Page:Catholic Encyclopedia, volume 1.djvu/649

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581

ANTIPODES


581


ANTIPODES


appears to have been one of Egbert's friends from that time, onward, which enables him to inform us (H. K., V,:iO) that Acca had learned the eccle- siastical chant from a certain Maban, who luul ac- quired it, himself, while living in Kent, from the successors of the disciples of the lilessed Pope Greg- ory. Acca had, in fact, spent twelve years in Maban's school. If we take 732 as the last of these twelve years, it follows that the first lessons given by Maban go back to the year 720, at which date Maban had had time to be trained by tlio successors of the ilisciples of Pope Gregory. Gregory- 1 1 became pope in 715; a space of five years is, evidently, not easy to reconcile with the plain meaning of what Beae says. It is true that, at a stretch, it might be understood thus: Maban was taught in Kent, between 715 and 720, by pupils trained on the spot by Roman singers sent by Gregory II. But, apart from the fact that no such mission has been ascribed to Gregory II, the words of Bede are too plain to permit this evasion of the difhculty. Bede in fact tells us that the chant taught by Maban (about 720) was simply a reform of the .same chant which hail undergone certain changes by long use. It is evi- dently impossible, then, to explain how, between 715 and 720. Maban could instruct .\cca in a chant which had been long in use, and which had so fallen away from its purity as to need reform, when, if its promoter were Gregory II, it dated, at the earliest, from five years previous. It seems, therefore, as though these words of Bede were equivalent to an early .\nglo-Saxon ascription of the ecclesiastical chant to Pope Ciregory I.

Speaking of Putta, Bishop of Rochester (669-676), the same historian says (H. E., IV, 2): "lie was above all things skilful in the art of singing in church according to the Roman fashion, which he had learned from the disciples of the Bles.sed Pope Greg- ory". There can be no doubt in this case, nor can anyone but Gregory I be meant. Thus the gap between St. Gregory and Egbert (604-732) becomes CTeatly lessened, almost, indeed, by a half, and Bede's silence can no longer be appealed to in con- nexion with the work of St. Gregory. E\'idence for his authorship of the ecclesiastical chant is met with at a period so near Gregory's own time that the thesis is critically tenable. Does it follow that St. Gregory was, as John the Deacon says, the com- piler of the antiphonary? There are, at least, good reasons for thinking so. One last argument may be cited on his behalf. The series of antiphons in the antiphonary, intended to be sung at the Communion during Lent, are for the most part taken from the Book of Psalms. Their order reveals the idea that governed the choice of them. With certain excep- tions, to be referred to presently, the antiphons follow one another in the numencal order of the Psalms from which they are drawn. The series thus obtained begins on .Vsh Wcdnestlay and ends on the Friday in Passion Week, forming a regular succession of Psalms from I to XXVI, except for the inter- ruptions caused (1) by intercalations and (2) by lacuna-.

These intercalations affect (1) the five Sundays, (2) the six Tliursilays, (3) the Saturday following Ash Wednesday. The exclusion of the Sumlays is explained by tiie adoption of a ferial, or week-<Iay, sequence; that of the Thursdays by the .simple ob- servation that the Tliur.s<hiys were not included in the liturgical .system for Ixnt at the period when Ps;ilms i to xxvi were diWded between the other days of the week. We learn from the "Liber Pontificalis" that it was (iregory II who intro- duced the Thursday of each week into the liturgical system of Lenten ^Iasses. Now it [iroves to be these very Thursdays which interrupt the order that the remaining days of the week would otherwise show.


No more precise and decisive accumulation of proof could possibly be wished for. We thus grasp the chronological element at the moment of its inter- polation into the very heart of the antiphonary. Gregory II — therefore still less Gregory 111 — is not the original author of the compilation whereon he has left his mark by misunderstanding the principle wliich governed its original formation. The musicd compilation known as the antiphonary is therefore not due to Gregory II, nor is it from him that it has hocoiiie known as the Gregorian antiplionary. Its existence prior to his time is proved by the intercalation of the Thursdays which interrupt the continuity of an harmonious arrangement, to which Gregory II paiil no attention, though possibly he may rather have wished to respect it as a work thenceforward irreforniable, as a traditional deposit which he refused to disturb and re-order. It is not easy to say, or even to convey an idea of, what this primitive edition of the antiplionary may have con- tained; but there can be no doubt that it contained in their actual order the Lenten communion-aiiti- phons, and is certainly anterior to Gregory III and to Gregory II. This fact alone proves the existence of an antiphonal collection, known as the Gregorian antiphonary, prior to the time of Pope Gregory II. Gev.ert, Le Chant Hturuiqiu: de I'tylise latine, in the Bien Public (23. 24 December. ItWUl; Dosi .Morin, Le role de Sninl Grfqoire le Grarul dana Ui formation du repertoire mii«ical de Vfglite latine, in the Hevue biiudictine (1890, p. 62 sqq.; 193- 2(M: 289-323; 337-309). .Some of these essays have been conecte<l under the title of Les v/rit'thUa oriffineg du chant nrfgorien (Marcdsous, 1S95, octavo; 2J eil.. 1904); Grihar, llat Gregor der Grouse den Kirchengceang rcformirt, in Zeit- achrift far kalhol. Theol. (1890); CJkv.krt, La milopH anluiwe dans le chant de I'l'tiliae latine (Ghent, 189.3, octavo); Leclkrcq, in the Diet, d'arch. chrli. s. v. antipfumaire (I, col. 2440-62).

H. Leclehcq.

Antipodes. — Speculations concerning the rotundity of the earth and the possible existence of human beings "with their feet turned towards ours" were of interest to the Fatliers of the Early Church only in so far as they seemed to encroach upon the funda- mental Christian dogma of the unity of the human race, and the conseouent universality of original sin and redemption. Tins is clearly seen from the fol- lowing passage of St. Augustine (De Civitate Dei, xvi, 9): "As to the fable that there arc Antipodes, that is to say, men on the opposite side of the earth, where the sun rises when it sets on us, men who walk witli their feet opposite ours, there is no reason for believing it. Those who affirm it do not claim to possess any actual information; tliey merely con- jecture that, since the earth is suspended within the concavity of the heavens, and there is as much room on the one side of it as on the other, therefore the part which is beneath cannot be void of human in- habitants. They fail to notice that, even should it he believed or demonstrated that the world is round or spherical in form, it does not follow that the part of the e:irtli opposite to us is not completely covered with water, or that any conjectured drj- land there should be inhabited by men. For Scripture, which confirms the truth of its historical statements by the accomplishinent of its prophecies, teaches no false- hood; and it is too aljsurd to sav that some men might have set sail from this side and. traversing the immense expanse of ocean, have propagated there a race of human lieings descended from that one first man." This opinion of St. Augustine was commonly held until the progress of science, whilst confirming his main contention that the human race is one, dissipated the scruples arising from a de- fective knowledge of geography. A singular excep- tion occurs to us in the middle of the eighth centurj-. From a letter of Pope St. Zachary (1 May, 748), addrc.s.sed to St. Boniface, we learn that the great Apostle of Germany had invoked the papal censure upon a certain missionary among tlic Ba\'arians