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In the Mozarabic Liturgy, on the contrary, Matins are made up of a system of Antiphons, Collects, and Versicles which make them quite a departure from the Roman system.
From the foregoing it is clear that Matins remains the principal Office of the Church, and the one which, in its origin, dates back the farthest, as far as the Apostolic ages, as far even as the very inception of the Church.
The "De Virginitate", a fourth-century treatise, gives them as immediately following Lauds.
The author, however, does not determine the number of psalms which had to be recited.
The name Matins was then extended to the office of Vigils, Matins taking the name of Lauds, a term which, strictly speaking, only designates the last three psalms of that office, i.e. At the time when this change of name took place, the custom of saying Vigils at night was observed scarcely anywhere but in monasteries, whilst elsewhere they were said in the morning, so that finally it did not seem a misapplication to give to a night Office a name which, strictly speaking, applied only to the office of day-break. The night from six o'clock in the evening to six o'clock in the morning was divided into four watches or vigils of three hours each, the first, the second, the third, and the fourth vigil.
From the liturgical point of view and in its origin, the use of the term was very vague and elastic.
Commenced in the evening, they only terminated the following morning, and comprised, in addition to the Eucharistic Supper, homilies, chants, and divers offices.
The hymns, which have been but tardily admitted into the Roman Liturgy, as well as the hymns of the other hours, form part of a very ancient collection which, so far at least as some of them are concerned, may be said to pertain to the seventh or even to the sixth century.The more solemn watches, which were held on the anniversaries of martyrs or on certain feasts, were also known by this title, especially during the third and fourth centuries.The Vigil in this case was also called pannychis , because the greater part of the night was devoted to it.Generally it designated the nightly meetings, synaxes , of the Christians.Under this form, the watch (Vigil) might be said to date back as early as the beginning of Christianity.