medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture

Jim Bugslag wrote:
> medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and
> culture
>> No, Christopher is right.  The 'choir screen' is what we now call a
>> "pulpitum", and is usually a stone screen at the entrance to the
>> choir.  The complication is that in monastic churches (especially
>> those with a parochial nave) there was a rood screen one bay west of
>> the pulpitum.  This had  a central altar on its western face,
>> flanked by two doorways, and the rood above.  A cathedral would not
>> normally have this second screen, and the pulpitum is usually called
>> a choir screen.
>> The term "jubé" is from " jube, domine, benedicere" - which was
>> presumably presumably sung 'in pulpito...'
> Well, John, if the pulpitum were one bay east of the rood screen, it 
> wouldn't make much sense to address the congregation from it.

Nobody addresses the "congregation" from the choir screen in a medieval 
cathedral.   In English secular cathedrals it is not at all clear where the 
rood was.  It seems to be generally accepted that it was over the choir 
screen at Salisbury, but as that was at the eastern arch of the crossing the 
rood could just as easily have been in the western arch.

> It is my understanding that "jube" and "rood screen", in this case, would 
> be synonymous, but there is some loose terminology abroad, as well.  For 
> example, there is quite a good recent article on them: Jung, Jacqueline 
> E., "Beyond the Barrier: The Unifying Role of the Choir Screen in Gothic 
> Churches," Art Bulletin, LXXXII, no. 4 (2000), 622-57, where she clearly 
> uses the term "choir screen" for "jube", "Lettner", etc.

It makes perfect sense to talk of a  "choir screen" as everyone (well, 
nearly everyone!) knows what is meant.  Some  prefer to reserve the  term 
pulpitum for the loft over the choir screen.  How this loft was generally 
used is unclear.  Organs could be placed there.  There was certainly a 
lectern for e.g. the deacon.  But he usually sang into the choir, not into 
the nave.  Singing westwards was only done when the procession was halted 

As the surviving examples of the French "jubé" seem to be of 
post-Reformation date (post-Counter Reformation), it is not helpful to 
employ such  a term in an English medieval context.

John Briggs 

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