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 1

INTRODUCTION TO THE ENGLISH EDITION

Aleksandr Andreev¹

As Professor Mikhail Skaballanovich remarked, a good title is a key element of a good


book, since it reveals to the reader the subject maer and character of the work he is about
to open.² e Greek term typicon (τυπικόν) is an adjective from the noun τύπος, meaning
type, example or model. If we placed the Greek word βιβλίον (book) in front of the word
typicon, we would obtain the title of this book as e Book of Examples. Only in the Orthodox
East does the book containing instructions for worship services have such a peculiar title;
and, in fact, only the Byzantine Rite has such an all-encompassing liturgical manual. In the
Slavonic tradition, the Typicon is also called ᲂу҆ ста́въ, meaning order. e Greek word used
here is taxis (τάξις), and the notion of taxis permeated Byzantine life:
e central aspect of Byzantine behavior was taxis or order. Earthly institutions,
both ecclesiastical and temporal, were considered to mirror the order of the
universe.³
In Byzantine political life, for example, “imperial ceremony” was seen “as a visible ex-
pression of the heavenly harmony and order”.⁴ Byzantine ecclesiastical life was no differ-
ent, and also looked to establish good order through examples and models. Lile churches
looked to great churches and lile monasteries – to the great lauras; but the ultimate ex-
amples were set in heaven, with earthly worship seen as reflecting the heavenly, cosmic
liturgy.⁵
In their preoccupation with good order, the Byzantines wrote books describing and cod-
ifying this order: diataxeis (descriptions of taxis) and typica. e process of codification
begins in earnest with the victory over Iconoclasm in 843 and achieves its height in the
final years of the Byzantine Empire.⁶ is process goes hand in hand with the synthesis of
liturgical practices and rites that ultimately produces what liturgiologists call “the Byzan-
tine Rite”: the “liturgical system that developed out of the Orthodox Patriarchate of Con-
stantinople and was gradually adopted by the other Chalcedonian Orthodox Patriarchates”.⁷
e Typicon describes several aspect of this rite: the daily cycle of prayer (matins, vespers,
and the other hours); the fixed and movable cycles of feasts, fasting periods, and saints’
days of the liturgical calendar; the usage of the liturgical books containing the ordinary and
proper materials for the services; and various aspects of monastic and parish worship and
discipline.
¹St. Petersburg Orthodox eological Academy; aleksandr.andreev@gmail.com. is text is a dra
from the Introduction to the English edition of the Typicon. Not intended for citation.
²M. Skaballanovich. Толковый Типикон: объяснительное изложение Типикона с историческим
введением. Russian. Kiev: Palomnik, 1910, p. 446.
³A. P. Kazhdan and G. Constable. People and Power in Byzantium: An Introduction to Modern Byzantine
Studies. Washington, DC: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 1982, pp. 60f.
⁴Ibid., pp. 60f.
⁵See the discussion of taxis in Byzantine worship in R. F. Ta. rough eir Own Eyes: Liturgy as the
Byzantines Saw it. InterOrthodox Press, 2006, esp. pp. 133ff.
⁶Ibid., p. 150.
⁷R. F. Ta. e Byzantine Rite: A Short History. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 1992, p. 16.

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Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

1.1 A Brief History


e history of the Typicon is closely connected with the history of the rite that it describes,
a history that is yet to be wrien in full.⁸ e second portion of the title of this book
reads: “the order (taxis) of divine services at the Laura of St. Sabbas near Jerusalem,” and
the reference to Jerusalem in the Typicon of the Byzantine Rite testifies to the process that
ultimately led to a monastic form of worship becoming the model for liturgical life in the
Orthodox East – but taking with itself also the best of what the cathedral form of worship
had to offer – in a process that has been called “the Byzantine synthesis”.⁹ Robert Ta offers
the following periodization of this synthesis:
• the palæo-Byzantine era, which roughly ends in the late 4ᵗʰ century;
• the imperial phase, beginning in the time of Justinian, which sees the formation of
the cathedral rite of the Great Church in Constantinople;
• the “Byzantine Dark Ages”, especially the struggle with the Iconoclast heresy, which
ends with the victory of Orthodoxy in 843;
• the Studite period, which sees the development of a monastic rite quite different from
the cathedral rite, and which ends with the Latin conquest of Constantinople in 1204;
• the neo-Sabbaitic synthesis, which takes place aer the fall of Constantinople to the
Latins, and leads to the ascendancy of the “Sabbaite Typicon” – which has remained
the Typicon in use today – during the hesychast movement of the 14ᵗʰ century.¹⁰
To this schema we may add one final, “modern” period, which begins roughly at the
start of the 16ᵗʰ century with the introduction of book printing in the Orthodox East and
takes us to the present. is period may be characterized by the standardization of liturgical
books, decay of the hesychast style of worship, and aempts at liturgical reform.

1.1.1 e Early Period


e earliest periods of this Byzantine synthesis may be viewed as the time of the formation
of the daily cycle of worship and the books containing the liturgical texts for this cycle:
the Horologion and Euchologion. e roots of daily worship can be traced to the practices
of daily prayer in first century Judaism. Observant Jews kept three times of daily prayer:
morning, noon and evening.¹¹ To these standard times – selected, undoubtedly, because they
were easy to determine astronomically and coincided with the principal moments of daily
activity – ascetic communities such as mran and the early Christian Church added prayer
at midnight. ough it is possible that daily public worship in the synagogues took place
in large cities and towns, this would not have been practical in the countryside. Rather,
Jewish public worship took place three times a week – on the Sabbath and on Monday and
ursday (the last two days were selected because they were market days and saw a large
gathering of people in the towns) – while most observant Jews kept the daily prayer rule at
home in private.¹²
⁸For an introduction to the history of the Byzantine Rite, see M. Arranz. “Les grandes étapes de la
Liturgie Byzantine: Palestine-Byzance-Russie. Essai d’apercu historique”. French. In: Bibliotheca Ephemerides
Liturgicae Subsidia (1976), pp. 43–72, M. Arranz and Yu. Ruban. «Око церковное»: история византийского
Типикона. Russian. St. Petersburg: Zhurnal «Neva», 2003, and esp. Ta, op. cit.
⁹A. Schmemann. Introduction to Liturgical eology. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1986,
ch. 4.
¹⁰Ta, op. cit., pp. 18f.
¹¹P. F. Bradshaw. Daily Prayer in the Early Church: A Study of the Origin and Early Development of the
Divine Office. Eugene, OR: Wipf and Stock Publishers, 2008, p. 11.
¹²Ibid., p. 19.
1.1 A Brief History

