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Historiated Initial With God The Father And God The Son, In A Psalter Preceded By Miniatures And A Calendar

Historiated Initial With God The Father And God The Son, In A Psalter Preceded By Miniatures And A Calendar

Medium: Ink, pigments and gold on vellum

Date: 1210

Shelfmark: Royal MS 1 D.x

Item number: f.98r

Length: 34.4

Width: 22.2

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated manuscript

Oxford University came into being gradually, around the year 1200, and a community of book-makers were soon established in the town, centred around the Catte Street and St. Mary's Church. Documentary records suggest that these book-makers not only provided students with the necessary textbooks, but also specialised in meeting the needs of the luxury market: a disproportionately large number of illuminators are recorded. This psalter is probably one of their products: the calendar and litany include three entries for St. Frideswide, the patron saint of Oxford. The initial 'D' to Psalm 109 is usually illustrated by an image of the Trinity, but here the artist has followed the opening words of the psalm more literally, by showing only two of the three persons of the Trinity, with their feet on footstools: 'The Lord said to my Lord: Sit thou at my right hand: Until I make thy enemies thy footstool.'

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