The erstwhile Beauty and Solemnity of the Liturgy in France

The Catholic Church in the north of France, especially in the Normandy and Picardy areas, had a very rich liturgical tradition. It certainly gives us an idea of what it must have been like to go to Mass in Salisbury Cathedral in the early 16th century. Here is a site with some mind-blowing views of Mass in Amiens Cathedral – Serpentists In Charles Wild's The Choir of the Cathedral of Amiens (France) (ca. 1826). This site deals particularly with a musical instrument for intoning liturgical chants, the serpent, which works like a brass instrument (trumpet, trombone, etc.). The paintings of the solemn Mass in the presence of the Bishop in his stall in Amiens Cathedral are stunning. Here is one of the pictures (reduced size) on this site.

Author: Fr. Anthony Chadwick

Father Anthony Chadwick was born in the north of England into an Anglican family. He was educated in one of the Church of England’s most well-known schools, St. Peter’s in York, at which he was nurtured in the Anglican musical tradition. After several years studying and working in London he studied theology at university level in Switzerland, Italy and France. Still living in France, he has been a priest of the Traditional Anglican Communion (under Archbishop Hepworth) since 2005. Fr. Chadwick is charged with chaplaincy work among dispersed Anglicans in the north of France, is married and lives in Normandy. His interests outside the Church and directly religious matters include classical music, DIY and sailing. As a non-stipendiary priest, he earns his living as a technical translator.

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