e same practice can probably be said of the early Christians, who took instead Sunday,
Wednesday, and Friday as their days of public worship (the last two being also days of
fasting). Already the Didache (dated by scholars to the late first century)¹³ mentions prayer
three times a day (8:3) and second and third century authors such as Clement of Alexandria
in the East and Tertullian in the West mention prayer in the morning, at noon, and in the
evening.¹⁴ us, the formation of the daily cycle begins in the first centuries of the Church.
It is probable that around the same time, the symbolism of the sun was reinterpreted and
applied to Christ as the “Sun of Righteousness” and the times of prayer were linked with
the Passion chronology narrated by St. Mark (see Mk. 15:25, 33). e threefold structure of
daily prayer has been maintained since then, and is still evident in the present edition of
the Typicon.
e Edict of Milan (in 313) allowed Christian worship to acquire a permanent public
dimension. In the cities and towns, daily morning and evening worship became the norm.
e “lesser hours” by and large were seen as times of private devotion.¹⁵ While Vespers and
Matins were thus celebrated daily, the Eucharist (the Divine Liturgy) – which constituted
an additional, third time of worship – during this period would be limited to its traditional
place on Sunday, and, in some places, on Saturday, as well as special days such as mar-
tyrs’ memorials. e later centuries would see a gradual increase in the frequency of the
celebration of the Eucharist until it becomes daily (with the exception of certain aliturgical
days), as in our present Typicon.¹⁶ Monastic communities would, of course, keep a fuller
cycle of daily services. An important document from this timeperiod – the diary of Egeria,
a female pilgrim who visited the Holy Land around 381-384 and recorded her impressions
of the worship at the Anastasis (the Church of the Resurrection constructed by St. Constan-
tine at the site of Golgotha) – recounts the liturgical practices in Jerusalem.¹⁷ From Egeria’s
pilgrimage we learn that daily prayer at the Anastasis began at cockcrow – around 3 AM
by our reckoning – with a vigil kept by monastics, and included four other times of daily
prayer in the morning, at noon, at the ninth hour (around 3 PM by the modern clock), and in
the evening. ese four times of prayer would be aended by the laity and presided by the
bishop. However, Jerusalem was perhaps unique given its status as a place of pilgrimage.
Fourth century sources tell us that daily worship consisted largely of psalmody and
intercessions.¹⁸ Already at this time, a system of Psalms said at fixed times of the day – the
beginnings of the modern Horologion – begins to emerge, with Psalm 62 (63) selected as
part of the morning office and Psalm 140 (141) chanted in the evening. Matins also likely
included Psalm 50 (51) and perhaps the Doxology (Gloria in excelsis); the evening office
may have included the hymn O gladsome Light (Phos hilaron) – already called an “ancient
hymn of the Church” by St. Basil the Great – and the Prayer of St. Symeon (Nunc dimiis).¹⁹
Here, Jerusalem also seems to have been special because its worship featured an extensive
amount of non-biblical hymnography. Already Egeria (around 384) writes of the chanting
of “hymns and antiphons”, which “always have suitable and fiing references, both to the
day that is being celebrated and also to the location where the celebration is taking place”
(7:5). Recent studies into Georgian collections of hymnography (iadgari) have brought to
light hymns that were intercalated with the verses of Psalm 140 and other biblical texts at
¹³For the most recent research on the Didache, see T. O’Loughlin. e Didache: A window on the earliest
Christians. SPCK Publishing, 2011.
¹⁴R. F. Ta. e Liturgy of the Hours in East and West. Collegeville, MN: Liturgical Press, 1986, p. 19.
¹⁵Bradshaw, op. cit., pp. 72-92.
¹⁶R. F. Ta. Beyond East & West: Problems in Liturgical Understanding. Washington: e Pastoral Press,
1984, pp. 64-69.
¹⁷Egeria’s diary has been edited in English in J. Wilkinson. Egeria’s Travels. Aris & Phillips, 1999.
¹⁸Bradshaw, op. cit., p. 74.
¹⁹Ibid., p. 74.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

Vespers and Matins, which have been dated to Jerusalem around the 5ᵗʰ century.²⁰ Some
of this hymnography, already organized at that early date according to a system of eight
musical tones (ἦχοι), later made its way into our modern Octoechos.²¹
e Peace of Constantine brought about a parallel development in the life of the Church
– the emergence of monasticism – which came to profoundly shape the Byzantine Rite.
Prayer has always occupied a central place in the monastic life, and early anachoretic
monasticism sought to fulfill quite literally the injunction of St. Paul to “pray without ceas-
ing” (I ess. 5:17). In its simplest form, the prayer of the early monastics in Egypt con-
sisted of meditation on the Psalter. Unlike in the “cathedral office” of the cities and towns,
the Psalter was sung continuously from beginning to end, instead of selecting individual
Psalms for occasional use; it was not uncommon to have a prayer rule consisting of chant-
ing a fixed number of Psalms – or even the entire Psalter – during the course of the day.
Night prayer – keeping vigil for the whole night or part of the night – was also central to
the anachoretic life.²² While daily prayer in the cathedral churches had predominantly an
intercessory and pedagogical character, the recitation of Psalms in the monastic tradition
becomes a form of ascetic practice for personal edification and spiritual growth. is form
of “monastic psalmody” has been preserved in the present Typicon by way of the Cathisma
readings at Vespers and Matins, structured in a way that the entire Psalter is recited once
during the course of a week.
While anachoretic monastics sought to live a life of constant prayer, this was not prac-
tical in a cœnobitic community, for which the Pauline injunction to self-support through
labor (see II ess. 3:7-12) became more relevant. Such communities needed a balance be-
tween prayer and work, and the daily cycle of prayer provided such a balance. Already in the
Pachomian cœnobia, two common prayer offices were held in the morning and evening,²³
while work during the day would be interrupted by brief individual prayer.²⁴ Such monastic
communities also came to be organized not only in the Egyptian desert, but also near the
towns and cities. We have seen already that monastics took an active part in the worship
in Jerusalem described by Egeria; St. Basil the Great, who traveled extensively in Egypt and
Palestine in 357, has been credited with bringing monasticism into the cities in Cappadocia.
ese Basilian communities held to the daily cycle of prayer – morning, third hour, noon,
ninth hour, and evening – to which they also added Compline (a service before retiring for
sleep) and Midnight Office (a midnight vigil).²⁵ From the descriptions in St. Basil’s Longer
Rules, we learn a bit about the structure of these offices. Psalm 90 (91), for example, was
chanted at noon and again at Compline; at the same time, the anachoretic practices of Egypt
were also incorporated, with the Psalter divided into groups of three Psalms used for con-
tinuous chanting.²⁶ In this way, by the end of the 4ᵗʰ century, we see the first of several
“syntheses” – an incorporation of monastic and cathedral practices – the result of which
is a nascent Horologion, with structured daily offices at the traditional times of Christian
prayer.
e distinction between monastic and cathedral rites at this stage, thus, should not be
²⁰ese have been published in French translation by C. Renoux. Les hymnes de la Résurrection. Tome 1,
Hymnographie liturgique géorgienne. French. Paris: Les Éditions du Cerf, 2000, (see also the introduction, esp.
pp. 21-64, for their content and theology).
²¹On the formation of the system of the eight tones (or modes), see P. Jeffery. “e earliest Oktoechoi: the
role of Jerusalem and Palestine in the beginnings of modal ordering”. In: e study of medieval chant: paths
and bridges, east and west (2001), pp. 147–209.
²²See Bradshaw, op. cit., pp. 93-95.
²³Ta, e Liturgy of the Hours in East and West, p. 63.
²⁴Bradshaw, op. cit., p. 95.
²⁵Ibid., p. 99.
²⁶Ta, op. cit., pp. 88-89.
1.1 A Brief History

over-emphasized.²⁷ Both monastic and lay communities held the daily schedule of prayer,
with the exception that a tightly-knit monastic community could also keep the “lesser
hours” during the day – impractical for the majority of working people in the cities (al-
though, as we have seen, the “lesser hours” were public services in Jerusalem). Monas-
tics also practiced night-time prayer, either with services at midnight or at cockcrow, al-
though the practice of night vigil was also present in lay worship. e difference here is that
night prayer was part of the daily cycle for monastic communities, while vigils in cathedral
churches were an occasional event, undoubtedly tied with the feasts and martyrs’ memori-
als of the emerging liturgical calendar.²⁸ Both monastic and cathedral practice at this time
– with the exception of, as we have seen, Jerusalem – was marked by an absence of extra-
biblical hymnography, keeping only to the singing of Psalms and other biblical poetry. is
period was marked by a general weariness of non-biblical compositions, which were oen
used to promote heresy, as reflected in Canon 59 of the Council of Laodicea (in 364): “Pri-
vate psalms must not be recited in church, nor uncanonical books, but only the canonical
books of the New and Old Testament.”²⁹ e development of ecclesiastical hymnography
would be characteristic of the next periods of the Byzantine synthesis.

