Dum Complerentur


 Vecellio Tiziano, The Descent of the Holy Ghost, Santa Maria della Salute,  Venice, c.1545

 

Dum complerentur dies pentecostes . . .

When the day of Pentcost had come . . .

 

Music for Pentecost by

Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina (1525-94) 

and

Tomás Luis de Victoria (1548 –1611)  

 

Pentecost, Shavout for the Jews, is the festival of the harvest.  In its origin, however, it goes back to the giving of the Torah to Moses on Sinai in the midst of a mountain storm, with thunder, a great wind and lightning.  The disciples of Jesus came to understand that they were united to God, not by the Torah, but by the Holy Spirit given on Pentecost in the "upper" room with a symbolic repetition of all that accompanied the mountain storm: the loud noise, the rushing of wind and the tongues of fire.

The Masses composed for Pentecost by Palestrina and Victoria are parody Masses based on motets that each had composed earlier.  Listen in all of these works for audible manifestation of what is written in the Acts of the Apostles about the occurence in the upper room.

Click to hear Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Dum complerentur (When [the day of Pentecost] had fully come), performed by the Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, Stephen Darlington, conducting:  the motet, the entire Mass, Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus, Agnus Dei I and Agnus Dei II.

Click to hear Tomás Luis de Victoria, Dum complerentur (When [the day of Pentecost] had fully come), performed by the Choir of Christ Church Cathedral, Oxford, Stephen Darlington, conducting:  the motet, the entire Mass, Kyrie, Gloria, Credo, Sanctus, Benedictus, Agnus Dei I and Agnus Dei II.