Between the lessons the ass was solemnly fed, and at the conclusion of the service was led by the precentor out into the square before the church (conductus ad ludos); water was poured on the precentor's head, and the ass became the centre of burlesque ceremonies, dancing and buffoonery being carried on far into the night, while the clergy and the serious-minded retired to matins and bed.
Since the 6th century the number and order of the hours have been fixed thus: matins, lauds, prime, terce, sext, none, vespers, compline.
The lessons are read at Matins (which is subdivided into three nocturns).
In the middle ages the nocturnal vigilia were, except in the monasteries, gradually discontinued, matins and vespers on the preceding day, with fasting, taking their place.
In the Church of England since the Reformation matins is used for the order of public morning prayer.
In the morning having said Matins, they went to the church (for Mass)..
He inveighs against the oppression of the poor by the rich, reproves those who, weary of matins or mass, spend their time in church "jangling," telling tales, and wondering where they will get the best ale, and revives the legend of the dancers at the church door during mass who were cursed by the priest and went on dancing for a twelvemonth without cessation.
Matins theoretically belongs to midnight, but in Italy it is XIII.
At matins is said the Venice (Ps.
Some of the chief points of difference between this and subsequent Prayer Books were the following: Matins and Evensong began with the Lord's Prayer, and ended with the third collect; there were no alternative Psalm-canticles for Benedictus, Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis; the Athanasian Creed was introduced after the Benedictus on six festivals only, and in addition to the Apostles' Creed; the Litany was placed after the Communion service, for which an alternative title was given, viz.: " commonly called the Mass."
At daybreak he confessed to the priest, heard matins, and communicated in the mass, offering a taper and a piece of money stuck in it as near the lighted end as possible, the first " to the honour of God" and the second " to the honour of the person that makes him a knight."
The intention of the compilers cf the Prayer-book seems to have been to restore the "Sunday next before Easter," as it is styled, to its earlier Western character of Passion Sunday, the second lesson at matins (Matt.
The third council of Carthage in 397 forbade anything but Holy Scripture to be read in church; this rule has been adhered to so far as the liturgical epistle and gospel, and occasional additional lessons in the Roman missal are concerned, but in the divine office, on feasts when nine lessons are read at matins, only the first three lessons are taken from Holy Scripture, the next three being taken from the sermons of ecclesiastical writers, and the last three from expositions of the day's gospel; but sometimes the lives or Passions of the saints, or of some particular saints, were substituted for any or all of these breviary lessons.
In addition to the enactment of canons (strictly so-called) the English provincial synods since the Henrician changes have legislated - in 1570 by the enactment of the Thirty-Nine Articles, in 1661 by approving the present Book of Common Prayer, and in 1873 by approving shorter forms of matins and evensong.
Psalms i.-cviii., with some omissions, are recited at Matins, twelve each day from Monday to Saturday, and eighteen on Sunday.
It has already been indicated, by reference to Matins, Lauds, &c., that not only each day, but each part of the day, has its own office, the day being divided into liturgical "hours."
Matins and Lauds (about 7.30 A.M.); Prime, Terce (High Mass), Sext, and None (about 10 A.M.); Vespers and Compline (4 P.M.); and from four to eight hours (depending on the amount of music and the number of high masses) are thus spent in choir.