"Tantum ergo" is the incipit of the last two verses of Pange lingua, a Medieval Latin hymn generally attributed to St Thomas Aquinas c. 1264, but based by Aquinas upon various earlier fragments. The "Genitori genitoque" and "Procedenti ab utroque" portions are adapted from Adam of Saint Victor's sequence for Pentecost. The hymn's Latin incipit literally translates to "Therefore so great".
The singing of the Tantum ergo occurs during veneration and benediction of the Blessed Sacrament in the Catholic Church and other denominations that have this devotion. It is usually sung, though solemn recitation is sometimes done, and permitted.
|Tantum ergo Sacramentum|
Et antiquum documentum
Novo cedat ritui:
Præstet fides supplementum
Laus et Jubilatio,
Salus, honor, virtus quoque
Sit et benedictio:
Procedenti ab utroque
Compar sit laudatio.
A century-old translation, still used in Catholic churches liturgically, renders the hymn in a form which can be sung to the same tune as the Latin:
Other, more modern, English translations exist and are also used in Catholic churches liturgically.
The words "procedenti ab utroque / compar sit laudatio"—literally, "May equal praise be to the One proceeding from both"—refer to the Holy Spirit, which according to version of the Nicene Creed used in Western Christianity proceeds from both the father and the son.
A partial indulgence is granted to the faithful who devoutly recite the Tantum ergo. But a plenary indulgence is granted on Holy Thursday and on the feast of Corpus Christi, if it is recited in a solemn manner.
The basic text has been set by numerous composers from the Renaissance (Palestrina), the Romantic period (Anton Bruckner, Gabriel Fauré, Franz Schubert, Louis Vierne), and modern composers (Maurice Duruflé, David Conte).
Déodat de Séverac composed a motet set to the text.
Bruckner wrote eight settings of the text: WAB 32, WAB 43, WAB 41 (Nos. 1, 2, 3, 4), WAB 42, and WAB 44. Fauré wrote two settings: Op. 55, and Op. 62 No. 2. Schubert wrote six settings: D. 460, D. 461, D. 730, D. 739 (Op. 45), D. 750, and D. 962. Vierne's treatment of it is his Opus 2. Duruflé's setting is contained as No. 4 of his Op. 10, Quatre Motets sur des thèmes grégoriens, published in 1960, and uses the plainchant melody.
Samuel Webbe composed a motet in 87 87 meter, widely used in the English and American Catholic churches.
The Church in the Philippines uses a separate hymn tune [another video] from the Pange lingua, whose first three strophes are otherwise sung to the melody used elsewhere. This particular tune, which is of Spanish origin, is credited to a "J. Carreras" and was originally published with a time signature of 3
4 but is now sung in quadruple metre in Luzon and in quadruple then triple metre in the Visayas.
This tune is also used to sing "Let Us Raise Our Voice", a loose English adaptation of the Tantum ergo. The hymn, whose lyrics paraphrase the first two forms of the Memorial Acclamation of the Mass, is sung during the Wednesday Novena Service to Our Lady of Perpetual Help and Benediction at Baclaran Church (the icon's principal shrine in the country).
((cite web)): CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)"Archdiocese of Milwaukee - Our Faith: Occasional Prayers". Archived from the original on 2009-05-08. Retrieved 2009-05-02., accessed May 2, 2009
The Tantum Ergo Sacramentum that is used in the Philippines is of Spanish origin. In old prayer books that were used in the Philippines prior to the advent of hand missals, and in old hymn books, the composer is usually credited as J. Carreras.... It is usually sung either in quadruple time, which apparently is the case in Luzon, or first in quadruple time and then in triple time, which is the case in the Visayas. None of these is in agreement with the original published time signature, which is 3/4 all throughout.