Catalog Archive
Auction 101, Lot 561

"[Antiphonal Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Music

Period: 1600 (circa)



15.5 x 21.5 inches
39.4 x 54.6 cm
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The origins of liturgical music traditionally date back to St. Gregory the Great (d. 604), who was inspired by the Holy Dove to record the principles of 'Gregorian' chant. The Gradual contained the musical parts of the Missal and was sung from the steps (gradus) of the altar. The Antiphoner contained the musical sections of the Breviary. These terms have become interchangeable in modern times. Because of their size and complexity, these manuscripts were still being handmade in the traditional way for centuries after the introduction of printing. They were boldly hand-written and illuminated on large sheets of sturdy vellum so that the entire choir could read from one book.

Handsome sheet of vellum from a Spanish Antiphony with a combination of five-line music and verse. Top of recto "ao Vesperas" and on verso "S. Marie Magdalene" indicating the leaf is part of the Suffrages, prayers to many saints and dedicated to Mary Magdalene. Each verse begins with a red or green initial with the balance written in black ink.


Condition: A

Minor light soil.

Estimate: $110 - $140

Sold for: $80

Closed on 12/4/2002