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Author Topic: Oriental Orthodox Prayers  (Read 3965 times) Average Rating: 0
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PoorFoolNicholas
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« on: May 26, 2009, 12:16:09 PM »

I have found this link on the Oriental Orthodox Prayers thread, and had a question. Are these hours to be done liturically, i.e. with a Priest in a Church? Or can these be prayed at home? Are these able to be used, as is, as a reader service of the hours? Thanks and God Bless!
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PoorFoolNicholas
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« Reply #1 on: May 26, 2009, 01:03:21 PM »

Perhaps, I could actually give the link, man I am dense sometimes, scratch that, all the time:

http://agpeya.org/
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Jonathan
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« Reply #2 on: May 26, 2009, 01:29:04 PM »

I have found this link on the Oriental Orthodox Prayers thread, and had a question. Are these hours to be done liturically, i.e. with a Priest in a Church? Or can these be prayed at home? Are these able to be used, as is, as a reader service of the hours? Thanks and God Bless!

They can be prayed by anyone. Generally the minimum or laity is to pray Prime & Compline from it daily (though not necessarily with all Psalms, whatever number is assigned by one's father of confession). Monks will normally pray all of it.

They are also prayed liturgically. When a priest is there, certain parts are said by the priest, unless he delegates them.

On a Sunday, the Vespers Praise is said, then the 9th, 11th, and 12th hours are prayed before Vespers Saturday evening. The midnight prayer is prayed after Vespers and before the Midnight Praise. The Prime hour is prayed before the Morning Praise and Matins (though this is often omitted and Matins starts right away). The Third and Sixth hours are prayed in between Matins and the Liturgy of the Word. Vespers Praise, Midnight Praise, the prayer of Prime and Morning Praise are optional. Vespers is also sometimes omitted. But Matins, followed by the appropriate hours are required before the Liturgy.

On fasting days the Liturgy is later in the day, so the 3rd, 6th, and 9th hours are prayed after Matins, meaning the next day's vespers will only have the 11th and 12th prayed before it. On days of Lent and the fast of Nineveh, fasting is stricter and so the Liturgy should be later in the day. In that case the 3rd, 6th, 9th, 11th, and 12th hours are prayed after Matins and before the Liturgy of the Word. In that case there can be no Vespers service since the Liturgy is so late in the day (though some churches ignore this and have illegal vespers on weekdays of Great Lent).

When I say 'Vespers' above, I mean the raising of evening incense, a service that requires a priest, not to be confused with the Agpeya prayer of the 11th hour, which also sometimes called Vespers in English.

The services of Vespers Praise, Midnight Praise, and Morning Praise can also be done at home without a priest. The appropriate prayers and hymns are found in a Coptic Psalmody book, there should be many online (though poorly translated).

If you're interested in a better translation of the agpeya pm me, and I can email you one where the Psalms are translated from the Coptic, rather than using NKJV. The translation of non-biblical parts are much better quality.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2009, 01:31:56 PM by Jonathan » Logged
Orthodox11
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« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2009, 02:03:08 PM »

If you're interested in a better translation of the agpeya pm me, and I can email you one where the Psalms are translated from the Coptic, rather than using NKJV. The translation of non-biblical parts are much better quality.

I have the one published by Fr. Abraham Azmy of Virgin Mary and Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church of Hamden, Connecticut. I believe that's the same as the one provided on the site. It uses a translation of the LXX for the Psalms, not the NKJV. I think it's from the Apostles Bible, which is the modern language revision of Brenton's translation.

Which is the version you're talking about? I'd be interested to see the difference between them.

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« Reply #4 on: May 26, 2009, 02:39:17 PM »

If you're interested in a better translation of the agpeya pm me, and I can email you one where the Psalms are translated from the Coptic, rather than using NKJV. The translation of non-biblical parts are much better quality.

I have the one published by Fr. Abraham Azmy of Virgin Mary and Archangel Michael Coptic Orthodox Church of Hamden, Connecticut. I believe that's the same as the one provided on the site. It uses a translation of the LXX for the Psalms, not the NKJV. I think it's from the Apostles Bible, which is the modern language revision of Brenton's translation.

Which is the version you're talking about? I'd be interested to see the difference between them.



The one I mentioned is a translation of the Psalms from the Coptic by Heg. Fr. Athanasius Iskander.

I will put a copy here: http://www.stmaryscopticorthodox.ca/publications/servicebooks/servicebooks.html

It is not quite finished, the grammar needs a little work in places, and a few of the page references are off by a few.
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Orthodox11
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« Reply #5 on: May 26, 2009, 02:58:02 PM »

Thanks for the link. It looks very good!

Since it's a work in progress, I have a question. Why do all Coptic service books translate Doxa si Kyrie (Glory to you, O Lord) after the Gospel reading as "Glory be to God forever"? I noticed the Arabic says المجد للّه داءما أبديا. Since this Agpia uses the Coptic Psalter, doesn't it make more sense to translate from the original Coptic (Greek) than the altered Arabic version?
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Jonathan
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« Reply #6 on: May 26, 2009, 03:25:46 PM »

Thanks for the link. It looks very good!

