22 March 2015

Fit porta Christi pervia.

Here is an adapted translation of a hymn (“Fit porta Christi pervia”) much used for Annunciation in former days among Lutheran churches in Germany. It is composed, as may be plain, of certain stanzas from the Christmas hymn “A solis ortu(s) cardine” [From East to West, from Shore to Shore, or, From Lands That See the Sun Arise]. Apparently the latter hymn had been reconstructed based on the supposition that it had been an alphabetical poem, and stanzas were taken from the present hymn (attributed to Ambrose, 4th c.) to that end. Here I have restored the hymn, and taken the existing translation of W. J. Copeland (from yet another translation of “A solis,” “From Where the Rising Sun Goes Forth”) and adapted it slightly according to the Latin of Lossius (1579), for use as an independent hymn. The melody, very sweet, is from the same source, and used for a number of other hymns in the sanctoral section.

CHRIST’S beauteous portal, full of grace,
Is hallowed for the King to pass;
The King doth pass: the folded door
Abideth folded as before.

2. Son of the Father’s might divine,
Proceeding form His Virgin shrine,
Maker, Redeemer, Bridegroom, He
The Giant of His Church shall be.

3. Of Mother-maid the light and joy,
Of all believers hope most high,
He the dark cup of death shall drain
Ere He unloose our guilty chain.

4. All Laud to God the Father be
All praise, eternal Son, to Thee,
All glory, as is ever meet,
To God the Holy Paraclete. Amen.

4.* O Lord, the Virgin-born, to Thee
Eternal praise and glory be,
Whom with the Father we adore
And Holy Ghost for evermore. Amen.

* Alternate stanza for use on other feasts of the Holy Virgin Mary.

Fit porta Christi pervia,
referta plena gratia,
Transitque Rex et permanet
Clausa, ut fuit per secula.

2. Genus superni luminis [numinis],
Processit aula virginis,
Sponsus, redemptor, conditor,
Suae gigas Ecclesiae.

3. Honor matris et gaudium
Immensa_et spes credentium,
Per atra mortis pocula,
Resolvit nostra crimina.

4. Deo Patri sit gloria,
Eiusque soli Filio,
Cum Spiritu Paraclito,
Et nunc et in perpetuum.

No comments: