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Gregorian Chant: Bibiliography of Gregorian chant

Date: Wed, 13 Sep 1995 10:14:43 -0100
From: chapmac(a)SWOSU.EDU (Charles Chapman)
Subject: Long answer to Gregorian Chant Question

For list members interested in the questions concerning performance of
Gregorian Chant I have appended a recent bibliography on the subject.

There will be a session, with demo choir, on this subject at the
Southwestern Division ACDA convention in March, in Dallas, Texas.

Persons interested in chant DO need the Liber Usualis, simply because it is
the only printed source for some chants. It is permanently out-of-print,
(not in publishing plans of either Solesmes or GIA) but copies still
circulate. Most recommended books are Graduale Triplex, (which is Graduale
Romanum with non-diastematic notation); Antiphonale Monasticum; and Liber
Cantualis for simpler chants. In order to interpret the oldest neums you
will need the Gregorian Semiology, also.

Bibliography follows:

A Selected Bibliography of Books Related to the Performance of
Gregorian Chant
Dr. Charles Chapman, Southwestern Oklahoma State University
Revised July, 1995General Information

Apel, Willi. Gregorian Chant. Burns Oates & Washbourne, Ltd., London, 1958.
For a long time this was the best general resource available. It is still
indispensable reading, but you should now use it with care in light of
research of the last 35 years.

Cardine, O. S. B., Dom Eugène, trans. by Tortolano, William. Beginning
Studies in Gregorian Chant. Published in French in 1975 by Abbey of
Solesmes. Translation, G.I.A. Publications, 1988. The opening pages are a
good introduction to square notation. The body of the book is a discussion
of chant for the more advanced student. It contains an excellent
discussion of the aesthetics of chant.

Cardine, Dom Eugène, trans. by Fowells, Robert M. Gregorian Semiology.
Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes, Solesmes, France, 1982. A thorough and
systematic study of the non-diastematic neumes of St. Gall and Laon and
their relationship to traditional square notation. Study of this material
will allow the conductor to update the Vatican Edition scores, and correct
omissions and errors. Of particular interest to persons who learned chant
rules in the 1950s, is the new information concerning repercussed neumes
and the performance of the quilisma.

Chapman, Charles W. Look Out, Roy! That Quilisma's Got Teeth!. Chorus!,
April, 1995, Vol. 7, #5, pp. 10-12. A short introduction to study sources
for beginners in chant literature and notation. Select bibliography
includes performance sources for English texts.

Fowells, Robert M. A New Look at Gregorian Chant. Choral Journal,
December, 1992, pp. 15 - 19. Read this first. A good introduction to the

Gangwere, Blanche. Music History from the Late Roman through the Gothic
Periods, 313-1425. Westport, Connecticut, Greenwood Press, 1986. Pretty
good outline for persons who want quick, checklist information.

Hiley, David. Western Plainchant. Clarendon Press, Oxford, 1993. The
newest resource in this field. It is complete and expensive! ($85.00). Of
particular interest is the discussion of the development of Gregorian
chant, which divorces the chant from supposed Jewish connections.

Hoppin, Richard H. Medieval Music. W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., New York,
1978. A fine discussion of chant, with many illustrations and good musical
examples in modern notation. It contains some outdated information
concerning chant rhythm.

Hourlier, Dom Jacques. La Notation Musicale des Chante Liturgiques Latins.
Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes, Solesmes, France, 1960. Many examples
of chant notation from the various Continental schools, with explanations.
An English edition is nearly ready.

Hughes, Andrew. Medieval Manuscripts for Mass and Office. University of
Toronto Press, Toronto, 1982. This is now out-of-print. It is an
excellent source to help you to organize the liturgy of the middle ages and
to identify music and texts.

Jeffers, Ron. Translations and Annotations of Choral Repertoire, Vol. 1,
Sacred Latin Texts. Earthsongs, Corvallis, Oregon, 1988. Address of
Earthsongs: 220 NW 29th Street; Corvallis, OR 97330. One of the most
useful books to appear in the last ten years for the conductor who works
with Latin texts. Contains word-by-word translations, historical notes,
and liturgical notes. Latin perfectionists may quarrel with his
translation of perfect tenses.

O'Connor, Joseph. Gregorian Chant Restoration and Solesmes. The American
Organist, May, 1992, pp. 58 - 65. An excellent historical summary of the
role of the monastery of St. Pierre in the modern restoration of the chant.

Rastall, Richard. The Notation of Western Music. St. Martin's Press, New
York, 1982. Excellent overview of the history of notation. The discussion
of non-diastematic notation is the most recent available in this kind of
Rayburn, John. Gregorian Chant, a History of the Controversy Concerning its
Rhythm. Greenwood Press, Westport, Connecticut. A 1981 reprint of the
1964 edition. A good historical summary of the problem, but written before
Dom Cardine's work.

Scores (Latin text) for Performance or Study
Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes. Gradulae Sacrosanctae Romanae Ecclesiae
de Tempore & de Sanctis. Desclée & Co., Tournai, Belgium, 1974. This is
the father of Graduale Triplex. It is the best Vatican edition of its
time. It is a good source for uncluttered scores. Address of Abbey: 72300
Sablé sur Sarthe, France.

Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes. Gradulae Triplex. Abbaye Saint-Pierre de
Solesmes, Solesmes, France, 1973. The Vatican edition of a large number of
the common chants for the Eucharist, with St. Gall neumes in red, below,
and Laon neumes in black, above. There are a few editorial [ ]

Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes. Liber Cantualis. Abbaye Saint-Pierre de
Solesmes, France, 1978. Collection of the most popular (and easiest)
chants, hymns, and settings of the ordinary for congregation's use at
Eucharist and at offices. All texts in Latin. This is the best first
singing book for beginners.

Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes, eds. The Liber Usualis with Introduction
and Rubrics in English. Gregorian Institute of America, Toledo, Ohio,
1954. Now out of print, the Liber was for over fifty years the best
collection of psalms, chants, and settings for the offices and the ordinary
of the mass. There are still many used copies available to the book
hunter. Try to buy the most recent copy possible. Contrary to rumor it is
not scheduled for republication.

Abbaye Saint-Pierre de Solesmes. Psalterium Monasticum. Abbaye
Saint-Pierre de Solesmes, Solesmes, France, 1981. The complete psaltery in
Latin for all the offices of the monastic day.

Psalm Settings in English to Traditional Tones
Church Hymnal Corporation Psalm Settings to English texts for Responsorial
Psalm Singing. Set of four books. Psalms in English for solo cantor to
intone to traditional formulas and tones, with congregation's responses for
use in Eucharist. The responses are sometimes too elaborate and must be
recomposed for the Sunday morning use of the average congregation. Each
book has tear-out sheets and authorization for photocopying if the book is
purchased. Price of each book is c. $15.00.

Church Hymnal Corporation. The Hymnal 1940. Church Hymnal Corporation,
New York. The immediate past hymnal of the Episcopal Church contains the
largest number of good adaptations of chant to English translations, most
accomplished by Canon Winifred Douglas, who studied at Solesmes. It uses
modern notation.

Church Hymnal Corporation. The Hymnal 1982. Church Hymnal Corporation,
New York, 1985. The current hymnal of the Episcopal Church--a good second
source, but too beguiled by the mensuralists.

Crocker, Richard. Gradual Psalms, Alleluia Verses, and Tracts for Year A.
Church Hymnal Series VI, Part I. Church Hymnal Corporation, New York,

Crocker, Richard. Gradual Psalms, Alleluia Verses, and Tracts for Year B.
Church Hymnal Series VI, Part II. Church Hymnal Corporation, New York,

Crocker, Richard. Gradual Psalms, Alleluia Verses, and Tracts for Year C.
Church Hymnal Series VI, Part III. Church Hymnal Corporation, New York,

Crocker, Richard. Gradual Psalms, Alleluia Verses, and Tracts for Holy
Days, Various Occasions, Pastoral Offices and Episcopal Services. Church
Hymnal Series VI, Part IV. Church Hymnal Corporation, New York, 1981.

Litton, James, ed. The Plainsong Psalter. The Church Hymnal Corporation,
New York, 1988. Choir and congregation psalms for the offices. Each text
pointed and set to one traditional tone.


Abbaye St. Pierre de Solesmes; F-72300 Sablé-sur-Sarthe, France.

Church Hymnal Corporation; 800 Second Avenue; New York, NY 10017.

G.I.A. Publications, Inc.; 7404 South Mason Ave.; Chicago, IL 60638. Phone

Paraclete Press; PO Box 1568; Orleans, Massachusetts 02613. Phone (800)

Charles Chapman
Southwestern Oklahoma State Univ

on June 5, 2007 10:00pm

HI,my name is Andrei Rosulescu, a student at Northern Illinois University,De Kalb,Illinois interested in Gregorian Chant and member of the Schola St Gregory the Great, at St John Cantius Parish(Fr Phillips-Pastor),in Chicago,which offers both the 11am-Novus Ordo,Missa Normativa in Latin(sung from the new Solesmes Graduale Romanum),as well as the traditional 12:30am Tridentine Mass(sung from the Liber Usualis),as well as full orchestral masses on high feast days.(

I would like to point out a few explanatory updates on chantbooks in print.
First of all,a very important fact is that,yes,now finally,there is a brand new reprint of the 1952 Liber Usualis available from St Bonaventure Publications, for $107+ shipping,without the disturbing Holy Week rite changes of 1955, but authentically- traditional in the true Pre-Vatican II spirit of the liturgy.It has been reprinted with additional masses for the proper feasts of the U.S.A.and also with the rare litany of the Sacred Heart,unavailable elsewhere. Everything is in traditional chant notation with introduction and rubrics in English.There is also,as part of the introduction,a helpful tutorial on the meaning of chant, as well as a comprehensive mini-course covering the basics of Gregorian Chant,like note reading and performance,so now you can actually teach yourself the square notes,just like I did,right from the Liber,and learn how to sing this inestimable treasure of sacred music !!!
The Liber is worth the money in its entirety.I had it for a year already of heavy use at St Johns, and is of extremely durable construction, with sewn binding,redpage edges and very clear black and white printing along with six colored ribbon markers,and Hardbound, embossed "Liber Usualis" in gold leaf letters. I think that this is way better than getting a cracked up 30-or 50 year old copy of the Liber, from used bookstores or e-bay,that barely even holds up and runs anywhere from $130-200.
So why wait,hurry up and get the Liber while its still in print!
Here's the purchase information for the Liber given below:

