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Barbara Oct 16th, 2002 06:04 AM

What is Evensong?
We will be on our first trip to London next month. It sounds like "Evensong" in Westminster Abbey or St. Paul's Cathedral is an experience not to be missed--but what exactly is Evensong? I assume it is a church service with lots of singing? Or is it more like a concert? Approximately how long is it-an hour or longer? Just trying to make plans. I will try to keep my stupid questions to a minimum over the next few weeks. Thanks!

Alexis Oct 16th, 2002 06:11 AM

I don't think your question was stupid. I was just going to post the same question myself.

Monk Oct 16th, 2002 06:22 AM

Evensong is the evening service in the Anglican church. When Monks (or anyone else) would celebrate the 7 canonical hours of divine office they would come to the chapel 7 times a day to say specific prayers prescribed by canon law--evensong was the 6th of the 7 services. The others were matins with lauds, prime, tierce, sext, nones, vespers (same as evensong), and complin.

Sally Oct 16th, 2002 06:23 AM

Evensong is the regular evening service in the Anglican church. It probably lasts about an hour or less, depending on how much music is used. It is a lovely experience.There is probably a web site for the Abbey or Cathedral that would have the schedule.

Shelley Oct 16th, 2002 06:36 AM

Evensong is a service with beautiful music, most of which is sung by one of the church choirs. The congregation joins in on a couple of the songs. We went to Evensong at St. Paul's (if you are going to Evensong, you don't have to pay the admission fee) and got there early enough to be seated in the quire. Overflow seating is under the rotunda, and not as desirable, to my way of thinking. Tourist dress is acceptable --- you don't have to dress up. A collection plate is passed, so you might want to be prepared to make a small contribution --- not be caught and have to fumble in your purse like I did. I think it lasted about an hour. On the same trip, we also attended Evensong at Wells Cathdral and found the music (men and boys choir) to be even more beautiful than at St. Paul's. They even had a little ceremony for a couple of boys who were being kicked out of the choir because their voices had broken. It is a wonderful experience and you will enjoy it very much. Don't forget to see the stained glass memorial in St.Paul's to all the United States servicemen who lost their lives in WWII. There is a small window representing each state in the memorial chapel.

Barbara Oct 16th, 2002 06:56 AM

Thanks to all for your help! Shelley, when you say "get there early enough"--what is early enough?

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