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Choralis Constantinus

The Choralis Constantinus is a collection of over 375 Gregorian chant-based polyphonic motets for the proper of the mass composed by Heinrich Isaac. The genesis of the collection is a commission by the cathedral of Constance for Isaac, at that time the official court composer for the Holy Roman Emperor Maximilian I, to compose a set of motets for the special holy days celebrated in the diocese of Constance. Isaac was in Constance at the time (April 1508) with the Imperial court as Maximilian had called a meeting of the German nobility (Reichstag) there. The music was delivered to the Constance cathedral in late 2008 and early 2009.

After Isaac's death in 1517 his pupil Ludwig Senfl, who had been a member of the Imperial chapel choir, compiled music composed for Constance and for the Habsburg Imperial court into the collection which was published by Hieronymous Formschneider in Nuremberg in three volumes from 1550-1555 and titled the Choralis Constantinus. Gerhard Pätzig, in his dissertation for the University of Tübingen in 1956 compared available manuscripts with the Formschneider print and determined that the music written for the Constance cathedral was most of that contained in Volume II and parts of Volume III of the Formschneider publication. The remainder of the Choralis Constantinus is from Maximilian's court repertory.

A modern edition appeared in Volumes 10 and 32 of Denkmäler der Tonkunst in Österreich, the latter edited by Anton Webern, the famous composer, who was a composition student of Arnold Schoenberg. He prepared this volume as part of his dissertation for the University of Vienna, where he received his PhD in 1906. Volume III, edited by Louise Cuyler, was published by the University of Michigan Press in 1950. Facsimiles of the original Formschneider prints are published by Alamire Publishers (Postbus 45, B-3990 Peer, Belgium) with a foreword by Edward R. Lerner. They can be obtained through OMI (Old Music and Incunabula)

Each Feast contains a polyphonic motet, based on the corresponding Gregorian chant for the Introit, Alleluia (or Tract) and Communion. Volume II contains most of the Solemn Feasts. Those Propers all include alternate verses of the Sequence hymn, set thusly so as to allow for alternatim performance between the choir and the organist. The medival Sequence was of particular interest to the Constance diocese, which included the monasteries of Reichenau and St. Gall where many Sequences originated.

Choralis Constantinus I (Denkmäler der Tonkunst in Österreich, Volume 10):

Asperges me Domine/Gloria Patri
Introit Alleluia Tract Sequence Communion
De Sanctissima Trinitate Benedicta sit sancta Trinitas Benedictus es, Domine Benedicta semper sancta sit Trinitas Benedicite Deum
Domenica I p. Pentecosten Domine in tua Domine Deus salutis Narrabo omnia mirabili
Domenica II p. Pentecosten Factus est Dominus Deus judex justus Cantabo Domino
Domenica III p. Pentecosten Respice in me Diligam te virtus Ego clamavi
Domenica IV p. Pentecosten Dominus illuminatio Domine in virtu te Dominus firmamentum
Domenica V p. Pentecosten Exaudi Domine In te Domine Unam petii
Domenica VI p. Pentecosten Dominus fortitudo Omnes gentes plaudite Circuibo et immolabo
Domenica VII p. Pentecosten Omnes gentes plaudite Eripe me de inimicis Inclina aurem
Domenica VIII p. Pentecosten Suscepimus Deus Te decet hymnus Gustate et videte
Domenica IX p. Pentecosten Ecce Deus Attendite populo Primum regnum
Domenica X p. Pentecosten Dum clamarum Exultate Deo Acceptabis sacrificium
Domenica XI p. Pentecosten Deus in loco Honora de tua
Domenica XII p. Pentecosten Deus meus Domine refugium De fructu saciabitur
Domenica XIII p. Pentecosten Respice in te Venite exultemus Panem dedisti
Domenica XIV p. Pentecosten Protector et respice Quoniam magnus Panis quem ego
Domenica XV p. Pentecosten Inclina Domine Paratum cor Qui manducat
Domenica XVI p. Pentecosten Miserere nostri Domine In exitu Domine memora
Domenica XVII p. Pentecosten Justus es Domine Dilexi quoniam Vovete Domino
Domenica XVIII p. Pentecosten Da pacem Domine Laudate Dominum Tollite et introite
Domenica XIX p. Pentecosten Salus populi Dextera Dei Tu mandisti
Domenica XX p. Pentecosten Omnia quae Deus judex Memento servo tua
Domenica XXI p. Pentecosten In voluntate De profundis In salutari anima mea
Domenica XXII p. Pentecosten Si iniquitates Confiteor tibi Dico vobis
Domenica XXIII p. Pentecosten Dixit Dominum Qui posuit Amen Dico vobis
Adventus I Ad te levavi Ostende nobis Dominus dabit
Adventus II Popule Sion Laetatus Sion Jerusalem surge
Adventus III Gaudete in Domino Excita Domine Dicite confortamini
Adventus IV Memento nostri Veni Domine Ecce virgo
Domenica intra oct. Epiphaniae In excelso Jubilate Deo Fili quid ego
Domenica I p. Epiphaniae Omnis terra Laudate Deum Dicit Dominum
Domenica II p. Epiphaniae Adorate Deum Dominus regnavit Mirabantur omnes
Septuagesima Circumdederunt me De profundis Illumina faciem
Sexagesima Exurge quare Commovisti Domine Introibo adalta
Quinquagesima Esto mihi Jubilate Domino Manducaverunt et
Cinerum Misereris omnium Domine non secundum Qui mediatur
Invocavit Invocabit et ego Qui habitat Scapulis suis
Reminiscere Reminiscere miserationum Dixit Dominus Intelligite clamorem
Oculi Oculi mei Ad te levavi Passer invenit
Laetare Laetare Jerusalem Qui confidunt Jerusalem quae
Judica Judica me Deus Saepe expugnaverunt Hoc corpus
Palmarum Domine ne longa Deus meus Pater si non
Quasimodo geniti Quasimodo geniti Mitte manum
Misericordia Domini Misericordia Domini Surrexit pastor Ego sum pastor
Jubilate Jubilate omnis terra Surrexit Christus Modicum et non
Cantate Cantate Domino Cum venerit
Vocem Jucunditatis Vocem jucunditatis Benedictus es Cantate Domino
Exaudi Exaudi Domine Pater cum