1.1.2 e Great Chur and the Chanted Office


e new capital founded by St. Constantine on the Bosporus soon became a large urban cen-
ter, and in such cities of Late Antiquity, worship included popular processions through the
porticoed streets and public squares. Liturgiologists call this form of worship the “stational
liturgy”.³⁰ From Egeria’s account, we know that processions also took place in Jerusalem,
but there they seem to have been occasional, with the clergy and faithful processing to
the holy sites of the events of the Lord’s earthly ministry and Passion on the days when
these events were commemorated in the liturgical calendar. e stational services in Con-
stantinople seem to have been frequent occasions, with the people taking to the streets to
plead for intercession from natural disasters and barbarian assaults. Heresies also rocked
ecclesiastic life in Constantinople, and since the Arians would assemble in the streets chant-
ing their heretical hymns, Orthodox hierarchs like St. John Chrysostom introduced stations
to counteract the Arian influence.³¹ Liturgy in Constantinople would continue to include
stational processions even aer the dedication of the Hagia Sophia – the Great Church –
by Justinian in 537; we see them mentioned as late as the 10ᵗʰ century in the Typicon of the
Great Church.³² ese stations would impact the shape of the Byzantine Liturgy with its
characteristic movement and entrances; they would be also responsible for the next stage
in the development of Byzantine hymnography through the introduction of the Troparion.
Like elsewhere, the worship texts in Constantinople were drawn primarily from the
Psalter. At this time we find the development of antiphonal psalmody: divided into two
groups, the people would chant brief responses to the Psalm verses sung by the professional
chanters. Although antiphonal psalmody is first mentioned by St. Basil the Great,³³ such
responses seem to be characteristic of Constantinople. ey were oen simply Alleluia,
²⁷is distinction was first recognized by A. Baumstark. Comparative Liturgy. A. R. Mowbray, 1958,
pp. 111f.
²⁸For the latest treatment of this subject, see Ta, op. cit., pp. 165-190.
²⁹D. Cummings. e Rudder. Chicago: Orthodox Christian Educational Society, 1957, p. 575.
³⁰e most comprehensive study of this topic is J. F. Baldovin. e Urban Character of Christian Worship:
e Origins, Development, and Meaning of Stational Liturgy. Orientalia Christiana Analecta. Rome: Pont. Inst.
Studiorum Orientalium, 1987.
³¹Ta, e Byzantine Rite: A Short History, pp. 28-32.
³²Edited by J. Mateos. Le Typicon de la Grande Église. French. Vol. I. Le Cycle des Douze Mois. Orientalia
Christiana Analecta. Rome: Pont. Institutum Studiorum Orientalium, 1962.
³³See Bradshaw, op. cit., p. 101.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

or a text from Scripture; but sometimes consisted of a verse of non-biblical composition,


called a troparion because it serves as a “trope” (explanation) of the Psalm. Sometimes, the
Troparia were longer compositions, chanted by the professional chanters, with the people
responding with only the last verse.³⁴ In the Divine Liturgy, later some of the Psalms used
with these Troparia were dropped and only the compositions have remained: such are the
Trisagion Hymn and the Cherubic Hymn.³⁵
e Byzantine office at Hagia Sophia consisted primarily of the chanting of psalmody in
such a manner. In Constantinople, the Psalter was divided into 76 antiphons; some of these
antiphons had a fixed place in the divine office, while the remainder were distributed, with
six antiphons chanted at each of Vespers and Matins. e odd antiphons were chanted with
the refrain Alleluia, while the even antiphons used as a refrain short verses like ‘Save us,
O Lord’.³⁶ According to St. Symeon of essalonica, who gives a description of this rite in
its much later, waning years (around 1420), it consisted almost entirely of chanting and re-
quired a large group of trained choristers, and so received the name chanted office (ἀσματική
ἀκολουθία).³⁷ Between the chanting of the antiphons, litanies were proclaimed by the Dea-
con and prayers offered by the officiating Priest or Bishop. Many of these prayers of the
Byzantine Euchologion have survived: they have been regrouped and placed back-to-back
by our present Typicon at the beginning of Vespers and at the beginning of Matins.³⁸ e
“lesser hours” in Hagia Sophia also consisted of prayers and antiphons (three in number).
e full daily cycle was served at the Great Church, including the Midnight Office, and it
is possible that the so-called acœmetoi, or sleepless monks, staffed the night services.³⁹ e
great feasts of the liturgical calendar included night services aended by the lay congrega-
tion as well: a special vigil called Pannychis was served, though, despite its name, it did not
last all night.⁴⁰ It rather seems to be the analog of Compline; on some feasts, the Typicon
of the Great Church appoints the chanting of the Kontakion aer Pannychis up until the
beginning of the midnight psalmody.⁴¹ e Kontakion initially was an elaborate musical
composition of a didactic character – a sermon in music – and seems to have been derived
from Syrian hymnography.⁴² Its most famous hymnographer is St. Romanus the Melodist,
of whom perhaps as many as 80 such kontakia have survived;⁴³ one full kontakion – though
of uncertain authorship – is still appointed by the present Typicon: the Acathist Hymn on
the fih Saturday of Lent.
e ethos of the chanted office differed from the later monastic services. Its combina-
tion of considerable public participation though congregational singing with the pomp and
splendor of its processions and entrances had a profound impact on the worshiper, inspiring
awe and amazement. It was this form of worship that St. Vladimir’s Russian ambassadors
experienced in 987; the Russian Primary Chronicle narrates their reaction: “we knew not
³⁴See J. Mateos. La célébration de la parole dans la liturgie byzantine: étude historique. French. Orientalia
Christiana Analecta. Rome: Pont. Institutum Studiorum Orientalium, 1971, pp. 13-20.
³⁵For a discussion of the origins of the Cherubic Hymn, see R. F. Ta. e Great Entrance. Orientalia
Christiana Analecta. Rome: Pont. Institutum Studiorum Orientalium, 1975, pp. 98-118.
³⁶M. Arranz. “Как молились Богу древние византийцы”. Russian. PhD thesis. Leningrad eological
Academy, 1979, pp. 26-29.
³⁷For a description of the musical elements of this office, see O. Strunk. “e Byzantine office at Hagia
Sophia”. In: Dumbarton Oaks Papers (1956), pp. 175–202.
³⁸See Arranz, op. cit., pp. 33-60.
³⁹Ibid., p. 120.
⁴⁰Ibid., pp. 153-179.
⁴¹See kontakion and pannychis in J. Mateos. Le Typicon de la Grande Église. French. Vol. II. Le Cycle des
Fêtes mobiles. Orientalia Christiana Analecta. Rome: Pont. Institutum Studiorum Orientalium, 1963, pp. 301,
311.
⁴²J. Grosdidier de Matons. Romanos le Mélode et les origines de la poésie religieuse à Byzance. French. Paris:
Éditions Beauchesne, 1977, pp. 3-66.
⁴³Ibid., p. 199.
1.1 A Brief History

whether we were in heaven or on earth.”⁴⁴ By contrast, the monastic psalmody was more
reserved and solemn, with a single monk chanting the Psalms verse-by-verse while the con-
gregation silently meditated on their meaning. e richness of hymnography would come
to be reconciled with the meditative form of worship in the next stages of the Byzantine
synthesis.

1.1.3 e Studite Reforms


We have already seen hymnography in Jerusalem mentioned by Egeria (around 348), and
by the 6ᵗʰ century, such hymnography came to grouped into a book called the Tropologion
(book of troparia), which has survived in its Georgian translation as the iadgari.⁴⁵ In fact, an
entire rite native to Jerusalem had emerged, with, in addition to the Tropologion, its own
liturgical calendar and system of readings (Lectionary)⁴⁶ and its own liturgical formulary –
the Liturgy of St. James.⁴⁷ e 7ᵗʰ century was a time of great perturbation for Palestinian
Christians, with the sack of Jerusalem by the Persians in 614, and its subsequent fall to the
Muslim Arabs in 637. Following these events, the center of liturgical creativity moves from
Jerusalem to the Monastery of St. Sabbas in the Judæan desert, which, despite the massacre
of 44 of its monks by Chosroes II (in 614), survived the onslaughts beer than other Pales-
tinian monastic communities.⁴⁸ e period 614-843 may, in fact, be considered a Golden
Age for the Laura of St. Sabbas, which becomes home to such figures as St. John of Damas-
cus (†749) and St. Cosmas of Maiuma (†c. 751). Unlike Constantinople, Jerusalem divided
the Psalter into 20 sections of three groups each called a stasis, to which were appended
nine biblical odes.⁴⁹ At the Laura, a new form of hymnography emerges: the Canon, a litur-
gical poem based on the themes of these biblical odes. Much of the hymnography of the
earlier Jerusalem Tropologion was reworked into the new canons, and new hymnographic
material was composed by St. John and St. Cosmas. e result of this creative work was a
new redaction of the Tropologion, and its resurrectional hymnography would later find its
way into the modern Octoechos, while the material for the feasts can now be found in the
Menaion.⁵⁰
e work of St. John of Damascus in composing canons should be viewed against the
background of the growing menace of Iconoclasm, a controversy that rocked the Church
in Constantinople between 726 and 843. As much as a theological heresy, Iconoclasm was
also a political and social movement against the growing role of monasticism.⁵¹ In 765, the
iconoclast Emperor Constantine V expelled monastics from the Byzantine capital, but in 798
or 799, the iconodule Empress Irene invited eodore, then abbot of a private monastery in
Bithynia – the future St. eodore the Studite – to reestablish monastic life at the Monastery
of St. John the Forerunner ‘in the Studium’ in Constantinople. St. eodore, a prolific writer
and talented administrator, who, nonetheless, seems to have been unable to get along with
any Byzantine autocrat aer Irene, led a monastic reform movement that sought to firmly
⁴⁴Cited by Ta, e Byzantine Rite: A Short History, p. 18.
⁴⁵Renoux, op. cit., pp. 14-85.
⁴⁶See K. Kekelidze. Иерусалимский Канонарь VII века: Грузинская версия. Russian. Tbilisi, 1912.
⁴⁷Ta, op. cit., p. 57.
⁴⁸For a brief history of the Laura of St. Sabbas, see the introductory text in G. Fiaccadori. “Sabas: Founder’s
Typikon of the Sabas Monastery near Jerusalem”. In: Byzantine Monastic Foundation Documents: A Complete
Translation of the Surviving Founders’ Typika and Testaments. Ed. by J. omas and A. Constantinides Hero.
Washington, DC: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2000, pp. 1311-1318.
⁴⁹See R. F. Ta. “Mount Athos: A Late Chapter in the History of the Byzantine Rite”. In: Dumbarton Oaks
Papers (1988), pp. 179–194, p. 181.
⁵⁰Idem, e Byzantine Rite: A Short History, p. 58.
⁵¹Kazhdan and Constable, op. cit., p. 87.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

