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Detailed record for Royal 2 B I

Title Selection of Psalms, with calendar, prayers, and litanies ('The Psalter of Humfrey of Gloucester')
Origin England, S. (London)
Date 2nd quarter of the 15th century, before 1447
Language Latin
Script Gothic
Artists The Master of Duke Humfrey's Psalms
Decoration 1 half-page miniature in colours and gold, with duke Humfrey of Gloucester kneeling (f. 8). 2 large historiated initials in colours and gold with full borders, at the beginning of the Psalms and the preface (ff. 7, 8). Smaller historiated initials in colours and gold, 78 containing heads of king David and 36 containing mainly other heads or busts, with foliate marginal extensions, at the beginning of Psalms and prayers. Foliate initials 'KL' in colours and gold with partial borders, in the calendar (ff. 1-6v). initials in gold with blue pen-flourishing, or in blue with red pen-flourishing, line-fillers in gold and blue.
Dimensions in mm 245 x 165 (140 x 90)
Official foliation ff. 87 (+ 4 unfoliated modern paper flyleaves at the beginning and at the end)
Form Parchment codex
Binding BM/BL in-house.
Provenance The calendar of Sarum use includes John of Beverley (7th May, added to the Sarum calendar in 1416, f. 3); Frideswide annotated 'non sarum' (f. 5v); Thomas of Canterbury, his octave and translation are erased (ff. 1, 4, 6v); added in a contemporary hand 'decolatio sancti johannis de Brydlyngton' (10th October, f. 5v, John of Bridlington canonized in 1401).
Humfrey [or Humphrey of Lancaster], duke of Gloucester (b. 1390, d. 1447), prince, soldier, and literary patron, duke of Gloucester from 1414, probably commissioned by him: his arms (the royal arms of England with a bordure argent) (f. 7), and his half-erased ownership inscription, 'Ceste livre est a moy Homfrey duc de Gloucestre des seaulmes les quelx jay esleus du saultier' (f. 87v).
Presented to the British Museum by George II in 1757 as part of the Old Royal Library.
Notes Full digital coverage available for this manuscript: see Digitised Manuscripts at http://www.bl.uk/manuscripts.
Other manuscripts associated with the Master of Duke Humfrey's Psalms are: Guildhall, Corporation of London Records Office, 'Statuta Antiqua Angliae', f. 137, London, Drapers' Company, Patent of Arms, 10 March 1439, Capetown, South African Public Library, Grey 4 c 5, and Harley 2909 (see Scott 1996).
Includes a calendar of Sarum use (ff. 1-6v), the prefatory prayer 'Suscipere dignare' (f. 7r-v), selected Psalms (ff. 8-66), litanies with prayers (ff. 66-76), and the Seven Penitential Psalms with a litany to the Virgin and prayers to Christopher, George and Ursula (ff. 76v-87v).
Catchwords.
The selection of Psalms is unique, as explained by an inscription: 'Cest livre est a moy homfrey duc de gloucestre des seaulmes les quelz jay esleus du saultier' (f. 87v). This selection is comprised almost entirely of the Psalms that are attributed to David's authorship.
Select bibliography The Palaeographic Society: Facsimiles of Manuscripts and Inscriptions, Second series, ed. by Edward Augustus Bond, Edward Maunde Thompson, and George Frederic Warner, (London: Cloves and Sons, 1884-1894), II, pl. 201.

[George Warner], Reproductions from Illuminated Manuscripts, Series I, (London: British Museum, 1907), pl. 17.

George F. Warner and Julius P. Gilson, Catalogue of Western Manuscripts in the Old Royal and King’s Collections, 4 vols (London: British Museum, 1921), I, p. 38.

Schools of Illumination: Reproductions from Manuscripts in the British Museum, 6 vols (London: British Museum, 1914-1930), IV: English A.D. 1350 to 1400 (1922), pl. 12.

[J. A. Herbert], British Museum: Reproductions from Illuminated Manuscripts, Series 1, 3rd edn (London: British Museum, 1923), pl. xvii.

[J. A. Herbert], Illuminated Manuscripts and Bindings of Manuscripts Exhibited in The Grenville Library, Guide to the Exhibited Manuscripts (Oxford: British Museum, 1923), no. 35.

Eric G. Millar, English Illuminated Manuscripts of the XIVth and XVth Century (Paris: Van Oest, 1928), p. 90.

Joan Evans, English Art 1307-1461, Oxford History of English Art, 5 (Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1949), p. 99, n. 6.

