I can tell you almost nothing about William Stratford he’s described in the Eton Choirbook as ‘monachus Stratfordiae’ which means he must have been a a monk of the Cistercian abbey of Stratford-atte-Bowe in what is now East London. His four-part setting of the Magnificat is one of the very few settings in the Eton Choirbook to have survived in its entirety as you might expect it’s written in the florid style of the late 15th century. Enjoy :-).
Text & Translation: Magnificat
|Latin||Modern English||Traditional Translation|
Magnificat anima mea Dominum.
Et exsultavit spiritus meus in Deo salutari meo.
Quia respexit humilitatem ancillae suae:
ecce enim ex hoc beatam me dicent omnes generationes.
Quia fecit mihi magna qui potens est:
et sanctum nomen eius.
Et misericordia eius a progenie in progenies
Fecit potentiam in bracchio suo:
dispersit superbos mente cordis sui.
Deposuit potentes de sede,
et exaltavit humiles.
Esurientes implevit bonis:
et divites dimisit inanes.
Suscepit Israel, puerum suum,
recordatus misericordiae suae.
Sicut locutus est ad patres nostros,
Abraham, et semini eius in saecula.
Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto.
Sicut erat in principio, et nunc, et semper,
et in saecula saeculorum. Amen.
Luke 1: 46-55
My soul proclaims the greatness of the Lord.
And my spirit rejoices in God, my Saviour.
For he has looked with favour on the lowliness of his handmaiden:
behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.
For he that is mighty has done wondrous things for me:
and holy is his name.
And his mercy is upon them
that fear him throughout all generations.
He has shown the power of his arm:
he has scattered the proud in their conceit.
He has put down the mighty from their seat,
and has exalted the humble and meek.
He has filled the hungry with good things:
and the rich he has sent empty away.
He has sustained his servant Israel,
in remembrance of his mercy.
As he promised to our forefathers,
Abraham and his sons for ever. Amen.
My soul doth magnify the Lord: and my spirit rejoiceth in God my Saviour.
For he hath regarded: the lowliness of his hand-maiden.
For behold, from henceforth: all generations shall call me blessed.
For he that is mighty hath magnified me: and holy is his Name.
And his mercy is on them that fear him: throughout all generations.
He hath shewed strength with his arm: he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.
He hath put down the mighty from their seat: and hath exalted the humble and meek.
He hath filled the hungry with good things: and the rich he hath sent empty away.
He remembering his mercy hath holpen his servant Israel:
As he promised to our forefather Abraham and to his seed for ever.
Glory be to the Father, and to the Son: and to the Holy Ghost;
As it was in the beginning, and is now, and ever shall be: world without end. Amen.