Liturgical books

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The books required for the celebration of the Church's divine services are specific to each ecclesial tradition. The following books are those belonging to the Byzantine liturgical tradition that is the normal usage of the Eastern Orthodox Churches. There are some differences between the Greek and Slavic traditions within the larger Byzantine tradition, and these will be indicated below in the sections covering the relevant books. The Greek name of each book is given first, followed with the Slavonic name in parentheses.

Epistle Book (Greek: Apostolos; Slavonic: Apostol)

Primary Article

The Apostolos ('book of the apostle'), also called the Epistle Lectionary, is the book containing prescribed readings from the Acts of the Apostles and the Epistles, arranged according to the Orthodox liturgical year. The lections are used in the first scripture reading in the Divine Liturgy, usually called the Epistle reading. This lectionary often includes the prokeimena and alleluias that are sung before and after the epistle reading, respectively.

Archieratikon (Chinovnik)

Primary Article

The Archieratikon ("book for the bishop," also spelled Arkhieratikon), is the bishop's liturgical service book. It is used in celebrating a Hierarchical Divine Liturgy, having pontifical editions of the Divine Liturgies of St. John Chrysostom and St. Basil the Great, as well as the Liturgy of the Presanctified Gifts, and other episcopal services, such as ordinations.

Gospel Book (Greek: Evangelion; Slavonic:Evangelie)

Primary Article

Also known as the Tetraevangelion, the Evangelion is the Book of Gospels, usually arranged by the pericopes appointed to be read throughout the liturgical year. It is generally kept on the altar table in a metal case decorated with icons of the evangelists; tradition forbids the use of animal skin on the altar table.

Euchologion (Slavonic: Trebnik)

Primary Article

The Greek word "ευχολογιον" literally means "book of prayers". The Slavonic word Требник (Trebnik) literally means "book of needs." This type of service book varies widely in contents and arrangemnents. The most comprehensive edition is The ευχολογιον το μεγα or Great Euchologion contains the prayers of the priest, deacon, and reader for Vespers, Orthros, and the Divine Liturgy; the six remaining sacraments, and other services of blessings (which in the west are often referred to as "sacramentals". There are also a variety of more concise editions, that contain only the most commonly done of these services. These texts are often called the Small Euchologion (mikron euchologion), and usually contains the forms for the mysteries (sacraments) other than the Eucharist and ordination, and other common services.

What distinguishes the services found in the Euchologion is that they are generally services that have are not appointed to be done at any given time according to the Church calendar, but are done as the need arises. Some services are associated with the liturgical calendar, however, such as the blessing of candles on the Feast of the Presentation, the blessing of Palms on Palm Sunday, etc.

Hieratikon (Sluzhebnik)

Primary Article

The Hieratikon (also spelled Ieratikon, also known as the Hierotelestikon and the Liturgikon), the "book of the priest" contains the priest's prayers for Vespers, Orthros, and Divine Liturgy.

Horologion (Tchasoslov)

Primary Article

The Horologion is the "Book of Hours," containing the fixed texts of the services of the Daily Cycle. There is also the larger Great Horologion (horologion to mega).

Menaia (Mineya)

Primary Article

The Menaia ("books of the months") is the collection of twelve books (each a Menaion), one for each month of the calendar year, containing the propers for the immovable feasts and the saints' days falling in that month.

Octoechos (Oktoikh)

Primary Article

Octoechos ("book of the eight tones") refers to two books containing the common of the cycle of liturgical services relating to the eight tones—The Great Octoechos (Parakletike, "book of supplication") and an abridged version of it called the Little Octoechos, which contains only the materials for Sundays.

Pentecostarion (Tzvyetnaya Triod)

Primary Article

The Pentecostarion conatins the propers for the services of the Paschal season, i.e., from the Day of Pascha until the First Sunday after Pentecost.

Prophetologion (Paremijnik)

Primary Article

The Prophetologion is a text that contains the Old Testament Lectionary readings appointed at Vespers, and at other services during the Church year.

Psalter (Psaltir)

Primary Article

The Psalter is simply the biblical book of the Psalms of David arranged for liturgical use, divided into twenty sections called kathismata. Each kathisma is further divided into three stasis.

Lenten Triodion (Postnaya Triod)

Primary Article

The Lenten Triodion ('book of the three odes') contains the propers from the beginning of the pre-Lenten season (the Sunday of the Publican and Pharisee, the 10th Sunday before Pascha) until Holy Saturday.

Typikon (Ustav)

Primary Article

The Typikon (also spelled as Typicon) is the "book of directives and rubrics, which regulate the order of the divine services for each day of the year. It presupposes the existence of other liturgical books which contain the fixed and variable parts of these services. In the strict monastic sense, the Typikon of the monastery includes both the rule of life of the community as well as the rule of prayer." [1]

Anthologion (Sbornik)

Primary Article

The Anthologion (άνθολόγιον) is a liturgical text that tries to encompasses as much of the basic liturgical textas as possible. An example of this text in Greek is the Synekdemos. A Slavonic example is the Velikij Sbnornik. The closest thing we have in English is the text:"Divine Prayers and Services of the Catholic Orthodox Church of Christ", by Fr. Seraphim Nassar—commonly known as "The Nassar Five-Pounder."

Anthologia usually contain the daily the basic text of the Horologion, the Sunday Octoechos, the General Menaion, and Selections from the Menaion, Triodion, and Pentecostarion.

Other liturgical books

In addition to the official liturgical books listed above, there are unofficial books that are published for the use of the laity. These include:

See Also


External links