Welcome to the ABA! Bell Talk Forums General `Bell Stuff` a certain type of bell

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    • #10616

      I am wondering if anyone has any history on the quote; “whoever touches me will hear my voice”. My father was recently given a brass bell, and wants to know where it came from and what the words meant that were on it. The original words were; “qui me tagnit vocem meam audit” That’s how it looked on his bell. I was curious if anyone had any info on both the bell and the quote.
      Thank you!

    • #13167
      Carolyn Whitlock

      If your father was given a single bell that is not hanging on a bracket, he probably has the bell only from a St. Mark’s bell.

      Here is what I could find about your bell online:

      St Marks bell ? QUESTION from Kimberly on September 13, 2003
      I have a rather intriging antique St Marks bell (the style identified from an out-of-date bell collectors book)which is an old monastery hallway bell. I am searching for the meaning these bells played in the everyday lives of the monastey. They all had the same Latin inscription around them: QUI ME TANGIT: VOCEM MEAM AUDIT. What part in faith and spirituality did the ringing of these bells play? Are they still used? Christ’s peace to you. Kimberly

      ANSWER by John-Paul Ignatius, OLSM on September 19, 2003
      Dear Kimberly:
      The Latin phrase, QUI ME TANGIT: VOCEM MEAM AUDIT, roughly means I think, Whoever Touches Me Hears My Voice, and was usually found on a small bell used as a doorbell. This particular bell has a deep resinating sound that can be heard at a distance.
      I am not sure, but such bells may have been used in hallways perhaps as a wakeup call for the monks or nuns; or as the final bell announcing the Grand Silence, perhaps. The Grand Silence is usually the period after Compline (Night Prayers) until after breakfast when silence is observed.
      The bells in the Bell Tower are used to call the monks or nuns to prayers or to Mass.
      As to how many monasteries use such bells for a doorbell or wakeup call, etc., I do not know. The monasteries I have been to will have a modern doorbell and the monks, if needed, use alarm clocks.
      God Bless,?Bro. Ignatius Mary

      Source #2 The Collectors Book of Bells by L. Elsinore Springer

      “…another ecclesiastical type is seen in the ornately beautiful bells on brackets. These are associated with European monasteries and are characterized by Latin inscriptions and heavy rococo decorations often involving allegorical figures from the medieval bestiaries. As noted example of this type and one much sought after by collectors is the Saint Mark’s bell. Deeply carved musical figures decorate the body of the bell, intermingled with profuse scrolls and foliage, and a stylized griffin ornaments the bracket. Incised around two smooth bands is a twofold Latin inscription, which when translated reads:

      Our Father who are in Heaven, the Lord be with thee and with thy spirit.

      Most ecclesiastical bells afford the collector an opportunity to increase his appreciation of religious art as applied to metalwork. So many guides to religious symbolism are presently in print that it is a simple matter of find, for example, that choirs of angelic musicians encircling a bell were intended to symbolize eternal praise to God or that the eight points on a Maltese cross represent the eight Beatitudes.”

    • #13168

      You can read more about your bell on plate nine in “World of Bells No. 2.”

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