Since it's a work in progress, I have a question. Why do all Coptic service books translate Doxa si Kyrie (Glory to you, O Lord) after the Gospel reading as "Glory be to God forever"? I noticed the Arabic says المجد للّه داءما أبديا. Since this Agpia uses the Coptic Psalter, doesn't it make more sense to translate from the original Coptic (Greek) than the altered Arabic version?

That's a good question. I know Fr. Athanasius changes the Psalms, Gospels,  gloria, the trisagion, the litanies, and the absolutions to conform to the Coptic or Greek as appropriate in this revision... but he may well have overlooked something that small. His email is on the website above if you want to ask him about it.
« Last Edit: May 26, 2009, 03:46:50 PM by Jonathan » Logged
PoorFoolNicholas
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« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2009, 11:40:49 AM »

After reviewing some of these prayers, I was wondering, How do the Coptic tones correspond to the Byzantine? Are they completely different?
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Orthodox11
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« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2009, 11:48:03 AM »

After reviewing some of these prayers, I was wondering, How do the Coptic tones correspond to the Byzantine? Are they completely different?

They are very different. There are many examples of Coptic chant on youtube if you're interested. Byzantine chant has its origins in Syrian and Greek music, whereas Coptic chant is of pharonic origin.

Also, Coptic chant does not use the 8-Tone system of Byzantine chant, although there are different tones (joyful, sad, etc.) used during different times of the year.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2009, 11:48:29 AM by Orthodox11 » Logged
PoorFoolNicholas
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« Reply #9 on: May 27, 2009, 11:49:30 AM »

They are very different. There are many examples of Coptic chant on youtube if you're interested. Byzantine chant has its origins in Syrian and Greek music, whereas Coptic chant is of pharonic origin.

Also, Coptic chant does not use the 8-Tone system of Byzantine chant, although there are different tones (joyful, sad, etc.) used during different times of the year.
If you are able, could you elaborate on the coptic tones? How they are used, and the number? God Bless.
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Orthodox11
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« Reply #10 on: May 27, 2009, 11:54:49 AM »

If you are able, could you elaborate on the coptic tones? How they are used, and the number? God Bless.

From what I understand they're seasonal. So the month of Kiakh (Advent) has it's own special tone (my favourite!), the mournful tone is used during Lent, the joyful tone used during feasts, etc. I'll leave it to someone more knowledgeable to elaborate further.
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Jonathan
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« Reply #11 on: May 27, 2009, 03:06:59 PM »

They are very different. There are many examples of Coptic chant on youtube if you're interested. Byzantine chant has its origins in Syrian and Greek music, whereas Coptic chant is of pharonic origin.

Also, Coptic chant does not use the 8-Tone system of Byzantine chant, although there are different tones (joyful, sad, etc.) used during different times of the year.
If you are able, could you elaborate on the coptic tones? How they are used, and the number? God Bless.

For Doxologies  (in matins and vespers, midnight praise, not the doxology of prime), Gospel responses, etc.,  there are 5 (or 6) tunes:

-Annual
-Joyful (Feasts of our Lord, the Holy 50)
-Koiahk (the month leading up to the Feast of the Nativity)
-Palm (Palm Sunday, Feasts of the Cross)
-Lenten (Lent and the Fast of Nineveh), with a different tune for weekdays of Lent

The Gospels and litanies in the Agpeya are read in their own tune, which I think you can hear on agpeya.org , and the Psalms can be read in another tune, but they're normally read silently. The rest of the Agpeya is recited with no tune.

There is another tune for venerations, and tunes for the parts of Midnight Praise (though some of that does follow the doxology tune). You can hear recordings of that at coptichymns.net or tasbeha.org . A recording of the annual Sunday Midnight Praise can be found here: http://www.stantonymonastery.org/psalmody.asp

There are at least there different tunes for reading the Psalm in the Liturgy: annual, joyful, koiak. There is one tune for reading the Gospel, and another for the epistles.

There is a different tune for the Psalms during Holy Week, and another for the Gospels then.
« Last Edit: May 27, 2009, 03:08:38 PM by Jonathan » Logged
PoorFoolNicholas
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« Reply #12 on: May 28, 2009, 09:29:39 AM »

For Doxologies  (in matins and vespers, midnight praise, not the doxology of prime), Gospel responses, etc.,  there are 5 (or 6) tunes:

-Annual
-Joyful (Feasts of our Lord, the Holy 50)
-Koiahk (the month leading up to the Feast of the Nativity)
-Palm (Palm Sunday, Feasts of the Cross)
-Lenten (Lent and the Fast of Nineveh), with a different tune for weekdays of Lent

The Gospels and litanies in the Agpeya are read in their own tune, which I think you can hear on agpeya.org , and the Psalms can be read in another tune, but they're normally read silently. The rest of the Agpeya is recited with no tune.

There is another tune for venerations, and tunes for the parts of Midnight Praise (though some of that does follow the doxology tune). You can hear recordings of that at coptichymns.net or tasbeha.org . A recording of the annual Sunday Midnight Praise can be found here: http://www.stantonymonastery.org/psalmody.asp

There are at least there different tunes for reading the Psalm in the Liturgy: annual, joyful, koiak. There is one tune for reading the Gospel, and another for the epistles.

