Matins for Pentecost and its Octave

Pentecost Sunday

The key texts (other than the readings) for Benedictine Matins for the feast of Pentecost can be found in the Liber Responsorialis from page 107 (download from CC Watershed), viz:
  • Invitatory: Alleluia, Spritus Domini (also in the Liber Hymnarius, pg 98 and Nocturnale Romanum, pg 484);
  • hymn Jam Christus (written out in full in the Hymnarius, 101-2; the Nocturnale, pg 485-6 uses an alternative chant tone);
  • one antiphon for each Nocturn (the three antiphons used in the Roman Office set out in the Nocturnale);
  • twelve responsories (alternate sources for many of these can also be found here).
For some reason the Liber Responsorialis doesn't provide the psalms numbers, but Divinum Officium does provide the correct ones.  Nonetheless, here they are for reference purposes:

Nocturn I: 1, 8, 18, 23, 26, 28
Nocturn II: 32, 45, 46, 47, 95, 97
Nocturn III: Isaiah 63:1-5; Hosea 6:1-6; Sophonias 3:8-13

The readings and responsories can, as usual be found as arranged for the Benedictine Office, at the Lectio Divina notes blog.

Alternatively you can follow the links below:

Nocturn I

Cum complerentur
Repleti sunt omnes
Iam non dicam vos
Spiritus sanctus procedens

Nocturn II

Apparuerunt apostoli
Loquebantur
Disciplinam et sapientiam docuit
Ite in universum orbem

Nocturn III

Advenit ignis divinus
Spritus Sanctus replevit
Non vos me elegistis
Spiritius Domini replevit


The Octave

Throughout the Octave the invitatory and hymn are of the feast, and there are three readings specific to the day of the Octave.

The 1962-3 rubrics provide two options for Monday and Tuesday for Matins during the Octave: Option 1 is to use the psalms and antiphons of the feast each day for Nocturns I&II, but with three readings only, of the day; Option 2 is to use the antiphons of the feast, but the normal daily psalms.

From Wednesday onwards, the breviary prescribes the normal psalms of the day under one antiphon.

History of the Octave

My 1892 English Congregation breviary doesn't follow either of these options.

Instead, for Monday and Tuesday there are three Nocturns, with (twelve) readings of the day.  From Wednesday however, the Office reverts to the normal daily psalms and three readings.

And there is an older history to this too, for in the oldest form of the Roman Office, the Octave has only three psalms and readings each day, and in Rome Pope Honorius (625-638) instructed Benedictines to adopt the Roman Office during this period, invoking Pope Gregory the Great's authority for the decision.

This practice seems to have continued even outside of Rome for some period, but under the Carolingians the full Benedictine Office on the feast seems to have been restored, and that is reflected in later breviaries.

In the modern Roman Office of course, this most ancient of Octaves has been abolished altogether.