establish a cœnobitic monastic community independent from the imperial government.⁵²


A cornerstone of cœnobitic life for St. eodore was communal prayer of the daily cycle,
in contrast with the “shis of prayer” practiced by the acœmetoi. Monks at the Studium
began each day by communal chanting of the Midnight Office and Matins (around 3 AM
by the modern clock); an emphasis on manual labor was the second feature of the Studite
reform, but the workday would be interrupted for communal chanting at the traditional
times of prayer – third, sixth and ninth hours – as well as Vespers and Compline before
retiring.⁵³ For the structure of the offices, St. eodore selected the Palestinian Psalter and
Horologion, with which the Studites integrated the litanies and Euchologion prayers of the
chanted office.⁵⁴ In addition to introducing the Palestinian Horologion, St. eodore felt that
Palestinian hymnography would be an effective tool against heresy, and hence wrote to
Patriarch omas of Jerusalem, asking him to send Palestinian monks to introduce Sab-
baite chanting at the Studium.⁵⁵ To the borrowed Palestinian hymnody, the Studites added
a large amount of hymnographic material of their own, including the weekday canons of the
modern Octoechos and the three-ode canons for the lenten period (now part of the Lenten
Triodion), some of it the work of St. eodore the Studite himself.⁵⁶
e final victory over Iconoclasm in 843 opens a period of rebuilding and synthesis in
Byzantine life in general, and in ecclesiastic affairs in particular. Lives of saints – many
of them martyrs or confessors during the recent iconoclast persecutions – were gathered
and services composed for them en masse – largely the work of St. Joseph the Hymnogra-
pher (†886) – which came to be grouped into the Menaion, thus completing the collection
of liturgical books containing the proper texts for the Byzantine Rite.⁵⁷ e result was a
fusion of Constantinopolitan and Palestinian usages, which created a Studite monastic rite
that borrowed from the Great Church “a strong Byzantine coloration [and] a certain taste
for the cathedral traditions,” while taking the Palestinian Horologion and adding to it “an
importance assigned to chant to the detriment of the Psalter”.⁵⁸ e role of chant would
become even more prominent during the next period of the Byzantine synthesis.

1.1.4 e neo-Sabbaitic Synthesis and the Hesyast Movement


e synthesis of cathedral and monastic usages by the Studites prompted the process of
codifying liturgical practice. A general need arose for liturgical instructions that would
indicate how to select and use hymnography from the ever growing volumes of different
liturgical compendia. Coupled together with rules and regulations for the internal affairs
⁵²For the life of St. eodore and his role at the Studium monastery, see the introductory materials in T.
Miller. “eodore Studites: Testament of eodore the Studite for the Monastery of St. John Stoudios in Con-
stantinople”. In: Byzantine Monastic Foundation Documents: A Complete Translation of the Surviving Founders’
Typika and Testaments. Ed. by J. omas and A. Constantinides Hero. Washington, DC: Dumbarton Oaks
Research Library and Collection, 2000; on the Studite reform of monasticism, see the introductory materials
in T. Miller. “Stoudios: Rule of the Monastery of St. John Stoudios in Constantinople”. In: Byzantine Monas-
tic Foundation Documents: A Complete Translation of the Surviving Founders’ Typika and Testaments. Ed. by
J. omas and A. Constantinides Hero. Washington, DC: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection,
2000.
⁵³J. Leroy. “La vie quotidienne du moine studite”. French. In: Irénikon 27 (1954), p. 26, pp. 30-39.
⁵⁴Ta, “Mount Athos: A Late Chapter in the History of the Byzantine Rite”, p. 182.
⁵⁵Miller, op. cit., p. 88.
⁵⁶For more on the authorship of the Triodion, see I. Karabinov. Постная триодь. Russian. St. Petersburg:
Tipografiya V. D. Smirnova, 1910, p. 123-144.
⁵⁷A. Nikiforova. Из истории Минеи в Византии: Гимнографические памятники VIII-XII вв. из собрания
монастыря святой Екатерины на Синае. Russian. Moscow: St. Tikhon’s Orthodox Humanitarian Univer-
sity, 2012, pp. 122-138, 192-194.
⁵⁸M. Arranz. “Les prières presbytérales des Matines byzantines. II: Les manuscripts”. French. In: Orientalia
Christiana Periodica 38 (1972), p. 85 as quoted by Ta, loc. cit.
1.1 A Brief History

