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The page says that the use "antiphoner" is obsolete in English, but it is used frequently by musicologists to the present day. Chubbles 21:52, 2 February 2007 (UTC)

"Antiphonary" sounds far the stranger of the two to me as well, though it is the only one in Webster's 9th. OED notes that Antiphoner is older, and also gives the variant antiphonar. Sparafucil (talk) 07:13, 21 November 2009 (UTC)

Large portions of this article are copied[edit]

This article seems to be almost entirely a cut and paste job from the two sources cited below, particularly the Catholic Encyclopedia article. It should be rewritten, and some of the facts checked, considering that the Catholic Encyclopedia was written in the early 1900s and is somewhat out of date both in style and content. —The preceding unsigned comment was added by Calante (talkcontribs) 15:59, 28 February 2007 (UTC).

Tagged it for cleanup because the 1911 Britannica sounds so stilted and odd to modern ears. RJFJR (talk) 13:29, 28 February 2009 (UTC)


I wish to comment about the style, content, classification, and references-cited of this article.

1/ In my opinion the article is very well written. (Actually I find this article somewhat refreshing by comparison to the 'standard' Wikipedia style of most of the other articles I've read.) I disagree that all articles need to conform to a consistent style of editing and contemporary language. The subject matter of this article is not of interest to the general public, and so a more formal style of writing should be permissible (and it might even be preferred).

2/ The depth of content in this article is appropriate for readers who have a specialized interest in this topic. Editing it down or 'cleaning it up' might tend to popularize the article and omit some important points that are of scholarly interest.

3/ I don't think this article ought to be classified narrowly as 'Catholic', because study of the history of liturgy, music notation, and medieval literate culture is of considerably wider importance than just religious. (Indeed, if one's interest is narrowly 'Catholic', then one should be concerned just with modern practice, not with historical documents that have been deprecated for today's use.)

4/ I would like to see substantially more citations of references in this article for further study (including page numbers), especially if referenced sources were accessible for study online without a paid subscription.

Neumation scribe (talk) 10:37, 20 November 2009 (UTC)

In regards 2/, I don't think the depth of content of this article is terribly great. It is a fairly simple article to read. I do find the writing clumsy and you may be mistaking bad writing (occasionally opaque in meaning because of the writer's ineptitude) for heavy duty intellectual writing (opaque in meaning because it is really technical). Gingermint (talk) 01:03, 23 August 2010 (UTC)

Out of date and full of "nun"sense[edit]

Speaking as a Benedictine nun who sang chant in Latin 50 years ago and who has a PhD in theology and a BA in Liturgical Music and is a former director of several liturgy commissions . . . .

This article is almost 100 years out of date. It is seriously inaccurate; that's not surprising, though; before the reforms of the Liturgy, it required the help of a 112-page book to learn how to organize the daily Divine Office correctly, so that all 4 classes of feasts, all 4 classes of ferias, and the precedence of octaves could be determined. Between saints' memorials--obligatory and facultative--, simple feasts, doubles, doubles of the 1st and 2nd class, it was enough to get any monastic head swimming. Been there. Done that. The chief inaccuracy is the frequently stated belief that an Antiphonale is used at a sung Mass. It is not. Why? Because antiphons are used in the divine office, which was sung as many as 8 times a day in certain monasteries. The only terms used in English are antiphonal or antiphonale, which is actually Latin and is a short form of the title Antiphonale Monasticum. (I'm looking at mine as I write.) The other terms the writer says are in use are not, at least not for this narrow use.

A new modern Antiphonale Romanum in at least 2 volumes has been published within the past couple of years by the Vatican. I'm surprised that it is not referenced, since it is now the official text.

The article also is unfocused, in that it can't decide between taking a historical or a cultural approach or even a hierarchical approach. Antiphonals differed greatly at different periods of time and in different parts of Europe, especially in Spain, which guarded certain liturgical prerogatives z/j/ealously. In addition, monastic antiphals were very different from those used in the episcopal cathedral, which is about the only other place where one might find a choir, big enough to need large books.

However, the main problem is that this article also goes far beyond the scope of the term Antiphonale and its history. The writer seems to have borrowed from the old Catholic Encyclopedia (in public domain) rather indiscriminately to include a farrago of info on missals, breviaries, and other books pertaining either to the Mass or the Divine Office, all out of date.

The article also seems a bit biased, in that the author tends to use the term "Roman" as if it were the equivalent of "Roman Catholic," which it is not. In fact, the term has been a bit pejorative at times.

The antiphonale, as a subject in Wikipedia, ought to be short and sweet. By and large this type of literature is no longer being created. I only know of a few monasteries like New Erlach in AZ that still use old printed antiphonales of the 17th-18th centuries. The books were huge so that they could be read by several monastics at once. As far as the development of the chant notation used in the antiphonals is concerned, not to mention most of what we now know about the way the chants developed, the monks of Solesmes, St. Wandrille, and a couple of other monasteries are the giants. The old hi-fi London and Decca discographies used the classic antiphonal music.

I have lots of sources for the subject; they are all on my bookshelves. Not much available on the net. However, if someone wants to work on this, I'd be glad to be a resource.

Sister Elias (talk) 05:39, 30 October 2011 (UTC)

External links modified[edit]

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