Historiated initial A with two warrior saints from an Antiphonary.

Accession number: 
MS M.1174
Historiated initial A with two warrior saints from an Antiphonary.
Italy, probably Rome, ca. 1570.
Purchased in 2010.
1 leaf
Commissioned by Pope Pius V as part of a series, ca. 1567-1572, of 34 volumes for the convent of Santa Croce in Bosco Maregno. Acquired by Dr. Robert J. Parsons (from Philip J. Pirages, Catalogue 53, Oregon, n.d.) who sold it (when it failed to sell at Sotheby's - London, 6 July 2010, lot. 16) to the Morgan Library.

Recto with 4 four-line staves of music with text beneath; 5 lines on the verso.
The opening for the antiphon for saints John and Paul.
Decoration: single historiated initial framed by sprays of acanthus leaves in blues, purples and greens.
Artists: Roman School: Style of Giulio Clovio and Bartolomeo Sprangher.
31 of the the 34 volumes commissioned by Pope Pius V for the convent of Santa Croce (founded by the Pope in 1566) in Bosco Maregno are in the Museo Civico, Alessandria. Two volumes are in the convent of San Domenico in Chieri. One of the San Domenico volumes, Corale II, a gradual that covers the liturgical season from the first to the fourth Sunday of Lent, has been deprived of its miniatures. Some of these have turned up in various collections: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Lehman Collection (1) Christ Carrying the Cross in an initial "D" and (2) Last Judgment in an initial "S"; Brooklyn Museum, (1) Return of the Prodigal Son in an initial "I" (or "L") and (2) Christ and the Samaritan Woman in an initial "F"; the Cini Collection, Venice (1) Jonah and the Whale in an initial "R" and (2) Expulsion of the Money Changers in an initial "D". M. 1174 does not appear to come from this volume. Two other initials were sold by Sotheby's, 19 June 1990, lot 42 (catalogue not seen).
Various artists worked on these choir books between 1567/8 and 1572. Bartolomeo Sprangher, whose style influenced some of these initials, was appointed court artist to Pius V in 1570.