St. Bonaventure Publications
PO Box 2750
Great Falls, MT 59403-2750
Phone 406 452-5452 Fax 406 452-9752

Aditional Gregorian Chant tutorials,publications,a reprint of the Pre-Vatican II, 1961 Graduale Romanum in two volumes, and chant pdf downloads are available directly from the Church Music Association of America at:(
Here you will also find several of the out of print Pre-Vatican II chant books in pdf formatas as well.
A brand new book that just came out is called:"Communio".It is an assembled collection of all the communion chants of the roman mass,but provided with their original,proper psalm verses, making it similar to the Introit.These verses have fallen out of use due to commodity,showing no real justification,for why they're no longer used. Well,they're back in print now !

Paraclete Press(,makes available additional publications from Solesmes,not readily available at GIA.There are invaluable Chant books, such as the much sought companion to the Graduale triplex:the inexpensive "Offertoriale triplex" from Solesmes(provided in black with the early adiastematic notation above the square notes,just like the Graduale Triplex).The Offertoriale is the soloists handbook,containing all of the old-fashioned offertory verses, that have fallen out of use over the centuries,but are nevertheless optional and fully aproved from Solesmes and Rome for performance either with the old or new roman rite in the context of the Liturgy.
The verses can be sung "in directum" by the entire schola as well,like in the case of the Gradual.
Some of these Offertory verses,which are not to be confused with the medievalTropes, are even more beautiful than the Gradual or Alleluia verses.An Offertory Chant has usually one to several verses,just like a Tract,usually two or three. When this is the case, the Offertory is performed by the schola in the responsorial manner,repeating the last part only, or the entire chant up until the next verse.

Another new invaluable book available at Paraclete Press is the:"Processionale Monasticum",from Solesmes.
It contains rare processional hymns(Salve Festa Dies- for Easter),responsories and antiphons,not available in other chant books,for the important feast days of the liturgical year(Just like the Palm Sunday Procession ,or the Feast of the Purification of the Blessed Virgin Mary,in the Graduale Romanum,or the Liber Usualis.).Some chants are proper to the Monastic Order of St Benedict,and are a completion for either before Mass,like Palm Sunday, or Vespers Processions,provided that they are sung in Gregorian Chant.The new "Processionale Monasticum" uses the Hartker manuscript of Saint Gall,and most of the chants but not all,are provided with the Hartker adiastematic notation above the square notes,just like the ones in the Graduale and Offertoriale triplex.

Solesmes has put out a Liber Hymnarius,containing all hymns of the Divine Office,as well as two volumes of the new Antiphonale Monasticum: VolumeI is the Temporal,VolumeII just appeared recently is the Ferial and VolumeIII,probably in late 2007 will be the Sanctoral.
The Liber Hymnarius can be used with both the old and new rites, many of the ancient hymns from the manuscripts are reintroduced.
the three Volume Antiphonale is meant to be used with the revised Vatican II Divine Office in Latin, and to replace the old 1934 out of print Antiphonale Monasticum.
By the way the the old 1934 Antiphonale Monasticum is also,paradoxally,along with the new Antiphonale, back in print again from Solesmes,for communities who choose to adhere(like in the case of the Tridentine Mass),chanting the old Tridentine Office.

The Liber Hymnarius along with the new Antiphonale Monasticum,which is almost in completion,reflects a new developement in chant notation as proposed by Solesmes and referres back to the oldest manuscript sources as in the case of the Graduale Triplex.
The newly devised square notation on the same four line stave by Solesmes,and used for the publication of the new three Volume Antiphonale,as well as for the liber Hymnarius,introduces new note forms like the Trigon,for example, and a better graphic representation of the liquescent neumes,so that a more accurate chant interpretation based on the ancient manuscript sources and updated neumatic chant rhytm of dom Cardine,is facilitated to the singers.
This way,all three notations of the Graduale Triplex is contained in one liquid form,without the outdated note markings of Dom Moquereau,as present in the Liber Usualis.I wish that Solesmes would reprint the Graduale Triplex according to this new complete notation.

A german Publishing company:Hartker Versand,(,has made available a new Antiphonale Romanum,gregorian Chant for the Office of the Readings,or Matins all in Latin. Here something important has been accomplished that even Solesmes did not achieve since back in the old days of Dom Pothier,a contemporary publication going back to the Hartker,Saint Gall Manuscripts,devised for use by communities who wish to chant the Tridentine Night Office with all the psalmody and the Responsoria Prolixa.

Finally in 2006 appeared a "Antiphonale Missarum iuxta ritum Sanct