The Historia project is concerned with devotion to Irish saints in the medieval liturgy. At its core is a remarkable and little known repertory of chants which were specially composed for singing at the Divine Office on their respective feastdays. They survive today in manuscripts preserved in libraries all over Europe.
The project aims to encourage interest in this neglected aspect of Ireland's international heritage by preparing scores and recordings of all of chants, making them available online and as digital apps, linking the material to the lives of the saints concerned, and to the foundations and present-day sites with which they were, and often still are, associated. While aimed at a broad public, it will have particular relevance for those involved in education at all levels, especially programmes linked to music, liturgy, and Irish cultural studies.
Note on the term: In liturgical practice the term historia refers to the Divine Office composed for a special feastday (usually but not exclusively) to honour a patron saint. The texts of the chants and readings combined stories from the saint’s life (birth, miracles, human qualities, death) with songs of praise and prayers for protection and for intercession with God and the Virgin Mary.
Latest Activity: on Friday
I presented a radio programme on RTÉ Lyric FM in May 2014. It was called 'A Musical Calendar of Irish Saints', with illustrations of music for a number of different feasts. I have a recording of this and would be happy include a link for anyone who is interested.
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