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(ăn`tĭfŏn, –fən), c.479–411 B.C., Athenian orator. He rarely spoke in public but wrote defenses for others to speak. Of his 15 extant orations 3 were for use in court, the rest probably for the instruction of his pupils. A few fragments of other speeches survive. Antiphon did much to advance Attic prose writing. His position in politics was with the conservative aristocrats, and he was instrumental in setting up the Four Hundred in 411 B.C. When they fell, Antiphon was among the first to be executed before AlcibiadesAlcibiades
, c.450–404 B.C., Athenian statesman and general. Of the family of Alcmaeonidae, he was a ward of Pericles and was for many years a devoted attendant of Socrates. He turned to politics after the Peace of Nicias (421 B.C.
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See R. K. Sprague, The Older Sophists (1972); Antiphon and Lysias (tr. by M. Edwards and S. Usher, 1985).


(ăn`tĭfən), in Roman Catholic liturgical music, generally a short text sung before and after a psalm or canticle. The main use is in group singing of the Divine Office in a monastery. However, the sung introit, offertory, and communion verses of the Mass are also antiphons, whose psalms have for the most part disappeared. Certain festival chants, sung preparatory to the Mass itself, are called antiphons. There are also the four antiphons of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which are in the nature of office hymns and are sung by alternating choirs (i.e., antiphonally), each one belonging to a certain portion of the year. The best known of these is Salve Regina, of whose text there are many polyphonic settings. Modern antiphons are set to composed music rather than plainsongplainsong
or plainchant,
the unharmonized chant of the medieval Christian liturgies in Europe and the Middle East; usually synonymous with Gregorian chant, the liturgical music of the Roman Catholic Church.
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. These are independent choral works for which the English term anthemanthem
[ultimately from antiphon], short nonliturgical choral composition used in Protestant services, usually accompanied and having an English text. The term is used in a broader sense for "national anthems" and for the Latin motets still used occasionally in Anglican services.
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 was derived from antiphon.


1. a short passage, usually from the Bible, recited or sung as a response after certain parts of a liturgical service
2. a psalm, hymn, etc., chanted or sung in alternate parts
References in periodicals archive ?
A canticle antiphon also used as the communion antiphon to evoke both liturgical feasts closely resembles Cynewulf's use of antiphon and introit.
We were able to define things in a new way and I was really pleased we did that together, communally and were able to pull together and create Antiphon.
73) At this point, in contrast to later embassies led by Antiphon and Phrynichus themselves, the leaders of the Four Hundred may have feared that they might be viewed as revolutionaries by the Spartans and be arrested, so they refrained from taking part themselves.
While King Johan's antimusical stance resembles Bale's prose polemics--"masses, ryngynges, synginges" are "heythynshe wares" in one tract, for example--in his morality drama Three Laws, music is used to restore order to the church, and the biblical God's Promises is structured around liturgical antiphons.
The final line of the LBW hymn expresses several further themes of Revelation and is the formulation from which the antiphon is formed: "This is the feast of victory for our God, for the Lamb who was slain has begun his reign.
305-7), a contention unsupported by the historian's words and rendered problematic by, among others, Antiphon 5.
Antiphon and response: scandalous accusation, scandalized rebuttal.
is used as an antiphon and versicle in conjunction with other biblical
The tale belongs to a miracles of the Virgin genre, so this antiphon is a key to the development of the plot.
The biography grew out of Herring's wish to know more about the person who wrote Nightwood, Ryder, and The Antiphon.
As early as the fourth century, the pilgrim Etheria's account of her visit to Jerusalem describes a processional liturgy in which "the bishop will be escorted in the same figure as formerly the Lord was escorted" by a palm-bearing crowd repeating the antiphon "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord" (Bevington, 10-11).
17) The book abounds in equestrian poses, like the one of Wendell Ryder that leads off that novel, and the horsey pose survives for the patriarch of The Antiphon.