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November, In The Calendar Of A Psalter Preceded By Miniatures And A Calendar

November, In The Calendar Of 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.14r

Length: 34.4

Width: 22.9

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 roundels depict the zodiac sign Sagittarius, and the occupation for the month: killing a pig. The two smudges on the page (at 10 and 23 Nov.) are where the word abbreviated Latin word for 'pope' has been erased, which would have occurred during the Reformation.

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