Antiphonaries

Antiphonarium de tempore et de sanctis choir, 1653

The antiphonary is a liturgical book of sacred vocal music used by the Catholic Church that generally consists of the antiphons, or responsory chants, sung by the cantor, congregation, and choirs of the Divine Mass.  The first of these collections of plainsong melodies can be attributed to Gregory the Great (590-604), and would often contain decorated initials, borders and miniature illustrations on parchment or vellum to accompany the music and text. 

Title page

The Antiphonarium de tempore et de sanctis choir, 1653, is one of several illuminated antiphonaries in the Rare Book Room’s Manuscripts and Music collections.  Gregorian chant notes can be found in black, with musical staves in red.  

Interior pages

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Filed under Book Art, Illuminated manuscripts

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