Adorna, Sion, thalamum (Charles H. Giffen)

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  • (Posted 2011-07-28)  CPDL #24020:       
Editor: Charles H. Giffen (submitted 2011-07-28).   Score information: Letter, 8 pages, 156 kB   Copyright: Personal
Edition notes: Music copyright by the composer for CPDL, may be freely copied, distributed, performed, or recorded. English translation copyright 2009 by Kathleen Pluth, used by permission. Please inform the composer of any performances of this work. Corrected PDF score uploaded 2019-03-25 (corrected text underlay).

General Information

Title: Adorna, Sion, thalamum (Let Zion's bridal-room be clothed)
Composer: Charles H. Giffen
Lyricists: Peter Abelard and Kathleen Pluth

Number of voices: 4vv   Voicing: SATB
Genre: SacredHymn   Meter: 88. 88 (L.M.) with alleluias

Languages: Latin, English
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 2011
Description: Alternatim setting (unison, SATB) of the hymn for the Feast of the Presentation (Candlemas) by Peter Abelard (1079-1142). Both the Latin text and the English translation by Kathleen Pluth are underlaid. The harmonizations of the even numbered verses are essentially the same as the composer's Creator of the stars of night (Conditor alme siderum). The odd numbered verses are to be sung in unison. A quiet two-fold Alleluia follows each verse.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Latin.png Latin text

by Petrus Abelardus (1079-1142)

Adorna, Sion, thalamum,
quæ præstolaris Dominum;
sponsum et sponsam suscipe
vigil fidei lumine.

Beate senex, propera,
promissa comple gaudia
et revelandum gentibus
revela lumen omnibus.

Parentes Christum deferunt,
in templo templum offerunt;
legi parere voluit
qui legi nihil debuit.

Offer, beata, parvulum,
tuum et Patris unicum;
offer per quem offerimur,
pretium quo redimimur.

Procede, virgo regia,
profer Natum cum hostia;
monet omnes ad gaudium
qui venit salus omnium.

Iesu, tibi sit gloria,
qui te revelas gentibus,
cum Patre et almo Spiritu,
in sempiterna sæcula.

English.png English text

by Kathleen Pluth, 2009

Let Zion's bridal-room be clothed:
He comes, her Lord and her Betrothed.
Let bride and Bridegroom, by faith's light,
A vigil keep throughout the night.

Saint Simeon, go forth in joy,
Exult to see the baby Boy:
Make known to all this Light divine
Who soon upon all lands shall shine.

His parents to the temple bring
The Temple as an offering
The righteousness of law He chose
Though to the law He nothing owes.

So, Mary, bring this little one,
Yours and the Father's only Son
Through whom our offering is made
By whom our ransom price is paid.

And forward, royal Virgin, go
And let rejoicing overflow
With gifts bring forth your newborn Son
Who comes to rescue everyone.

Lord Jesus Christ, the Glory bright
Who guides the nations into light
Be praised, and for eternity
Be glorified, O Trinity.