The familiar Ave Maria text has provided an important source of inspiration for composers of sacred music from the tenth century to the present day, but particularly those of the sixteenth and early seventeenth centuries. The core text is from the words of the Angel Gabriel (Luke, i, 28) and Elizabeth (Luke i, 42) to Mary with a standard petition often appended, as in Victoria's setting in this edition. Until the middle of the sixteenth century other supplicatory additions and textual variants were frequently included. Nowadays Ave Maria settings are appropriate for the various feasts of the Virgin Mary, particularly the Annunciation, as well as eucharistic and general devotional occasions.
Translation: Hail Mary ,full of grace, the Lord is with thee. Blessed art thou among women, and blessed is the fruit of thy womb [Jesus Christ].
[Victoria setting: Holy Mary, Mother of God, pray for us sinners, now and in the hour of our death . Amen.]
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