/ Cheroubikon by Konstantinos Protopsaltis in Fourth Mode "Agia"
/ A study of classical theseis and their interpretations

Konstantinos Protopsaltis (+1862) left us three complete series of cherubic hymns. Of these the middle series, megala cheroubika, "Of Sundays and feasts" as they are called in many mss, is the best-known. They were first published in the Tameion Anthologias (Constantinople, 1824) which represents the exegesis of Gregorios Protopsaltis, but it seems they were transcribed by Chourmouzios who was in charge of the publication. Later on we find them in the Tameion Anthologias of Stephanos (Constantinople, 1845), Neon Tameion Anthologias of Nikolaos Protopsaltis of Smyrna (1867) and essentially in all other important and classical publications. These cheroubika are still performed in the Patriarchal church and slowly gain popularity on Mt. Athos as well (though there are many Athonite mss by e.g. Ioasaph Dionysiatis or Nektarios Vlachos (in Romanian) which contain them, see also Mousikos Thesauros). A detailed information on mss and printed sources is given in Fr. Konstantinos Terzopoulos' doctoral thesis "Konstantinos o Byzantios".

General comments

These very brief comments are based on Fr. Konstantinos Terzopoulos' doctoral thesis (buy it here).

pp. 360-366, [zip, 1.3 mb]

1) The cheroubika start with a characteristic introductory melos called parakletike which is typical for the papadic compositions (see Chrysanthos, par. 417).
2) The words "Oi ta cheroubim" constitute the larger part of Konstantinos' cheroubika, while at the same time the second part of the cheroubika starting with the words "tais angelikais..." are set to short melodies.
3) The megala cheroubika unlike the megista ones don't have kratemata.
4) The melodic variety is achieved through the use of mixed scales, modulations, change of tonal bases, wide vocal range.
5) Comparison of Konstantinos' papadic compositions to those by his teachers Manouil Protopsaltis and Georgios the Cretan as well as the whole preceding psaltic tradition shows an impressive continuity of the tradition.

Sound examples

Dimitrios Nerantzis
[mp3, 1.5 mb]
(extracted from the broadcast of the Ekklesia radio on 15.08.2003 recorded by Panayiotis Papadimitriou)


Theodoros Fokaeus' "Tameion Anthologias"
[zip, 1.6 mb] (or browse pages [1] [2] [3] [4] [5])
(kindly provided by Gabor Monostori)

Stephanos Domestikos' Tameion Anthologias
[zip, 420 kb]

Other Cheroubika in Fourth Mode "Agia"

Sound examples

L. Asteris
Live at the Patriarchate (a) [rm, 2 Mb]
Live at the Patriarchate (b) [rm, 2.1 Mb]
Live at the Patriarchate (c) [rm, 2 Mb]
(from cmkon.org)

Choir of Athonite fathers
[mp3, 24 Mb]
(from the panygeris of Hilandar monastery, Mt. Athos)

K. Fotopoulos' choir
[mp3, 11 Mb]
(kindly provided by Vladimir Pavlenko, buy the double CD here)

X. Taliadoros
[wma, 12 Mb]
(from the CD "Transfiguration of the Saviour", buy it here)


Petros Lambadarios' weekday cheroubikon
from Stephanos Lambadarios' Tameion Anthologias
[zip, 320 Kb]

Th. Fokaeus' slow cheroubikon
from Neon Mousikon Egcheiridion
[zip, 930 Kb]

Th. Fokaeus' cheroubikon
from "Melodemata Askesewn Leitourgikes" published by Prof. A. Alygizakis
[zip, 370 Kb]

Ioasaph Dionysiatis' cheroubikon
from "Melodemata Askesewn Leitourgikes" published by Prof. A. Alygizakis
[zip, 370 Kb]

M. Basileiou's cheroubikon
from Neon Mousikon Egcheiridion
[zip, 400 Kb]

Three cheroubika by Alexandros Byzantios
from Cheroubikarion by the same author
[zip, 1.8 Mb]

A. Kyriazidis' cheroubikon
from "En Anthos Ecclesiastikes Mousikes" by the same author
[zip, 460 Kb]

K. Psachos' cheroubikon
[zip, 260 Kb]
(from cmkon.org )

Analysis of theseis

(pending) -->