Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Bloxam, M. Jennifer. "Plainsong and Polyphony for the Blessed Virgin: Notes on Two Masses by Jacob Obrecht." The Journal of Musicology 12 (1994): 51-75.

The Marian masses Sicut spina rosam and Sub tuum praesidium by Jacob Obrecht exhibit connections to local devotional and liturgical usages. Obrecht's Missa Sicut spina rosam borrows from Ockeghem's Missa Mi-mi and takes a verse from the responsory Ad nutum Domini nostrum as its cantus firmus. Obrecht borrowed a segment of the chant corresponding with the text "sicut spina rosam, genuiut Judea Mariam" ("As the thorn brought forth the rose, so did Judea bring forth Mary"). The isolation of this fragment can be connected to its particular liturgical usage in the locale of Antwerp, where Ad nutum domini nostrum served as the culmination of the Matins service and as the great responsory for Vespers on the Feast of the Nativity of the Virgin. Likewise, Obrecht's Missa Sub tuum praesidium contains associations to local Marian traditions through its use of seven Marian plainsongs. Sub tuum praesidium is the main structural cantus firmus, four borrowed chants are drawn from internal verses of sequences for the Blessed Virgin, and two popular Marian antiphons Salve Regina and Regina caeli serve as cantus firmi in the final Agnus Dei. A comparison of the chants and their local usages in places where Obrecht was employed suggest that the Missa Sub tuum praesidium was probably written while he was working in Antwerp or possibly Bergen-op-Zoom.

Works: Obrecht: Missa Sicut spina rosam (52, 56-63); Missa Sub tuum praesidium (52, 64-74).

Sources: Responsory Ad nutum Domini nostrum (56-61); Ockeghem: Missa Mi-mi (56); Antiphons Sub tuum praesidium (65-71), Ave praeclara (65, 67, 70) Aurea virga (65-66, 68, 70-71), Verbum bonum (65, 67, 70), Regina caeli (66, 71), Salve Regina (66, 73).

Index Classifications: 1400s

Contributed by: Mary Ellen Ryan

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