Paul Jausions

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Dom Paul Jausions OSB (born November 15, 1834 in Rennes , † September 9, 1870 in Vincennes , United States ) was a Benedictine and from the mid-19th century a pioneer in the field of the restitution of Gregorian chant .


Born as the son of the printer Ambroise Juilen Jausions in Rennes, Paul Jausions in his parish of St. Jacut became very interested in liturgical singing at an early age. On October 21, 1854, he received permission to enter the Benedictine Abbey of Saint-Pierre de Solesmes as a novice . The abbot Prosper-Louis-Pascal Guéranger , who went on a trip to the Vatican with Paul Jausions in 1856 , soon recognized his love for the liturgy and his large workload. Paul Jausions made his profession on September 29, 1856 and was ordained a priest on December 18, 1858.

In the following years Paul Jausions dealt intensively with the interpretation and in particular with the accentuation of Gregorian chant, whereby he continuously devoted himself to the study and copying of old manuscripts. By 1860 at the latest, he had access to the so-called Wilton Processional from St. Edith in England from the 13th to 14th centuries in his abbey . In April 1860 Paul Jausions was in Rennes to look after the first proofs of the chorale book Directorium Chori intended for the abbey at Vatar . After this trip he went to Le Mans to exchange ideas with the clergyman Augustin-Mathurin Gontier and to clear up any differences in the rhythmic interpretation of the chants that had already been discussed by letter. On this occasion he also had the opportunity to view manuscripts available only in Le Mans - especially the Graduale of Maine . After some difficulties, the bishop in charge gave him permission to take this gradual with him to Solesmes for six months. From the spring of 1862 to 1867, Paul Jausions then copied the first pure new manuscripts from a Missal available in the Angers City Library ( manuscript 91 (83)); these transfers are true masterpieces in terms of precision. His brother Dom Joseph Pothier began at the same time with the copy of neumen manuscripts published by Lambilotte as early as 1851 from the Codex Sangallensis 359 of the Abbey Library of St. Gallen with significantly older neumes than those from Angers.

Through the knowledge he acquired during these years, Paul Jausions was able to reform the traditional melodies of that time and to teach his confreres, but also visitors from other abbeys, how to interpret the chants.

As a result of this work, the Directorium Chori was finally completed in 1864 , which as the first chorale book of the restitution represents an important milestone in the rediscovery of the meaning of the handwritten neumes. In the following years Paul Jausions also traveled to Paris, where he was able to take a look at a copy of the important adiastematic as well as diastematic manuscript of the antiphonals of the Medical Library of Montpellier from the 11th century in the Imperial Library (Codex H. 159 ).

In 1865 Paul Jausions was busy with the publication of the Le petit Office de la BV Marie pour les different temps de l'année, avec une traduction nouvelle et un commentaire en forme de méditations (Angers, Barassé) until July. After that he stayed in Alsace for health reasons before traveling to Sulzmatt , St. Gallen and Laon , among others , to study the manuscripts there. On the return trip he paid another visit to the imperial library in Paris and found another manuscript of interest to him in Sankt Geneviève.

From the end of July 1867 - after completing the copies of the Angers manuscripts - Paul Jausions gave a series of singing courses in various places outside his home abbey.

In 1868 Paul Jausions traveled again to Paris, where he was apparently finally able to ensure that the "bilingual" manuscript (Codex H. 159) from Montpellier could be sent to Solesmes for copying. The Liber Gradualis published by Dom André Mocquereau in Solesmes in 1883 is essentially based on the findings from this manuscript.

On May 6, 1869, Paul Jausions went on a study trip to Vincennes in Indiana to research and write down the life story of his uncle Brute , who founded the diocese there and then became bishop there. Shortly before his return to France , he died there in an accident on September 9, 1870. He is buried in the Abbey of Saint-Pierre.

Occasionally Paul Jausions also excelled as a composer .

Publications (selection)

  • Vie de l'Abbé Carron . Douniol, 1866.
  • Saint Maur et le sanctuaire de Glanfeuil en Anjou . P. Lachèse, 1868.


  • Pierre Combe: Histoire de la restauration du chant grégorien d'après des documents inédits: Solesmes et l'Edition Vatican . Saint Peter Abbey, Solesmes 1969.

Individual evidence

  1. Birth Register (1834), Archives municipales de Rennes, cote 2E42, p. 205