and daily routine of monks, these would be codified by founders of monastic institutions
in the first liturgical typica. ough St. eodore the Studite never authored a typicon
himself, his followers wrote down regulations for monastic and liturgical life in the Hy-
potyposis (aer 842).⁵⁹ e influential role of the Studites as defenders of Orthodoxy led
to the proliferation of Studite usage to monasteries beyond Constantinople over the next
few centuries. On Mt. Athos, for example, the Hypotyposis formed the basis of the Rule
set forth by St. Athanasius the Athonite for the Great Laura (in 963).⁶⁰ Our first extant full
typicon was authored by Alexius the Studite, Patriarch of Constantinople (1025–1043), for a
monastery that he founded near the Byzantine capital. is typicon consists of a Synaxar-
ion (instructions for every day of the fixed cycle), Canonarion (instructions for the lenten
and pentecostarion periods), and a Founder’s Typicon that provides certain regulations for
monastic life, diet, and obediences. e Typicon of Alexius the Studite (TAS) has survived
only in Slavonic translation.⁶¹ Some time between 1068 and 1074, it was translated into
Church Slavonic at the initiative of St. eodosius of Kiev for use at the Laura of the Kiev
Caves.⁶² Subsequently, because of the important role of the Kiev Caves in the life of the Rus-
sian Church, this Typicon came to be used across Russia, both in monasteries and parish
churches.⁶³ Unlike Constantinople, Russia does not seem to have had a tradition of a sepa-
rate cathedral rite; in fact, it is not clear to what extent the chanted office was ever practiced
in Russia.⁶⁴
e Studite typicon spread even to Palestine as part of the general influence of Con-
stantinople on the eastern patriarchates following the desecration of Christian churches
and monasteries in 1009 under Caliph Al-Ḥākim and the subsequent upheavals during the
Crusades. By the end of the 13ᵗʰ century, the eastern Patriarchates had abandoned their na-
tive usages and adopted the Byzantine Rite.⁶⁵ Monastic communities in Palestine during this
period adopted the Studite Synaxarion, the lectionary of Constantinople – which the Stu-
dites had borrowed from the Great Church – and the formulary of the Liturgies of St. John
and St. Basil, which replaced the native Palestinian Liturgy of St. James.⁶⁶ However, these
Studite usages were adapted for the needs of Palestinian monasticism, a process that litur-
giologists have called the neo-Sabbaitic synthesis, since the center of activity, once again,
seems to be the Laura of St. Sabbas.⁶⁷
⁵⁹English translation in Miller, op. cit., pp. 97-115.
⁶⁰Ta, op. cit., p. 183.
⁶¹Edited by A. Pentkovsky. Типикон патриарха Алексия Студита в Византии и на Руси. Russian.
Moscow: Издательство Московской патриархии, 2001, pp. 233ff.
⁶²Ibid., p. 41.
⁶³Ibid., p. 194 et passim.
⁶⁴e opinion that the chanted office (in accordance with the Typicon of the Great Church) was cele-
brated in Russia was first expressed by M. Lisitsyn. Первоначальный славяно-русский Типикон: историко-
археологическое исследование. Russian. St. Petersburg, 1911, esp. pp. 33-160, but his methodology was
subsequently questioned by I. Karabinov. “Отзыв о труде протоиерея М. Лисицына «Первоначальный
славяно-русский Типикон…»” Russian. In: Сборник отчетов о премиях и наградах, присуждаемых
Императорской Академией наук: Отчеты за 1912 г. Petrograd, 1916, pp. 312–368. e existence of Slavonic
Kondakaria – books containing complex music for Kontakia and other hymns notated in a special Kondakar-
ian notation – indicate that perhaps some elements of the cathedral rite were, in fact, practiced in Russia, but
the liturgical function of Kondakaria still remains a mystery; see N. Zakharʹina. “Русские певческие книги:
Типология, пути эволюции”. Russian. PhD thesis. N. Rimsky-Korsakov St. Petersburg State Conservatory,
2007, pp. 164-166. One such Kondakarion, for example, is placed inside of a Typicon reflecting Studite usage;
see Ye. Ukhanova. “Древнейшая русская редакция Студийского устава: происхождение и особенности
богослужения по Типографскому списку”. Russian. In: Типографский Устав: устав с кондакарем конца
XI – начала XIII в. Ed. by B. Uspensky. Vol. 3. Moscow: Yazyki Slavyanskikh kulʹtur, 2006, p. 246 et passim.
⁶⁵Ta, e Byzantine Rite: A Short History, p. 57.
⁶⁶See A. Pentkovsky. “Константинопольский и иерусалимский богослужебные уставы”. In: Журнал
Московской Патриархии 4 (2001), pp. 70–78.
⁶⁷is term was coined by Ta, op. cit., p. 79.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

It is at this stage that the Typicon of St. Sabbas is born. We find no trace of such a
document before the 11ᵗʰ century; an earlier Testament, aributed to St. Sabbas, but prob-
ably a later interpolation, is a founder’s typicon from the Laura of St. Sabbas containing no
menologion or detailed liturgical instructions.⁶⁸ e extant manuscript copies of the early
Sabbaite Typicon are adaptations of the Studite Synaxarion and Lectionary.⁶⁹ Our earliest
mention of these typica ‘of Jerusalem’ is due to Nicon of the Black Mountain, an 11ᵗʰ century
liturgiologist of sorts who collected and studied various liturgical texts for the purposes of
draing his own founder’s typicon for the Monastery of the eotokos of the Pomegranate
somewhere in the vicinity of Antioch.⁷⁰
e distinguishing characteristic of the neo-Sabbaite Typicon is the presence of the
agrypnia – the All-night Vigil – the rubrics for which form the opening chapters of all redac-
tions. According to the Testament, the tradition of serving the All-night Vigil for Sunday
goes back to St. Sabbas, thought no rubrics are provided.⁷¹ It is, in fact, an ancient Palestinian
monastic custom, first aested in a seventh century description of the visit of Abbots John
and Sophronius to Abbot Nilus of Sinai, where an all-night vigil is sung, consisting, among
other things, of the chanting of the entire Psalter.⁷² In addition to the fact that it reflected
the more austere usage of Palestinian and Egyptian monasticism, the All-night Vigil also
had a practical dimension: at the Laura of St. Sabbas, monks lived in a system of sketes, and
treacherous terrain made night travel difficult, so the community would gather for all-night
prayer on Saturday evening. By contrast, the Studium was a cœnobitic monastery and had
no practical use for an All-night Vigil, celebrating instead the offices of Vespers, Compline,
Midnight Office, and Matins at their appropriate times. Studite practice also reflected the
more lenient usage of urban monastics, who would sleep during part of the night.
In addition to the practice of the All-night Vigil, the more austere character of the Sab-
baite Typicon is reflected in an increase in the amount of monastic psalmody. Both Studite
and Sabbaite practice uses the Palestinian Psalter of 20 cathismata, but in Studite usage the
Psalter in the summer months is read once through every three weeks and in the winter
months – once through every week, with two cathismata appointed at Matins. In Sabbaite
practice, two cathismata are appointed at Matins in the summer months and three cathis-
mata in the winter months; thus the winter Studite schedule becomes the summer schedule
of Sabbaite practice and a stricter schedule is created for the winter months. ere is also
a general increase in the amount of hymnography (by increasing the number of troparia in
the Canon and the number of stichera) and an increase in psalmody through the addition of
the Biblical Odes.⁷³ A number of further nuanced differences need not concern us here;⁷⁴ in
summary, we can say that the neo-Sabbaite Typicon used today is a more austere version
of the Studite typica.
e Sabbaite Typicon was subsequently adopted on Mt. Athos, where typica from the
⁶⁸English translation in Fiaccadori, op. cit., pp. 1316f.
⁶⁹Many of these are edited by A. Dmitrievsky. Описание литургических рукописей, хранящихся в
библиотеках Православного Востока. Russian. Vol. 3: Τυπιkά. Petrograd: Tipografiya V. Kirshbauma,
1917, pp. 1–394.
⁷⁰See Ta, op. cit., pp. 79f. We will return to Nicon of the Black Mountain in our discussion of the dis-
ciplinary material of the modern Typicon; his life and work is described in the introductory material to R.
Allison. “Black Mountain: Regulations of Nikon of the Black Mountain”. In: Byzantine Monastic Foundation
Documents: A Complete Translation of the Surviving Founders’ Typika and Testaments. Ed. by J. omas and
A. Constantinides Hero. Washington, DC: Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection, 2000.
⁷¹Fiaccadori, op. cit., p. 1316.
⁷²Described in detail by N. Uspensky. Чин всенощного бдения на православном Востоке и в Русской
Церкви. Russian. Moscow: Izdatelʹskiy Sovet Russкой Православной Церкви, 2004, ch. 1; see also the schema
in Ta, “Mount Athos: A Late Chapter in the History of the Byzantine Rite”, p. 188.
⁷³See the discussion in ibid., p. 190.
⁷⁴ey are described, inter alia, in J. Getcha. La réforme liturgique du Métropolite Cyprien de Kiev:
l’introduction du Typikon sabaı̈te dans l’office divin. French. Paris: Les Éditions du Cerf, 2003, passim.
1.1 A Brief History

