English translation of Bruckner’s Locus iste

Locus iste is a sacred motet composed by Anton Bruckner in 1869.  The Incipit, locus iste a deo factus est, is translated as this place was made by God. Bruckner composed it for four unaccompanied voices, and it was dedicated to the Votivkapelle (votive Chapel) at the new cathedral in Linz, Austria, where Bruckner had been a cathedral organist.

He also worked in San Florian and it was the first motet that Bruckner composed in Vienna. It was published in 1886, along with three other motets. The text focuses on the concept of the sacred place, based on the biblical history of Jacob’s Staircase, the saying of Jacob “Verily The Lord is in this place, and I did not know it” (Genesis 28:16) , and the story of the Burning Bush where Moses is told “Take your shoes off your feet, for the place where you are is Holy Land ” (Exodus 3:5). Bruckner structured the three lines of the text in an ABA da capo form, closed by a coda , with a containing the first line, framing the second and third. As has happened with other composers like Dufay, Peter Strasser suggests that the work reflects elements of architecture, such as the symmetry of the Capo shape and the use of motifs as building blocks. Locus was a Deo factus est, inaestimabile Sacramentum, Irreprehensibilis est. This place was made by God, a sacrament of incalculable value, free from all defect.

Trabajó también en San Florían y fue el primer motete que compuso Bruckner en Viena. Fue publicado en 1886, junto con otros tres motetes.

El texto se centra en el concepto del lugar sagrado, basado en la historia bíblica de la Escalera de Jacob, el dicho de Jacob “Ciertamente el Señor está en este lugar, y yo no lo sabía” (Génesis 28:16), y la historia de la zarza ardiente donde a Moisés se le dice “quita tus zapatos de tus pies, porque el lugar en que estás es tierra santa” (Éxodo 3: 5).

Bruckner estructuró las tres líneas del texto en una forma ABA da capo, cerrado por una coda. Tal y como ha ocurrido con otros compositores como con Dufay, Peter Strasser sugiere que la obra refleje elementos de la arquitectura, como la simetría de la forma da capo y el uso de motivos como bloques de construcción.

 

Locus iste a Deo factus est,

inaestimabile sacramentum,

irreprehensibilis est.

 

Este lugar fue hecho por Dios,

un sacramento de valor incalculable,

libre de todo defecto.

 

This place was made by God,

a priceless sacrament;

it is without reproach.

 

Photo by Photoangel.