25 March 2014

Quod Esaias dixerat

Here is my translation of the Reformation-period Latin hymn “Quod Esaias dixerat” (G. Fabricius) set by Lucas Lossius to the same melody as the other Annunciation hymn there, “Fit porta Christi,” by St. Rhabanus Maurus. Unlike Rhabanus’ text, which, appointed for Compline on the Annunciation, focuses on the mystery of the virgin birth, Fabricius’s new hymn is explicitly of the Annunciation. Lossius (fol. 204b) includes in Latin a preface to the hymn as follows:
“There are four parts: first, a proposition or assertion of the conceiving of the Son of God according to the prophecy of Isaiah 7, in the womb of the virgin Mary, through the working of the Holy Spirit (Luke 1); second, an exposition of the manner of the conception, by the envoy or message of the Angel Gabriel; third, a description of the person of the Messiah, which is that He is not only true Man but also true God, and that His reign is spiritual and eternal; fourth, a prayer that Christ would conjoin and preserve the Church which He has redeemed by His Passion and death, that He together with the Father and Holy Spirit may be rightly acknowledged, adored, and invoked by us.”
The melody follows as provideds by Lossius.

FULFILLED is St. Esaias’ word,
The virgin pure conceives her Lord,
The Seed is sown that, being bred,
Shall crush at last the dragon’s head.

2. Glad tidings doth God’s Angel tell:
Salvation gained, Emmanuel,
The Hope of all by human birth;
So sing ye praises, all the earth!

3. He shall be great, His name shall be
Son of the Most High Majesty;
His Father’s kingdom He shall tend,
And of it there shall be no end.

4. O Christ, that kingdom Thou hast built
By many_a wound and blood outspilt
Let not the foe this latter day
Confound and leave in disarray;

5. So be Thou honored, God the Son,
With Father and with Spirit one,
To whom alone belongs the praise
And laud of all, for endless days. Amen.

Translation © 2014 Matthew Carver.

1. Quod Esaïas dixerat,
Intacta virgo concipit,
Ut Semen illud conterens
Caput Draconis prodeat.

2. Laetum salutis Angelus
Profert adeptae nuncium, [nuntium]
Promissa Spes, Emanuel,
Nascetur orbi, psallite.

3. Hic magnus est, et Filius
Altissimi vocabitur,
Patrisque regnum termino
Carens in aevum, proferet.

4. Hoc Christe regnum plurimo
Quod astruisti vulnere,
Ne dissipari hoc ultimo
Sinas ab hoste, tempore.

5. Ut tu colaris cum tuo
Patre_atque sancto Spiritu,
Cui cultus et laus, omnibus
Debetur uni seculis. Amen.


RobbieFish said...


Walter said...

Hi Matt, I've been slowly studying
these last several posts. Thank you
for the great translations !
But you've stumped me on who LOSSIUS
is. Will stop there before I put my foot in my mouth any more than I have already.

Matt Carver (Matthaeus Glyptes) said...

Thank you, Robin and Walter.

Walter: Lucas Lossius (1508–82) was a Lutheran theologian and pedagogue in Lüneburg (near Hamburg). He edited a cantional which appeared in several editions during the 16th c.

Matt Carver (Matthaeus Glyptes) said...

Oh, and of course, Lossius was also a Kantor.