Edward Caswall was born in 1814, at Yately, in Hampshire, where his father was a clergyman. In 1832, he went to Brasenose College, Oxford, and in 1836, took a second-class in classics. His humorous work, "The Art of Pluck," was published in 1835; it is still selling at Oxford, having passed through many editions. In 1838, he was ordained Deacon, and in 1839, Priest. He became perpetural Curate of Stratford-sub-Castle in 1840. In 1841, he resigned his incumbency and visited Ireland. In 1847, he joined the Church of Rome. In 1850, he was admitted into the Congregation of the Oratory at Birmingham, where he has since remained. He has published several works in prose and poetry.
--Annotations of the Hymnal, Charles Hutchins, M.A. 1872… Go to person page >
Ex more docti mystico. [Lent.] This hymn is found in two manuscripts of the 11th century, in the British Museum (Vesp. D. xii. f. 54 ; Harl. 2961, f. 237); and in the Latin Hymns of the Anglo-Saxon Church, printed from an 11th century manuscript at Durham (B. iii. 32, f. 18 6), by the Surtees Society, in 1851. Mone's (No. 73) text from a 15 century manuscript is slightly different from this; as is also that in Daniel, i., No. 86; and in the Hymnarium Sarisburiense, 1851. Daniel prints also the text of the Roman BreviaryMone holds that the hymn is by St. Gregory the Great. Concerning its use we may note:—
In the Uses of Sarum and York it is the hymn at Vespers of the 1st Sun. in Lent to the second Vespers of the 3rd Sunday. In the Roman Breviary it is the hymn at Matins for the 1st Sun. in Lent to Passion Sunday ex¬clusively. In the Uses of Evesham, Canterbury, and St. Albans, stanzas i.-iv. are to be said at Matins, and the rest at Lauds, from the 1st to the 3rd Sun. in Lent. Some continental Breviaries differ from each of these.
[Rev. W. A. Shouts]
Translations in common use:—
i. Ex more docti mystico. Of this there are the following translations in common use:—
1. Now with the slow-revolving year. By E. Caswall from the Roman Breviary text, in his Lyra Catholica, 1849, p. 72, and his Hymns, &c, 1873, p. 40. In 1850 it was included in Dr. Oldknow's Collection, No. 70, and later in The Crown of Jesus Hymn Book, and other Roman Catholic hymn-books for Schools and Missions. In the Hymnary, 1872, No. 212, this translation is also given as, "By precepts taught in ages past, Again the fast," &c.
--Excerpts from John Julian, Dictionary of Hymnology (1907)