavenly Father, Almighty and everlasting God, who hast safely brought us to the beginning of this day; Defend us in the same with thy mighty power; and [247] grant that this day we fall into no sin, neither run into any kind of danger: but that all our doings may be ordered by thy governance, to do always that is righteous in thy sight; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

Domine sancta, Pater omnipotens, æterne Deus, qui nos ad principium hujus diei pervenire fecisti; tua nos hodie salva virtute; et concede ut in hac die ad nullum declinemus peccatum; nec ullum incurramus periculum, sed semper ad tuam justitiam faciendam omnis nostra actio tuo moderamine dirigatur. Per &c.65




Although the following prayers have long been used by the church of England, yet they were not placed in their present position until the year 1661, having been previously repeated at the end of the Litany. The appellation of "prayers," which is given to these collects, in itself marks their introduction into the office of morning prayer at a different period from the "collects." The rubric before the collect for the day says, "Then shall. follow three collects." That before the collect for the king, "Then these five prayers following." Had all these prayers been introduced at the same time, they would all have been called "collects," or " prayers." [248] In fact, there are now six collects after the collect for the day, besides the benediction. According to the ancient English offices, these collects would be termed Memoriæ, or commemorations, de Pace, de Gratia, pro Rege, &c.66 The collects for the king, &c. are placed in precisely the situation they would have occupied, had they been repeated at morning prayer by the English church in ancient times. On the days when these prayers are omitted, the litany is said at the end of the office of morning prayer. This is according to the rites of the church of Constantinople, where, at the office of matin lauds every morning, the service is terminated by a litany, and prayer or benediction67; and the eastern church, in the third or fourth century, also adopted the same custom exactly, as may be seen in the Apostolic Constitutions68. The two prayers for the king and royal family, although they do not appear to have been actually translated from any very ancient offices, are yet, both in expressions and substance, perfectly conformable to the many prayers for kings, &c. which are found in the liturgies and offices of the primitive church69.



This collect is as old as the fifth century, being found in the sacramentary of Gelasius, A.D. 494. We can have no reasonable doubt that it has been used by the English church for above twelve hundred years.

Almighty and everlasting God, who alone workest great marvels; Send down upon our Bishops and Curates, and all Congregations committed to their charge, the healthful Spirit of thy grace; and that they may truly please thee, pour upon them the continual dew of thy blessing. Grant this, O Lord, for the honour of our Advocate and Mediator, Jesus Christ. Amen.

Omnipotens sempiterne Deus, qui facis mirabilia magna solus; prætende super famulos tuos Pontifices, et super cunctas Congregationes illis com-missas, Spiritum gratiæ salutaris; et ut in veritate tibi complaceant, per-petuum eis rorem tuæ benedictionis infunde70.




This prayer occurs in the liturgy of the church of Constantinople, which bears the name of Chrysostom. It must be confessed, however, that it is not found in the most ancient manuscripts of that liturgy, but in those of the liturgy of Basil, where it is recited as the prayer preceding the third anthem at the beginning of the Communion-service. [250] It occurs in a MS. of Basil’s liturgy, which has been referred by Goar and others to the ninth century. Whether this prayer be as old as the time of either Basil or Chrysostom, is very doubtful to me, because all the commencement of those liturgies which bear their names (except the lessons) appears to be more recent than the time of Chrysostom: however, this prayer has certainly been very anciently used in the exarchate of Caesarea, and the patriarchate of Constantinople.

Almighty God, who hast given us grace at this time with one accord to make our common supplications unto thee; and dost promise, that when two or three are gathered together in thy Name, thou wilt grant their requests: Fulfil now, O Lord, the desires, and petitions of thy servants, as may be most expedient for them; granting us in this world knowledge of thy truth, and in the world to come life everlasting. Amen.

Ho tas koinas psautas kai sumphônous hêmin charisamenos proseuchas, ho kai duo kai trisi sumphônousin epi tô onomati sou, tas aitêseis parechein epaggeilamenos; autos kai nun tôn doulôn sou ta aitêmata pros to sumpheron plêrôson, chôrêgôn hêmin en tô paronti aiôni tên epignôsin tês sês alêtheias, kai en tô mellonti zôên aiônion charizomenos)71



The office of matins terminated with a benediction, according to Benedict, A.D. 530, Amalarius, [251] A.D. 82072, and the offices of the Anglo-Saxon church73. We find also by the Apostolical Constitutions, that the conclusion of the office of matins in the eastern church, in the third or fourth century, was a benediction given by the bishop74. The benediction we use is derived from the liturgies of the eastern churches. This form occurred in the liturgies of Antioch, Cæsarea, Constantinople, and Jerusalem. It is spoken of by Chrysostom (A.D. 380), Theodoret (A.D. 420), and many others; and had probably been used in those oriental churches from the most primitive times.

