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Title:

Vita Sancti Gregorii papae

Maker(s):

John the Deacon; author
; production
; production

Collection:

Frank McClean

Category:

illuminated manuscript

Name:

other; type of text

Date:

circa 1200

Period:

Germany, c.1200 and Italy, Venice, probably Murano, c.1450

Description:

PHYSICAL DESCRIPTION: Parchment, iii modern parchment flyleaves + 151 fols. + iii modern parchment flyleaves, 257 x 182 mm (193-199 x 127 mm), 24 long lines, ruled in brown ink, quire marks

BINDING: 1903, blind- and gold-stamped brown leather over wooden boards, by Joseph William Zaehnsdorf (name and date gold-stamped signed inside upper cover) , probably re-using the oak boards from the previous binding (cf. Phillipps sale catalogue of 1899), rust stains from fastening devices of earlier binding on fol. 1

CONTENTS:
fol. 2r Versus in laude sanctissimi Gregorii pape
fols. 2v–151v John the Deacon, Vita S. Gregorii papae, with Prologue and capitula
fol. 151v List of Gregory’s works (fifteenth-century addition)

ORNAMENTATION: Gold initials [6-14 ll.] with white vine-scroll terminating in flowers and fruit on blue grounds, sometimes combined with red, green and gold, for Prologue (fol. 2v) and books (fols. 4v, 23v, 54v, 94v); red penwork initials [1-2 ll.]; capitals highlighted in red.

Production
Place (legacy):

Germany, production, region
Italy, region
Venice, place
Murano, place

Technique(s):

illumination; whole
penwork

Material(s):

parchment; support
gold; medium

Dimension(s):

height
width

Acquisition:

bequeathed; 1904; McClean, Frank

Provenance:

At the Camaldolese Abbey of San Michele in Murano, Venice, by c.1450, as revealed by two partially erased ownership inscriptions: Iste liber est monasterii S. Michaelis de Muriano ordinis Camaldulensis [et] diocesis Torcellane (fols. 1v and 151v); at San Michele in Murano at least until 1779 (listed in Mittarelli 1779, cols. 472-473, as [Gregorius], Vita scripta a Johanne Diacono, codex speciosissimus in folio sec. xiii num. 704, and dated to the thirteenth century); probably sold with the main part of the San Michele library after 1810; French owner or dealer (inscription ‘150 feuillets’ on fol. 1r); Sir Thomas Phillipps (1792-1872), his MS 4559 (number on fol. 1r); his sale, Sotheby’s, London, 5-10 June 1899, lot 654; Frank McClean (1837–1904); his bequest, 1904.

Associated
Person(s):

McClean, Frank; previous owner
Phillipps, Sir Thomas; previous owner
Camaldolese Abbey of San Michele; original owner

Notes:

While the text and its penwork decoration point to Germany c.1200, the spaces left blank at the beginning of the Prologue and the four books were only filled in with gold and white vine-scroll initials in Venice c.1450. It was probably at that time that the list of Gregory’s works was added on fol. 151v.

Inscription:

secundo folio; fol. 3r; ac publicavit auctoritas

Exhibition(s):

Illuminated Manuscripts in the Fitzwilliam Museum. 1966 - 1966
Organiser: The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge (Cambs.), UK
Venue: The Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge (Cambs.)
Catalogue number: 90

Splendours of Italian Illumination. 1989 - 1990
Organiser: Alexander, J.J.G.
Venue: Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge
Catalogue number: 52

Documentation:

Wormald, F.. Giles, P.M.. 1966. Illuminated Manuscripts in the Fitzwilliam Museum.Cambridge (Cambs.):
cat. no. 90

James, Montague Rhodes, Dr. 1912. A descriptive catalogue of the McClean Collection of Manuscripts in the Fitzwilliam Museum.Cambridge (Cambs.): Cambridge University Press
pp. 242-43, pl. LXX

Mittarelli, G. B.. Ceruti, Giacinto. 1779. Bibliotheca codicum manuscriptorum Monasterii s. Michaelis Venetiarum prope Murianum una cum appendice librorum impressorum seculi XV / opus posthumum Johannis-Benedicti Mittarelli etc., ed. by Giacinto Ceruti..Venice:
cols. 472 – 73, no. 704

Accession:

Object Number: MS McClean 110
(Manuscripts and Printed Books)
(record id: 179016; input: 2010-12-15; modified: 2012-08-28)

Permanent
Identifier:

http://data.fitzmuseum.cam.ac.uk/id/object/179016





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