References in classic literature ?
All day long, within the canonical hours, the door of Holchester House is perpetually opening to receive visitors.
The Wandering Jew image appears at the beginning of the section marking the canonical hour of Sext [Figure 3].
In monasteries and convents, the first canonical hour ushers in all the following canonical hours, the liturgy of the mass, and all other daily activities, according to a schedule organized purposefully to ensure that the monks avoid all forms of idleness and their lives are totally oriented toward God.
In addition to the psalms, devotional words such as the "Prayer of Thanksgiving" that opens each of the seven canonical hours of the Coptic daily office, including vespers, still me with their precision:
Forcades's first work in English is divided into six parts -- one for each of the five traditional canonical hours, from matins to vespers, plus compline, a final chapter on forgiveness and reconciliation.
Anyone perusing the daily schedule is instantly aware that central to every twenty-four hours, because formative, are the seven canonical hours: Matins with Lauds, Prime, Tierce, Sext, Nones, Vespers, and Compline.
Kendrick's book, however, is not a general overview of Holy Week rituals, but rather a study that isolates a genre of Triduum music from roughly 1550-1750: the Canonical Hours of Matins and Lauds, which were performed as a combined service for the days of Maundy Thursday, Good Friday, and Holy Saturday.
Maybe this presence is God: the collection is anchored by a crown of sonnets titled "Quarantine" that styles itself as a prayer arranged according to the canonical hours. But maybe it's an awareness of absence so great that it's perceived as presence.
Vespers, or evening prayer, is the liturgy of the canonical hours. The word comes from the Greek [TEXT NOT REPRODUCIBLE IN ASCII] (hespera) and the Latin vesper, meaning "evening." It opens with the singing or chanting of the words Deus, in adiutorium meum intende.
All great Christian religious orders observe the Canonical Hours, during which they chant the Divine Office.