All the settings provide four-voice (cantus, altus, tenor, bassus) polyphony for the even-numbered verses of the Magnificat with the odd-numbered verses to be supplied by plainchant, the same approach as another set of Magnificats on the eight Psalm tones composed by Forme.
In comparison, Aux-Cousteaux's Magnificats are refined and learned, with sustained rhythms, elegant suspensions, and imitative points that paraphrase the Psalm tones.
Also the Rachmaninov Vespers, the Latin Magnificat
by Stanford for Double Choir and a cycle of Bruckner Motets.
Four appendices display detailed aspects of matters described in the central chapters, including an example of a modal plainsong formula as probably performed by Lasso's own choir; a catalogue of all his Magnificats, in approximate order of composition; a verbatim transcript (alas, untranslated) of a 1673 set of instructions for rites practiced in the Diocese of Freising, to which Munich belonged during Lasso's thirty-eight years as Kapellmeister there (1556-94); and outline analyses of thirty-five "imitation" Magnificats by Lasso, tracing specific passages of each to specific portions of their models.
Musical examples, placed close to the analyses they illustrate, outline the subtle but real relationships between the "tonal type" of the model over against that of the "imitation" Magnificat based on it, and raise intriguing implications of intertextuality between model and Magnificat, which Crook explores at length.
settings are arranged by mode in ascending order, the most straightforward of the orderings in the sources.
With regard to the two Magnificats
, Wielakker states that "it was not uncommon for two Magnificats
to be set in a Vespers collection, one a sober setting, the other richer.
This amounts to twenty-three psalms and three Magnificats
, making Cavalli's the largest Italian collection of purely Vesper music of the entire seventeenth century.
Opus III (consisting of Vesper psalms and two settings of the Magnificat
canticle) - printed in twelve partbooks at Augsburg in 1701 and scored for four solo voices, four voices in ripieno, strings, and basso continuo (with separate partbooks for the violone and the organ) - is the most recent of his known sacred music to be published in a modern edition.
The edition comprises two volumes, the main one dedicated to the full score and ancillary materials, including a brief introduction, charts of the vocal and instrumental ranges, a section on editorial principles, three facsimiles, chant antiphons for the psalms and Magnificat
, and examples of embellishments.