13ᵗʰ century onward reflect the neo-Sabbaite usage.⁷⁵ By contrast with the Studite cœnobitic
ideal, the hesychast movement, which comes to ascendancy in the 14ᵗʰ century, put greater
value on solitary contemplation, and the system of sketes in a laura was the most appropri-
ate model for hesychast monastic life. e Sabbaite Typicon provided the needed liturgical
rule for such a community, allowing a solitary to maintain ties with the community at large
through the Sunday All-night Vigil.⁷⁶ Additionally, hesychast theology emphasized night
prayer, the ancient monastic ideal.⁷⁷
In 1204, Constantinople was sacked by the Fourth Crusade, and a Latin state and patri-
archate were established in the city. ough the Byzantines were able to recapture their
capital in 1261, Byzantium never fully recovered from these events. e liturgical traditions
of the Great Church were interrupted, and the chanted office fell into general disuse.⁷⁸ Clergy
in the exiled Empire of Nicæa where drawn from the monastic communities of Asia Minor
that by then already used the Sabbaite Typicon, and during the period of the Paleologan
dynasty (1259-1453), the Sabbaite Typicon displaced other usages in Byzantium. By 1420,
St. Symeon, Metropolitan of essalonica, writes that his is the last cathedral still using the
chanted office.⁷⁹
ough St. Symeon aributes the decline of the chanted office to its requirement of many
trained clergy and chanters, the real reason, perhaps, was the growing influence of the hesy-
chasts. In addition to its doctrinal aspects and emphasis on spiritual life, hesychasm was also
a socio-political movement.⁸⁰ Aer the theology of St. Gregory Palamas was upheld at a se-
ries of councils in Constantinople in 1341–1351, hesychast clergy came to control prominent
positions in Byzantine ecclesiastical life. One such figure is Philotheus Kokkinus, a friend
and biographer of St. Gregory Palamas, who was Patriarch of Constantinople in 1353–1355
and again 1364–1376. Formerly abbot of the Great Laura on Mt. Athos, Philotheus authored
two diataxeis that codified neo-Sabbaite usage for both monasteries and parishes around
Constantinople.⁸¹ In turn, a disciple of Philotheus, St. Cyprian, Metropolitan of Kiev (1373–
1406), initiated a transition to the neo-Sabbaite usage in Russia, issuing in Slavonic his Aug-
mented Psalter.⁸² e Sabbaite Typicon itself was translated into Slavonic in Russia around
the same time by St. Athanasius, Abbot of the Vysotsky Monastery in Serpukhov (†1410).
is edition of the Sabbaite Typicon – a compilation from a variety of Greek sources that in-
cludes also additions from the Tacticon of Nicon of the Black Mountain and other materials
– forms the basis for the modern Slavonic Typicon.⁸³
It may seem that, apart from the practice of the All-night Vigil, the differences between
Studite and Sabbaite usages are insignificant. Yet the neo-Sabbaitic synthesis did bring about
a change in the ethos of Byzantine worship. Sabbaite worship takes on a more contempla-
tive and reserved character, in keeping with hesychast spirituality. While at the Studium,
the entire monastic community participated in the divine office in the form of congrega-
tional chanting,⁸⁴ in the Sabbaite office, the psalmody becomes the task of trained individual
⁷⁵Ta, loc. cit.
⁷⁶A. Lingas. “Hesychasm and psalmody”. In: Mount Athos and Byzantine Monasticism. Ed. by A. Bryer
and M. Cunningham. 1996, pp. 155–170, p. 159.
⁷⁷See the citations in Getcha, op. cit.
⁷⁸Ta, e Byzantine Rite: A Short History, p. 78.
⁷⁹Symeon of essalonica. Treatise on Prayer: An Explanation of the Services Conducted in the Orthodox
Church. Brookline, MA: Hellenic College Press, 1984, p. 71; see also Migne, PG 155, col. 624.
⁸⁰is is described in detail in J. Meyendorff. Byzantium and the Rise of Russia: A Study of Byzantino-
Russian Relations in the Fourteenth Century. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1981, chs. 5–8.
⁸¹Ta, “Mount Athos: A Late Chapter in the History of the Byzantine Rite”, pp. 191ff.
⁸²Edited with a French translation in Getcha, op. cit.
⁸³I. Mansvetov. Церковный устав (типик): его образование и судьба в греческой и русской церкви. Rus-
sian. Moscow: Tipografiya E. Lissnera i Yu. Renana, 1885, p. 277.
⁸⁴Leroy, op. cit., p. 31.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

chanters. e 14ᵗʰ century witnesses an explosion in the calophonic style of music: ornate,
highly melismatic chanting of psalms, stichera, and other hymns, sometimes with the inser-
tion of cratemata – extra-textual nonsense syllables.⁸⁵ is form of chanting may have been
used to support the practice of continual recitation of the Jesus Prayer during the All-night
Vigil, and is something of a return to the early monastic form of worship of the Egyptian
desert, with its contemplative character, except that the extra-biblical hymnography now
dwarfs the psalms and other biblical texts. e same tendency towards ever-growing elab-
oration of musical seings for stichera, hirmoi, and other hymns, can also be observed in
Slavonic musical manuscripts starting with the end of the 14ᵗʰ century, when the Sabbaite
Typicon is first introduced in Russia.⁸⁶ e transition to the Sabbaite usage is accompanied
by a large-scale structural and textual reform of the liturgical books and the composition of
new hymnography both because of the increased solemnity of the office and the glorifica-
tion of new saints.⁸⁷ So while this period in the development of the Byzantine Rite can be
viewed, in some ways, as a time of consolidation and further synthesis,⁸⁸ it is also a time
of rich textual and musical development driven by the deep, personal spirituality of the
hesychast movement.

1.1.5 e modern period


Medieval scholars will aest that no two manuscripts are identical. e complete standard-
ization of liturgical books comes about following the introduction of the printing press,
which allowed for the relatively inexpensive mass production of a single text. e center of
Greek printing activity was Venice; the first printed liturgical books appeared there in the
1470’s and the Typicon was printed in 1545.⁸⁹ e subsequent editions of the Typicon are
very similar to the editio princeps up until the Greek liturgical reforms of the 19ᵗʰ century.⁹⁰
Book printing begins in Moscow in the mid-16ᵗʰ century, and the Slavonic Typicon was
printed at the Moscow Printing Court in 1610. is edition follows the manuscript tradition
due to St. Athanasius Vysotsky, which differs somewhat from the Greek Sabbaite typica with
the inclusion of additional materials from Nicon of the Black Mountain and other sources,
but the preparation of the 1610 edition was accompanied by the first aempt to ‘correct’
the text of the Typicon. is was part of the first stage of a long history of the ‘correction
of books’ in Russia that culminated with the Nikonian reforms of the late-17ᵗʰ century. e
principles of the first ‘correction’ of the Typicon have not come down to us; we can see
only that the text of the Typicon was greatly expanded with the addition of new material
from Slavonic sources. Its editor, a certain Longin, canonarch at Holy-Trinity St. Sergius
Laura, came to be involved in later polemics concerning the correction methodology. As a
result, his edition of the Typicon was condemned by Patriarch Philaret (1609–1633), who
ordered it to be confiscated and burned. Luckily, the order does not seem to have been
carried out, and copies of the Slavonic editio princeps survived; the 1610 Typicon was not
without contradictions, but certainly did not contain any heresy.⁹¹
⁸⁵See examples in Lingas, op. cit., pp. 161ff.
⁸⁶See M. Brazhnikov. Пути развития и задачи расшифровки Знаменного роспева XII–XVIII вв. Russian.
Leningrad: Gosudarstvennoye muzykalʹnoye izdatelʹstvo, 1949, passim., but esp. pp. 46-49.
⁸⁷is reform is described by Zakharʹina, op. cit., pp. 119-126.
⁸⁸is is the view of Ta, op. cit., p. 194.
⁸⁹Æ. Koumarianou, D. Loukia, and E. Layton. Το ελληνικό βιβλίο: 1476-1830. Greek. Athens: Ethnikē
trapeza tēs Helladas, 1986, p. 265.
⁹⁰e editio princeps and subsequent editions are described in Dmitrievsky, op. cit., pp. 495-508.
⁹¹In outlining the history of the Slavonic printed editions, I follow the exposition of G. Krylov. Книжная
справа Типикона в XVII веке. Russian. Presentation at the 18ᵗʰ Rozhdestvenskiye Chteniya. Moscow, 2010;
the 1610 edition is described by Mansvetov, op. cit., pp. 311–315. See the additional information provided
1.1 A Brief History

