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Magi veniunt ab oriente

4vv SATB
author of text
Sixth Respond at Matins & Magnificat Antiphon at First Vespers on the Feast of the Epiphany

Magi veniunt ab oriente is modestly conceived, employing just four voices. Clemens non Papa’s motet is in two parts, the second section, ‘Magi videntes stellam’, recounting the excited joy of the Magi as they resolve to set off in search of the Christ-child. Clemens, whose epithet ‘non Papa’ has long been assumed to be a means of distinguishing him from Pope Clement VII, worked in Flanders during the first half of the sixteenth century. He constantly refreshes the polyphony with new points of imitation, and an exotic modality underpins the whole piece, reflecting the Eastern origins of the Magi, whose three gifts are proffered in a series of fermata chords just before the final ‘alleluias’.

from notes by Charles Cole © 2020


Sacred treasures of Christmas
Studio Master: CDA68358Studio Master FLAC & ALAC downloads available


Track 14 on CDA68358 [6'12]

Track-specific metadata for CDA68358 track 14

Recording date
20 March 2020
Recording venue
St Augustine's Church, Kilburn, London, United Kingdom
Recording producer
Adrian Peacock
Recording engineer
David Hinitt
Hyperion usage
  1. Sacred treasures of Christmas (CDA68358)
    Disc 1 Track 14
    Release date: November 2020
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