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Jesu, Corona Virginum


The office hymn that was historically used at Vespers and Lauds of the Common of Virgins. It is in iambic dimeter and was composed probably by St. ambrose, although the tendency toward rhyme and the use of four stanzas instead of his customary eight make some scholars doubt Ambrose's authorship. The first three stanzas, based on Is 28.5, Sg 2.16, and Rv 14.4, respectively, are in praise of Christ, the heavenly bridegroom, rather than of the virgins who follow Him. The hymn concludes with a prayer directed to Christ for a life free of the wounds of sin.

Bibliography: Analecta hymnica 50:2021, text. j. connelly, ed. and tr., Hymns of the Roman Liturgy (Westminster, Md.1957), translation and commentary. a. s. walpole, ed., Early Latin Hymns (Cambridge, Eng. 1922). f. j. e. raby, A History of Christian-Latin Poetry from the Beginnings to the Close of the Middle Ages (Oxford 1953).

[m. a. malone]

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