There is a different tune for the Psalms during Holy Week, and another for the Gospels then.
So how many tunes are there in all? Is the liturgical/musical Tradition of the Coptic Church as confusing, and difficult as the Byzantine?
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« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2009, 11:43:21 AM »


So how many tunes are there in all? Is the liturgical/musical Tradition of the Coptic Church as confusing, and difficult as the Byzantine?

Not sure how many tunes or tones there are in all, but as to your second question, I've been told, that the Coptic tones are quite a bit easier and less confusing than Byzantine chant tones. However, that is of course once you're used to the Egyptian sounding style. Just from my experience I seem to be able to "pick up" on them quite a bit quicker while attending a Coptic Liturgy than I ever have been able to do learning Byzantine chant. That doesn't mean I can chant Coptic Chant, but it had a familiarity to it after 3 hours at Church. While with byzantine Chant, i've been studying my backside off for YEARS and still don't know half of what I should. (I guess I'm saying compared to byzantine chant EVERYTHING is easier...LOL!)
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PoorFoolNicholas
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« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2009, 11:51:49 AM »

While with byzantine Chant, i've been studying my backside off for YEARS and still don't know half of what I should. (I guess I'm saying compared to byzantine chant EVERYTHING is easier...LOL!)
Oh how I feel for you. I was sent to a Sacred Music Seminar a while back to learn Byzantine Chant, and in my foolishness, thought that I would have a great hold on the subject after I was finished, man was I wrong. I think that I was more confused after attending. The one thing I did learn was that there really aren't any rules when it comes to Byzantine Chant. Impossible sometimes... Huh
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Jonathan
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« Reply #15 on: May 29, 2009, 02:15:03 PM »


So how many tunes are there in all? Is the liturgical/musical Tradition of the Coptic Church as confusing, and difficult as the Byzantine?

Sorry, I don't know anything about Byzantine chant to be able to understand the question.

There are many liturgical hymns that have unique tunes to that hymn, so if you add them all up it would be dozens or more.

The Midnight Praise service has it's own tunes for it's hymns that vary by day and season.

For the doxologies, there are 5 tunes, 6 if you count the weekday lenten one as separate.

For reading the Gospel and Epistles there are other tunes.
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Orthodox11
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« Reply #16 on: May 29, 2009, 02:58:21 PM »

Sorry, I don't know anything about Byzantine chant to be able to understand the question.

Byzantine chant has 8 Modes that change from week to week. So various sections of the Liturgy, Vespers, Matins, the Sunday Midnight office, will have 8 different melodies, or an entirely different set of hymns written to a particular scale, depending on the week. So it's very different from the Coptic system.


In a book I was reading on Severus of Antioch, it said he composed numerous hymns for the Syrian Octoechos. Does this mean the OO Syrian Church follows a system similar to the Byzantine tradition (which is Syrian in origin)?
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« Reply #17 on: May 29, 2009, 03:46:35 PM »

That's a good question. I know Fr. Athanasius changes the Psalms, Gospels,  gloria, the trisagion, the litanies, and the absolutions to conform to the Coptic or Greek as appropriate in this revision... but he may well have overlooked something that small. His email is on the website above if you want to ask him about it.

He responded to my question. Apparently, "doxa si Kyrie" (Glory to You, O Lord) is the congregation's response after the reader of the Gospel has said "pi oou fa pen Nouti pe sha eneh ente pi eneh Amen" (Glory be to God forever). I've not seen this Coptic line in any of the service books I own, so it seems most print only the congregations response, but translate the Gospel reader's proclamation. Makes sense.
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« Reply #18 on: May 29, 2009, 06:20:15 PM »

That's a good question. I know Fr. Athanasius changes the Psalms, Gospels,  gloria, the trisagion, the litanies, and the absolutions to conform to the Coptic or Greek as appropriate in this revision... but he may well have overlooked something that small. His email is on the website above if you want to ask him about it.

He responded to my question. Apparently, "doxa si Kyrie" (Glory to You, O Lord) is the congregation's response after the reader of the Gospel has said "pi oou fa pen Nouti pe sha eneh ente pi eneh Amen" (Glory be to God forever). I've not seen this Coptic line in any of the service books I own, so it seems most print only the congregations response, but translate the Gospel reader's proclamation. Makes sense.

Cool. Now the congregation says "Glory be to God forever", so maybe the two got joined to save time.
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« Reply #19 on: July 13, 2009, 11:35:33 PM »

Can I ask, what should one pray at night from the Compline prayers?

http://agpeya.org/Compline/compline.html

It takes about half an hour to pray the entire prayers for me, especially with the Psalms. But are there specific sections of Compline that I should at least pray every night?
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« Reply #20 on: July 14, 2009, 12:12:21 AM »

That is probably something you should ask your priest.  Perhaps, though, Fr. James or Fr. Peter could give some advice if they see this thread.   Smiley
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