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Historiated Initial With Virgo, In The Martyrology Of St. Augustine's, Canterbury

Historiated Initial With Virgo, In The Martyrology Of St. Augustine's, Canterbury

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1100

Shelfmark: Cotton MS Vitellius C XII

Item number: f.139r

Length: 33.1

Width: 24.5

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

A martyrology records accounts of martyrs and their deaths, for reading each day as part of the Divine Office, in the sequence of their feast-days through the year. Sometimes, as in the present example, space is left for the insertion notes to commemorate other deaths. The additions to the present manuscript (in addition to the style of its handwriting and decoration) show that it was made at St. Augustine's Abbey, Canterbury. The 'KL' monogram which introduces September includes a representation of the zodiac sign for Virgo, the young woman. The added commemorations allow historians to build up a picture of the personnel of 12th-century Canterbury; one entry, for example, refers to 'Asketinus, monk of Christ Church [Canterbury], father of the monk God[frey?]'

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