by WILLIAM BURRIDGE
Prayers of the Eucharist edited by R. C. D. Jasper and by G. J. Cuming (Collins £2.50)
The current interest in liturgical revision in the Catholic Church and other communions makes this a timely book. It is not a doctrinal study but a collection of central texts of 34 Eucharistic liturgies (or ancient evidence of them) from Apostolic times to the 1662 Book of Common Prayer.
Eighteen of them date from before the fifth century including Justin's "First Apology" of around 150 AD, Hyppolitus' "Apostolic Tradition" (on which our Eucharistic Prayer No. II is closely modelled) of about the same period, and Cyril of Jerusalem's "Lectures." virtually a running commentary on the liturgy in the Church of the Holy Sepulchre.
With No 23 of the collection we come to the Reformation period (Zwingli, Luther, Bucer, Calvin ....) and among others the intriguing ArchbishopElector of Cologne, Hermann von Wcid, who began in hostility towards the Reformers and ended up ex-communicated by Paul III.
A translation of his Simplex Pia Dellberatio (which Cranmer drew on for his abortive 1548 "Order") is given here, but one would need his earlier Einfialtiges Bedenhen also to follow his ideas and his downfall.
The book ends at 1662 because later texts, say the editors, arc readily available elsewhere. It is a pity, though, that they did not point the way immediately beyond that date if only to call attention to the alltoo-little noticed Alcuin Club's 1973 volume, "The Liturgy of Comprehension 1689" with its valuable historical analysis of the English scene from 1660 onwards and the transcription of the enlightening diary (Seeker MS 24/6 in the Lambeth Palace Library) of the discussions and manoeuvres of the 1689 Commission.