Psalms 133 and 135 in a manuscript for Franciscan Use

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Psalms 133 and 135 in a manuscript for Franciscan Use



Recto: 19 lines of text in Latin written in a rounded gothic script on parchment. Illuminated initials alternating in blue and red begin each verse.  A two-line illuminated initial ‘E’ in blue followed by a calligraphic ‘C’ marks the start of Psalm 133.  Further down a two-line initial ‘L’ marks the start of Psalm 135.  See images below


Verso:  As Recto, with 18 lines and one-line versal initials only.  See Verso image below


Source:  Probably Italy.


Date:   c.1600


Content:  Psalm 132 (KJV133) begins: Ecce quam bonum et quam iucundum: habitare fratres in unum.  Sicut unguentum in capite, quod descendiit in barbam, barbam Aaron...(Behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to dwell together in unity.  It is like the precious ointment upon the head that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron’s beard...)


Condition:  This leaf is in very good condition.  There is some cockling of the parchment and minor browning, but the text and coloured initials are bright and clear.  The staining in the bottom outer corner of Recto is from page-turning. 

The leaf is unconditionally guaranteed genuine.


Notes:  Ecce quam bonum  is one of a group of Psalms that were first used in the thirteenth century as an appendage to the Divine Office in the Roman Catholic Church. They are the so-called Gradual Psalms, Nos. 119 through 133, and were used as prayers for the dead and for other occasions in the church.  The English composer William Byrd set the words to music for four a cappella voices.


Size:  Size of leaf: approx. 550x375 mm. Text and illuminated area : approx.  450x300 mm.  Mat size: approx. 640x470 mm.  Presented in a museum quality mat, ready to frame.  Certificate of Authenticity. 

Packing & registered, insured post within Australia: $32.50.  Overseas destinations: ask for quote.


Item No:  MOT 021

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