Cistercian Antiphoners from Morimondo Abbey

Cistercian Antiphoners from Morimondo Abbey – CTHS – N. A. Lat. 1410-1412 – Bibliothèque nationale de France (Paris, France)

Cistercian Abbey of Sancte Marie de Morimondo, Milan (Italy) — Ca. 1175

One of the best and oldest witnesses of the medieval antiphonaries used by the Cistercian Order: this specimen was created in the Cistercian Abbey of Sancte Marie de Morimondo in the Diocese of Milan ca. 1175

  1. An antiphonary is a liturgical book used by a choir and contains antiphons or short chants used in the liturgy

  2. Although antiphonaries vary from region to region, this specimen adheres to the General Roman Calendar

  3. This manuscript contains chants for the sanctorale, which consists of fixed feasts like Christmas and saints’ days

Cistercian Antiphoners from Morimondo Abbey

  1. Description
  2. Facsimile Editions (2)
Description
Cistercian Antiphoners from Morimondo Abbey

This manuscript represents one of the best and oldest witnesses of the medieval antiphonaries used by the Cistercian Order. An antiphonary is a liturgical book used by a choir and contains antiphons or short chants used in various parts of the liturgy and varied from region to region during the Middle Ages. This particular specimen is designed for the sanctorale, one of two main cycles of the liturgical year according to the General Roman Calendar, the other being the temporale. The sanctorale consists of fixed feasts like Christmas and saints’ days while the temporale, as its name suggests, consists of movable feasts such as Pentecost. Identified on fol. 202v as Liber sancte mariae de morimundo mediolan[ensis] dioccesis, this specimen was created in the Cistercian Abbey of Sancte Marie de Morimondo in the Diocese of Milan ca. 1175.

Cistercian Antiphoners from Morimondo Abbey

Created in the third quarter of the 12th century, the Cistercian antiphonary from the Abbey of St. Mary of Morimondo in the diocese of Milan is an exemplary specimen of a medieval antiphonary with staff notation. It is a complete manuscript that has had two small folios inserted into it at a later date and was rebound in the 16th century. Liber sancte mariae de morimundo mediolan[ensis] dioccesis is written twice on fol. 202v, although not in the main hand of the manuscript so it is assumed that this too was added later. Diferenciae are identified by both a letter and a number. The letter indicates the pitch on which the formula ends; if more than one formula ends on that pitch, a number is assigned arbitrarily to distinguish them. The foliation used in the index is that given in the manuscript by a modern hand in the top right corner of the folios. Its tonary, an index listing various items of Gregorian chant by their incipits according to the Gregorian mode or tonus of their melodies within the eight-mode system, is one of the most complete sources that is very close to those used in Cistercian foundations in Austria, Germany, and Poland.

Morimondo Abbey

Morimondo Abbey was a Cistercian monastery located about 20 kilometers southwest of Milan and its original brick structure, built in the Romanesque and Gothic styles, still stands today. Founded in 1134 as a daughter house of Morimond Abbey near Dijon, its name means “die to the world”. The abbey soon attracted various patrons and postulants from all social classes and as a result numerous vocations were practiced at Morimondo. Activity flourished in the abbey’s scriptorium, which not only supplied their own library but also supplied books to two daughter houses. This manuscript was presumably created while Morimondo was under the leadership of Abbot Rogerio (d. 1195). Construction of the abbey was completed in 1296 after being delayed. This was both due to disputes with the clergy of a nearby village as well as various attacks on the abbey as it became entangled in wars between Pavia and Milan: Frederick Barbarossa (1122–90) and his troops looted Morimondo in 1161, it was attacked by Pavian troops in December of 1237, in which various monks were killed, and another attack by imperial troops occurred in 1245. At its height, the community included 50 monks and 200 lay brothers but is a museum today.

Codicology

Alternative Titles
Zisterziensisches Antiphonale aus der Abtei Morimondo
Antiphonaire Cistercien
Origin
Italy
Date
Ca. 1175
Style
Language

Available facsimile editions:
Cistercian Antiphoners from Morimondo Abbey – Maison des Sciences de l'homme et de la société de Poitiers – N. A. Lat. 1410-1412 – Bibliothèque nationale de France (Paris, France)
Maison des Sciences de l'homme et de la société de Poitiers – Paris, 1998
Facsimile Editions

#1 Un Antiphonaire Cistercien pour le Sanctoral

CTHS – Paris, 1999

Publisher: CTHS – Paris, 1999
Commentary: 1 volume by Claire Maître
Language: French
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
Facsimile Copy Available!
Price Category: €
(under 1,000€)

#2 Un Antiphonaire Cistercien pour le Temporal

Commentary: 1 volume by Claire Maître
Language: French
1 volume: Exact reproduction of the original document (extent, color and size) Reproduction of the entire original document as detailed as possible (scope, format, colors). The binding may not correspond to the original or current document binding.
Facsimile Copy Available!
Price Category: €
(under 1,000€)
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