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Beatus Page, In A Psalter f.11r

Beatus Page, In A Psalter f.11r

Medium: Ink, pigments and gold on vellum

Date: 1220

Shelfmark: Lansdowne MS 431

Item number: f.11r

Length: 33

Width: 21

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

The saints commemorated in the calendar and litany of this Psalter point without doubt to its having been made for an Augustinian house in East Anglia, and this house is very likely to have been Barnwell Priory, on the outskirts of Cambridge. The start of Psalm 1 is decorated with an unusually large and complex Beatus initial (for the start of the Psalm, 'Beatus vir' = Blessed is the man). It incorporates the symbols of the Four Evangelists, King David and his musicians, personifications of the Church and the Synagogue, various entertainments including a knife-juggler and a bear-baiter, and numerous animals and birds.

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