Melodies for Stichera

The prostopinije tradition provides two kinds of melodies for stichera:

Each melody has two parts: a short pripiv melody or verse melody, used for the psalm verse than the cantor intones; and a longer sticheron melody for the hymn. The sticheron melody is usually constructed of several repeating phrases, to that a sticheron of any length can be sung.

Samohlasen tones

These are the usual prostopinije melodies for stichera; they are used whenever just the tone is specified. The following able shows the entire verse melody, and the beginning of the sticheron melody.

  Verse (pripiv) melody Start of sticheron melody Phrases Examples, with recordings
Tone 1

(A B) F  examples
Tone 2 (A B C ) F examples
Tone 3 (A B C ) F examples
Tone 4 I J (A B C) F examples
Tone 5 (A B C ) F examples
Tone 6 I (A B C ) F examples
Tone 7 (A B) F examples
Tone 8 (A B C ) F examples

Bolhar tones

These "Bulgarian" melodies (their exact origin is unknown) are used for moments of solemn prayer, particularly during the intercessory procession of the Litija at Vespers, and in the hymns for the dead sung at Friday evening Vespers and during the funeral service. (Litija stichera are sung to the Bolhar melodies if one exists for the specific tone; otherwise, the samohlasen melody in that tone is used.) The verse melodies are the ones for the samohlasen tones.

Melody Start of sticheron melody Phrases Examples, with recordings
Tone 1 Bolhar I (A B) F  examples
Tone 2 Bolhar (A B) examples
Tone 4 Bolhar (A B) A F examples
Tone 5 Bolhar I J (A B C ) F examples


Special melodies (podobny)

These melodies are named with a tone, together with the first words (in Slavonic or English) of the liturgical sticheron that they are associated with, as an aid to memory. They are used whenever they are named in the liturgical books. Unless otherwise specified, they are used with verses sung to the samohlasen verse melodies. If a special melody is not known or music is not available, use the corresponding samohlasen tone.

Tone Melody Start of sticheron melody Phrases
Tone 1 Nebesnych činov
(O Joy of the heavenly ranks)
(A B) F 
Prechvalnyj mučenicy
(O all-praisworthy martyrs)
I J K (A B C ) F
O divnoje čudo
(O awesome wonder)
Tone 2 Jehda ot dreva
(When from the wood)
(A B C D) F
Dome Jefratov
(O house of Ephrathah)
Tone 3 Krasoti (A B)
Tone 4

Jako dobl'a
(As on valiant among the martyrs)

I (A B C D E) F
Dal jesi znamenie
(You have given a sign)
all unique
Zvannyj svyše byv
(You who were called from above)
(A B C) E F
Udivisja Iosif (A B)
Tone 5 Radujsja
(Joy to you, O life-giving Cross)
(A B C D) F
Tone 6 Vsju otloživše
(Having set all their hope)
Tone 8 O preslavnaho čudese
(O marvelous wonder)
Cto vy naračem
(What shall we call you, O saint?)


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