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A Diagram for a Procession on Palm Sunday, in the 'Wormald Processional'

A Diagram for a Procession on Palm Sunday, in the 'Wormald Processional'

Medium: Ink and pigments on vellum

Date: 1400

Shelfmark: Additional MS 57534

Item number: f.32r

Length: 21.2

Width: 12.2

Scale: Centimetres

Genre: Illuminated Manuscript

Processions often take place before masses on Sundays and important feasts. The procession, accompanied with chants, may be made to another church (a station), for readings and prayers. The processions' hymns are sometimes assembled in a book called a processional. Made for an urban church dedicated to St Mary and with dependent suburban churches, this one may have been for Salisbury Cathedral, but one of its processions is adapted for the tradition (use) of Norwich and a procession with the relics of St Swithin suggests Winchester, too. A rare illustrated processional, the book gives diagrams of the positions of participants, an efficient approach for feasts, such as Palm Sunday, which have multiple processions. The second diagram for that day, for the blessing of the palms, shows an altar with an image of the Crucifixion with the Virgin and St John. Seven palms rest to the side of the altar, while the gospel book is held on a step below with the red-coped bishop on next step between two deacons (brown circles), crucifer (acolyte holding a processional cross), taperers (acolytes holding candles), thurifer (acolyte holding incense container), holy water and sacristan (priest in charge of the sacristy where the eucharistic hosts and ritual objects were kept) to rear.

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