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A Monk, in the Cartulary of Furness Abbey, Pt. II

A Monk, in the Cartulary of Furness Abbey, Pt. II

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1412

Shelfmark: Additional MS 33244

Item number: f.57v

Length: 38.3-00-00 00:00:00

Width: 23.2-00-00 00:00:00

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Made for Abbot William Dalton of Furness Abbey, Lancashire, the cartulary collects all the documents, such as deeds, papal bulls , charters, and grants, pertaining to the monastery. The result is called the 'Coucher' or 'Cowcher'. It probably was produced at Furness Abbey itself, in a period when manuscripts were often produced in urban workshops. Furness was a Cistercian monastery and as such was remote because of the order's ideal of isolation. The provincial surroundings, however, did not deter the ambitious project. The monk in a white robe whose portrait decorates the first letter of this document is probably meant to represent Abbot Robert who is mentioned near the beginning. Generalised portraits, all painted by a single artist, are typical decoration in the Furness Coucher. The document concerns land given to the monastery by Randulph and Walter of Boulton. Further down in the text, another section dealing with a Boulton grant begins with a letter decorated with a bishop's crosier or staff. The coucher's documents are arranged by location and type of donor (king, ecclesiastic, lay).

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