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Miserere mei, Deus

5vv; Cantiones Sacrae 1591 xx
author of text
Psalm 50 (51): 1

Thanks to the efforts of editors in the twentieth century some of Byrd’s works have become well established gems of the repertory. One such is the five-part Miserere mei, Deus. A clear homophonic opening asking for mercy moves quickly into beautiful imitation. The text contains several words which seem to elicit particularly powerful melodies from Byrd, especially ‘iniquitatem’ (‘wrong-doing’) and ‘misericordiam’ (‘mercy’); indeed the melody of this latter word was one that he was to take forward and use in the monumental Infelix ego.

from notes by Andrew Carwood © 2009

Grâce aux efforts d’éditeurs du XXe siècle, certaines œuvres de Byrd sont devenues de véritables joyaux du répertoire. Ainsi le Miserere mei, Deus à cinq parties, dont la limpide ouverture homophone implorant la miséricorde se mue rapidement en une splendide imitation. Le texte recèle plusieurs mots qui semblent arracher à Byrd des mélodies particulièrement puissantes, surtout «iniquitatem» («iniquité») et «misericordiam» («miséricorde»)—de fait, la mélodie entendue à ce mot sera mise en avant dans le monumental Infelix ego.

extrait des notes rédigées par Andrew Carwood © 2009
Français: Hypérion

Dank der Bemühungen mehrerer Herausgeber des 20. Jahrhunderts gehören einige Werke Byrds nun zum Grundrepertoire. Eins dieser Werke ist das fünfstimmige Miserere mei, Deus. Ein klarer homophoner Anfang bittet um Gnade und geht dann schnell in wunderschöne Imitation über. Der Text enthält mehrere Worte, die Byrd besonders großartige Melodien zu entlocken scheinen, so etwa „iniquitatem“ („Missetaten“) und „misericordiam“ („Gnade“); die Melodie dieses letzteren Wortes nahm er sogar später wieder auf und verwendete sie in dem monumentalen Infelix ego.

aus dem Begleittext von Andrew Carwood © 2009
Deutsch: Viola Scheffel


Byrd: Hodie Simon Petrus & other sacred music
Faire is the Heaven
COLCD107Download only
Libera nos - The Cry of the Oppressed
SIGCD338Download only


Track 3 on CDA67653 [3'04]
Track 3 on COLCD107 [3'46] Download only
Track 7 on SIGCD338 [3'20] Download only

Track-specific metadata for CDA67653 track 3

Recording date
14 November 2007
Recording venue
Fitzalan Chapel, Arundel Castle, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Jonathan Freeman-Attwood
Recording engineer
Martin Haskell & Iestyn Rees
Hyperion usage
  1. Byrd: Hodie Simon Petrus & other sacred music (CDA67653)
    Disc 1 Track 3
    Release date: February 2009
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