Decantabat Domino seraphim (Pietro Lappi)

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  • (Posted 2020-12-05)  CPDL #61816:  Network.png
Editor: Christopher Shaw (submitted 2020-12-05).   Score information: A4, 6 pages, 416 kB   Copyright: CC BY SA
Edition notes: Please click on the link for preview/playback/PDF download. This edition is offered at original pitch (high chiavette) for SSSSAATT or transposed down a fourth for SSAATTBB

General Information

Title: Decantabat Domini seraphim
Composer: Pietro Lappi

Number of voices: 8vv   Voicings: SSAT.SSAT or SATB.SATB
Genre: SacredMotet

Language: Latin
Instruments: A cappella

First published: 1607
Description: It is unclear what liturgical purpose this motet served. It appears to be a state encomium, or even a coronation anthem. (The copy held at Gdansk Library has been manually altered to replace "seraphim et seraphim" with"Wladislaus Sigismundus", but he cannot have been intended as the original subject of the piece. It is difficult to identify to whom the Venetian republic might have accorded the honour.

External websites:

Original text and translations

Latin.png Latin text

Decantabat Domino seraphim in hymnis
et canticis cum exultatione: "Vivat rex [et seraphim].
Et laudatio eius maneat in sæculum sæculi".

English.png English translation

The Seraphim sang praises to the Lord in hymns
and canticles and in exultation: "Long live the king [and seraphim].
And may his glory last for ever and ever".

(trans. Timmi O'Danaos & Donna Ferrentes)