Coldingham Breviary


A 13th-century breviary.

Made for the Benedictine priory of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Coldingham, Berwickshire, this handsome breviary commemorates local feasts in its calendar such as the Dedication of the altar of St Michael in Coldingham (29 April), the Translation of Margaret of Scotland at Dunfermline (19 June), the Dedication of the altar of St Ebba, a 7th-century abbess of Coldingham (22 June), and the Dedication of the church of Coldingham (15 October).

Breviaries are liturgical books containing the texts necessary for the celebration of the Divine Office, the cycle of daily devotions performed by members of religious orders and the clergy. The Coldingham Breviary includes the texts for the feast days throughout the year, a calendar to keep track of the feast days, the Psalms for reciting over the course of every week, and hymns for singing in the choir. It is also contains beautiful illuminations, such as a full-page image of a Benedictine monk kneeling in prayer before the enthroned Virgin and Child (f. 125v, digitised image 1).

View images of the entire manuscripts via our Digitised Manuscripts website.

Full title:
Coldingham Breviary
c. 1270–1280
Manuscript / Manuscript
Latin / Old French
Usage terms

Public Domain in most countries other than the UK.

Held by
British Library
Harley MS 4664

Full catalogue details

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