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Anyone speak Latin, please?

Stower 24 Jul 15 - 06:27 AM
Stower 24 Jul 15 - 06:47 AM
GUEST 24 Jul 15 - 07:09 AM
GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest 24 Jul 15 - 07:11 AM
GUEST,# 24 Jul 15 - 07:56 AM
sleepyjon 24 Jul 15 - 07:58 AM
sleepyjon 24 Jul 15 - 08:02 AM
GUEST,# 24 Jul 15 - 08:07 AM
GUEST,leeneia 24 Jul 15 - 08:42 AM
Stower 24 Jul 15 - 01:56 PM
GUEST,Grishka 24 Jul 15 - 02:02 PM
Stower 24 Jul 15 - 02:12 PM
McGrath of Harlow 24 Jul 15 - 03:23 PM
GUEST,Grishka 24 Jul 15 - 05:19 PM
Stower 25 Jul 15 - 09:03 AM
McGrath of Harlow 25 Jul 15 - 07:36 PM
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Subject: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: Stower
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 06:27 AM

A recent discovery has pushed back the earliest known polyphony to the 10th century.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: Stower
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 06:47 AM

Oh! Where the rest of my post go?! Here's what disappeared ...

A recent discovery has pushed back the earliest known polyphony to the 10th century. I'd like to play it using harp as the second voice, in Latin then English (so everyone can hear the words). However, I can't get the third line.

In Latin ...

Sancte bonifati martyr inclite Christi
te quesumus ut nos tuis precibus
semper gratiae Dei commendare digneris

In English ...

Saint Boniface glorious martyr of Christ
We beseech thee to thy prayers
Always God's grace commend/recommend?? you deem/deign/condescend??
(Is it something like, 'You always condescend to give God's grace'?)

Any help from Latin speakers will be much appreciated.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 07:09 AM

'You are always deemed worthy to commend the grace of God' or something like that, I reckon.

'Digneris' appears to be a passive verb.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST,Infrequent but always polite guest
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 07:11 AM

Commend us always to God's grace. Or more literally: Please commend us always to God's grace [in your prayers].


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST,#
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 07:56 AM

Sancte Bonifati martyr inclite Christi te quesumus ut nos tuis precibus semper gratiae Dei commendare digneris.

O holy distinguished martyr of Christ, Boniface, we beseech you that you should always see fit in your prayers to commend us to God's grace.

from

http://gregorianchantnetwork.blogspot.ca/2014_12_01_archive.html


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: sleepyjon
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 07:58 AM

At first glance I'd make it:

(Latin in "English order")

"quesumus te/ ut/ digneris/ semper commendare nos/ gratiae Dei/tuis precibus/"

English:

"we beseech thee/ that/ you might deign/ to always commend us/ to the grace of God/ in your prayers" - though it could easily be "always deign ..." rather than "...always commend" (and yes, I did split the infinitive - to clarify what bit of Latin goes with what bit of English)

- which is substantially what the always polite Guest said but more literal so you can see where it comes from.

If you're in any doubt, I know an expert whom I could run it past.

Pax tecum

SJ


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: sleepyjon
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 08:02 AM

- and Guest# was obviously typing at the same time as me!

SJ


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST,#
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 08:07 AM

LOL

But you know Latin and I just know Google.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 08:42 AM

Thanks for the link, Stower. On that page, we can see the old manuscript and a modern version of the sheet music. We can also hear two men singing the harmony.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: Stower
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 01:56 PM

Thank you all for your swift and helpful answers. Now I need to make the syllables fit in modern English for the second time round. It isn't easy as, for example, 'sancte bonifati' has 6 syllables and 'Saint Boniface' has only 4. They don't correspond so it means stretching the words differently over the melismata and my initial attempts soon run into trouble. I'll have to give this some thought.

Thank you all for being so helpful.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 02:02 PM

GUEST,# (24 Jul 15 - 07:56 AM) is quoting from an authoritative source.

Nevertheless, I have my doubts about some subtle details. First, the address: "Sancte" is used as a title, like, say, "Doctor", therefore the translation must be "O St. Boniface, distinguished martyr of Christ!" The martyr thing looks like a mere epitheton ornans, but it may also serve to distinguish the addressee from that other St. Boniface, the Englishman Winfrid, who was murdered by a gang of Frisian robbers, presumably for his money, not for his missionary activities.

Then: "should" has recently acquired too much of an imperative connotation, "might" is too meek. What about "may"?

Then: "always see fit in your prayers" - would be OK if the saint were considered to be praying permanently, but then he would not have time for input and evaluation. The idea is rather: whenever he reconsiders his prayers, he is asked not to leave out that commendation. Thus, in modern English the syntax must be "always see fit to commend us to God's grace in your prayers."

"Deign" is an example that etymology can destroy the meaning. "See fit" is correct, but "find it worthy" may be even closer, though perhaps a bit clumsy.

"O St. Boniface, distinguished martyr of Christ, we beseech you that you may always find it worthy to commend us to God's grace in your prayers."


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: Stower
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 02:12 PM

Wow, Grishka! That's excellent, thank you, and your translation even even be made to fit the sung scansion of the Latin perfectly! Thank you, hugely.

(My computer seems to have a life of its own! I don't know why a single w got posted when I was only just beginning to type!)


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 03:23 PM

Why sing it in English? Wouldn't speaking a translation first work just as well? Then you aren't constrained by needing to get the right number of syllables, and can concentrate on getting the sense right.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: GUEST,Grishka
Date: 24 Jul 15 - 05:19 PM

For those who did not get the joke: The saint in question is of course the "Englishman" who Christianized parts of "Germany" (without major language problems!). The medieval German clergy thanked him by declaring him a martyr honoris causa.

McGrath: I agree in principle. If the claim is to present the real thing, one should strive to stick to the original - though be aware that it will never be perfect. (I once went to a restaurant boasting "medieval" dishes - with tomato sauce!) On the other hand, artistic adaptations are the adapters' own responsibility.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: Stower
Date: 25 Jul 15 - 09:03 AM

Hello, McGrath of Harlow. Why sing it in English? Because to me music is about communciation and, while I'm communicating something in a language very few or no one (depending on the audience) understands, I'm not communicating anything in terms of verbal meaning (even if the music gives emotional meaning). That's why, when I sing in Middle English, if the song is short (say, Miri it is), I'll sing it in ME and modern English. And yes, sometimes I don't and give a translation first. It works with some songs, not with others.


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Subject: RE: Anyone speak Latin, please?
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 25 Jul 15 - 07:36 PM

I wholly agree about communication of the meaning of the words rather than just the emotional sense being essential. But I'm pretty sure I'd get the meaning a lot more readily with the translation first, before the song, than I would listening to a song I couldn't understand, and then trying to make out the words of the sung translation.

But that's partly down to my not having the best hearing in the world these days, and who always prefers subtitles to translated versions or dubbing.

You do it the way that works for you.


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