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Donor Inscription And Anathema, On A Flyleaf Of A Psalter

Donor Inscription And Anathema, On A Flyleaf Of A Psalter

Medium: Ink on vellum

Date: 1250

Shelfmark: Royal MS 2 B.vi

Item number: f.1r

Length: 27.6

Width: 18.7

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Mid 13th-century St. Albans is crucially important in the history of English illuminated manuscripts thanks primarily to the works of Matthew Paris, a monk of the abbey. Many manuscripts have been--probably wrongly--attributed to the abbey by comparison with Matthew's style and technique; this psalter is therefore important because its claim to be a St. Albans product (based on the calendar, litany, and early ownership by a St. Albans monk) is secure. The inscription in red ink states that Brother John of Dalling (? Dallington, not far from St. Albans) gave this book to God and to the church of St. Alban, but that by permission of Abbot John, he was allowed to keep it for the duration of his life. It was not uncommon for monks to own books as personal property, and then to bequeath them to their monastery at their death. The inscription at the very top of this page records that this manuscript was kept in a cupboard in the choir of the church.

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