The Akathistos Hymn occupies an important in the reverential period of Great Lent and is one of the most popular and well-known hymns, both in terms of its melody and poetry. Its inclusion in the Triodio can be explained by the fact that the content is linked to the joyful message of the Annunciation, which is why the Fridays before and after the feast both announce it and recollect it.

A special place in the service of the Akathistos belongs to the proem to the kontakion ‘To you victorious leader of triumphant hosts. It’s sung ‘slowly and melodically’, clearly in order to emphasize the historical depth of the faith of Christians that ‘the triumphant leader’ is our protectress and helper in every kind of trial and danger. One such instance was in 626, when she saved Constantinople from invaders.

From the point of view of the musical setting, it’s worth mentioning that, unlike other kontakia of the Byzantine period, that of the Akathistos Hymn is set to music as a whole by Byzantine and post-Byzantine melodists (14th- 18th c.).

The former Protopsaltis Archon Leonidas Asteris interprets ‘ To you triumphant leader’, as it was normally sung in the Patriarchal church, ‘slowly and melodically’.



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Pemptousia Partnership

Pemptousia and OCN have entered a strategic partnership to bring Orthodoxy Worldwide. Greek philosophers from Ionia considered held that there were four elements or essences (ousies) in nature: earth, water, fire and air. Aristotle added ether to this foursome, which would make it the fifth (pempto) essence, pemptousia, or quintessence. The incarnation of God the Word found fertile ground in man’s proclivity to beauty, to goodness, to truth and to the eternal. Orthodoxy has not functioned as some religion or sect. It was not the movement of the human spirit towards God but the revelation of the true God, Jesus Christ, to man. A basic precept of Orthodoxy is that of the person ­– the personhood of God and of man. Orthodoxy is not a religious philosophy or way of thinking but revelation and life standing on the foundations of divine experience; it is the transcendence of the created and the intimacy of the Uncreated. Orthodox theology is drawn to genuine beauty; it is the theology of the One “fairer than the sons of men”. So in "Pemptousia", we just want to declare this "fifth essence", the divine beaut in our life. Please note, not all Pemptousia articles have bylines. If the author is known, he or she is listed in the article above.


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