Monastic Office


Can anyone give me a complete list of all the liturgical books used to recite the Divine Office in a monastery. If it differs by monastic order I’d like lists for the Benedictines and the Trappists.


I use the Monastic Diurnal which follows the Divine Office of the Order of St Benedict, but it follows the old Divine Office (the 1961 hours, with the Latin and English).

For the current version of the Benedictine Office:

Antiphonale Monasticum I, II and III contain all the antiphons and psalms needed to chant the day hours. Available from the monks of Solesmes.

Psalterium Monasticum can get you the antiphons and psalms for the night office as well, and can allow you to do the entire day office but some of the antiphons have changed and the O.T. canticles at Lauds have changed (the new Antiphonale Monasticum has them on a 4-week cycle matching LOTH).

Liber Hymnarius will get you all the hymns.

The Night office for feasts and solemnities is a bit more problematic. You can find some of the antiphons in Nocturnale Romanum but not all. This will be rectified with the Nocturnal antiphonary comes out. It was supposed to be this year but no sign of it yet. Many communities chant Matins recto-tono so no need for music.

Alternately there’s the 1934 Antiphonale Monasticum but you need another book, no longer in print (“Documenta”) to adapt it to the post-Vatican II office.

All of the books are available from Solesmes. There is also Antiphonale Monasticum V but it only contains what’s necessary for the memorials and feasts proper to the Solesmes congregation.

These are to chant. To simply recite, there’s the Monastic Diurnal (day office only) or the old Brevarium Monasticum (if you can find a copy). Easily adapted to the post-Vatican II era if you also have a copy of LOTH; the O.T. canticles at Lauds, the readings, collects and intercessions you can take from LOTH, and the psalmody from either the diurnal or Brevarium Monasticum, since the order of psalmody hasn’t changed (if you still say Prime; otherwise there are instructions on how to parse the psalms of Prime into other hours, in Psalterium Monasticum).

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