The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Ghost, be with us all evermore. Amen.

Hê charis tou Kuriou hêmôn Iêsou Christou, kai hê agapê tou Theou kai Patros ka hê koinônia tou hagiou Pneumatos eiê meta pantôn humôn. 75


1 Num. 22. p. vii.

2 "Perfectis Missis (lectionibus) dicite Matutinos, directaneo; Exaltabo te Deus meus et Rex meus. Deinde, Confitemi. Inde, Cantemus Domino. Lauda anima mea Dominum. Benedictionem, Laudate Dominum de cœlis. Te Deum, laudamus, Gloria in excelcis Deo: et Capitellum. Omni Dominica sic dicatur." Regula S. Cæsarii c. xxi. p. 56 pars 2. Codex Regularum.

3 "Omni Sabbato Matutinos, Cantemus Domino: et Te Deum laudamus." Regula S. Aureliani juxta finem, p. 68. Codex Regular.

4 Regula S. Benedicti, c. 11.

5 Breviar. Sarisbur. fol. 4. 22. Breviar. Eboracens. fol. 5.

6 This will remind the reader of that eloquent passage of Cyprian, where he exhorts us to fix our affections and desires on heaven: "Magnus illic nos carorum numerus expectat, parentum, fratrum, filiorum, frequens nos et copiosa turba desiderat, jam de sua immortalitate secura, et adhuc de nostra salute solicita. Ad horum conspectum et complexum venire, quanta et illis et nobis in commune lætitia est! Qualis illic cœlestium regnorum voluptas, sine timore moriendi, et cum æternitate vivendi! Quam summa et perpetua felicitas! Illic Apostolorum gloriosus chorus: illic Prophetarum exultantium numerus: illic Martyrum innumerabilis populus, ob certaminis et passionis victoriam coronatus: triumphantes illic virgines, quæ concupiscentiam carnis et corporis continentiæ robore subegerunt: remunerati misericordes, qui alimentis et largitionibus pauperum justitiæ opera fecerunt: qui Dominica præcepta servantes, ad cœlestes thesauros terrenia patrimonia transtulerunt." Cyprianus de Mortalitate, p. 166. edit. Fell.

7 Brev. Sar. fol. 5. et Psalt. ibid. fol. 8. Brev. Ebor. fol. 5.

8 Bona, de Div. Psalmod. p. 636. c. 18. §. 11.

9 Mabillon. de Lit. Gall. p. 108.

10 S. Benedict. Regula, c. 11, 12. Amalarius de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 10. de Matutinali Officio.

11 Pros orthron de ton psalmon touton legete ho Theos mou pros de orthrizô. edipsêse se hê psuchê mou. (diaphauma de) eulogeite panta ta kuriou ton kurion. doxa en hupsistois Theô k. t. l. Athanasius de Virginitate, c. 20. p. 122. tom. ii. Oper. ed. Benedict.

12 Breviar. Sarisb. fol. 5. et Psalt. fol. 8. 22. Brev. Ebor. fol. 5. Brev. Hereford.

13 S. Benedict. Regula, c. 12, 13. Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 10. "Dein sequitur lectio quæ pro admonitione fraterna recitatur in choro, quæ semper placita erit quamdiu in præsenti sæculo deget ecclesia."

14 Cassian. Institut. Cœnob. lib. ii. c. 6.

15 Brev. Sarisb. fol. 5. Brev. Ebor. fol. 6. Brev. Hereford. Psalt. in Dominica die.

16 S. Benedict. Regula, c. 13.

17 Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 12.

18 Brev. Sar. fol. 5. et Psalt. ibid. fol. 7. Brev. Ebor. fol. 5.

19 Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 10. de Matutinali Officio.

20 Brev. Sar. fol. 5. Psalt. ibid. fol. 11. Brev. Eborac. fol. 250. Brev. Hereford. ad primam.

21 Waterland’s Critical History of the Athanasian Creed, p. 84, 85. ch. iv. p. 46, &c.

22 Breviar. fol. 3. 9.

23 Breviarium Sarisbur. Psalt. fol. 11, 12. Dominicis diebus ad primam.

24 Breviar. Sarisb. Psalt. fol. 13. Breviar. Eborac. fol. 251.

25 Appendix to Hickes’s Letters, ad primam.

26 Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 2.

