Canticles – The Magnificat

The Cradle of Prayer Canticle Tutorials

In chanting the rhythms of natural speech are essential. The notes of a chant tune have no time value of their own only the rhythm of the syllables. Listen to the cantor (singer) sing the verses, notice the strong and weak stress of syllables, and follow the line “|” which establishes the change of the notes in the melody.

Evening Prayer – Magnificat
“My soul doth MAGNIFY the Lord”.
The Magnificat is the first of two canticles sung in each service of Evening Prayer. The words are as follows:

My soul doth magnify the Lord, | and my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

For he hath regarded | the lowliness of his handmaiden.


For behold, from henceforth | all generations shall call me blessed.

For he that is mighty hath magnified me; | and holy is his name.

And his mercy is on them that fear him | throughout all generations.

He hath showed strength with his arm; | and he hath scattered the proud in the imaginations of their hearts.


He hath put down the mighty from their seat, | and hath exalted the humble and meek.

He hath filled the hungry with good things; | and the rich he hath sent empty away.

He remembering his mercy hath holpen his servant Israel; | as he promised to our forefathers, Abraham and his seed, for ever.


Glory be to the Father and to the Son, and | to the Holy Ghost;

As it was in the beginning, is now and ever shall be, world without | end. Amen.


The following canticles are from the “Hymnal 1940 Standard Harmony edition”:

Magnificat #655

Magnificat #655

Magnificat #657

Magnificat #657


The following canticles are from a traditional Anglican Book of chants:

Magnificat #81

Magnificat #81

Magnificat #82

Magnificat #82

Magnificat #117

Magnificat #117

Magnificat #190

Magnificat #190