Ad multos annos presbyter aidanus!
May God grant Fr. Aidan many years, for such wisdom.
One of my Nativity "presents" this year, was the book "Hymns of the Anglo-Saxon Church (before 1066 AD)" by Inge B. Milfull (Cambridge Studies in Anglo-Saxon England, Vol. #17). I recommend it to everyone. I know a few others already have it.
As I peruse through it I see proper hymns for these particular saints: Stephen protomartyr, Oswald, King Edward the Confessor, Cuthbert, Augustine of Canterbury, Chad, Dunstan, Lawrence of Rome, Martin of Tours, Gregory Magnus, Benedict, thats in the 11th c. (also ones for each of the 12 apostles.)
Than by the 14th century theres several more proper hymns to "pre-schism saints" added, such as for Patrick of Ireland.
Than we can go across to other local regions and find proper hymns for other saints, which are still on the calendar but did not happen to have proper hymn to them sung in england, only a "common hymn". I can't see anything wrong with this. So long as one notes what origin of diocese it originates in. This fills in the blank for the numerous, italian , french, mexican, whatever ancestors ones has (I have some of them myself.) If this practice is wrong, may someone soon correct me. It's academic as much as anything, call it unpractical or nerdy if you must. But it's not boring, and no worse a hobby than baseball card collecting.
Let me paste a translation of one of them:
YMNUS DE SANCTO DUNSTANO EPISCOPO
(the english is not metered for singing)
I - Ave Dunstane, presulum sidus decusque splendidum,
lux vera gentis Anglice et ad deum dux previe.
I - Hail Dunstan, you star and glorious ornament among bishops, true light of the English nation and leader preceding it on its way to God,
II - Tu spes tuorum maxima, dulcedo necnon intima
spirans odorum balsama vitalium melliflua.
II - you are the greatest hope of your people and also and innermost sweetness breathing the honeyed balm of life-giving perfumes.
III - Tibi, pater, nos credimus, quibus te nil iocundius,
ad te manus expandimus, tibi preces effundimus.
III - We have faith in you, Father, we to whom nothing is more pleasing than you are. We extend our hands to you, we pour our prayers to you.
IV - Oves tuas, pastor pie, passim premunt angustie.
Mucrone gentis barbare necamur, en cristicole.
IV - Troubles oppress your sheep on all sides, kind shepherd, See how we, the believers in Christ, are deciamated by the swords of the pagan nation.
V - Offer, sacerdos, hostias Christo precum gratissimas,
quibus placatus criminum solvat catenas ferreas,
V - O priest, offer up to Christ the sacrifice of most satisfactory prayers, so that by them he may be appeased and release us from the iron chains of our transgressions
VI - Per quas Anglorum terminis ecclesieque filiis
et nationes perfide petesque cedant noxie.
VI - and so that by them both infidel nations and harmful diseases may recede from the territory of the English and sons of the church.
VII - Per te, pater, spes unica, per te, proles, pax unica
et spiritus, lux unica adsit nobis in secula. Amen.
VII By your intercession may the Father, our only hope, by your intercession may the Son, our only peace, and the Spirit, our only light, be with us throughout the ages. Amen.
The goal, if not stated before is to have them all fitted to proper meter to be sung smoothly and easily by all, in english. perhaps eventually other languages too.
Under the aegis of my good high-lutheran friend (odd as this sounds eh..) Matthew Carver with his mastery of hymn translations/adaptions, who can churn out a remarkably fine work in a few days notice for reasonable fees. (http://matthaeusglyptes.blogspot.com/