lectionary


lectionary
/lek"sheuh ner'ee/, n., pl. lectionaries.
a book or a list of lections for reading in a divine service.
[1770-80; < ML (liber) lectionarius. See LECTION, -ARY]

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      in Christianity, a book containing portions of the Bible appointed to be read on particular days of the year. The word is also used for the list of such Scripture lessons. The early Christians adopted the Jewish custom of reading extracts from the Old Testament on the sabbath. They soon added extracts from the writings of the Apostles and Evangelists. During the 3rd and 4th centuries, several systems of lessons were devised for churches of various localities. One of the first attempts for a diocese to fix definite readings for special seasons during the year was made by Musaeus of Marseille in the mid-5th century.

      At first, the lessons were marked off in the margins of manuscripts of the Scriptures. Later, special lectionary manuscripts were prepared, containing in proper sequence the appointed passages. The Greek Church developed two forms of lectionaries, one (Synaxarion) arranged in accord with the ecclesiastical year and beginning with Easter, the other (Mēnologion) arranged according to the civil year (beginning September 1) and commemorating the festivals of various saints and churches. Other national churches produced similar volumes. Among the Western churches during the medieval period the ancient usage at Rome prevailed, with its emphasis on Advent.

      During the 16th-century Reformation the Lutherans (Luther, Martin) and Anglicans (Anglicanism) made changes in the Roman Catholic lectionaries. Luther was dissatisfied with the choice of many of the lessons from the letters in the Roman system, and he included a greater proportion of doctrinal passages. In the Anglican Church, the first edition of The Book of Common Prayer (Book of Common Prayer) assigned for each day a passage of the Old Testament and the New Testament to be read at both the morning and evening services. Nearly all the saints' days were dropped, and the new system assigned chapters of the Bible to be read consecutively. Present-day liturgists in many denominations have been active in revising traditional lectionary systems.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Lectionary — • A term of somewhat vague significance, used with a good deal of latitude by liturgical writers Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Lectionary     Lectionary      …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • Lectionary — Lec tion*a*ry, n.; pl. { ries}. [LL. lectionarium, lectionarius : cf. F. lectionnaire.] (Eccl.) A book, or a list, of lections, for reading in divine service. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • lectionary — [lek′shə ner΄ē] n. pl. lectionaries [ML(Ec) lectionarium: see LECTION & ARY] a sequence or list of lections to be read in church services during the year …   English World dictionary

  • Lectionary — A Lectionary is a book or listing that contains a collection of scripture readings appointed for Christian or Judaic worship on a given day or occasion. HistoryIn antiquity the Jews created a schedule of scripture readings assigned to be read in… …   Wikipedia

  • Lectionary —    The Tables to be found in the Prayer Book setting forth the portions of Scripture to be read daily in Public Worship throughout the year, also the Proper Lessons for Sundays and the Holy Days of the Church. The word is derived from the Latin… …   American Church Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • lectionary — An orderly compilation for reading scripture. Jewish synagogues read the scriptures according to a prescribed arrangement; a lectionary designated the passages to be read in public worship on the sabbaths in a continuous sequence, but for feasts… …   Dictionary of the Bible

  • Lectionary — The book of church readings quoted from the Holy Bible, appointed to be read at public worship. There is an annual lectionary, another for the great lent, a third for the Holy Week or the Pasch, and one for the Pentecost, i.e. the fifty days… …   Dictionary of church terms

  • Lectionary —    Christian liturgical book indicating the readings and psalms to be used for each day of the liturgical year. Probably the first written lectionary was that of the Jerusalem rite in the fifth century …   Historical dictionary of sacred music

  • Lectionary —    This word (from the Latin lectio, meaning reading ) refers to an official book with Scripture readings for use atMass; the Roman Catholic Lectionary has a three year cycle of readings for Sundays and a two year cycle for week days …   Glossary of theological terms

  • lectionary — noun (plural aries) Date: 1780 a book or list of lections for the church year …   New Collegiate Dictionary


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