Choralis Constantinus II (Denkmäler der Tonkunst in Österreich, Volume 32):

Introit Alleluia Sequence Communion Other
Natalis Domini Puer natus Dies sanctificatus Natus ante saecula Viderunt omnes
Circumcisionis Vultum tuum Post partum Laetabundus exsultet Simile homini
Epiphanie (6 Dec.) Ecce advenit Vidimus stellam Festa Christi Vidimus stellam
Purificationis Mariae (2 Feb.) Suscepimus Deus Post partum Concentu parilli Responsum Simeon Gaude Maria (tract)
Anunciationis Mariae (25 Mar.) Rorate coeli Ecce virgo Ave Maria (tract)
Resurrectione Domini Resurrexi et adhuc Pascha nostrum Laudes Salvatori Pascha nostrum Haec Dies (gradual)
Ascensionis Domini Viri Galilei Dominus in sina Summi Triumphum Psallite qui ascendit
Sancto Spiritus Spiritus Domini Veni sancte Spiritus Sancti Spiritus Factus est
Corpore Christi Cibavit eos Caro mea Lauda Sion Qui manducat
Johannis Baptistae De ventre Internatos mulierum Sancti baptistae Tu puer propheta
Johannes et Pauli Multae et dehis Isti sunt Haec die veneranda Et sicoram tormenta
Petri et Pauli Nunc scio Tu es Petrus Petre summi Christi Tu es Petrus
Visitationis Mariae (31 May, formerly July) Gaudeamus omnes Magnificat Lauda sponsa Beata viscera
Mariae Magdalena Gaudeamus omnes Maria haec Laus tibi Christe Dico vobis
Assumptio Mariae (15 August) Gaudeamus omnes Assumpta est Maria Congaudent angelorum Dilexisti justi
Sancto Geberhardo Sacerdotes Domine O Geberhardo Sancti Spiritus assit nobis Beatus servus
Sancta Pelagio Laetabitur justus O Pelagio Omnes devota mente Qui vult ab neget
Nativitatis Mariae (8 Sep.) Gaudeamus omnes Nativitatis gloriosae Stirpe Maria regis Diffusa est
Dedicatione Templi Terribilis est Vox exultationis Ecclesiae desponsato Domus mea
Sancta Cruce Nos autem Dulce lignum Laudes crucis Nos autem
Omnia Sanctorum Gaudeamus omnes Vox exultationis Omnes sancti Seraphim Amen dico vobis
Sancto Martino Sacerdotes Martinus episcobus Sacerdotem Christi Beatus servus
Presentationis Mariae Gaudeamus omnes Felix virgo Altissima providente Beata viscera
Sancto Conrado Sacerdotes Ecce sacerdos Adornata laudibus Beatus servus
Conceptionis Mariae (8 Dec.) Gaudeamus omnes Conceptionis gloriosae Conceptio Mariae virginis Diffusa est

