Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina By: Molly Margolis

  • Born at Palestrina in 1514 or 1515
  • Spent most of his time in Rome
  • Went to “The Roman School of Musical Composition”
  • Passionate about spiritual songs and hymns, studying under St. Philip Neri and writing church music
  • Known for his church music. Some examples include: Mass O Sacrum Convivium, Magnificat sexti toni, and Missa Aeterna Christi Munera
  • St. Philip Neri=Patron
  • Pierluigi's works are examples of monotheism as, his patron was a saint and his music was made specifically for the church and for a single God. He is non-secular in the way that he studies, writes his music, and is funded.
  • A year after being called to Rome, he was promoted to choirmaster.
  • O Magnum Mysterium
  • Published in 1582
  • It can be found in the release of the "First Book of Motets", a collection of renaissance songs published in 1569 and sold for any interested singers.
  • It is a parody mass of Pierluigi's original "O Magnum Mysterium"
  • I find this piece interesting due to the beautiful work of harmony, blend of music, and because of the fact that this was an imitation of Pierluigi's original. I had not known that parodies existed in the Renaissance times. This new piece of information was very cool to learn, in my opinion which is why I find the piece very interesting.
  • O Magnum Mysterium is a work of monotheism, being a song with lyrics about religious texts such as Gloria and Sanctus
  • You can find a copy of Pierluigi's O Magnum Mysterium here
Works Cited:

Barker. "Palestrina: Mass, O Magnum Mysterium." American Record Guide, Mar.-Apr. 2014, p. 135+. Student Resources in Context, Accessed 5 Dec. 2016.

Da Palestrina, Giovanni Pierluigi. "Masses and Motets (Dover Vocal Scores) Paperback.", 2 July 1993. Web. 05 Dec. 2016. <>.

Mephisto01cl. "Giovanni Pierluigi Da Palestrina (1525-1594) - O Magnum Mysterium." YouTube. YouTube, 05 June 2009. Web. 05 Dec. 2016. <>.

"O Bone Jesu." Catholic Insight, Mar. 2013, p. 32. Student Resources in Context, Accessed 5 Dec. 2016.

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