e second edition of the Slavonic Typicon appeared in 1633 and was intended to replace
the condemned 1610 text. It reproduces almost verbatim a manuscript of the St. Athanasius
Vysotsky tradition without any additional texts, and is thus shorter than the 1610 edition.⁹²
However, during the subsequent ‘correction of books’ under Patriarch Joasaph I (1634–
1640), the correctors at the Printing Court returned to the structure of the 1610 Typicon.⁹³
e result of this ‘correction’ is the 1641 edition of the Typicon, a giant, over 2000-page-
long compendium of liturgical information. In this edition, many more Mark’s Chapters and
other additional rubrics were added and the entire book was systematized and reorganized.
Many of the contradictions of the 1610 edition were resolved, though some duplication of
materials and contradictory instructions nonetheless remained. Be that as it may, with its
abundance and variety of liturgical instructions, this edition can be viewed as the apogee
of Russian rubrical creativity.
e reform of liturgical books under Patriarch Nikon (1652-1666) primarily focused on
the Hieraticon,⁹⁴ the Euchologion, the Horologion, and the Psalter.⁹⁵ e decision to correct
the Typicon was taken by Patriarch Joachim (1674-1690) in 1674. e stated purpose of this
reform was to “correct the Typicon in accordance with Greek editions, reconcile it with other
corrected books, and remove any materials of a local character.”⁹⁶ In reality, the ‘correctors’
were not alway consistent and “oen went off-track, introducing, as a result, contradictions
and oversights.”⁹⁷ In fact, as with the entire Nikonian reform, the idea was to make Russian
liturgical practice agree with Greek usage of the time; but because the ‘correctors’ had only a
vague idea of Greek usage beyond what was described in the Venetian printed editions, and
because they were not entirely consistent, the resulting 1681 edition of the Typicon differs
both from the pre-reform Slavonic editions and from Greek editions. In general, the late
17ᵗʰ century in Moscow was a time of cultural paradigm shis – society was transitioning
from the Middle Ages to Modernity under the influence of Polish baroque culture – and the
‘correction’ reflected the growing desire to abbreviate lengthy and seemingly burdensome
Sabbaite services and to shorten the text of the Typicon itself.⁹⁸
Without geing into the details of the reform, we will only describe some of the more
noticeable changes in the 1681 edition. ese include the elimination of the 17ᵗʰ Cathisma
at the Sunday All-night Vigil during the fall and winter months; changes in the order of
singing the catabasiæ and It is truly meet; and the elimination of many Mark’s Chapters,
Temple Chapters, and other rubrics.⁹⁹ e Synaxarion was completely revised, and as a
result, many Russian commemorations were made ‘optional’ or eliminated entirely in order
to accord the text with Greek Menaia.¹⁰⁰ While some contradictions of the 1641 edition were
corrected, other contradictions remained and new contradictions were introduced by the
by A. Dmitrievsky. “Рецензия на книгу И. Д. Мансветова «Церковный устав (типик)…»” Russian. In:
Khristianskoye chtenie 9–10 (1888), pp. 480–576, pp. 540ff.
⁹²Krylov, op. cit.
⁹³Mansvetov, op. cit., p. 320.
⁹⁴See the study of P. Meyendorff. Russia, Ritual, and Reform: e Liturgical Reforms of Nikon in the 17th
Century. Crestwood, NY: St. Vladimir’s Seminary Press, 1991.
⁹⁵No comprehensive study of these reforms has been undertaken. For some details on the reform of the
Psalter, see A. Voznesensky. “Сведения и заметки о кириллических печатных книгах. 12. О московской
Псалтири 1658 г.” Russian. In: Trudy Otdela drevnerusskoy literatury 56 (2006).
⁹⁶I. Mansvetov. “Как у нас правились Типик и Минеи: Очерк из истории книжной справы в XVII
столетии”. Russian. In: Pribavleniya k izdaniyu tvoreniy Svyatykh osov v russkom perevode 33.1 (1884), p. 1.
⁹⁷is is the opinion is expressed by Mansvetov in ibid., p. 2.
⁹⁸e sociological and cultural background of the reforms is eminently described by G. Krylov. Книжная
справа XVII века: богослужебные Минеи. Russian. Moscow: Indrik, 2009, ch. 1.
⁹⁹ese changes are documented by idem, Книжная справа Типикона в XVII веке.
¹⁰⁰A list is provided in K. Nikolʹsky. Материалы для истории исправления богослужебных книг: Об
исправлении Устава церковного в 1682 году и месячных Миней в 1689–1691 гг. Russian. St. Petersburg, 1896,
pp. 6ff.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

reform.¹⁰¹ e result was a text that was “non-systematic and much less handy for practical
use,” requiring “greater knowledge of liturgical practice – and not just established practice,
but the new practice of the reformed books,” making it suitable primarily for “intellectuals,”
that is, “Typicon experts well aware of the new reformed usage.”¹⁰²
Following the ‘correction’ of the Typicon, a revision of the Menaia was undertaken,
resulting in the printed Menaion editions of 1689–1693.¹⁰³ Once the Menaia were published,
the Synaxarion portion of the Typicon was reconsidered again, and made to agree with
the new Menaia. A new edition of the Typicon was issued in 1695, which, other than the
Synaxarion, is exactly the same as the 1682 text.¹⁰⁴ is edition concludes the stormy process
of the ‘correction’ of the Slavonic Typicon; all subsequent editions of the Typicon printed in
Russia follow the 1695 text almost verbatim, with the exception of a few changes to Slavonic
orthography and the addition of some newly-glorified saints to the Synaxarion.¹⁰⁵ is 1695
edition can be viewed as normative for parish and monastery usage in the Russian Church,
and thus forms the basis for our present English translation.
However, though the evolution of the Slavonic Typicon ends at the turn of the 18ᵗʰ cen-
tury, liturgical life in the Russian Church did not remain stagnant, but continued to evolve,
in many ways departing considerably from the ‘examples’ outlined in the Typicon. As early
as during the Nikonian reform of the late 17ᵗʰ century, the need had arisen for abbreviat-
ing services. In the subsequent two centuries, this practice continued apace, especially in
St. Petersburg, where liturgical life was dominated by the practices of the Court Chapel. By
the end of the 18ᵗʰ century, the All-night Vigil came to be greatly abbreviated and lasted no
more than four hours. e didactic readings had completely disappeared; the evening litē
was served only on major feasts; the number of Psalms, stichera, troparia at the Canon, and
other hymnographic elements specified by the Typicon was reduced in practice. Similar
developments took place elsewhere in the Russian Church; for example, by the end of the
18ᵗʰ century, Cathisma 17 was sung only at the Glinsk Hermitage and the Laura of the Kiev
Caves; the full text of the Polyeleos – only at Valaam and New Athos.¹⁰⁶ In the 19ᵗʰ century,
the All-night Vigil was abridged even further, in some churches lasting no more than 1.5–
2 hours and came to be served in the evening, rather than at night. As a result, the service,
still called “All-night Vigil”, ceased to serve its original purpose and function.¹⁰⁷
Under the sway of growing secularization, urbanization, and lifestyle changes (espe-
cially with the introduction of electrical lighting), daily worship in the Russian Church
suffered a similar fate. At the end of the 17ᵗʰ century, at least in principle, the decisions
of the Council of 1687 were in effect, which specified that a parish with two priests was to
serve the full cycle of services daily, while a parish with only one priest was to serve daily
Vespers and Matins, with Liturgy only on Saturdays, Sundays, and major feasts of the calen-
dar.¹⁰⁸ is rule was confirmed in the 1841 Ukase Concerning Ecclesiastical Consistories.¹⁰⁹
Liturgical handbooks provided recommended times for serving the divine offices; thus, it
was recommended to begin Vespers at 4 PM, Matins at 5 AM, and Liturgy at 7–8 AM.¹¹⁰ In
¹⁰¹Some of these are listed in Mansvetov, op. cit., pp. 8ff.
¹⁰²is is the opinion of Krylov, op. cit.
¹⁰³is reform has been studied by idem, Книжная справа XVII века: богослужебные Минеи, pp. 149ff.
¹⁰⁴Details of this edition are provided in Mansvetov, Церковный устав (типик): его образование и судьба
в греческой и русской церкви, pp. 362ff.
¹⁰⁵Dmitrievsky, op. cit., pp. 560ff.
¹⁰⁶Details in M. Zheltov and S. Pravdolyubov. “Богослужение Русской Церкви Х–XX вв.” Russian. In:
Pravoslavnaya Entsiklopyediya. Vol. RPTs. Moscow, 2000, pp. 485–517.
¹⁰⁷See Uspensky, op. cit., conclusion.
¹⁰⁸V. Tsypin. Церковное право: учебное пособие. Russian. Moscow, 1996, p. 322.
¹⁰⁹e text is available in S. Bulgakov. Настольная книга для священно-церковно-служителей. Russian.
Kiev, 1913, p. 732.
¹¹⁰Ibid., p. 735.
1.1 A Brief History