27 Brev. Sarisb. Psalt. fol. 13. Breviar. Eborac. fol. 251. Breviar. Herefordens. ad primam.

28 S. Benedict. Regula, c. 17. c. 13. Amalarius de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 2.

29 Concil. Toletan. iv. c. 9. Concil. Gerundens. can. 10. "Item nobis semper placuit observari, ut omnibus diebus post Matutinas et Vesperas Oratio Dominica a sacerdote proferatur."

30 Appendix to Hickes’s Letters, ad primam.

31 Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 4.

32 Appendix, &c. ut supra.

33 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 12.

34 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 13. These three forms were placed before the Collects in the ancient offices of the English churches, but their present position is very good, at the commencement of the prayers.

35 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 13. Brev. Eboracens. fol. 251. Brev. Herefordens. ad primam.

36 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 13. Brev. Ebor. fol. 251.

37 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 57. p. 2. fol. 22. p. 2. This rubric appears to be derived from those I have referred to, for in both the priest alone stood up after a certain part of the prayers had been said.

38 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 13.

39 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 22. Brev. Hereford. ad primam. Offic. Anglo-Sax. ad prim. Appendix to Hickes’s Letters.

40 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 22. Brev. Hereford. ad prim. preces feriales.

41 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 22. Brev. Hereford. ad prim. Offic. Anglo-Sax. ad primam.

42 Brev. Eboracens. fol. 264. Brev. Sarisb. fol. 85. Bishop Lloyd remarks on this verse and response as follows: "I do not know what Burnet means by stating that this response was made in the year 1549, on the occasion of political occurrences—for this answer is found in all the foreign breviaries, in the Salisbury primer, and in the primer of Hen. VIII. See Burnet’s Hist. Ref. p. ii. b. i. anno 1549."

43 Brev. Sar. Psalt. fol. 13. Brev. Eborac. fol. 251. Offic. Anglo-Sax. ad primam.

44 Brev. Sar. fol. 9. 13. 22. Brev. Eboracens. fol. 252.

45 Officium Anglo-Sax. ad primam. Appendix to Hickes’s Letters.

46 Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 12.

47 Amalar. lib. iv. c. 45.

48 Bona, Divitia Psalmodia, c.xvi. §. 17. N0. 2.

49 "Oratio et benedictio semper in fine sunt, antequam disjungantur fratres singuli ad propria." Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 45.

50 "Sicut, ubique fit, et post antiphonas collectiones per ordinem ab episcopis vel presbyteris dicantur—plebs collecta oratione ad vesperam ab episcopo cum benedictione dimittatur." Concil. Agathens. can. 30. Concil. Labbe, tom. iv. p. 1388.

51 Apost. Const. lib. viii. c. 37.

52 Cassian. Inst. Cœnobit. lib. ii. c. 7.

53 Athanasii Apologia pro Fuga, p. 334. tom. i. ed. Benedict. Historia Arianorum ad Monachos, ibid. p. 394.

54 tosoutous de psalmous eipe, hosous dunê stêkousa eieiv kai kata psalmon euchê kai gonuklisia epiteleisthô. Athan. de Virginitate, p. 122. tom. ii. ed. Benedict. The gonuklisia after the euchê mentioned here, is also spoken of by Cassian, Inst. lib. ii. c. 7. "Apud illos (Ægyptios) ergo non ita est, sed antequam flectant genua, paulisper orant, et stantes in supplicatione majorem temporis partem expendunt. Itaque post hæc puncto brevissimo procidentes humi, velut adorantes tantum divinam clementiam, summa velocitate consurgunt," &c.

55 Sacramentar. Gregorii a Menard. p. 212. Gelasii Sacramentar. Muratori, Liturg. Vet. Rom. tom. i. p. 743.

56 Gavanti Thesaurus a Merati, tom. ii. p. 152, 153.

57 Amalar. de Eccl. Off. lib. iv. c. 12. "Oratio consueta."

58 Fulbertus Carnotensis, Ep. 79. "Finitis autem capitulis post orationem Dominicam, ubi dicitur Domine exaudi orationem meam, statim esset subdenda oratio, quæ ex libro Sacramentario recitatur."

