The Octoechos or “Eight Tones” is an East Roman liturgical text, being first arranged by St. John of Damascus at the Mar Saba monastery (Palestine) in the eighth century. This book contains a rotation of eight tones and services with specific hymns that are chanted from the end of the Pentecostarion season to the beginning of Great Lent. The ancient Greek tones were originally named Dorian, Phrygian, Lydian, Mixolydian, Hypodorian, Hypophrygian, Hypolydian, and Hypomixolydian, but are simply enumerated as the first through eighth tones in the Church Slavonic. The original Octoechos of St. John of Damascus was edited and expanded upon by Ss. Cosmas of Maiuma, Joseph the Hymnographer, Theophanes the Branded of Nicaea, Paul of Amorium, Metrophanes of Smyrna, and others. It was essentially in its final form by the end of the ninth century.
The English translation by N. Orloff, used for this digital version of the General Menaion, is based on the text of the Slavonic first edition printed in 1891. The Logos edition is designed to enhance and accelerate your studies. Scripture passages link directly to your preferred English translations and original-language texts, and important theological concepts link to dictionaries, encyclopedias, and a wealth of other resources in your library. In addition, you can perform powerful searches by topic or name within the Octoechos.