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The Start Of The Canon Of The Mass, In A Durham Missal

The Start Of The Canon Of The Mass, In A Durham Missal

Medium: Ink, pigments and gold on vellum

Date: 1348

Shelfmark: Harley MS 5289

Item number: f.282r

Length: 26.5

Width: 15

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

A Missal is necessary for the celebration of the Mass: it is likely that each priest or altar would have had one. Flyleaf inscriptions record that this manuscript was acquired for Durham cathedral through Prior John Fossor (1341-1374), and that it was kept at the altar of Sts. John the Baptist and Margaret in the Chapel of the Nine Altars. Each Mass is made up of parts which change, and parts which stay the same. The parts which do not vary are often written in larger script, or more elaborately decorated. In this example the darkened colour of the parchment makes it clear how much more handling than the rest of the volume this section has had.

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