Moscow and St. Petersburg, a schedule of services was decreed by diocesan authorities.¹¹¹
However, in reality by the mid-19ᵗʰ century, the practice had emerged in the cities to serve
an abbreviated Matins in the evening. ough St. Philaret, Metropolitan of Moscow (1821–
1867), disparaged this practice as an “abuse”, by the 20ᵗʰ century it became widely accepted
throughout the Russian Church.¹¹² e same developments, though at a slower pace, were
taking place in the countryside. In some parishes, an abbreviated version of the All-night
Vigil would be served in the morning, before the Liturgy, and other parishes would omit
Vespers entirely during the agricultural season.¹¹³ Generally speaking, the peasant populace
“aended church infrequently”: oen, especially during the agricultural season, services
were aended “only by old women,”¹¹⁴ and, even then, “parish services were rushed, the
[reading and singing] unintelligible, [so] no one was able to understand much.”¹¹⁵ Instead,
peasants practiced a certain folk piety, and, despite their infrequent church aendance and
lack of participation in the Mysteries, would pray frequently at home – morning, evening,
and before meals – oen intermingling Christian prayers with folk traditions and supersti-
tions.¹¹⁶
e structural changes in the order of services coincided also with an overall shi in the
ethos of worship. Hesychast-style liturgical chanting designed to support the Jesus Prayer
gave way to harmonized music, first in the Polish and, later, Italian and German musical
styles. In the cities, where an increasingly secular intelligentsia grew further and further
estranged from the church and the life of prayer, music now functioned to entertain the
aending audience. It was not uncommon for entire sets of stichera and other hymns to
be omied from the services; in their stead, choirs performed paraliturgical concerts.¹¹⁷ By
the start of the 20ᵗʰ century, delegates to the Council of 1917–1918 lamented that “orig-
inal, stylistically correct chanting” could only be heard at the Laura of the Kiev Caves, at
Moscow’s Dormition Cathedral, and at the Convent of Sts. Martha and Mary.¹¹⁸ In the coun-
tryside, the traditional ethos of worship was beer preserved, even though the complex
Byzantine hymnography of the neo-Sabbaite form of worship remained largely incompre-
hensible for the semi-literate peasant populace. e situation be described as a liturgical
crisis at the end of the Synodal Period, which was well summarized by Metropolitan Eu-
logius (Georgievsky) in his report to the Council of 1917–1918: “the services outlined by
the Typicon have become defaced by all manner of deletions and abbreviations, which are
usually carried out without any guiding principles … one can observe both complete vari-
ance in the way that the Typicon is followed, and complete arbitrariness in its application,
and complete disorder in our church services.”¹¹⁹
During this period, similar changes were also taking place in the Greek-speaking
churches. Archimandrite Antoninus (Kapustin), head of the Russian Ecclesiastic Mission
in Jerusalem (1869–1894), noted that “All-night Vigils are no longer served on Mt. Sinai or
at the Laura of St. Sabbas in Palestine.”¹²⁰ e practice was abandoned even earlier in Greek
¹¹¹It is provided in K. Nikolsky. Пособие к изучению устава богослужения православной церкви. Russian.
St. Petersburg, 1907, p. 150.
¹¹²Zheltov and Pravdolyubov, op. cit.
¹¹³T. Bernshtam. Приходская жизнь русской деревни: очерки по церковной этнографии. Russian. St. Pe-
tersburg, 2005, p. 181.
¹¹⁴Ibid., pp. 150, 191.
¹¹⁵Ibid., pp. 112.
¹¹⁶Ibid., p. 200.
¹¹⁷Ye. Rusol. Поместный собор Русской Православной Церкви 1917–1918 года о церковном пении: сборник
протоколов и докладов. Russian. Moscow: St. Tikhon’s Orthodox eological Institute, 2002, p. 21.
¹¹⁸Ibid., p. 38.
¹¹⁹oted in A. Kravetsky. “Священный собор Православной Российской Церкви: из материалов
Отдела о богослужении, проповедничестве и храме”. Russian. In: Bogoslovskiye Trudy 34 (1998), pр. 289.
¹²⁰oted in Uspensky, loc. cit.
Chapter 1 Introduction to the English Edition

parish churches. In 1838, a new Typicon was published, edited by Constantine, Protopsaltis
of the Great Church, and intended for parish practice.¹²¹ is Typicon, while preserving
the general structure of neo-Sabbaite worship and liturgical books, eliminates the All-night
Vigil. A Slavonic translation of the Typicon of Protopsaltis Constantine was completed in
1851, and is used by the Bulgarian Church.¹²² Further changes to the structure of services,
generally intended to simplify and abbreviate services and eliminate complex combinations
from the liturgical calendar, were carried out in the 1888 edition of the Greek Typicon, edited
by George Biolakis, which is still used in Greek parishes and some monasteries today. While
these editions of the Typicon are printed under the title of “Typicon of the Great Church”, in
reality, while preserving the neo-Sabbaite liturgical books, they constitute something of an
aempt to return to Studite liturgical practice, with separate serving of Vespers and Matins
on Sundays and feasts, a lighter schedule of psalmody, and reductions in the amount of
hymnography.

1.1.6 e Council of 1917–1918


e question of liturgical practice in general and the Typicon specifically was discussed at
the All-Russian Church Council in 1917–1918 at a special Commiee for Liturgical Practice
and a number of its subcommiees. e Commiee’s membership included several well-
known scholars in liturgics: I. Karabinov, M. Skaballanovich, Priest V. Prilutsky, B. Turayev,
then Hieromonk Athanasius (Sakharov), and others. From the onset of the meetings, a wide
range of opinions was expressed, from the desire to reform the Typicon or to transition to
the Greek Typicon of Biolakis, on the one hand, to issuing recommendations to follow the
existing Typicon more strictly on the other. At the end of its meetings, the Commiee issued
a series of recommendations. However, because the work of the Council terminated prema-
turely, these were never reviewed or enacted by the Concil at-large. Instead, the Episcopal
Conference delegated to the Holy Synod the task of distributing these recommendations
to dioceses “for guidance.”¹²³ ough this document cannot be viewed as normative, we
nonetheless draw on it in our discussion of guidelines for the adaptation of the Typicon to
parish use, below. Generally speaking, the Commiee tended towards stricter adherence
to the existing Typicon, and, while recognizing that the “regulations of the current Typicon
are difficult to fulfill in full,” recommended that monasteries “should, to the extent possible,
strictly abide by the appointed order of services,” while parish churches may “allow certain
abbreviations”, but only in “a spirit of condescension to the weaknesses of worshipers and
the realities of modern life”.¹²⁴
e Commiee also recommended some changes to the text of the Typicon itself. e
members felt that “it is necessary in the shortest time to reconsider the text of our Typicon,
since the last correction of this book took place at the end of the 17ᵗʰ century.” During this
revision, “it is necessary to publish a Russian translation of the text, supplied with a clear
and understandable exposition of the liturgical instructions and a foreword that explains the
history and meaning of the church Typicon.”¹²⁵ A number of specific instructions were also
made, including the recommendation that rubrics for the celebration of local saints, which
had been removed from the 1681 edition, be returned to the Typicon. It is our earnest hope
¹²¹A comprehensive study of the Greek liturgical reforms of the 19ᵗʰ century is yet to be undertaken. We
have had to rely on the somewhat limited and outdated information provided in A. Dmitrievsky. “Типикон
Великой церкви, или современный Типикон греческих приходских церквей”. Russian. In: Rukovodstvo
dlya Selʹskikh Pastyrey 6 (1887), pp. 181–242, pp. 236ff.
¹²²Ibid., p. 238.
¹²³e recommendations themselves and the course of the discussions is given in Kravetsky, op. cit.,
pp. 202ff.
¹²⁴Ibid., p. 320.
¹²⁵Ibid., p. 322.
1.1 A Brief History

that, with its translation into the vernacular (albeit English and not Russian), reconsidered
and expanded rubrics, and a foreword that reflects the state of liturgical scholarship today,
this Jubilee Edition of the Typicon, printed in time for the Council’s centennial, will, at least
in part, fulfill the Commiee’s recommendations.
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