59 Bona, de Div. Psalmod. c. xviii. §. 10. p. 631.

60 Brev. Sar. fol. 5. and 8. Brev. Eborac. fol. 7. and 221.

61 Brev. Sar. fol. 83.

62 Brev. Sar. fol. 13. Brev. Heref. ad primam. Brev. Ebor. fol. 252.

63 Miss. Sarisb. Commune, fol. 19. MS. Leofric. Alissa pro Pace, fol. 223. Gelasii Sacramentarium, Muratori Lit. Vet. Rom. tom. i. p. 727. Gregorii Sacr. Menard, p. 216. A passage in S. Augustin’s Meditations (c. 32.) seems to have suggested a part of this collect: "Deus, eujus nos fides excitat, spes erigit, charitas jungit; Deus, qui pati te jubes, et inveniri te facis, et pulsanti aperis; Deus a quo averti, cadere est, ad quem converti, surgere est, in quo manere, consistere est; Deus, quem nemo amittit, nisi deceptus, nemo quærit, nisi admonitus, nemo invenit, nisi purgatus, Deus, quem nosse, vivere est, cui servire, regnare est, quem laudare, salus et gaudium animæ est; te labiis et corde, omnique, qua valeo virtute, laudo, benedico, atque adoro."

64 "Gratias agimus, Domine sancte, Pater omnipotens, æterne Deus, qui nos transacto noctis spatio, ad matutinas horas perducere dignatus es: quæsumus ut dones nobis diem hunc sine peccato transire, quatenus ad vesperum gratias referamus. Per." Gelasii Sacr. Murat. tom. i. p. 743. Orationes ad Matutinas.

65 Gregorii Sacramentar. a Menard. p. 212. Breviar. Sarisb. fol. 13. Psalter. Offic. Anglo-Sax. in Appendix to Hickes’s Letters, ad primam. Bishop Lloyd remarks on this prayer as follows: "In the Brev. Rom. this prayer is as follows: ‘Domine Deus omnipotens, qui ad principium hujus diei nos pervenire fecisti; tua nos hodie salva virtute, ut in hac die ad nullum declinemus peccatum, sed semper ad tuam justitiam faciendam nostra procedant eloquia, dirigantur cogitationes et opera per Dominum.’ That in Brev. Sarisb. is somewhat different:" (Then follows the collect which I have given above in the text.) "It is clear that our collect was taken from Brev. Sarisb.; and this is one instance, among many, that the reformers of our liturgy did not use the Brev. Rom. It is to be observed, that the collect is the same in the Roman breviaries both before and after the reformation of Pins V." MS. Annotations on the Book of C. P.

66 Brev. Sarisb. fol. 22. Psa. Memoriæ Communes ad Laudes.

67 Goar, Rituale Græccum, p. 54, 55. The English church also from ancient times has been accustomed to recite the Litany in the morning, during Quadragesima, or Lent. See Brev. Sarisb. Pars hiemalis, fol. 68.

68 Apost. Const. lib. viii. c. 38.

69 Liturgia Basilii, Goar, Rit. Græc. p. 171. 178. Liturgia Marci, Renaudot, Liturg. Oriental. tom. i. p. 133. Miss. Sarisb. fol. 19. Commune. Missa pro Rege, &c. In the Gothic or Gallican liturgy, we find the same ideas as those which occur in the first part of our prayer for the king. "Dominum dominantium et Regem regnantium—deprecemur ut nobis populo suo pacem regum tribuere dignetur." Mabillon, Lit. Gall. p. 246. Mnêthêti Kurie tôn eusebestatôn kai pistotatôn hêmôn basileôn … hupotaxon autois panta ta barbara ethnê, ta tous polemous thelonta. Lit. Basilii ut supra. "Quaesumus, omnipotens et misericors Deus, ut rex noster—qui tua miseratione regni suscepit gubernacula, virtutum omnium perci piat incrementa." Miss. Sar. Com. fol. 19. MS. Leofric Missa cotidiana pro Rege.

70 Gelasii Sacramentar. Muratori, tom. i. p. 719. Sacr. Gregorii, Menard. p. 254. Miss. Sarisb. Commune, fol. 24. Brev. Sarisb. post Letaniam, fol. 60. Psalt.

71 Liturgia Chrysostomi, Goar Rituale Græc. p. 66. Basilii, ibid. p. 160. Goar refers this prayer, not to Chrysostom, but to Basil. See Rituale Græc. not. 106. in Chrysostomi Liturg. But although the absence of the form in question in the ancient MSS. of Chrysostom’s liturgy affords sufficient reason for thinking that it was not composed by him, yet the mere existence of the prayer in the MSS. of Basil’s liturgy is no proof that it is to be attributed to him.

72 Benedict. Regula, c. 11. Amalar. de Off. Eccl. lib. iv. c. 45.

73 Off. Anglo-Sax. ad primam. Appendix to Hickes’s Letters.

74 Apost. Const. lib. viii. c. 38.

75 Liturgia Basilii, Goar, p. 165. ibid. p. 75. Jacobi Græce, Assemani, Codex Liturg. tom. v. p. 32. Jacobi Syriace, Renaudot, Liturg. Oriental. tom. ii. p. 30.

Project Canterbury