Choralis Constantinus III (University of Michigan Press, 1950)

Introit Alleluia Sequence Communion Other
In Vigilia un. Apostoli Ego autem sicut Dorsa eorum Plausu chorus laetabundo Ego vos elegi Justus et palma (gradual)
Commune Apostolorum Mihi autem honorati Non vos me elegisti
Per manus autem
Iam no estis
Clare sanctorum Vos qui secuti
Amen dico ego
Commune Martyrum Multae tribulationis
Induant sancti tui
Justi epulentur
Sancti tui Domine
Sapientiam sanctorum
Salus autem justorum
Intret in conspectu
Laetabitur justus
Beatus vir
Justus germinabit
Justus ut palma
O beata beatorum
Agone triumphali
Laetabitur justus
Qui mihi ministrat
Posuisti Domine
Qui vult venire
Magna est gloria
Commune un. Martyris Laetabitur justus
In virtute tua
Gloria et honore
Protexisti me Deus
Justus non conturbabitur
Justus ut palma
Laetabitur justus
Beatus vir
Justus germinabit
Justus ut palma
Spe mercedis et coronae
Haec est sanctus
Laetabitur justus
Qui mihi ministrat
Posuisti Domine
Qui vult venire
Magna est gloria
Commune Confessoribus Stauit ei Dominus
Os justi
Sacerdotes Dei
Sacerdotes ejus
Invravit Dominus
Elegit te
Inveni David
Iste est qui ante
Amavit eum
Fulgebunt
Dilectus Deo
Ad laudes salvatoris
Beatus servus
Domine quinque talenta
Fidelis servus
Commune Virginibus Gaudeamus omnes
Me exspectaverunt
Loquaebar de testimonis
Dilexisti justitiam
Diffus est
Specie tua
Omnis gloria
Exultent filiae Sion Simile est regnum
Quinque prudentes
Diffusa est gratia
Dilexisti justitiam
Commune Apostolis (tracts)
Qui seminant
Desiderium animae
Beatus vir
Audi filia
Audi filia
Annunciatiatione beate Virginis Rorate coeli Prophetae sancti Mittet ad Virginem
Beata Virgine p. Nativitatis Christi Vultum tuum Post partum Regem regnum
Commune de Beata Virgine Salva sancta Sancta Dei Verbum bonum Beata viscera
Philippi et Jacobi Exclamaverunt Tanto tempore
Sancta Cruce Nos autem Dulce lignum Laudes crucis Nos autem
In Vigilia Johannis Baptistae Ne timeas
Natalis Johannis Baptistae De ventre matris Erat Johannis Sancti Baptistae Tu puer propheta
Vigilia Petri et Pauli Dicit Dominus Simon Johannis
Festo de Petri et Paili Nunc scio vere Tu es Petrus Tu es Petrus
Sancti Pauli Scio cui credidi Tu es vas electionis
Visitationis Mariae Virginis In Maria benignitas Veni praecelsa
In Divisione Apostolorum Coeli enarrant
Maria Magdalenae Laus tibi Christi Dico vobis
Vigilia Sancta Laurentii Dispersit dedit
Sancta Laurentii Martyris Confessio et pulchritudo Levita Laurentius Laurentii, David
Assumptio Maria Virgine Assumpta est Maria Congaudent Angelorum
Navitatis Mariae Nativitatis gloriosae Stirpe Maria
Sancta Michaele Benedicite omnes Concussum est mare Ad celebres Rex Benedicite omnes
S. Ursula ac Sociarum Virginum Virginalis turma sexus

Recordings

Margaretha-Maximilian I, Capilla Flamenca together with La Caccia, Schola Cantorum Cantate Domino, Schola Gregoriana Lovaniensis and Joris Verdin, 2001 (Orf CD 265). Contains proper chants from the Choralis Constantinus along with several pieces of secular music.

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