Sacra Iam Splendent
SACRA IAM SPLENDENT
The office hymn that was formerly sung at Matins on the feast of the Holy Family. The hymn has nine unrhymed stanzas, each containing three Sapphic verses and one Adonic. Pope leo xiii composed the Sacra iam splendent —together with the hymns for Vespers, O lux beam caelitum, and for Lauds, O gente felix hospita —especially for the feast of the Holy Family. The classical form gives graceful expression to many thoughts from Leo's encyclicals.
Bibliography: u. chevalier, Repertorium hymnologicum (Louvian-Brussels 1892–1921) 2:487. Poems, Charades, Inscriptions of Pope Leo XIII, ed. and tr. h. t. henry (New York 1902) 104–115, 282–284. m. britt, ed., The Hymns of the Breviary and Missal (new ed. New York 1948) 100–107. a. schwerd, ed., Hymnen und Sequenzen (Munich 1954) 69–70, 113–114. Connelly Hymns 68–71, text and tr.
[g. e. conway]