B. L. Ullman, ‘Manuscripts of Duke Humphrey of Gloucester’, in Studies in the Italian Renaissance, Storia e Letteratura, 51 (Rome: Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura, 1955), pp. 345-55 (first publ. in English Historical Review, 52 (1937), 670-72), (p. 353, no. 11).

Duke Humfrey and English Humanism in the Fifteenth Century: Catalogue of an Exhibition held in the Bodleian Library, Oxford (Oxford: Bodleian Library, 1970), no. 8A.

J. J. G. Alexander, 'William Abell 'lymnour' and 15th -Century English Illumination', in Kunsthistorische Forschungen Otto Pächt zu seinen 70. Geburtstag, ed. by Artur Rosenauer and Gerold Weber (Salzburg: Residenz Verlag, 1972), pp. 166-72 (p. 169).

Richard Marks and Nigel Morgan, The Golden Age of English Manuscript Painting 1200-1500 (London: Chatto & Windus, 1981), p. 30, fig. XX.

J. J. G. Alexander, 'Painting and Manuscript Illumination for Royal Patrons in the Later Middle Ages', in English Court Culture in the Later Middle Ages, ed. by V. J. Scattergood and J. W. Sherborne (London: Duckworth, 1983), pp. 141-62 (p. 150).

J. E. Krochalis, 'The Books and Reading of Henry V and his Circle', The Chaucer Review, 23 (1988), 49-77 (p. 56).

Kathleen Scott, ‘Caveat Lector: Ownership and Standardization in the Illustration of Fifteenth-Century English Manuscripts’, in English Manuscript Studies, 1, ed. by Peter Beal and Jeremy Griffiths (London: British Library, 1989), 19-63 (pp. 28-29, pl. 1).

C. Paul Christianson. 'Evidence for the Study of London's Late Medieval Manuscript-Book Trade', in Book Production and Publishing in Britain 1375-1475, ed. by J. Griffiths and D. Pearsall (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1989), pp. 87-108 (p. 98).

Kathleen L. Scott, Later Gothic Manuscripts 1390-1490, A Survey of Manuscripts Illuminated in the British Isles, 6, 2 vols (London: Harvey Miller, 1996), no. 83.

David Rundle, 'Two Unnoticed Manuscripts from the Collection of Humfrey, Duke of Gloucester: Part I', Bodleian Library Record, 16 (1998), pp. 211-24 (p. 223, n. 14)

Allesandra Petrina, Cultural Politics in Fifteenth-century England: The Case of Humphrey, Duke of Gloucester (Leiden: Brill, 2004), pp 195-96.

Jenny Stratford, ‘The Early Royal Collections and the Royal Library to 1461’, in The Cambridge History of the Book in Britain, 6 vols (Cambridge: University Press, 1999-2011), III: 1400-1557, ed. by Lotte Hellinga and J. B. Trapp pp. 255-266 (p. 266).

Nigel Morgan, 'Patrons and Devotional Images in English Art of the International Gothic c.1350-1450', in Reading Texts and Images: Essays on Medieval and Renaissance Art and Patronage in Honour of Margaret M. Manion, ed. by Bernard J. Muir (Exeter: University of Exeter Press, 2002), pp. 93-121 (p. 100, fig. 35).

Scot McKendrick and Kathleen Doyle, Bible Manuscripts: 1400 Years of Scribes and Scripture (London: British Library, 2007), p. 146, fig. 132.

St Augustine's Abbey, Canterbury, ed. by B. C. Barker-Benfield, Corpus of British Medieval Library Catalogues, 13, 3 vols (London: British Library, 2008), p. 403.

Royal Manuscripts: The Genius of Illumination (London: British Library, 2011), no. 32.
Last revised: 01 June 2011


Images
* * *
 
Calendar pages

ff. 4v-5
Calendar pages
Illuminated initial

f. 7
Illuminated initial
Illuminated initial

f. 7
Illuminated initial
 
Arms of England

f. 7
Arms of England
Illuminated initial

f. 7v
Illuminated initial
Commendation scene

f. 8
Commendation scene
 
Commendation scene

f. 8
Commendation scene
David

f. 8
David
David

f. 27v
David
 
David

f. 27v
David
David

f. 27v
David
David

f. 34v
David
 
Historiated initials

f. 58v
Historiated initials
Historiated initial

f. 58v
Historiated initial
Historiated initial

f. 58v
Historiated initial
 
King, bishop and the Holy Spirit

f. 74v
King, bishop and the Holy Spirit
Virgin and Child

f. 76v
Virgin and Child
Virgin and Child

f. 76v
Virgin and Child
 
Virgin

f. 84v
Virgin

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