Gospel Book

Accession number: 
MS M.565
Gospel Book
Saxony, northeastern Germany, ca. 1210-1220.
19th-century pastiche with 12th- and 13th-century elements; manuscript is bound into a box case of heavy wooden boards; upper cover has silver-gilt plaque at center with a figure of Christ enthroned in relief; wide filigree border set with crystals and semi-precious stones and eight medallions depicting figures of saints and scenes from the lives of Christ and the Virgin.
Purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1905.
52 leaves (1 column, 41-42 lines), bound : vellum, ill. ; 325 x 196 mm
Kloster Heiningen, a monastery of Augustinian canonesses in Hanover; Prince Alexis Soltykoff (who also owned, separately bound, the other part of this manuscript); his sale (Paris, 1861, lot 1); Guillaume Libri; his sale (London, Sotheby's, July 26, 1862 (second day's sale), lot no. 229) to Sir Thomas Phillipps (Phillipps Collection no. 16388); purchased by J. Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), perhaps through Quaritch, in 1905 or 1906; J.P. Morgan (1867-1943).

Ms. Gospel book; written and illuminated in Saxony, northeastern Germany, perhaps in Hamersleben (or Halberstadt or Madgeburg), in the 12th century.
Text: canon tables followed by the Gospels of Matthew and Mark.
The other part of this manuscript is now held by the British Library (MS Add. 27926).
Musical notation: vellum fragments of a German 15th-century antiphonary are found on the front and back pastedowns; the front pastedown has 5-line staves ruled in black and hufnagle notation; on the back pastedown is an antiphon for Lauds for the first Sunday in Lent.
Decoration: 12 illuminated canon tables; 2 full-page miniatures; illuminated initials throughout.