The Magnificat is a hymn, also known as the Canticle of Mary. Its name comes from the incipit of the Latin version of the text taken from the Gospel of Luke where it is spoken by Mary upon the occasion of her Visitation to her cousin Elizabeth. In the narrative, after Mary greets Elizabeth, who is pregnant with John the Baptist, the latter moves within Elizabeth's womb. Elizabeth praises Mary for her faith using words partially reflected in the Hail Mary prayer, and Mary responds with what is now known as the Magnificat, one of the eight most ancient Christian hymns and perhaps the earliest Marian hymn.
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