Bamburgh Select Psalter
Held by: Durham University Library: Bamburgh Manuscripts

Psalter written at the start of the 13th century for a Scottish Augustinian house (most likely to be Holyrood Priory), at York in the 16th century and now in the Bamburgh Castle Library.


Physical description of manuscript
Support

Parchment

Extent: 122 f
Size: 298 mm x 205 mm

Foliation

Foliated 1-40; 45-126.


Secundo folio: gunt
Collation

I8 (separate bifolia?), II-XV8, 162

Signatures: Traces of signatures on quires VI-XV

Condition of manuscriptEvidence of signatures implies that three quires of eight are missing between the calendar and the psalter.
Layout

23 lines in 2 columns

Script

Written in early Gothic book hand by a single scribe.

Decoration

Large initials with gold and colour mark the major divisions of the Psalter.

Binding

Medieval wooden boards, recovered in 19th century.


Manuscript history
Creation

Written in Scotland, approximately 1200.

Provenance

Most likely to have been produced for Holyrood Abbey, and transferred to Blantyre in the 13th century, with a suggestion that it had Coldingham connections. Inscription "Ex dono percevalli crawfurth Civitatis Ebor. 22 Augusti 1558 ad usum Ecclesie sancti Michaelis de Berefrido eiusdem civitatis" on front pastedown places the book in York at St Michael Belfry. How it became part of the Bamburgh Castle Library is not recorded.


Manuscript contents
f.1
Modern title: Psalter preliminaries
Date: 13th/14th century
Language: Latin

Seven pieces added

f.3-8v
Modern title: Calendar
Language: Latin

Augustinian. Important feasts written in red or green.

Edited: Doyle 1957
f.9-116
Modern title: Psalter
Language: Latin
f.116v-125v
Modern title: Six ferial canticles
Language: Latin

Te deum; Benedicite; Benedictus; Quicumque vult; Magnificat

f.126
Modern title: Prayers
f.126r
Modern title: Prayer
Incipit: Domine sancte spiritus. Deus omnipotens qui coequalis coeternus et consubstancialis ...
Language: Latin
f.126r
Modern title: Prayer
Incipit: Ad sanctam trinitatem. Sancta trinitas atque indivisa unitas. omnipotens eterne deus. spes unica mundi ...
Language: Latin
f.126r-126v
Modern title: Prayer
Incipit: Orationes ad crucem omni die. Domine lhesu criste gloriosissime conditor mundi. qui cum sis splendor ...
Language: Latin
f.126v
Modern title: Prayer
Incipit: Domine lhesu criste adoro te in cruce ascendentem ...
Language: Latin

Ends imperfectly


Bibliography

Doyle, A.I., "A Scottish Augustinian Psalter", Innes review viii (1957) 75-85

Gameson, Richard, Treasures of Durham University Library (London: Third Millennium, 2007)

Ker, N.R., Medieval manuscripts in British libraries. II Abbotsford - Keele, (Oxford: ClarendonPress, 1977)