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Veni Sancte Spiritus / Veni creator Spiritus

author of text

Frank Harrison long ago proposed that Dunstaple’s motet Veni Sancte Spiritus / Veni creator Spiritus and the same composer’s now-fragmentary Mass on Da gaudiorum premia might have been composed directly for the Notre-Dame coronation in 1431. While the demonstrably earlier copying of the motet and its direct structural parallel with Preco preheminencie, plus the likely performance role of both in the routine ritual devotions of Henry V’s chapel, undermine this hypothesis, it may yet be the case that both it and the Mass were indeed performed there. (The same might equally be true also of the boy Henry’s earlier English coronation, held at Westminster in November 1429.)

The hymn Veni creator was, as Harrison, Hughes and Wright all noted, an essential component of the coronation ritual; and the words of the verse of the Trinity respond quoted in the tenor of the Mass would have been exactly fitting for the occasion: ‘Give the rewards of joy, give the gifts of grace; loosen the chains of strife, tighten the bonds of peace’. Indeed, the relationship between motet and Mass may be closer still: the liturgical Da gaudiorum text seems itself to have been lifted (as Wright noted) from a recension of the Veni creator hymn, the very source which supplied Dunstaple with much textual and melodic material for his great motet.

from notes by Andrew Kirkman & Philip Weller © 2017


English Motets
Studio Master: CDA68256Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available
Music for the 100 Years' War
Studio Master: CDA68170Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


Track 17 on CDA68170 [5'16]
Track 9 on CDA68256 [5'29]

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