John Harper – The Forms and Orders of Western Liturgy from the Tenth to the Eighteenth Century

An introduction to the principal forms and orders of Western liturgy between about 900 and 1700, this book explains their nature and basic historical origin, and presents in detail the contents and orders of principal services as well as additional and special forms of worship. This book emphasizes the mainstream of Western liturgy derived from the medieval Roman Rite as found in secular and monastic churches. After the Reformation it concentrates on the rites of the Roman Catholic church and the Church of England. Harper discusses the nature of liturgy and provides an historical summary and individual chapters on medieval churches and their communities, the Christian calendar, medieval liturgical books, the Psalms, the Office, the Mass, Processions and Additional Observances, Holy Week and Easter, the Tridentine Rite, and the English Book of Common Prayer. Harper concludes with two chapters which raise the problems of establishing the order of a liturgical service, and introduces selected medieval sources accessible in facsimile or edition. A select, annotated bibliography and a glossary of ecclesiastical and liturgical terms are included.


Prologue: What is Liturgy?
1. The Formation of Christian Liturgy: A Historical
The Spread of Christian Worship
Monasticism and the Daily Office
The Mass
Liturgical Change in the Later Middle Ages
Reformation and Counter-Reformation
2. Liturgy and the Medieval Church
Medieval Clerics, Religious, and their Churches
The Ordering of Collegiate and Monastic Foundations
The Relationship of Order in Choir and Music
Nuns and Canonesses
The Place of the People in the Medieval Liturgy
Polyphony and Polyphonic Choirs
3. The Liturgical Year and Calendar
The Day
The Week
The Calendar
The Annual Cycle of Seasons (Temporale)
The Annual Cycle of Feast-Days (Sanctorale)
The Ranking of Liturgical Days
Seasonal and Festal Observance
The Extent of the Liturgical Day
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