Catalog Archive

Auction 115, Lot 794

"[Antiphonal Leaf]", Anon.

Subject: Music

Period: 1600 (circa)



14.5 x 20.5 inches
36.8 x 52.1 cm

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.

Sturdy vellum leaf contains five-line music, with a large initial painted in a very unusual red and green color scheme.


Condition: B

Couple of large repairs in blank margins and some spots of candle wax.

Estimate: $130 - $160

Sold for: $100

Closed on 6/21/2006